Guide To Mountain Biking Trails In Gunma | 15 Thrilling Gunma MTB Trails To Try!

Planning a biking adventure in Gunma? We made a list of mountain biking trails in Gunma for you! Check it out!

Gunma, located in the heart of Japan, is a prefecture renowned for its breathtaking natural landscapes and rugged terrain. For mountain biking enthusiasts, Gunma offers a plethora of exhilarating trails that cater to riders of all skill levels. 

Whether you’re a beginner seeking a leisurely ride through picturesque countryside or an experienced thrill-seeker looking for challenging downhill descents, Gunma has something for everyone. 

In this guide, we’ll explore some of the top mountain biking trails in Gunma and help you plan an unforgettable biking adventure.

Mountain Biking Trails In Gunma

Takasu Cycling Road

Takasu Cycling Road is a well-known biking trail located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan.

It stretches approximately 50 kilometers through the picturesque countryside, offering a delightful biking experience for riders of all skill levels.

The trail starts in the town of Takasaki and winds its way through the rural landscapes, passing by lush green fields, charming villages, and scenic mountains.

It offers a peaceful and serene atmosphere, making it an ideal choice for leisurely rides and family outings.

One of the notable features of Takasu Cycling Road is its well-maintained paved path. The smooth surface ensures a comfortable and enjoyable biking experience.

The absence of significant elevation changes makes it accessible to riders of varying fitness levels and ages. 

Whether you’re a beginner just starting out or someone looking for a relaxing ride, this trail is a great option.

As you cycle along the route, you’ll have the opportunity to take in the natural beauty of Gunma’s countryside.

The expansive rice fields, colorful flower gardens, and rolling hills create a picturesque backdrop for your biking adventure. 

The trail also passes through quaint villages, allowing you to experience the local culture and interact with friendly residents.

Takasu Cycling Road is well-marked with signs and maps at regular intervals, making navigation easy. 

Along the route, you’ll find rest areas and facilities where you can take a break, have a picnic, or enjoy a refreshing drink. These amenities add convenience and comfort to your journey.

The best time to explore Takasu Cycling Road is during spring and autumn when the weather is pleasant, and the surrounding landscapes showcase their vibrant colors. 

During spring, you can witness cherry blossoms in full bloom, creating a scenic spectacle.

In autumn, the foliage transforms into shades of red, orange, and gold, offering a breathtaking display.

Whether you’re seeking a peaceful ride, a chance to connect with nature, or a family-friendly outing, Takasu Cycling Road provides a fantastic opportunity to explore Gunma’s countryside on two wheels. 

Mt. Akagi

Mt. Akagi, located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan, is a popular destination for mountain biking enthusiasts.

It offers a variety of thrilling trails that cater to riders of different skill levels, making it an exciting and diverse biking destination.

The mountain features a mix of natural and purpose-built trails, providing a wide range of options for riders to choose from.

Whether you’re a beginner looking for a scenic ride or an experienced rider seeking technical challenges, Mt. Akagi has something for everyone.

For beginners and intermediate riders, there are trails that offer a more relaxed and enjoyable biking experience. 

These trails are usually wider and smoother, allowing riders to comfortably navigate through the scenic landscapes of Mt. Akagi.

You can expect to ride through lush forests, open meadows, and alongside picturesque lakes. 

These trails are perfect for riders who want to enjoy the beauty of the mountain while honing their skills.

For more advanced riders, Mt. Akagi offers adrenaline-pumping trails that provide a thrilling biking experience.

These trails feature technical sections, steep descents, and challenging climbs, testing the skills and endurance of riders. 

The terrain can vary from rocky and rooty sections to narrow and winding singletracks.

These trails require good bike handling skills and provide an exhilarating ride amidst the stunning mountain scenery.

One of the highlights of biking in Mt. Akagi is the panoramic views you can enjoy from the trails.

As you ascend the mountain, you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking vistas of the surrounding landscapes, including lush forests, sparkling lakes, and distant mountains. 

The views from the top of Mt. Akagi are particularly awe-inspiring and offer a sense of accomplishment after a challenging climb.

It’s important to note that the trails in Mt. Akagi are well-maintained and regularly marked, ensuring riders can navigate safely. 

However, it’s always recommended to check trail conditions, maps, and any additional information before embarking on your biking adventure.

Whether you’re a local rider or a visitor, exploring the biking trails in Mt. Akagi is a fantastic way to experience the natural beauty of Gunma. 

The mountain offers a range of trails that cater to different skill levels, allowing riders to enjoy the thrill of biking while immersing themselves in the stunning landscapes of Mt. Akagi. 

Haruna Downhill

Haruna Downhill is a thrilling mountain biking trail located on the slopes of Mount Haruna in Gunma Prefecture, Japan. 

It is renowned for its exhilarating downhill sections, technical features, and stunning natural surroundings, making it a popular destination for experienced mountain bikers seeking an adrenaline-pumping adventure.

The trail starts near the summit of Mount Haruna and descends through a diverse range of terrain, including dense forests, rocky sections, and open slopes.

The combination of fast descents, challenging berms, jumps, and technical features creates an exciting and dynamic riding experience.

Haruna Downhill is designed for experienced riders who have good bike handling skills and are comfortable with high-speed descents. 

The trail offers a mix of natural and man-made features that require precision and control.

Riders can expect steep sections, tight corners, drops, and jumps, providing an adrenaline rush and an opportunity to showcase their technical abilities.

One of the highlights of the Haruna Downhill trail is the breathtaking natural beauty that surrounds it. 

As you navigate through the forested sections, you’ll be treated to glimpses of lush greenery, vibrant foliage, and glimpses of Mount Haruna itself. 

The combination of the challenging terrain and stunning scenery creates a truly immersive and memorable mountain biking experience.

Haruna Downhill has gained popularity among mountain biking enthusiasts and even hosts local competitions and events.

This trail attracts riders from different parts of Japan and beyond who come to challenge themselves and experience the thrill of downhill riding in a captivating setting.

It’s important to note that due to the technical nature of the trail, riders should ensure they have the appropriate safety gear and equipment.

Full-face helmets, knee and elbow pads, and protective clothing are highly recommended to ensure rider safety.

