Aomori's Oirase Gorge is most famous in summer for its lush green moss and wild ferns, but it's just as wonderful for a winter adventure. The 9-kilometer hiking trail that interlaces with the mountain stream is dotted with frozen waterfalls and trees bejeweled with icicles.
The area around the powerful Ashura Current has become the face of Oirase Gorge in postcards and magazines through the years. In winter, you can appreciate the full force of the current while surrounded with pristine white snow. At 7 meters high and 20 meters wide, blue-tinged Choshi Falls creates a stunning display of ice when it freezes over in the winter.
Explore the area on your own snowshoes or join a guided tour for a more informative experience. There is also a free shuttle bus connecting parts of the gorge throughout the winter.
Oirase Gorge is a two-hour drive from Shin-Aomori Station. JR bus services from Shin-Aomori Station are suspended in the winter.