Suwa Shimo Castle
Shimonojō was built as part of a complex of mountain fortresses which included Kaminojō and Hagikura-toride. For more information see my upload / profile on Kaminojō.
Shimonojō ("Lower Castle") is paired with Kaminojō ("Upper Castle") further along the trail. Shimonojō has a ladder-layout essentially following the ridge up. I thought it very interesting that the ôte (main path) was often flanked on both sides by tall embankments. I identified a few kuruwa (baileys) and horikiri (trenches which bisect the ridge) whilst following this path up to Kaminojō. There are four principal baileys, the two lowest of which have koshikuruwa (sub-baileys) terraced beneath them, and there are many more smaller enclosures carved into the mountainside. The upper baileys do not have terracing above or below but each have a fairly deep trench to the rear.
|English Name||Suwa Shimo Castle|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Access||Shimo-Suwa Station on the Chuo Line; 50 minute walk|
|Visitor Information||24/7 free|
|Time Required||One Hour|
|Location||Shimo-Suwa, Nagano Prefecture|
|Coordinates||36° 5' 29.87" N, 138° 4' 38.32" E|
|Added to Jcastle||2020|
|Admin Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|