Additionally, familiarize yourself with the trail conditions and follow any local regulations or guidelines to ensure a responsible and enjoyable biking experience.

Overall, Haruna Downhill offers an exciting and challenging mountain biking adventure for experienced riders.

With its thrilling descents, technical features, and stunning natural surroundings, this trail is sure to leave riders with lasting memories of their biking experience in Gunma.

Minakami Trails

Minakami, located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan, is a renowned outdoor adventure destination, and it offers a variety of biking trails that cater to riders of all levels. 

The Minakami biking trails are known for their diverse terrain, scenic beauty, and the opportunity to explore the region’s natural landscapes.

The trails in Minakami cover a wide range of difficulties, from gentle forest paths suitable for beginners to challenging descents and technical sections for experienced riders. 

Here are some highlights of the Minakami biking trails:

  • Tanigawa Forest Trails

The Tanigawa Forest Trails offer a network of interconnected paths that wind through lush forests, providing a tranquil and scenic biking experience.

These trails cater to riders of varying skill levels, with options for both leisurely rides and more technical sections for those seeking a challenge.

  • Minakami Kogen Trails

The Minakami Kogen Trails encompass a series of trails that traverse the picturesque highlands of Minakami.

The terrain varies from rolling meadows to forested areas, offering a mix of open stretches and tree-lined sections. 

These trails are suitable for riders of different skill levels, allowing for enjoyable rides amidst beautiful natural surroundings.

  • Tone River Trails

The Tone River, one of Japan’s longest rivers, runs through Minakami, and its banks offer biking trails that provide stunning views and a relaxing ride. 

These flat and well-maintained paths are ideal for beginners or those who prefer a more leisurely biking experience. The tranquil atmosphere and the soothing sound of the river make for a pleasant ride.

  • Sarugakyo Downhill

For riders seeking an adrenaline rush, the Sarugakyo Downhill trail is a must-visit. This trail offers a thrilling descent with a mix of technical features, jumps, and berms.

The trail is designed for experienced riders who are comfortable with high-speed descents and maneuvering through challenging terrain. 

The stunning mountain scenery and the exhilarating ride make it a popular choice for downhill enthusiasts.

  • Hoshi Onsen Trails

Hoshi Onsen is a hot spring village in Minakami known for its beautiful natural surroundings. The Hoshi Onsen Trails provide a combination of forest paths, riverside routes, and scenic mountain vistas. 

These trails offer a mix of beginner-friendly sections and more technical areas, allowing riders to enjoy the serenity of the area while exploring the trails at their own pace.

Minakami’s biking trails also provide easy access to other outdoor activities, such as hiking, rafting, and hot spring relaxation.

The town is known for its stunning river valleys, pristine nature, and breathtaking foliage during autumn, adding to the overall charm of the biking experience.

Before setting out on the trails, it’s important to check local information, trail conditions, and any necessary permits or regulations. 

Additionally, always prioritize safety by wearing appropriate protective gear and being mindful of other trail users and the natural environment.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced rider, the Minakami biking trails offer a diverse and captivating experience, allowing you to immerse yourself in the beauty of Gunma’s nature while enjoying the thrill of biking.

Oze National Park

Oze National Park, located in the bordering areas of Gunma, Fukushima, Niigata, and Tochigi prefectures in Japan, is a vast and stunning natural reserve known for its pristine wetlands, alpine landscapes, and diverse flora and fauna. 

While Oze is primarily famous for its hiking trails, there are also biking trails that offer a unique way to explore this magnificent national park.

The biking trails in Oze National Park vary in difficulty and terrain, catering to riders of different skill levels. 

Here are some highlights of the biking experience in Oze:

  • Ozegahara Loop Trail

The Ozegahara Loop Trail is one of the most popular biking routes in Oze National Park. It encompasses the expansive Ozegahara Marshland, which is renowned for its beautiful alpine scenery. 

The trail consists of well-maintained paths that wind through the marshland, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and vibrant flora. The terrain is generally flat and manageable, making it suitable for riders of various skill levels.

  • Ozenuma Pond Trail

The Ozenuma Pond Trail is another notable biking trail in Oze National Park. This trail takes riders through a picturesque landscape dotted with serene ponds, dense forests, and blooming alpine flowers. 

The route features well-marked paths that provide a mix of gentle ascents and descents. The highlight of this trail is the opportunity to enjoy the tranquil atmosphere and the reflections of the surrounding mountains in the pristine ponds.

  • Oze-Tadami Trail

The Oze-Tadami Trail is a longer and more challenging biking route that connects Oze National Park to Tadami in Fukushima Prefecture. This trail offers a combination of mountainous terrain, forested sections, and scenic vistas. 

The route includes both on-road and off-road segments, providing an adventurous experience for riders who are seeking a longer, more immersive biking adventure.

  • Shirane Kazan Trail

The Shirane Kazan Trail takes riders to the summit of Mt. Shirane, one of the iconic peaks in Oze National Park. This trail presents a more demanding biking experience, with steep climbs and technical sections. 

However, the reward is the stunning panoramic views from the mountaintop, overlooking the surrounding landscapes and the breathtaking Okutadami Lake.

As Oze National Park is primarily a protected natural area, it’s important to note that biking is restricted to designated trails and certain areas. 

Additionally, due to the sensitive ecosystems in the park, riders are advised to follow strict Leave No Trace principles, respect wildlife, and adhere to any regulations or guidelines set by park authorities.

Biking in Oze National Park allows you to immerse yourself in the unspoiled beauty of Japan’s alpine landscapes and experience the serenity of the wetlands. 

The combination of biking and the diverse natural surroundings make for a memorable and unique adventure in Oze National Park.

Mount Tanigawa

Mount Tanigawa, located on the border of Gunma and Niigata prefectures in Japan, is a renowned mountain known for its rugged beauty and challenging terrain. 

While it is more famous for its skiing and mountaineering opportunities, it also offers exciting biking trails for enthusiasts looking to explore the mountain on two wheels.

The biking trails on Mount Tanigawa cater to riders of various skill levels, from beginners to experienced riders seeking more technical challenges. 

