Saturday, April 25, 2015

Japan 2015 - Day 8 - Shimanami Kaido Cycling Adventure

We started the day with a simple breakfast purchased from a convenience store the night before and it was going to be a long long day.
The weather forecast was accurate with rain in the morning but we have to get ourselves moving even though it was drizzling...bye bye Guesthouse Yadocurly we hope we can come back again in the near future.
First we went to the wrong jetty, fortunately the correct one is just nearby and don't bother to look for any ticket counter you just have to pay the fare on the boat itself.
A map showing the bicycle route of Shimanami Kaido covering 7 islands with 6 bridges at the jetty.
The boat fare to be paid on board 110yen per person with bike and the ferry crosses every 5 - 10 minutes.
Here come the boat to get over to the first island and it's called Mukaishima Island. The elderly man with baseball cap is another wonderful person we tried to communicate but I think only 10% was comprehended... I remember he was telling us to follow the blue line for Shimanami Kaido cycling..
Again the senior suggested that we take a picture from here so Jo got the opportunity for the shot.
The sign shows the direction to the first bridge which is "Innoshima Bridge".
The rain drops kept on falling and we kept on pedalling on a cold wet Monday morning.
Basically the cycling route is generally running along the coastal side of the islands.
At last we could see the first bridge.
On a cold day frequenting the loo was often indeed.
On the blue line there are distance indicator to the final destination that is Imabari.
One for the album for remembrance.
Despite it was raining we tried to appreciate the beauty as we pedal.
The route we were taking is shown in red.
7.5km from the jetty to Innoshima Bridge 因島大橋.
The Innoshima Bridge (因島大橋) is a suspension bridge, part of the Nishi-Seto Expressway linking the islands of Honshū and Shikoku. Completed in 1983, it has a main span of 770 metres (2,526 ft) and connects Mukaishima, Hiroshima with Innoshima, Hiroshima.
This bridge is a double deck bridge the bicycle and motor lane at the lower deck.
In term of view it is block by the fencing.
I guess it's promotion time free for bicycle until 2016. Is it so? We did not drop any coin.
Now that we have completed bridge no.1 and were checking on the second island known as Innoshima Island.
The rain was getting milder we reach Innoshima Island, the traffic was quiet and as usual the view is beautiful.
Port facilities is another common sights at these islands.
We took a brief stop at a junction to ensure that our orientation was correct and heading at the right direction.
A peep at the houses and vegetation in Innoshima Island.
Pit stop at this convenience shop for a hot coffee and also to warm up our bodies.
My cockpit during a wet condition.
In this island we started to see big mandarin oranges on the road or bicycle lane. These plants at almost everywhere in the island. I was tempted to pick up the oranges but did not.
From the coastal road we turned left as shown in this sign to a dedicated bicycle lane leading us to the elevated bridge.
It was nearly a distance of 11km of pedalling in this island before the next crossing.
Bridge No.2 - Ikuchi Bridge
The two towers of the Ikuchi Bridge are delta-shaped, with two inclined planes of fan-arranged stays.
One of the major structures is the Ikuchi cable-stayed bridge, with a main span of 490 metres (1,610 feet). 
That's the end of bridge No.2 Ikuchi Bridge on a bicycle lane.
The third island is known as Ikuchijima Island. Ikuchijima is a small island of about 11,000 people. 
On this island we have to cover a distance of 15km before we could reach bridge no.3. I like the variation of scenery as we ride on.
There were only a few cyclists seen on this day. And the weather was getting better and better which good for my soaked jean and socks.
At times it was very windy and sometime we had to face head wind making cycling very tough.
Lemon trees everywhere in the lemon island.
Hirayama Ikuo Art Museum. 
Hirayama Ikuo was a major Japanese painter of the Nihonga style who passed away in 2009. He was born in Setoda and was in Hiroshima when the city was atom bombed. He is known mostly for large scale painting of the Silk Road as well as of his home turf of the Inland Sea
Suddenly I could see a busy spot in this island it is near a port on the north.
Jo loves this kind of cycling lane. Unfortunately it is not found everywhere in the world.
Arriving at Sunset Beach on the northern side of the island. We decided to stop to have a look see.
We were the only customers.
Setoda Port is actually located in this island other than its popularity in lemon growing.
Whenever I see bridges I am very happy, this is the third bridge and it's called Tatara Bridge.
Bye bye Setoda and its Lemon.
After going through the winding lane we managed to ascend to Tatara Bridge.
I could see places for food and I can even smell them from the bridge. We were hungry by hook or by crook we have to stop there and eat.
Another sign indicating the rest place (Tatara Shimanami Park) and we were going there soon.....
Yes we are coming down to the rest area........
At last we made our way to the food place Tatara Shimanami Park and the question now is what shall we eat ....
Our lunch in this restaurant for some seafood.
My choice of a fish head noodle sound like our Malaysian noodle.
Jo was really hungry she had this set. Of course I trespassed a bit.
That is the Tatara Bridge connecting Ikuchijima Island and Omishima Island viewed from Omishima Island. The center span is 890 meters and was the longest cable-stayed bridge in the world when it was built.
And the ride continued and we have covered about half or more of the journey. As for this island of Omishima we cycled on land for 7 km before reaching the next bridge.
Some of the oncoming cyclists seen on this Shimanami Kaido Adventure.

