Furano to Shimukappu – Sunday 9 June

A very pretty ride …

The Petit Melon Hotel had a free happy hour last night … it was nice meeting all the guests over a wine and snacks as well as the managers.

I’m so pleased we persisted to go this route. A short 50km ride – we were on route 985 from Furano, a quiet road among farms and mountains to our right some with streaks of snow. There were threatening heavy clouds but no rain. It is a Sunday and lots of people in the farms working … a tractor is busy spraying an onion crop, some hand planting in the fields. A couple struggling with lengths of plastic in the breeze as they make small rows of hot houses.

Gentle rolling hills … it’s 27°C and only 9am. Rockmelon vines well established under plastic, a scattering of vineyards and some asparagus, and of course rice and grain crops … possibly barley. The combination creates such an interesting landscape.

Water channels are a many coming from the hills, which adds to the beauty and tranquility.

After 14km we turn onto route 237 as the mountains close in we are going through a heavily forested valley crossing several rivers and attractive rail bridges. The forest is very thick and we are looking for deer everytime we see the familiar deer road sign.

Then up for a long climb over the mountains – a bit of relief with a 500m tunnel. Then a great descent, before we knew it, we were in Shimukappu at 1pm.

A small village in the hills with a few visible ski runs on the mountain above the township.

We are at a guesthouse that has seen better days – it has a public bath which is always nice after a ride … not the mineral water kind. Accommodation was extremely hard to find here.

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