Here are some highlights of the biking experience on Mount Tanigawa:

  • Tanigawa Forest Trail

The Tanigawa Forest Trail is a popular biking route that takes riders through the enchanting forests surrounding Mount Tanigawa. The trail offers a mix of dirt paths and narrow singletracks that wind through the dense vegetation. 

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Riders can expect a combination of moderate climbs, thrilling descents, and technical sections that provide an enjoyable and scenic biking experience.

  • Tanigawa Downhill Course

For riders seeking an adrenaline rush, the Tanigawa Downhill Course is a must-try. This course is designed for experienced riders looking for an exhilarating and challenging ride. 

It features steep descents, rock gardens, jumps, and berms that require advanced bike handling skills. The course rewards riders with stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys as they navigate through the rugged terrain.

  • Tanigawa Long Climb

If you’re up for a test of endurance, the Tanigawa Long Climb offers a rewarding challenge. This trail takes riders on a steep ascent up Mount Tanigawa, with a continuous climb that tests both physical and mental stamina. 

The climb is accompanied by breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes, making the effort worthwhile.

  • Tanigawa-Minakami Loop

The Tanigawa-Minakami Loop is a longer biking route that combines the beauty of Mount Tanigawa with the scenic landscapes of Minakami. 

The loop covers a variety of terrains, including forested sections, river valleys, and mountain slopes.

This route provides a well-rounded biking experience, allowing riders to explore the natural beauty of the region while enjoying the thrill of biking.

It’s important to note that the trails on Mount Tanigawa can be challenging and require appropriate skills and fitness levels.

Riders should always ensure they have the necessary safety equipment, including helmets, pads, and suitable bikes for off-road riding.

Before embarking on any biking adventure on Mount Tanigawa, it is advisable to check local information, trail conditions, and weather forecasts. 

It’s also recommended to be mindful of any restrictions or regulations in place to ensure a safe and responsible biking experience.

Biking on Mount Tanigawa offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the mountain’s natural beauty, challenge yourself on thrilling trails, and enjoy breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. 

Whether you’re a beginner looking for a scenic ride or an experienced rider seeking technical challenges, Mount Tanigawa has biking trails that will satisfy your adventurous spirit.

Mount Akagi Kogen

Mount Akagi Kogen, located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan, offers a diverse and exciting biking trail for riders of various skill levels. 

The biking trail on Mount Akagi Kogen provides an opportunity to explore the beautiful landscapes, scenic views, and natural beauty of the area.

The biking trail on Mount Akagi Kogen is known for its well-maintained paths, stunning vistas, and a mix of terrain that caters to both beginners and experienced riders. 

Here are some key features of the biking trail:

  • Scenic Landscapes

The trail on Mount Akagi Kogen takes riders through picturesque landscapes, including dense forests, open meadows, and rolling hills. 

As you ride along the trail, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, including the iconic volcanic cone of Mount Akagi. The combination of natural beauty and the biking experience creates a memorable and immersive adventure.

  • Varied Terrain

The biking trail on Mount Akagi Kogen offers a mix of terrain that caters to riders of different skill levels. For beginners and casual riders, there are gentle and relatively flat sections that allow for a comfortable and enjoyable ride. 

These trails are perfect for those who want to take in the scenic beauty of the mountain while cycling at a leisurely pace.

  • Technical Challenges

For more experienced riders seeking a challenge, Mount Akagi Kogen also offers technical sections and more demanding trails. These trails include steep descents, narrow singletracks, and rocky or rooty terrain that require advanced bike handling skills. 

These sections provide an adrenaline rush and a chance to test your abilities as you navigate through the rugged terrain.

  • Trail Network

The biking trail on Mount Akagi Kogen consists of a network of interconnected paths, offering riders various route options and opportunities for exploration. 

The trails are typically well-marked, allowing riders to easily navigate through the area. It’s a good idea to obtain a trail map or seek local advice to ensure you make the most of your biking adventure.

  • Stunning Views

One of the highlights of the biking trail on Mount Akagi Kogen is the breathtaking views that await riders along the way. 

As you ascend or descend the mountain, you’ll be rewarded with vistas of lush greenery, shimmering lakes, and distant mountains. These awe-inspiring views add an extra dimension of beauty to your biking experience.

It’s important to note that safety is paramount while biking on Mount Akagi Kogen. Always wear appropriate safety gear, including helmets and pads, and ensure your bike is in good working condition. 

It’s also advisable to check weather conditions and trail information before setting out on your ride.

Biking on Mount Akagi Kogen provides an opportunity to connect with nature, enjoy the stunning landscapes, and challenge yourself on the varied terrain. 

Whether you’re a beginner seeking a leisurely ride or an experienced rider looking for technical challenges, the biking trail on Mount Akagi Kogen offers a memorable adventure in the heart of Gunma Prefecture.

Mount Haruna Loop

The Mount Haruna Loop is a scenic and popular biking trail that encircles Mount Haruna, a dormant volcano located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan. 

This loop offers a unique biking experience, combining breathtaking natural beauty, challenging climbs, exhilarating descents, and a variety of terrain for riders of different skill levels.

The Mount Haruna Loop covers a distance of approximately 50 kilometers, taking riders on a journey through stunning landscapes, including forests, fields, and picturesque rural areas. 

Here are some key features of the Mount Haruna Loop:

  • Mount Haruna

The trail begins and ends at the base of Mount Haruna, allowing riders to admire the majestic presence of the volcano throughout the ride. The symmetrical shape and lush greenery of the mountain create a picturesque backdrop as you navigate the loop.

  • Scenic Views

As you pedal along the loop, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. The route offers panoramic vistas of rolling hills, serene lakes, and distant mountain ranges. 

The changing seasons bring their own beauty, with vibrant cherry blossoms in spring, lush greenery in summer, and colorful foliage in autumn.

  • Climbs and Descents

The Mount Haruna Loop includes a mix of climbs and descents that cater to riders of varying abilities. 

The challenging ascents provide a rewarding test of stamina and strength, while the thrilling descents offer an exhilarating rush. The varied terrain adds an element of excitement and adventure to the biking experience.

  • Road Conditions

The majority of the Mount Haruna Loop follows well-paved roads, offering smooth and enjoyable riding conditions. The roads are generally well-maintained, providing a comfortable surface for cyclists. 

