For more detail on the situation in rural Akita, this article by John Mock makes a very sobering read. http://www.japanfocus.org/-John-Mock/4095
And yet, the Nairiku line is beautiful. I went up there many years ago in April, which is not the best time to see snow country in Japan - bleak and brown - and I didn't realise how much of the line is absolutely stunning.
|Bento 1 (spinach, chrysanthemum leaves, daikon pickles and egg rolls)|
|Ogata, Hiro's mother's hometown|
|The Ani River|
|The stations of the Nairiku Sen|
|Snow near Ani Maeda|
|Maeda Minami Station|
|GPS calls this Gomihori, towards Kobuchi|
|Despite being in the deep mountains, there are few tunnels.|
The tunnels that are on this line are very short.
Near Ani ai
|Ani Ai station|
|Waiting for the train coming the opposite direction at Ani Station.|
It was a 6 minute stop here.
|Heavy duty snow clearing machinery for heavy duty snow.|