Kaminoko Pond

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The name ‘Kaminoko’ means “child of the gods” from stories that it is fed by underground waters from Lake Mashuko, which is known by the Ainu as Kamuito or “Lake of the Gods”. The water is crystal clear and stays at 8C throughout the year and so prevents the submerged trees from rotting. The Ainu are the indigenous inhabitants of Hokkaido, more about them later.

Despite the rain, the short walk through the forrest to see this turquoise lake was quite magical. The colour does not fill the lake water itself, but is a surface deposit on a patch of land in the middle of the lake.

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© Helen Gray 2021