However, it’s important to remain cautious and be mindful of traffic, especially on sections shared with vehicles.

  • Cultural Points of Interest

Along the Mount Haruna Loop, there are several cultural points of interest worth exploring.

These may include Shinto shrines, Buddhist temples, traditional Japanese houses, and local shops and eateries. 

Taking the time to visit these spots can add a cultural and historical dimension to your biking adventure.

It’s important to note that the Mount Haruna Loop is a moderately challenging ride, particularly due to some steep climbs and descents. 

Riders should ensure they have the necessary fitness levels and be prepared with appropriate safety gear, including helmets, gloves, and reflective clothing.

It’s also advisable to carry water, snacks, and basic bike repair tools to ensure a comfortable and safe journey.

Biking the Mount Haruna Loop provides a wonderful opportunity to explore the natural beauty and cultural heritage of Gunma Prefecture. 

Whether you’re seeking a scenic ride, a physical challenge, or a chance to immerse yourself in the local charm, the Mount Haruna Loop offers an unforgettable biking experience.

Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road

The Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road is a picturesque biking trail located in Kusatsu, Gunma Prefecture, Japan. 

Known for its tranquil surroundings, scenic landscapes, and refreshing forest atmosphere, this cycling road offers an enjoyable and serene biking experience for riders of all skill levels.

The Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road is designed to provide a peaceful and immersive biking experience, allowing riders to connect with nature as they pedal through the lush greenery and charming surroundings. 

Here are some key features of the Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road:

  • Forest Setting

As the name suggests, the trail takes riders through beautiful forests, creating a serene and calming atmosphere. 

The towering trees provide shade and a refreshing ambiance, especially during the hot summer months.

The vibrant colors of the foliage in autumn make it an ideal season for a biking adventure on this trail.

  • Well-Maintained Paths

The cycling road in Kusatsu Forest is well-maintained, offering smooth and comfortable riding surfaces. 

The paths are typically wide and free from major obstacles, allowing riders to enjoy a leisurely or more energetic ride depending on their preferences. The well-marked trail makes it easy to navigate and explore the area.

  • Scenic Views

Throughout the biking trail, riders are treated to scenic views of the surrounding landscapes. The route may include picturesque meadows, crystal-clear streams, and glimpses of the nearby mountains. 

These stunning vistas add an extra layer of beauty to the biking experience and provide plenty of opportunities to capture memorable photos.

  • Relaxation and Recreation

The Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road is not only a biking trail but also offers opportunities for relaxation and recreation. 

Along the route, you may find rest areas with benches or picnic spots where you can take a break, enjoy a packed lunch, or simply soak in the peaceful atmosphere of the forest. These areas provide a chance to rest and recharge before continuing your ride.

  • Family-Friendly Environment

The Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road is suitable for riders of all ages, making it a great option for a family outing or a leisurely bike ride. 

The relatively flat terrain and well-paved paths ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience for children and adults alike.

It’s a wonderful opportunity to introduce younger riders to the joy of cycling in a safe and serene environment.

While biking on the Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road, it’s important to adhere to responsible biking practices.

Stay on designated paths, be mindful of other cyclists and pedestrians, and respect the natural environment by refraining from littering or disturbing wildlife.

Biking along the Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road offers a delightful escape into nature, allowing riders to immerse themselves in the peaceful surroundings and enjoy the beauty of Gunma Prefecture. 

Whether you’re seeking a relaxing ride, a chance to connect with nature, or a family-friendly biking adventure, the Kusatsu Forest Cycling Road is a wonderful choice.

Shima Onsen Circuit

The Shima Onsen Circuit is a scenic and popular biking route located in the Shima Onsen area of Gunma Prefecture, Japan. 

This circuit offers a unique biking experience, combining stunning natural landscapes, serene hot springs, and a mix of challenging climbs and enjoyable descents.

The Shima Onsen Circuit covers a distance of approximately 30 kilometers, taking riders on a loop that showcases the beauty of the surrounding mountains, rivers, and traditional Japanese onsen (hot spring) towns. 

Here are some key features of the Shima Onsen Circuit:

  • Natural Beauty

The circuit takes riders through breathtaking natural scenery, including lush forests, rolling hills, and pristine rivers. 

The route offers panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, such as Mount Shirane and Mount Oze, adding a majestic backdrop to your biking adventure.

The changing seasons bring their own charm, with cherry blossoms in spring, vibrant greenery in summer, and colorful foliage in autumn.

  • Hot Springs

One of the highlights of the Shima Onsen Circuit is the opportunity to visit and enjoy the hot springs in the Shima Onsen area. 

Shima Onsen is known for its therapeutic waters and traditional ryokans (Japanese inns) that offer a relaxing and rejuvenating experience. After a challenging ride, you can unwind and soak in the healing waters, soothing your muscles and refreshing your body and mind.

  • Climbs and Descents

The circuit includes a mix of climbs and descents, providing a balance of physical challenges and thrilling riding experiences.

Riders can expect moderate to steep ascents and descents, which add an element of excitement and variety to the biking route. 

The climbs reward you with scenic views, while the descents offer exhilarating speed and a chance to feel the wind in your face.

  • Cultural Exploration

Along the Shima Onsen Circuit, there are opportunities to explore the rich cultural heritage of the region. 

You may pass by traditional Japanese villages, ancient shrines, and local shops that showcase traditional crafts and products. 

Taking the time to immerse yourself in the local culture and interact with the friendly residents can add a memorable and authentic touch to your biking adventure.

  • Cycling Infrastructure

The Shima Onsen Circuit is well-maintained and has designated cycling paths or quiet roads that offer a safe and enjoyable biking experience. 

The roads are typically in good condition, allowing for smooth riding surfaces.

However, it’s important to remain cautious and follow traffic rules, especially on sections shared with vehicles.

It’s recommended to check weather conditions, trail information, and the operating hours of hot springs and facilities before embarking on the Shima Onsen Circuit. 

Also, ensure you have the necessary safety gear, including helmets, gloves, and reflective clothing, and carry water, snacks, and basic bike repair tools.

