Sports World is probably my favourite haikyo in Japan. In an upcoming top ten list of ruins in East Japan I’m putting together, it will more than likely be number 1. It’s just so awesome. It’s massive, 20 years abandoned but relatively intact, and set in a really beautiful forested mountain area. There are creepy screaming monkeys/birds at night, models on fashion shoots by day, and all manner of ways to entertain oneself clambering, clowning, and investigating the rest of the time.
This was my third trip to Sports World. The first was 2 years ago, my first solo haikyo and kind of a watershed moment for me- still getting my head out of a past relationship and trying to figure out how to forge ahead. I went in at night after walking for an hour from the train station. It was pitch black as I wandered the huge grounds, looking for a place to pitch my tent. Every few minutes something like a dying pig would roar in the distance.
In the end I ensconced myself in one of the old hotel rooms- virtually intact- and went a little crazy barricading the doors and windows while waiting to go to sleep.
The next day the place was a gorgeous wonderland. I took many more photos then, more focused on exploring, and made three videos, one grave, one comical, and one deathly fictional.
You can see all that stuff here.
My second trip was a fly-by visit with Mike, via car, before it got too dark. That was the first time I saw the blue tubes- something I hadn’t even found the first time I went. You can see those shots and story here.
This time, Sports World capped a weekend trip into Izu to explore haikyo. We saw hotels, mining towns, and ancient hospitals, but afterwards everybody said Sports World was the best.
And then my shots. I’m experimenting with various techniques, including HDR amongst others. If you prefer straight shots of exploration, see my earlier posts. Now I’m much more interested on trying to capture the striking nature of these places, to bring out the beauty.
Dead cars. I didn’t climb on them, this time.
A wasp’s nest writhed just to my right. I hurried off.
Taro Aso, ex-Prime Minister, had approval ratings around 20% before he was ousted a few weeks ago.
Lie on a deck-chair and look into the jungle.
A strange smell in this place.
I ran the middle route.
Location – Izu, Japan.
Entry – Easy, round a fence.
Highlights – Tubes, pool, vistas.
RUINS / HAIKYO
You can see all MJG’s Ruins / Haikyo explorations here:
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