Tag Archives: Spring

Return of the Light to Iwaya, 2019 February 16 and 17




2019.02.16 at 13:04 (L) and 13:22 (R)

In our previous post, we showed the photos taken by Chika-san on 02.21. We have now received photos from Sugisaka-san taken earlier, on 02.16 and 02.17. By comparing them, we can see how the spotlight on Sekimen-ishi changes from day to day. The pair of photos above were taken on February 16th.




2019.02.17 at 13:04 (L) and 13:22 (R)

The photos just above were taken the very next day at the same times. The first pair of photos is closer to the back wall, since the sun’s path on the 16th is lower in the sky than it is on the 17th. When compared with Chika-san’s photo of the 21st, the later day shows a narrow spotlight on Sekimen-ishi. Perhaps on the 22nd or 23rd the spotlight did not reach Sekimen-ishi at all.

The spotlight previously appeared on October 23, 2018. The report is given here. The observation then marked sixty days before the winter solstice.  You can refresh your memory of the Kanayama Megaliths solar calendar here.

We are grateful to Chika-san and Sugisaka-san for sharing their photos with us.






60 Days Before the Summer Solstice

From Friday, April 20th to Sunday 22nd, 2018
The above photo of the whole area, showing the Iwaya-Iwakage cluster on the left and the simulator building and the Senkoku-ishi grouping on the right, was taken from Highway 86 early in the morning of April 20.  Kanayama Megaliths blog has posted a new report dated April 26, 2018.   It is about the observation of 60 days before the summer solstice in the solar calendar of the Kanayama megaliths. It is the sunlight observation that tells the beginning of summer at the April 22 milestone date of the Kanayama Six-Season calendar.
At 6: 54 in the morning, light begins to stream from the top mountain. Summer observation is mainly at Senkoku-ishi. Looking at the position where the sun rises from the megalith, we see the sun just ascending from the mountain in the east at the Higashinoyama group. Now it’s past seven, and the light begins to reach Iwaya-Iwakage which is located somewhat higher than the Senkoku-ishi.
Then light begins to penetrate into the grotto of Senkoku-ishi. Around 7 a.m., sunight starts to shine on every single megalith. Although it starts out rather chilly, when the sun comes out, we feel the air of summer already.
Today Kobayashi-san is here, and there is a television interview going on. Kobayashi-san is standing in front of the shadow on Senkoku-ishi. this shadow is cast by the megalith in the lower right photo, below, on the morning of April 22.
As the sun rises higher, the grotto is illuminated, and the triangular face is very bright. On May 21, this face will be adorned with dashes of sunlight.

February 19, 2018 Winter into Spring

金山巨石群 冬期120日間終了の光

Kanayama Megaliths 120 Days of Winter Ends 2018 21519

This is our excerpt from the blog posted by the Kanayama Megaliths Research Center at  http://blog.livedoor.jp/kanayama_tour-kanayamamegaliths/archives/1070157722.html on 2018.02.22. 

The face of the Sekimen stone in Iwaya-Iwakage is lit by a spotlight for five days from February 15 to 19. February 19 marks the end of the 120-day winter season. (The exact number of days was 119.) The 120 days of winter can be divided into the 60 days of Early Winter ending on the Winter Solstice and the 60 days of Late Winter following the Solstice.


The Kanayama blogsite has posted two photos taken on 2018.02.19 at 13:23 and 13:33. Note how well the lower edge of the spotlight matches the edge of the Sekimen. Comparison of the two photos shows that the solar altitude has decreased during the ten minutes lapse, causing the spotlight to move higher “up” the stone face. The spotlight of 2/19 matches that of 10/23, because the sun’s altitude is the same on these two days.


Here is a view of the beam of light entering from the crevice above. Three megaliths form the crevice and shape the sunbeam in exactly the right way.




Spring has arrived!


It is lovely at Kanayama Megaliths. Chika-san visited on the spring cross-quarter date (half-angle date of the Kanayama solar calendar) , April 22, 2017. In addition to photographing solar phenomena, she took these pictures of spring in Iwaya Valley.

The first three photos are the sakura and pink peach blossoms growing by the side of the road. Notice how petals drift down in the breeze and form a pink river on the ground.


The fourth photo is that of Monotropastrum globosum or Monotropastrum humile (銀龍草: ギンリョウソウ ginryousou). Monotropastrum humile is a species of myco-heterotrophic plant of the family Ericaceae, distributed throughout eastern Asia. It lacks chlorophyll and is therefore unable to photosynthesis as most plants do; instead it gains sugars and nutrients from mycorrhizal fungi. (Wikipedia). Monotropastrum humile (D.Don) H.Hara is the accepted name of a species in the genus Monotropastrum (family Ericaceae). You can read about it here.