Biking the Shima Onsen Circuit offers a unique combination of natural beauty, cultural exploration, and relaxation in the tranquil surroundings of Gunma Prefecture. 

Whether you’re seeking a challenging ride, a chance to soak in healing hot springs, or an opportunity to connect with the local culture, the Shima Onsen Circuit promises an unforgettable biking experience.

Mount Myogi

Mount Myogi, located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan, is a stunning mountain range that offers a variety of biking trails for outdoor enthusiasts. 

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The mountain’s rugged cliffs, unique rock formations, and lush greenery provide a captivating backdrop for an exhilarating biking experience. 

Here are some key features of the biking trails on Mount Myogi:

  • Diverse Terrain

The biking trails on Mount Myogi offer a diverse range of terrain, catering to riders of different skill levels. 

From smooth and flowing sections to more technical and challenging segments, there is something for everyone. The trails wind through dense forests, open meadows, and rocky terrains, providing a thrilling mix of scenery and riding conditions.

  • Scenic Views

As you navigate the biking trails on Mount Myogi, you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. 

From various vantage points, you can admire the majestic cliffs and rock formations that define the mountain. The vistas of the lush valleys and distant peaks create a sense of awe and make for memorable photo opportunities.

  • Technical Challenges

Mount Myogi offers trails that are suitable for riders seeking technical challenges and adrenaline-pumping experiences. 

The mountain’s rocky terrain and steep descents provide opportunities for advanced riders to test their skills and push their limits.

Sections with tight switchbacks, drops, and natural obstacles add an extra element of excitement and skill to the biking adventure.

  • Trail Network

The biking trails on Mount Myogi form a network that allows riders to create customized routes based on their preferences and abilities. The trails are well-marked, ensuring that you can easily navigate the mountain’s paths. 

It’s recommended to obtain a trail map or seek local advice to plan your ride and make the most of the available trails.

  • Nature and Wildlife

Biking on Mount Myogi gives you the chance to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the area.

The mountain is home to diverse flora and fauna, and you may encounter various bird species, small mammals, and even the occasional deer during your ride. 

Riding through the tranquil natural surroundings provides a sense of peace and connection with nature.

When biking on Mount Myogi, it’s essential to prioritize safety. Ensure that you have the appropriate safety gear, including a helmet, knee pads, and gloves. 

Additionally, check the weather conditions, trail conditions, and any necessary permits or restrictions before starting your ride.

It’s also advisable to ride with a companion or inform someone about your biking plans for added safety.

Biking on Mount Myogi offers a thrilling and immersive experience, allowing you to appreciate the mountain’s natural beauty and challenge yourself on its varied terrain. 

Whether you’re a beginner seeking a scenic ride or an experienced rider looking for technical challenges, the biking trails on Mount Myogi provide an exciting adventure in the heart of Gunma Prefecture.

Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road

The Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road is a scenic biking route located in Tomioka, Gunma Prefecture, Japan. 

This cycling road offers a unique opportunity to explore the historical and cultural heritage of the Tomioka Silk Mill, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, while enjoying a leisurely bike ride through picturesque surroundings. 

Here are some key features of the Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road:

  • Tomioka Silk Mill

The Tomioka Silk Mill is a historic silk reeling factory that played a significant role in the modernization of Japan’s silk industry during the Meiji era. 

The cycling road begins at the mill itself, providing riders with a chance to learn about the history and importance of silk production in Japan. The mill’s red brick buildings and industrial architecture create a unique backdrop for the start of your biking journey.

  • Scenic Landscapes

As you cycle along the Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road, you’ll be treated to beautiful natural landscapes. 

The route takes you through charming rural areas, peaceful countryside, and scenic riverside paths. The surrounding greenery, including fields and forests, adds a touch of tranquility to your biking experience.

  • Cultural Points of Interest

Along the cycling road, there are several cultural points of interest to explore. These may include shrines, temples, traditional Japanese houses, and local shops. 

Taking the time to visit these spots allows you to immerse yourself in the local culture and appreciate the historical significance of the region.

  • Easy Terrain

The cycling road is relatively flat and offers an easy and enjoyable ride, making it suitable for riders of all ages and skill levels. 

The well-paved paths or quiet roads ensure a smooth and comfortable biking experience. This makes the Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road a great option for families or those looking for a leisurely ride.

  • Silk Industry Heritage

As you explore the area, you’ll have the opportunity to learn more about the silk industry and its impact on the region.

Informational displays and exhibits along the route provide insights into the silk production process, showcasing the innovation and craftsmanship that went into Japan’s silk heritage.

  • Local Cuisine and Souvenirs

During your bike ride, you can stop by local cafes, restaurants, or souvenir shops to sample regional delicacies or pick up unique silk-related souvenirs. 

Tomioka is known for its local cuisine, including silk-themed dishes, and you can take home mementos that celebrate the region’s silk industry.

When cycling on the Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road, remember to follow traffic rules, wear appropriate safety gear, and respect the local surroundings.

It’s also advisable to check the opening hours and accessibility of the Tomioka Silk Mill and other cultural sites in advance to plan your visit accordingly.

Biking along the Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road offers a blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. It allows you to appreciate the significance of the silk industry in Japan while enjoying a leisurely ride through picturesque landscapes. 

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or simply seeking a relaxing biking experience, the Tomioka Silk Mill Cycling Road is a must-visit destination in Gunma Prefecture.

Joshinetsu Kogen National Park

Joshinetsu Kogen National Park is a vast and picturesque national park located in the regions of Gunma, Nagano, Niigata, and Fukushima in Japan. 

It covers a wide expanse of mountainous terrain, volcanic landscapes, alpine meadows, and pristine lakes, offering visitors a diverse range of natural wonders to explore. 

Here are some key features of Joshinetsu Kogen National Park:

  • Scenic Landscapes

The national park is renowned for its stunning landscapes, including majestic mountains, expansive plateaus, and serene lakes. 

The park encompasses iconic peaks such as Mount Asama, Mount Kusatsu-Shirane, and Mount Myoko, each offering breathtaking views from their summits. 

The panoramic vistas, lush forests, and vibrant wildflower fields create a picturesque setting for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

  • Volcanic Activity

Joshinetsu Kogen National Park is home to several active volcanoes, which have shaped the dramatic landscapes of the region. 

