【Series】Spirits of the Kamuy landscape (16)Swans waking elegantly in the morning mist

A swan spreads its wings in the orange-tinged Suigo Park

In eastern Hokkaido’s Teshikaga Town, the temperature in Suigo Park drops below minus 20 degrees Celsius, and the area is enveloped in a mist of water vapor. In a curtain of fine water vapor particles, the morning sun shines through.

Suigo Park has a pond that is fed by a fresh spring flow, keeping the pond from icing over even in the coldest part of winter. Though it is located in the town’s urban district, the area is quiet and even serves as a sleeping place for swans and ducks, where they can rest their wings at night. As the area began to brighten with the light of day, I witnessed swans spread their wings and become active.

Swans are migratory birds and Hokkaido is their resting stop. Most head for Honshu, but some pass the northern winter in areas where spring water or hot springs flow, preventing the ponds from freezing over. In Suigo Park and Lake Kussharo located on the Teshikaga outskirts, cold temperatures and spring water generate morning mists, and swans fly within. These areas are popular among photography enthusiasts as beautiful scenic spots.

A pure white bird, the sunrise glow, and the magical morning mist blend together to create a memorable cold winter season scene.


Suigo Park