Hakusan Castle

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Castle Properties
English Name Hakusan Castle
Japanese Name 白山城
Alternate Names Nabeyama Toride
Founder Takeda Nobuyoshi (?)
Year Founded mid 12th C.
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition Ruins only
Designations Top 100 Mountaintop Castles, National Historic Site
Historical Period Pre Edo Period


Features trenches
Visitor Information
Access Nirakasaki Sta. 50 min walk
Visitor Information mountain castle, open anytime.
Time Required 75 mins
Location Nirasaki, Yamanashi Prefecture
Coordinates 35° 42' 3", 138° 25' 20"
Admin Visits
Year Visited 2015
Visits October 12, 2015
Added 2016
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Hakusan18.jpg


History

It's often said that Hakusan Castle was built by Takeda Nobuyoshi as a defensive position for his home just over a kilometer away. Many castles or seats of power from this time period are actually comprised of a home or palace on lower ground and a nearby mountain castle for times of unrest. Perhaps he founded some castle on this site, but from looking at the design and remnants you see today it is very much a Sengoku Period mountain castle. Given the position and style it was likely reformed or completely rebuilt by Aoki Nobutane in the defensive line from Hakusan Castle to Shinpu Castle to Noumi Castle. After the fall of the Takeda clan when the Tokugawa and Hojo fought for positions around the Yamanashi region, the Tokugawa got Hakusan Castle. The castle was maintained by Yamadera Nobumasa for awhile and was likely part of the Tokugawa Castle network in this region but there are no records of it's history after Yamadera. It was abandoned in the early Edo Period.

Visit Notes

This was a neat castle full of many trenches, earthen embankments and baileys and bailey entrances. They are more well defined than many sites so beginning fans of castle ruins can enjoy it and learn a lot. The only concern is there are not many signs.

There is also a bus from Nirasaki Station to the Takeda Hachiman Shrine, which is on the opposite side of the mountain from where I started. The busses are few so plan carefully. Due to poor timing of the bus after visiting Shishiku Castle, I took a taxi to the Hakusan Shrine to visit the castle and walked back to the station from here. If I were to do it again, I would probably start form Takeda Hachiman Shrine come down via Hakusan Shrine and walk back. The walk between the castle and the station also offers spectacular views of Mt Fuji. I read on a Japanese blog and was told by one person that bears are frequently spotted around the castle so wear a bear bell or go with others. Rather than bears I was more concerned that the two snakes I saw could be pit vipers. You never know what could be hiding under the brush.

Japanese Notes

この城は堀、土塁、虎口、郭などがよくわかるので登城するのが楽しいお城です。土の城のビギナーでもよく楽しめる城跡です。もうちょっと説明版があったらなおさら勉強になるでしょう。

韮崎駅から武田八幡宮までのバスもあるようですが、本数が少ないのでよく計画して行ってください。今回は獅子吼城を訪れた後で韮崎駅に戻ったらバスに間に合わなかったため、タクシーで白山神社まで行って、歩いて帰りました。また行く機会があれば武田八幡神社から登って白山神社に降りてから歩いて帰るとおもいます。途中で富士山の絶景も楽しめます。あるブログでも書いてあったし、一人の現地の方にも言われましたが、このあたりはクマが出没するので、クマ鈴をつけたり、他の人と一緒に行ったりして注意した方がいいそうです。私はクマ鈴をつけていきました。でもクマより私はヘビを二カ所で見た時はマムシではないかと心配してクマよりちょっと怖かったです。

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