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Mid-3. Subalpine coniferous forest with wave regeneration in Mt. Shimagare, Nagano Prefecutre

26th Aug.

Organizer: Susumu OKITSU (Chiba University) (

Co-organizer: Masatsugu YASUDA  (Chiba University) (

Itinerary: 26 Aug., Meet at 7:00 am at Chuo University – arrive at 9:30 Mugikusa Pass (alt. 2120 ) – take a hike in Mt.Shimagare – 15:30 Mugikusa pass – Chuo University (Finish at about 19:00 pm)  


Mt. Shimagare (alt. 2403 m) is a peak of the Yatsugatake Mountains located in an inland area of central Japan. The coniferous forest on the mountains is a typical subalpine forest dominated by Abies veitchii, A. mariesii, Tsuga diversifolia, and Picea jezoensis with Betula ermanii. Several hardwoods such as Sorbus comixta, Acer tschonoski, and Acer ukurunduense are mixed in the coniferous forest. Shimagare ("stripes of dead trees" in Japanese) was named after the unique landscape made by a wave regeneration of Abies forest. Dead tree stands make horizontal stripes more than 1km long and move towards the top of the mountain at a speed of 1–3 m per year. Under the dead trees forming the stripes, saplings pre-regenerated under the upward moving closed canopy of mature trees begin to grow. The regeneration cycle is constant enough to make a regular pattern of upward moving stripes. The causes of the wave regeneration on this mountain have been attributed to prevailing wind, summer desiccation, and deep freeze as well as undeveloped soil, although the decisive environmental factor controlling the regeneration has not been elucidated.

Expense: 10,000JPY, excluding lunch.

Maximum participants: 22

Minimum participants: 12

Additional information: Mountaineering gears (rainwear, hiking shoes and backpack) as well as lunch and drink are required. Note a hike with an altitudinal differences of about 400m.

Wave regeneration of Abies forest in Mt.Shimagare

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