The Misaka pass is located about 200 meters further up from Kuma town, where there was still a lot of snow. Since the henro route goes down from the highest point of the pass, I was thinking about deciding whether to take the henro route or the national road after seeing the situation at the junction.
Since there was less snow than expected, I took the old henro pilgrimage route. As I descended, the amount of snow on the road decreased and the fallen leaves were clearly visible.
After descending the mountain route from the Misaka pass, I encountered a man who was taking pictures of the resting place. He told me that he was keeping a record of the mistakes on the maps of the Association for the Preservation of the Shikoku Henro Pilgrimage Path. According to him, there’re more than 500 mistakes in the map, and in the worst places, they were off by 500 meters. I wanted to take a break, however, he talked too much, so I moved on ;)…
While I was descending the narrow, but concrete-paved road, the snow had completely disappeared and it was warm and sunny. I felt it’s bit strange to see such a dramatic changes in the weather in just a few hours of walk.
According to the story, at Misaka pass, the people were troubled by two large stones blocking the road. Then Kobo-Daishi came by and decided to help them.
Kobo-Daishi asked them to make a net out of “Kazura (a kind of vine)” and carry the stones by hanging them from the ends of the balance bars. However, the stones were so heavy that the meshes of the net dug into them, and the sticks broke and one of the stones fell into the river, while the other fell on the pilgrimage path.
Amikake-ishi, this large rock with a net pattern, has such a story.