Saturday, January 5, 2013

Hare's-tail Cotton Grass Community on the Tobu Line


EMU Tobu 6050 series stands at Tobu-Nikko Station

As I mentioned before, Tobu has an extensive railway network in the Tokyo metropolitan area. The total line length is 463.3km, the longest private railway in the Tokyo metropolitan area.

Tobu Railway has two faces... one as a commuter railway in the densely populated area, and one as a local route in the countryside. The trains of Tobu Railway are also composed of two groups... one as an 8 to 10-car urban commuter train, and one as a 2-car short local train.

An EMU 6050 series is a standard local train operated in the countryside (see the top photo). It was launched in 1985, and is still a major fleet on the local routes. I love this train, as it makes me enjoy railway travel. The comfortable cross seats and large windows to capture the beautiful outside scenery can be relaxing. A white colored train body with red and orange colored stripes is my favorite.

One day last summer, I got on the EMU 6050 series and visited Senjogahara near Tobu-Nikko Station. Senjogahara, which is a part of Nikko National park, is famous for its beautiful highland marsh. We are only allowed to walk on the boardwalks, as the area is strictly preserved. While I walked there, I saw a gorgeous Hare's-tail Cotton grass community. It was pure white cotton weed, and spread all over the field (see the following photo).


Nothing beats railway travel and a nature walk.
 
Hare's-tail cotton grass community in Senjogahara near Tobu-Nikko Station
 
More information about EMUs on the Tobu Line (in Japanese):
http://www.tobu.co.jp/corporation/rail/vehicles/