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Karamatsu-no-yu is a free, open air, and mixed hot spring.
The bath is located right next to a little creek half way under a big tree. The bath is pretty small, with room for about 6-8 people. The water is clear, with a nice and hot temperature.
The bath is mixed, but there are two small huts to undress in and put one's clothes while enjoying the hot spring.
Karamatsu-no-yu is located in eastern Hokkaido between lake Mashu and Shiretoko peninsula.
From Shibetsu town, take route 272 to Naka-Shibetsu town. Just about in the center of Naka-Shibetsu town, take the local road #69 north. #69 will change to #150 and start heading west. Stay on #150 until you see #505 on your left to Yoroushi onsen. #505 will swing in to Yoroushi onsen and Karamatsu-no-yu and then back out to #150, so if you miss the first turn off, then take the next.
I arrived at Karamatsu-no-yu after having been driving around for about an hour trying to find some food and drinks in a nearby town. I did not really have any luck with me. There were already 4 guys at Karamatsu-no-yu when I arrived. As I got off my bike and got my helmet off, one of the guys asked if I wanted to stay there for the night. There was a little old wooden lodge, and the four guys obviously intended to spend the night there. I did not have anything better to do, so I accepted the invitation.
The 4 guys has plenty of food and beer, so we made a barbecue and had a good time. It was a pretty interesting gang of guys I had ended up with. One guy was from Kanazawa and was touring Hokkaido on his bicycle. This guy had hurt his foot and had therefore taken a rest at the lodge. Another guy was from Osaka and was touring Hokkaido on his motorcycle like the rest of us. He had a giant plastic box on the rear of his bike filled with cooking utensils and food. Unfortunately for him, there had been no room in the box for his sleeping bag, so he had strapped it onto his bike, but lost it on his way. The third guy was from Gifu and had not taken a bath for the last 5 days. He finally took one at Karamatsu-no-yu. The last guy was from Kyoto, but did not say a whole lot. We sat there until late at night eating, drinking, and talking. While sitting there, people constantly showed up and got in the hot spring.
I woke up early the following morning and got ready to move on. As I was packing my bag, two off road bikes rolled up next to the lodge. When they got their helmets off, I could see that it was the guy and girl, which I had met at Nupun Tomuraushi onsen. We took some pictures in front of Karamatsu-no-yu before I finally left them all and went off for new adventures.
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