This informative sign seen as we cycled along the route.
Bridge 4 - Omishima Bridge is the shortest bridge among all the bridges. I like this arch bridge.
We could easily complete the shortest bridge linking between Omishima Island and Hakatajima Island.
This is the small island among the seven islands where we rode for about 5km from one end to the other.
Bridge No. 5 - Hakata - Oshima Bridge taking us into Oshima Island.
Passing by marble producing sites like this.

Some of the houses seen at this neighbourhood.

My dear wife was getting tired and could not wait to finish the ride.
We had the most difficult time in this 12km ride at Oshima Island with hilly climbs, lesser bicycle lanes, the rest places are far apart and we were basically tired. Jo was in a pain but she kept it to herself.
At last a rest place to recover and rest ourselves before the last push to complete this adventure.
The sight of the last bridge was a relief as we get closer and closer to it.
So near yet so far when are we reaching the bridge after going round the linkage.
Another rest before we we climb again.
Bridge No.6 is the longest which is 1.2km long and it is called Kurushima-Kaikyo Bridge. The sign leading to the circular ramp of the bicycle lane.
The Kurushima-Kaikyō Bridge (来島海峡大橋) connects the island of Ōshima to the main part of Shikoku, is the world's longest suspension bridge structure and was completed in 1999.
The Kurushima-Kaikyō Bridge consists of three successive suspension bridges with six towers and four anchorages. There is a shared anchorage that joins each suspension bridge to the next.
The bicycle ramp to bring cyclists up and down to the bridge.
Its construction is similar to the western portion of San Francisco – Oakland Bay Bridge which is two successive suspension bridges with four towers and one shared anchorage. The bridge's total length of 4,015 metres (13,173 ft), is just a little longer than the total length of the two tower Akashi-Kaikyō Bridge, which is 3,911 metres (12,831 ft).
Lovely view from the bridge and it is open for people to walk on the bicycle lane too.
This is seen at the end of the bridge while approaching to Imabari City.
It's such a breeze for road bikers to cycle along this route.
Instead of taking a train from Imabari Station I have predetermined to take it from Hashihama Station which is nearer to Shimanami Kaido Route. 
We were in a rush to board the train and were asked to bag our bikes before boarding the train but the time couldn't permit us to do so, the kind train master allowed us to do it on the train itself. Domo Arigato!
 The fare was 1,700 yen for 2 person to Matsuyama
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The train we took in Imabari City.
I was glad we have reach Matsuyama safely as I was worried about the long ride with my wife. Well done, Jo, you did it.
Now we have to locate Sen Guesthouse in this city.
With Oregon it was easy, she took us to places accurately while we enjoy seeing new places.
Yes it was the place for the night at Sen Guesthouse.
Spicy hot ramen was my dinner.
By the way the bath facility at Sen Guesthouse is on a shared basis, we decided to have our bath at a public bathhouse, Onsen hot spring is one of Matsuyama tourists' attractive.
Sorry no camera inside a public bath!
Good Night Day 8 and our Brommies have to rest outside the hotel.