At the lake, we decided to rent a paddleboat and toodle around. Oh yeah, it was waaay hot today- 30deg midday in the mountains! so we paddleboated for a half hour in a rocketship-shaped boat.
Then we continued our drive north in the mountains along the Akita-Iwate border taking dozens of photos because it was SO beautiful! Ridiculously beautiful. Our next stop was Hachimantai (it's a volcano!), where we went for a short hike around the sulfur pits and mudpots at the top. They were pretty cool (hot, actually) and smelly. It was fun because there's still patches of snow in that area, but the day was so warm we were hot walking around in T-shirts! The volcanic wonders were neat, but not as expansive as the stuff at Mt Lassen and it kind of made me miss CA in a nice way. The girls were really stoked about it though, because apparently Chicago, Dublin, and Johannesburg don't have volcanoes nearby and had never seen the sulfur/mud before. They kept asking me all kinds of questions that made me wish I'd paid more attention on those Lassen fieldtrips! :P
After mooore driving, we got to Kazuno, our destination for the night. We picked up some groceries, rented a movie and made ourselves at home at Nick's (Christy's bf, but he's out of town) apartment. We cooked a nice dinner and relaxed - now it's time for bed!