Author Archives: Skorj

GRAND TOURING: Shio no Michi, the Salt Road — Part 01

Having not been away in a few weeks, we decided to take a Monday off and spend three days exploring Nagano Prefecture and some of the less traveled valleys near the Northern Alps. Using our usual form of taking the main … Continue reading

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GRAND TOURING: Mobara Twin Circuit

As some of you might know, I own a dark gray Honda S800M Coupe, and it has landed me right in the middle of Tokyo’s S-car scene. When some friends went out for a day of circuit racing, I decided to … Continue reading

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GRAND TOURING: Kanto

Since the opening of the Yamate Tunnel, provided traffic is light of course, traversing Tokyo to join the out-going expressways has become a lot easier. In ten or fifteen minutes, you can join the Joban for a quick run out … Continue reading

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GRAND TOURING: Driving the Chubu Touge, Part 02

In Part 01 of our Chubu grand tour, we escaped Tokyo by expressway northwest into the mountains. Our return trip took us on roads less traveled, over some of Japan’s most famous winding passes known as touge. We had made … Continue reading

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GRAND TOURING: Driving the Chubu Touge, Part 01

With an extended weekend available and being rather tired of Tokyo one tedious week, we decided to explore Chubu. North of Tokyo but with its name meaning “central”, Chubu is the region between Kanto (the greater Tokyo area), and Kansai … Continue reading

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GRAND TOURING: Tohoku, Part 02

In Part 01 of our Grand Tour through Japan’s Tohoku region we headed north from Tokyo, past tsunami-devastated villages and deep into Aomori Prefecture. Normally on such trips the nostalgics we encounter are the most beloved — Skylines, rear-drive Corollas, Honda … Continue reading

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GRAND TOURING: Tohoku, Part 01

For the last year or more, most of our visits to Tohoku have been single minded – helping with the recovery efforts. This trip was a chance to relax, tour the glorious countryside, meet people and, of course, capture some … Continue reading

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Grand Touring: The Kii Peninsula via the newly opened Shin-Tomei Expressway

Earlier this year the first section of the Shin-Tomei Expressway opened for traffic, marking a new era for Japan’s highway system. Naturally we went exploring, taking this newest road to one of the oldest inhabited regions of Japan, the Kii Peninsula.

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Grand Touring: A Weekend in Nagano Prefecture

Eight-and-a-half feet of reliable snowfall blankets the mountains of Nagano Prefecture each winter, transforming quaint and quiet towns into temporary getaways for Tokyo-ites. When the snows disappear so do the downhill skiers and onsen soakers, but local FJ40 Land Cruisers stay to witness the spring thaw. … Continue reading

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Grand Touring: Nostalgic Nissans in Yamanashi Prefecture

In exploring the non-traditional Japan, you quickly learn to identify markers to indicate you are on the right track to discover something old and special — narrow roads lined with closed shutters, anything made of red brick, disconnected power meters, … Continue reading

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