It used to be that Nakanojinjō was considered the governing centre of the Aida-jōkangun, but now it is believed that the true core was the terraced area alongside Akiyoshi-toride, the fort above serving as an immediate redoubt. It is believed that this mountainside array of long, stacked baileys was developed in the 16th century out of a temple which was built originally in the 15th century.
Akiyoshi-toride is part of the Aida-jōkangun (see Aida Kokuzousan Castle), and is located roughly in the centre of the complex of fortifications which make it up. The toride site proper is on a narrow ridge, and is made up of climbing baileys with a large horikiri (trench) above; the climbing baileys become small and narrow and go like a giant’s staircase up to the ridge and Kokuzōsanjō. There is a moraine-like feature to the left (going up), like a static river of rock, and along the climbing mini-baileys is also a gate ruin with some ishigaki (stone-piled ramparts).
Akiyoshi-toride sits directly above the true core of the Aida-jōkangun. Here there is a terraced area of at least a half-dozen tiers lined with ishigaki (stone-piled ramparts) (specifically, this part of the fort complex is called the 十二原沢上流の平場群 or 谷間の平場群). I was amazed at how much masonry remains here. These stone-lined terraced are flanked in the south by a large tatebori (climbing trench) which runs their length. It reminded me strongly of Kirihara Castle and other sites in the Chikuma area of Shinano which were influenced by the Ogasawara Clan, showing the same method of constructing mountainside fortifications.
|English Name||Akiyoshi Fort|
|Founder||Aida Clan; Ogasawara Clan|
|Year Founded||Kamakura Period; 16th century|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Artifacts||Ishigaki, Tatebori, Kuruwa|
|Features||trenches, stone walls|
|Access||Bus from Matsumoto Station|
|Visitor Information||24/7 free; mountain|
|Time Required||80 minutes|
|Location||Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture|
|Coordinates||36° 21' 51.88" N, 138° 0' 26.82" E|
|Added to Jcastle||2023|
|Admin Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|
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