Sanada Yazawa Castle
It is thought that Yazawajō was built around the time - 1551 - that the Sanada took over Toishijō, ousting the Murakami. The castle served to protect the outer perimeter of Sanada territory. Along with Isezakijō to the west, it served to guard the stretch of plains that gave entry to the Sanada homelands. Yazawajō was the castle of Lord Yazawa Yoritsuna, the younger brother of Sanada Yukitaka. His residence was located at the foot of the castle. In 1585 Yazawajō was attacked by Tokugawa forces. Yazawa Yoriyasu defended the castle with 800 men, defeating General Yoda Genshichirō's force of 1,500 men. After the Battle of Sekigahara Yazawajō was abandoned.
Yazawajō, now reasonably maintained as a park, is an oddly proportioned site. The relatively narrow shukuruwa (main bailey) is surrounded in the west and southwest by a series of belt baileys which terrace the hillside in five bands. Aside from the bottom tier, these bands are themselves quite wide, and the shukuruwa is not much wider. The terraced baileys surround the shukuruwa in the shape of 巛. On the other side the terrain slopes off quickly into a ravine. The second bailey, located below the shukuruwa, is now the site of a small shrine building. Remnants of ishigaki (stone-piled ramparts) can be seen here. There is a projecting bailey beyond the shukuruwa. Trenches cut into the mountain ridge here. An impressive ivy-streaked stele marks the castle site. Yazawajō possessed a branch castle, Yazawashijō, located across the small valley to the east (toward Tono).
|English Name||Sanada Yazawa Castle|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Artifacts||Kuruwa, Ishigaki, Hori|
|Features||trenches, stone walls|
|Access||Ueda Station on the Shinano Railway; Sugadaira Bus from Ueda Station No.3 Bus Stop|
|Visitor Information||Free; 24/7; Park|
|Time Required||50 minutes|
|Location||Ueda, Nagano Prefecture|
|Coordinates||36° 24' 45.40" N, 138° 18' 37.26" E|
|Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|
|Added to Jcastle||2020|