Mount Fuji Fools
I climbed Fuji-san by full moon one night in August 1981. I had left Zurich and was on the way to Boston for law school, the wrong way around via the Trans Siberian Express across the Soviet Union, and ferry to Japan. I visited a Swiss biology researcher I knew from Zurich, in the vicinity of Mt. Fuji, and he told me how to do it.
I was dropped off in the evening by a bus up to the base. I bought a climbing stick, a collapsible water bottle, and a flashlight. I climbed through the night. There are rest stations along the way with small fire places and they sell tea and give your stick a brand. Many people were climbing up the switchbacks.
I reached the top in time for more tea while watching the sunrise. It was glorious. It seemed like I could see all of Japan.
I was giddy with sleep deprivation. I found some people I met while traveling and we crashed down the rocky trail to the bottom in about an hour.
Japanese say there are two kinds of fools: those who never saw the sun rise from Mt. Fuji and those who saw it more than once. I am happy not to be such a fool.