Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Sagano Scenic Railway and more general train thoughts

Even when viewed through gaps in the trees, 
the Hozu River (aka Hozugawa) is a pretty sight
 View of the same river -- note the different color of 
the water! -- from near Kameoka Torokko Station

When I was in Kyoto a few weeks ago, the weather was lovely -- with lots of days with bright blue skies and without nary a drop of rain falling in the city the entire duration of my visit.  A week before, things had not been so pretty however, what with Typhoon Man-yi having unleashed torrential rain and strong winds on the area, and even causing rivers in the area to over-run their banks and cause floods.

And even though Typhoon Man-yi had long left the area by the time I visited, it still was responsible for denying me from doing one of the things I had wanted to do when in Kyoto -- that is, going on a ride along the Hazagawa in the manner so amusingly described by Emily Cannell (whose Japan blog posts I've thoroughly enjoyed reading). Consequently, I had to make do with just one leg of a round trip in the Arashiyama and Sagano area that I had originally planned -- specifically, the Sagano Scenic Railway leg.

Even though things didn't go the way I had originally envisioned, the ride I took along the Sagano Scenic Railway from Saga to Kameoka proved to be a pleasant follow-up to my time at the Toei Kyoto Studio Park. Although shorter than them (from what I can remember), I still found the experience enjoyable along the lines of the rides I took on such as the Hakone Tozan (mountain) Railway last year and also Wales' narrow gauge Ffestinoig Railway back in the summer of 1987.

When riding special trains like these through scenic landscapes, I have to admit to feeling some kinship with trainspotter types and thinking that my favorite mode of transport in the world may well be trains.  At the very least, I get to thinking along the lines of Margaret Schlegel in E.M. Forster's Howard's End: that is, that "she had strong feelings about the various railway termini. They are our gates to the glorious and the unknown. Through them we pass out into adventure and sunshine...", though it's also true that "to them, alas! we return". ;b  

2 comments:

Sue St Clair said...

I love trains! I would like to take a train trip across Canada (my home) one day. Its on my bucket list :)

YTSL said...

Hi Sue --

I used to have a Trans-Canadian on my bucket list too. But after going on long journeys in the US (e.g., Denver to L.A.), I have to admit to realizing I prefer shorter train journeys! ;b