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to Noto..Camping Car Travelogue | 能登半島への旅 ①

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Just after England defeated the ‘All Blacks’ in the RWC, simultaneously the country was hit by a catastrophic Typhoon Hagibis (Typhoon #19), luckily we managed to depart to our annual camping car voyage. This year to the Noto Peninsula which projects about 100 kms into the Northern Sea from Ishikawa Prefecture, an approximate 470 kilometers from Tokyo at a straight distance. Noto Peninsula known for poor public transportation, it remains quite remote, sparcely populated and with rugged and wild coastline, rice fields and small quiet villages.

台風19号が多域に災害をもたらせた翌週、そしてイングランドがオールブラックスにRWCで勝利した次の日、今年のキャンピングカー旅行に出かけました。爪痕が浅くところどころで道路も寸断され、閉鎖区間は避けながらも今年は能登半島に向かいました。

初日は関越道路で湯沢ICまで新潟へ。去年は初日に一気に出雲大社へ爆走しましたが、今年の旅行はのんびり旅を目標にトロトロ走り始めました。高速道路を降りると17号線(県道)をゆっくりと農道、山道、街並みを見ながら走っていきます。

Our dear dog ‘Nana’ who has been traveling with us since childhood

On our very first day, from central Tokyo, we headed north to Nagaoka (Nigata prefecture), to pick up our friend who will be joining us the following day arriving by Shinkansen from Tokyo.

My husband and ‘Nana’

Heading north along the Kanetsu Expressway, will take you to Niigata prefecture, this area of Japan know for rice agriculture, ski resorts and great hot springs (onsen). Exiting the highway at Yuzawa IC, stopping over for one of my favorite delicacies, the Hegi Soba. Hegi Soba is a buckwheat noodle integrated with funori (seaweed) which yields a smooth and firm texture, originated at Tokamachi (Niigata).

県道沿いにあった「へぎ蕎麦」屋さん、中野屋十日町が由来の「へぎ蕎麦」はここのエリアでしか食べれないうまさがあります。

Restaurant : Nakanoya | 中野屋

住所:新潟県南魚沼市南田中534−89 TEL:025−778-3113

No doubt, one of the best way to see rural Japan is the travel along the country roads if one has the luxury of time. These two places are located along local prefectural road #17 and to find a long cue at a rural countryside was such a strange view, apparently to find out to be small Onigiri (rice ball) shop.

お昼を終えて少し走ると田舎町に行列を発見。大行列がどんどん、どんどん長くなり興味本位で止まってみることに。なんと「おにぎり屋さん」。並ぶのは好きじゃない二人ですがこんなに人が並ぶならと試すことに。列で待つこと30分。裏方で作るよりも売れていくスピードの方が早く、たどり着いた時には何が買えるかはその時にあるおにぎり。キャンピングカー旅行では買って車内で食べれる設備が整っているので今夜の夕食にすることに。

Uonuma Soyu Farm うおぬま倉友農園

Extract from Uonuma Soyu website.

Uonuma Soyu Farm makes rice in Minami-Uonuma, former Shiozawa town, the farm terrain surrounded by Mt. Maki and Mt. Echigo. The harsh mountainous environment; short sunshine hours, cold snowmelt and extreme difference in day and night temperatures has been a year to year challenge to the highest brand rice production in the Uonuma area.

うおぬま倉友農園が米作りを行うのは南魚沼にある、旧塩沢町。
ここは巻機山、越後三山の山々に囲まれ、日照時間の短さや冷たい雪解け水、昼夜の寒暖差など厳しい環境の山間地です。この厳しい環境に向き合い、長年に渡り品種改良や研究が行われてきたことで、塩沢産コシヒカリは、魚沼地区の中でも最も高い評価を受けるブランド米となりました。

Uonuma Soyu Onigiri (Rice Ball) | うおぬま倉友農園直営店「おにぎり屋」

Michi-no-Eki is a “Roadside Station” where provides rest facilities including free parking and local community cultural center including some with hot spring (onsen) facilities and restaurants.

<to Noto..Camping Car Travelogue | 能登半島への旅 > to be continued 続く…..

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0nigiri, rice balls
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