Towering ice stalagmites, a world of magic

It is the perfect season to see ice stalagmites growing up like bamboo shoots in Hyakujojiki Cave in Otaki-ku, Date City, which neighbors central Hokkaido’s Muroran City. Water dripping down from the cave top freezes to the stone ground and grows taller little by little, creating a magical fantasy space.

Ice stalagmites are said to grow large if the temperature inside the cave is around minus 3 degrees Celsius. Locals affectionately call them “nyoro-nyoro”. They started growing in mid-December of last year, and the taller stalagmites have even grown up to 1.5 meters in height and 10 centimeters in diameter. Currently there are about 2,500 large and small stalagmites crowded together.

“Ootaki Outdoor Adventures” has operated a tour since 2008 in which participants can don snowshoes and walk about one hour one-way to see the cave. An Ootaki Outdoor Adventures representative reported, “This location has fascinating scenery that never gets old no matter how many times you see it.”
Tours cost a fee and are scheduled to last until late March.


Hyakujojiki Cave