Nakano Castle (Chiisagata)

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ChiisagataNakanojou (4).JPG


For more information see Chiisagata Nishiyama Castle.

Visit Notes

Of the three forts in the Nishiyamajō Fort Group, the Nakanojō is the one which most looks like a castle ruin. The main bailey is just a small mountain peak, on which it is presumed some kind of look-out or signal tower was built, but below there is terracing with a large ditch running down the hill to the side. At the top of the ditch the earth is banked up. These features could be taken for a tatebori (climbing trench), dobashi (earthen bridge) and multiple koshikuruwa (terraced baileys). However, these earthworks could've been made by farmers cultivating the hillside at a much later time. The tatebori could be a drainage channel. I struggle to imagine why a drain would be so wide, and so perhaps there is an alternative explanation. Nevertheless, considering the lack of convincing ruins at any of the other supposed Unno Clan forts, it seems these features could be a mirage. I am reminded of bigfoot. Take a photo of the forest. People who want to see bigfoot will, upon the mere suggestion of his presence in the foliage, surely see him somewhere. And yet this is a castle ruin according to the local education board and Miyasaka Takeo, a legend of castle exploration in Nagano.

  • Terraced ledge

Castle Profile
English Name Nakano Castle (Chiisagata)
Japanese Name 小県中ノ城
Founder Unno Clan
Year Founded 1330
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition Ruins only
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Artifacts Kuruwa, Dobashi, Tatebori
Features trenches
Visitor Information
Access Ueda Sation on the Shinano Railway; bus to Kamishina; 20 minute walk to Sumiyoshi
Visitor Information 24/7 free; mountain
Time Required 20 minutes
Location Ueda, Nagano Prefecture
Coordinates 36° 25' 21.14" N, 138° 17' 0.13" E
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Added to Jcastle 2022
Contributor ART
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed
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