Mount Asama, one of Japan’s most active volcanoes, is a prominent feature of the park. 

The volcanic activity in the area has resulted in geothermal hot springs, bubbling mud pools, and steam vents, adding to the park’s unique charm.

  • Outdoor Activities

The national park provides abundant opportunities for outdoor activities year-round. In the warmer months, visitors can engage in hiking, mountain biking, and camping, exploring the numerous trails and enjoying the fresh mountain air. 

During the winter, the park transforms into a winter sports paradise, with ski resorts offering a variety of slopes and trails for skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing.

  • Biodiversity

Joshinetsu Kogen National Park boasts a rich biodiversity, with a wide range of plant and animal species. The alpine meadows and forests are home to various wildlife, including Japanese macaques, deer, foxes, and numerous bird species. 

The park’s diverse ecosystems provide ample opportunities for birdwatching, nature photography, and wildlife observation.

  • Hot Springs

The national park is renowned for its therapeutic hot springs, which are scattered throughout the region. 

These natural hot springs, known as onsen, offer a rejuvenating experience, allowing visitors to relax and unwind amidst the beautiful natural surroundings.

The park’s hot springs are particularly popular in towns such as Kusatsu, Shibu, and Yudanaka.

  • Cultural Heritage

Alongside its natural wonders, Joshinetsu Kogen National Park also boasts a rich cultural heritage. Visitors can explore traditional villages, historic temples, and shrines that dot the park’s landscape. 

The region is known for its rural charm, traditional festivals, and local craftsmanship, providing insights into Japan’s cultural traditions.

When visiting Joshinetsu Kogen National Park, it’s essential to follow designated trails, respect the natural environment, and adhere to park regulations. 

It’s also advisable to check weather conditions, prepare appropriate gear and clothing, and carry sufficient food and water for your outdoor activities.

Joshinetsu Kogen National Park offers a captivating blend of stunning landscapes, outdoor adventures, and cultural experiences.

Whether you’re seeking a peaceful retreat in nature, an adrenaline-fueled outdoor excursion, or a glimpse into Japan’s rich cultural heritage, this national park has something for every visitor to enjoy.

Usui Pass Cycling Road

The Usui Pass Cycling Road, also known as the Usui Touge Cycling Road, is a popular cycling route located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan. 

This scenic road follows the historic route of the Usui Pass Railway, offering cyclists the opportunity to ride through breathtaking landscapes, historical sites, and challenging ascents. 

Here are some key features of the Usui Pass Cycling Road:

  • Historical Significance

The Usui Pass has a rich history as an important transportation route connecting Gunma and Nagano prefectures. The Usui Pass Railway, which operated from 1883 to 1997, was renowned for its engineering marvels and scenic beauty.

The cycling road follows the path of the old railway line, allowing riders to experience the nostalgia and historical significance of this route.

  • Panoramic Views

The Usui Pass Cycling Road offers cyclists stunning panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

As you ascend the pass, you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking vistas and lush greenery. The road winds its way through picturesque landscapes, providing ample opportunities for memorable photographs and moments of awe-inspiring beauty.

  • Challenging Climbs

The Usui Pass Cycling Road is known for its challenging climbs, making it a favorite destination for cyclists seeking a physical and mental test.

The ascent can be steep in certain sections, requiring endurance and strength. However, the sense of accomplishment and the stunning views from the top make the effort worthwhile.

  • Tunnel Experience

One unique feature of the Usui Pass Cycling Road is the opportunity to ride through tunnels along the route. These tunnels, remnants of the old railway, add a sense of adventure and intrigue to the ride.

Cyclists are advised to use caution and carry appropriate lighting when passing through the tunnels for safety.

  • Cultural Landmarks

Along the cycling road, there are several cultural landmarks and attractions worth exploring. The Usui Pass Observation Platform offers a panoramic view of the surrounding mountains, allowing riders to take a break and appreciate the scenery.

Additionally, there are small shrines, historical markers, and rest areas that provide insight into the area’s cultural heritage.

  • Nature and Wildlife

The Usui Pass Cycling Road takes riders through natural landscapes with abundant flora and fauna. Depending on the season, you may witness cherry blossoms in spring or vibrant foliage in autumn.

The surrounding forests and valleys are also home to various bird species and small mammals, creating opportunities for nature enthusiasts and wildlife lovers.

It’s important to note that the Usui Pass Cycling Road involves sharing the road with vehicles, so cyclists should exercise caution and follow traffic rules. 

It’s recommended to wear appropriate safety gear, carry sufficient water and snacks, and check weather conditions before embarking on the ride.

The Usui Pass Cycling Road offers an exciting and challenging biking experience with historical significance and breathtaking views. 

Whether you’re a seasoned cyclist seeking a test of endurance or a nature lover wanting to immerse yourself in the beauty of Gunma Prefecture, this cycling road is a must-visit destination.

Kanna Lake Loop

The Kanna Lake Loop is a scenic cycling route located near Kanna Lake in Gunma Prefecture, Japan.

This loop offers cyclists a delightful ride around the picturesque lake, surrounded by natural beauty and tranquil landscapes. 

Here are some key features of the Kanna Lake Loop:

  • Stunning Lake Views

The highlight of the Kanna Lake Loop is the opportunity to enjoy stunning views of Kanna Lake throughout the ride. 

The lake is known for its serene atmosphere and crystal-clear waters, reflecting the surrounding mountains and sky.

As you pedal along the loop, you’ll be treated to different perspectives of the lake, offering a peaceful and immersive experience.

  • Smooth Cycling Paths

The Kanna Lake Loop features well-maintained cycling paths that make for a comfortable ride. 

The paths are paved and offer a smooth surface for cyclists, ensuring an enjoyable and hassle-free experience. The loop is suitable for riders of various skill levels, including families and recreational cyclists.

  • Scenic Natural Surroundings

Cycling around Kanna Lake provides an opportunity to appreciate the natural beauty of the surrounding landscapes. 

The route takes you through lush forests, open meadows, and charming countryside. The changing scenery offers a sense of tranquility and allows you to connect with nature as you pedal along.

