Mt. Apoi in Hokkaido Opens for Climbing Season, Prepares for National Park Designation

Mt. Apoi in Hokkaido, Japan, set to open for climbing season, with plans to designate the area as a national park in 2024, attracting more visitors to its diverse alpine flora, while prioritizing ecosystem protection.

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Muhammad Jawad
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Mt. Apoi in Hokkaido Opens for Climbing Season, Prepares for National Park Designation

Mt. Apoi in Hokkaido Opens for Climbing Season, Prepares for National Park Designation

Mt. Apoi, located in Hidaka Sanmyaku-Erimo Quasi-National Park in Samani, Hokkaido, officially opened for the climbing season on April 13, 2024. The mountain attracts over 7,000 climbers annually who come to view its diverse alpine plant species, including 20 that are endemic to the area.

The park is scheduled to be designated as a national park in the summer of 2024, and local officials anticipate the number of climbers to increase further after the designation. "We are enthusiastic about the upcoming national park designation and the opportunity to showcase the natural beauty of Mt. Apoi to even more visitors," said a spokesperson for the Samani town office.

On the opening day, a prayer service was held at the base of the mountain trail to wish for the safety of climbers throughout the season. Volunteers also placed a brush near the trailhead to remove mud from shoes and installed warning signs to help prevent invasive plant species from being inadvertently brought into the delicate alpine ecosystem.

Why this matters: The designation of Hidaka Sanmyaku-Erimo Quasi-National Park as a national park will provide increased protection for the area's unique biodiversity and raise awareness about the importance of preserving Japan's natural heritage. The expected increase in visitors will also bring economic benefits to the local community in Samani.

Mt. Apoi boasts a rich variety of alpine flora, with over 80 different plant species, making it a popular destination for nature enthusiasts and botanists. The endemic species found on the mountain are of particular scientific interest and require careful conservation efforts to ensure their survival. As the park prepares for its new status, local authorities are working to balance the promotion of tourism with the need to protect the fragile ecosystem of Mt. Apoi for future generations.

Key Takeaways

  • Mt. Apoi in Hokkaido opened for climbing on April 13, 2024, attracting over 7,000 climbers annually.
  • Hidaka Sanmyaku-Erimo Quasi-National Park to be designated as a national park in summer 2024.
  • Mt. Apoi has 20 endemic plant species, and the park aims to protect its unique biodiversity.
  • Increased visitors expected after national park designation, bringing economic benefits to Samani town.
  • Local authorities balance tourism promotion with protecting Mt. Apoi's fragile alpine ecosystem.