Kintaikyo Bridge

Happy New Year to everyone. It seems the years are going faster. I will try and get more posts up in 2015, and I want to get some “how to” posts as well, as a number of folks have contacted me with questions around things like scanning. While I don’t ever want people to think I am an expert - I have made enough mistakes to probably count as a useful advisor.

I took a week over Christmas to go to part of Japan I have not been to - there is an awful lot of Japan I have yet to see, so this will be a theme. In this case, I went with my lovely wife to Shikoku, the 4th in terms of size of the many islands that make up Japan. We took the Shinkansen to Okayama and rented a car to drive around for a week. It was a blast - and I can thank the car for having an excellent navigation system that saw us pretty well arrive at all of the intended destinations with minimum fuss. Of course - as it seems with all navigation systems - the roads changed faster than the software and we had a few interesting moments. Luckily Japanese drivers are careful and seemingly endlessly patient.

One of the more interesting places we visited was the Kintaikyo Bridge - one of the more famous landmarks in Japan. It is a short train ride from Hiroshima, past the even more famous Miyajima shrine. It is more than 300 years old and features in many old and famous wood block carvings. 

Since I used 99% film for the trip, my ability to get them back from the developer and scan them is the main gating factor for when I can post. I shot more than 20 rolls of 135 and 10 rolls of 120 film. Only 4 of the 135 rolls were colour negative (Ektar and Portra 160) which can come back in the same day. Most of the others are either black and white (ACROS and TMAX) or slide film (Provia, Velvia and Astia) so will take a couple of weeks due to the New Year holiday. This set is all Kodak Ektar 100. All are shot on a Nikon F6 body with a Nikkor 50mm F1.4 G Series lens.


The bridge is supremely elegant and very beautifully made. A real tribute to the quality of Japanese wood working.


There were mercifully few tourists this day - it was only 1 degree celsius and blowing a wind. Most who were there seemed to be from Hong Kong - sounded like home.


It has 3 main spans and 2 “entry spans”.


This pine tree is more than 300 years old.


The intricacy of the construction is amazing. Very few nails were used.


The sun setting turned the wood a beautiful colour.


The main three spans had steps for the steepest parts.


The sunshine was perfect. It belies the fact it was simply freezing. My hands had trouble with the camera by this point.

© David Runacres 2014