  • Recreational Facilities

Kanna Lake is not only a beautiful natural attraction but also offers various recreational facilities that enhance the cycling experience. 

Along the loop, you’ll find picnic areas, rest spots, and viewing platforms where you can take a break, enjoy a snack, or simply soak in the peaceful ambiance. These facilities provide opportunities for relaxation and allow you to fully appreciate the surroundings.

  • Local Attractions

In addition to the natural beauty of Kanna Lake, the area is also home to several local attractions. 

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These may include nearby shrines, temples, or cultural sites that you can explore during or after your ride. These attractions add depth to your experience and offer insights into the local culture and history.

  • Seasonal Attractions

Depending on the time of year, the Kanna Lake Loop may offer additional seasonal attractions. In spring, the cherry blossoms along the lake’s shoreline create a stunning spectacle of pink blossoms. 

During autumn, the surrounding trees burst into vibrant colors, providing a breathtaking backdrop for your ride.

When cycling the Kanna Lake Loop, it’s important to observe traffic rules, be mindful of other cyclists and pedestrians, and respect the natural environment. 

Carrying basic safety equipment, such as a helmet, and staying hydrated are also recommended.

The Kanna Lake Loop is a scenic and enjoyable cycling route that allows you to immerse yourself in the beauty of Gunma Prefecture. 

Whether you’re seeking a leisurely ride with stunning lake views or an opportunity to connect with nature, this cycling loop offers a memorable experience for cyclists of all levels.

When is the best time to go mountain biking in Gunma?

The best time to go mountain biking in Gunma largely depends on personal preferences and the specific trails you plan to ride. 

However, here are some general guidelines to consider:

  • Spring (March to May): Spring in Gunma brings mild temperatures and blooming cherry blossoms. It’s an excellent time to explore lower elevation trails as the weather is pleasant, and the scenery is vibrant.

    Keep in mind that higher elevation trails may still have snow or be muddy during the early spring.
  • Summer (June to August): Summer in Gunma can be hot and humid, but it offers longer daylight hours and lush green landscapes. 

    It’s a good time to ride in higher elevations where temperatures are cooler, such as the mountainous regions. Keep in mind that afternoon showers and thunderstorms are common during this season, so plan your rides accordingly.
  • Autumn (September to November): Autumn is a popular time for mountain biking in Gunma. The weather is typically cooler, making for comfortable riding conditions.

    The colorful foliage adds a stunning backdrop to your rides, especially in late October to early November. It’s a great time to explore the forested trails and enjoy the beauty of Gunma’s natural landscapes.
  • Winter (December to February): Winter in Gunma brings colder temperatures and the possibility of snowfall, particularly in higher elevations.

    While some dedicated mountain bikers enjoy fat biking on snow-covered trails, it’s important to have the appropriate equipment and skills for riding in winter conditions.

    Additionally, ski resorts in Gunma often offer groomed trails for fat biking enthusiasts during this time.

Remember to check the specific trail conditions, weather forecasts, and trail accessibility before heading out for a mountain biking adventure in Gunma.

Different trails may have their own optimal seasons, so it’s a good idea to research and plan accordingly based on your skill level, preferences, and the trail’s characteristics.

What to expect when mountain biking in Gunma

When mountain biking in Gunma, there are several things you can expect. Here are some key aspects to consider:

  • Varied Terrain

Gunma offers a diverse range of terrain for mountain biking, including mountains, forests, valleys, and lakes. 

You can expect trails with a mix of rocky sections, dirt paths, singletracks, and gravel roads. The terrain can vary from smooth and flowy to technical and challenging, catering to different skill levels and riding preferences.

  • Scenic Landscapes

Gunma is known for its stunning natural beauty, and mountain biking allows you to immerse yourself in these scenic landscapes. You can expect picturesque views of mountains, dense forests, serene lakes, and meandering rivers. 

The changing seasons add to the beauty, with cherry blossoms in spring, lush greenery in summer, colorful foliage in autumn, and snowy landscapes in winter.

  • Trail Options for All Levels

Gunma offers mountain biking trails suitable for riders of all skill levels. Whether you’re a beginner looking for gentle trails or an experienced rider seeking technical challenges, you’ll find options that cater to your abilities. 

Some trails may have easier sections for beginners, while others may feature more advanced features like steep descents, jumps, or rock gardens.

  • Hot Springs and Onsen

Gunma is famous for its hot springs (onsen), and many mountain biking destinations in the region have onsen facilities nearby. 

After a rewarding ride, you can expect to relax and rejuvenate in these natural hot springs, which offer a soothing experience for your tired muscles.

  • Weather Considerations

It’s important to consider the weather conditions when mountain biking in Gunma. Summers can be hot and humid, so it’s advisable to carry sufficient water and wear appropriate clothing for sun protection. 

In autumn and spring, temperatures can be milder, but sudden weather changes and rain showers are possible, so it’s recommended to check the forecast and prepare accordingly.

  • Trail Etiquette and Safety

When mountain biking in Gunma, it’s important to follow trail etiquette and prioritize safety. Always yield to hikers and other trail users, maintain control of your bike, and be mindful of the natural environment. 

Additionally, wearing proper safety gear, including a helmet and protective pads, is crucial for your own safety.

  • Local Hospitality

Gunma is known for its warm hospitality, and you can expect a friendly and welcoming atmosphere during your mountain biking adventures. 

Local communities may offer services such as bike rentals, guiding services, and information about the best trails in the area. Don’t hesitate to engage with locals and fellow riders, as they can provide valuable insights and recommendations.

Overall, mountain biking in Gunma offers a thrilling and rewarding experience amidst beautiful natural surroundings. 

With proper preparation, respect for the trails and the environment, and a sense of adventure, you can expect to have an enjoyable and memorable mountain biking journey in Gunma.

Mountain Biking In Gunma

Here are some additional details about mountain biking in Gunma:

  • Trail Networks: Gunma boasts a well-established trail network that caters to mountain biking enthusiasts.

    You’ll find a wide range of trails, including cross-country (XC) trails, downhill tracks, flow trails, and technical singletracks. Many of these trails are well-maintained and offer a variety of riding experiences for different skill levels.
  • Bike Parks: Gunma is home to several bike parks that provide purpose-built trails and facilities for mountain bikers.

