Hanasaki Castle (Tsuru)
Hanasakijō is not well remembered to history but there are hints here and there. Oral traditions, chiefly the name of some surrounding localities, suggest that the fort was used as a signal fort or fortified belltower for the striking of warning bells and production of smoke signals, part of a large network of such forts in the borderlands between Kai and Musashi. The Kōshū highway runs below, so the fort may have been given a degree of fortification, suggested by surviving ruins, congruent with a fort also used to guard the trade route. It may have been a satellite fortification of Iwadonojō. The castellans are unknown.
Hanasakijō is a very minor yamajiro (mountaintop castle) site but some ruins remain. The shrine area is thought to have been a castle bailey. It is about 40m long. To the rear there is what looks like the remains of a trench and dorui (earthen ramparts). The trench's middle section may have been filled in for rear access to the shrine for vehicles, but to either side there are chutes which appear to be tatebori (climbing trenches). There is dorui just behind the shrine building. The dorui is less certain toward the rear of the site where the road runs because probably dirt was heaped up and cut away to construct the roads below, though it's tempting to imagine some kind of gate complex here. Some castle explorers speculate that more ruins may be located further up the ridge beyond the large road which was cut for the neighbouring golf course.
|Tsuru Hanasaki Castle
|Pre Edo Period
|Tatebori, Dorui, Horikiri, Dobashi
|Kami-Ôtsuki Station on the Fujikyū Line; 30 minute walk to shrine causeway
|24/7 free; shrine
|Ôtsuki, Yamanashi Prefecture
|35° 36' 23.26" N, 138° 55' 18.80" E
|Added to Jcastle
|Admin Year Visited
|Friends of JCastle