Sometimes if I have down time at work, I do some exploring on Google Maps. This entails just zooming in on random areas to see what’s there; more often than not, nothing interesting. Every once in a while, though, there’ll be something surprising. That’s how I found this waterfall!
After driving up small, windy mountain roads, I parked at a tiny shop that suddenly appeared on the side of the road close to the waterfall.
A short walk down some stairs, and I arrived. The sound was deafening; probably why it’s called ‘Thunder Falls,’ huh?
Random fun fact: in Japanese, 雷 (kaminari) is the word for both thunder and lightning; they don’t usually differentiate between the rumble and the flash. My students are always surprised when I tell them that English has separate words for these! That means this waterfall could technically also be called ‘Lightning Falls,’ even though that wouldn’t make any sense.
This waterfall does actually have a second name though! It’s also called 「裏見の滝」(urami no taki), which could be badly translated as ‘See Behind Falls.’ Why? Because you can walk behind it!
The path right behind the waterfall was covered in water dripping from the rocks above. It felt like it was raining!
Continuing behind the waterfall, the path goes down to a viewing platform so you can see the whole thing. I had to be careful on the path here; there was a small stream flowing down the middle that had actually carved out some of the rock. Didn’t want to slip or end up with wet feet.
It was pretty impressive, and very loud; I could barely hear myself think!