    These parks offer features such as jumps, berms, drops, and technical features to challenge riders of all levels. Bike parks like Manza MTB Park and Gunma Cycle Sports Center provide uplift services, allowing riders to access the downhill trails without having to pedal uphill.
  • Events and Competitions: Gunma hosts various mountain biking events and competitions throughout the year.

    These events range from casual group rides and social gatherings to more competitive races and endurance events. Participating in these events can be a great way to connect with the local mountain biking community and test your skills on the trails.
  • Rental Services: If you don’t have your own mountain bike or prefer to travel light, you’ll find rental services available in Gunma. Bike shops and outdoor gear stores offer mountain bike rentals, allowing you to explore the trails without the need to transport your own bike.

    Make sure to inquire about bike availability, sizes, and any specific requirements in advance.
  • Guided Tours: For those who prefer a guided experience or want to explore lesser-known trails, guided mountain biking tours are available in Gunma. Local guides have in-depth knowledge of the trails, terrain, and the region’s natural beauty.

    They can provide valuable insights, ensure your safety, and enhance your overall mountain biking experience.
  • Bike-Friendly Infrastructure: Gunma is known for its bike-friendly infrastructure, including cycling paths, designated bike lanes, and bike-friendly accommodations. This makes it easier to access the trails and explore the region on two wheels.

    Additionally, many hotels and guesthouses in Gunma provide bike storage facilities and are accustomed to catering to the needs of cyclists.
  • Nearby Attractions: Gunma’s mountain biking trails are often located near other attractions and points of interest.

    After a day of riding, you can explore nearby hot springs, cultural sites, local cuisine, or even visit other natural attractions like waterfalls or hiking trails. This allows you to have a well-rounded experience and discover more of what Gunma has to offer.

Remember to check trail conditions, obtain trail maps, and follow any regulations or guidelines provided by local authorities or trail organizations. 

It’s also important to respect the environment, leave no trace, and be mindful of other trail users to ensure a positive mountain biking experience for everyone.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced rider, Gunma offers a vibrant and diverse mountain biking scene that caters to various preferences and skill levels. 

With its scenic trails, bike parks, events, and bike-friendly infrastructure, Gunma is an ideal destination for mountain biking enthusiasts seeking thrilling rides and memorable adventures.

Where to get rental mountain bikes in Gunma?

There are several places in Gunma where you can rent mountain bikes. Here are a few options:

  • Local Bike Shops: Local bike shops in Gunma often offer mountain bike rentals. These shops are well-equipped with a range of bikes suitable for different riding preferences and skill levels.

    They can provide expert advice on bike selection and may offer additional gear such as helmets and protective pads. Some popular bike shops in Gunma include Gunma Cycle Sports Center in Annaka and Kusatsu Cycle Sports in Kusatsu.
  • Outdoor Gear Stores: Outdoor gear stores, such as sporting goods stores or outdoor adventure shops, often have mountain bikes available for rent.

    These stores may carry a variety of bike brands and sizes to accommodate different riders. Examples of outdoor gear stores in Gunma where you may find bike rentals include Sports Depo in Maebashi and Alpen Outdoor in Takasaki.
  • Bike Parks: Gunma is home to several bike parks that not only offer thrilling downhill trails but also provide bike rental services.

    For example, Manza MTB Park near Tsumagoi offers rental bikes for downhill enthusiasts. Gunma Cycle Sports Center in Annaka also has a bike park and offers rental options for those who want to ride their trails.
  • Guided Tour Operators: If you’re interested in a guided mountain biking tour, many tour operators in Gunma provide rental bikes as part of their packages.

    These tours typically include the bike rental, guide services, and sometimes transportation to and from the trails. It’s a great option if you prefer a guided experience and want the convenience of having all the necessary equipment provided.

When contacting rental services, it’s a good idea to inquire about the availability of mountain bikes in your desired size, rental rates, duration options, and any additional equipment or services included. 

It’s also advisable to make reservations in advance, especially during peak seasons or if you have specific bike preferences.

Remember to bring your identification, as rental services may require a valid ID and a deposit. Additionally, make sure to inspect the rental bike before riding to ensure it’s in good condition and fits you properly.

By renting a mountain bike in Gunma, you can explore the region’s trails and enjoy the exhilarating experience of mountain biking in this beautiful prefecture.

Are there guided mointain biking tours in Gunma? 

Yes, there are guided mountain biking tours available in Gunma. These tours are a great option for those who want to explore the trails with the assistance of a knowledgeable guide. 

The guides are familiar with the local terrain, can provide insights about the area, and ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. 

Here are a few options for guided mountain biking tours in Gunma:

  • Local Tour Operators

There are tour operators in Gunma that specialize in outdoor activities and offer guided mountain biking tours. 

They provide various tour packages tailored to different skill levels and preferences. These tours typically include the rental of mountain bikes, helmets, and other necessary equipment. 

Some operators also provide transportation to and from the trailheads. Examples of tour operators in Gunma include Evergreen Outdoor Center and Outdoor Japan Adventures.

  • Bike Parks

Gunma’s bike parks often offer guided mountain biking tours as well. These tours are led by experienced guides who are familiar with the trails and can provide instruction and tips along the way. 

The guides can cater the tour to your skill level and provide insights about the park’s features and technical sections. Manza MTB Park and Gunma Cycle Sports Center are two bike parks in Gunma that offer guided tours.

  • Local Cycling Associations

Gunma has active cycling associations that organize group rides and events, including guided mountain biking tours. 

These associations often have experienced riders who volunteer as guides and lead group rides on the region’s trails. 

Connecting with these associations can be a great way to join guided tours and meet other mountain biking enthusiasts in Gunma.

When booking a guided mountain biking tour, consider factors such as the tour duration, difficulty level, group size, and any specific preferences or requirements you may have. 

It’s also important to inquire about safety protocols, guide qualifications, and what is included in the tour package, such as refreshments or meals.

Guided mountain biking tours in Gunma offer a structured and informative way to explore the trails while receiving expert guidance. 

They can enhance your experience, provide local insights, and ensure you make the most of your time on the bike.

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