Having sent numerous emails over the last 18 months or so sharing stories and locations with fellow haikyo/urban exploration fans Mike (Michael John Grist), Mike (Mike’s Blender) and, erm, Mike (Gakuranman), the chance to actually get together on a trip finally presented itself, culminating in a two day road trip covering the known, and not so known, roads of Gunma and Nagano; first and foremost on our minds being the Mount Asama Volcano Museum — a decidedly bleak looking structure somewhat precariously perched on one of the many mountains looking up to the one time tourist spot’s not exactly insubstantial namesake.
The slowly decaying building creating a strangely serene and yet at the same time almost post-apocalyptic scene.
A feeling that continues as one gradually approaches.
Its wonderfully weatherworn exterior damaged due to the extremely exposed location.
And more than likely the marvellously positioned museum’s close proximity to a still very much live volcano.
Some early snow on the roof already signalling what’s to come in the ensuing months,
along with signs inside of what could be a combination of both vandal and volcanic activity.
The latter at least creating a situation that may well have played some part in the people who once worked there walking out.
Leaving only the lonely binoculars to rather forlornly look out onto the landscape.