|A tree met while snowshoeing in Hakuba.|
In mid-February we took a short trip up to Hakuba in search of snow. These mountains in Nagano offer some of the country's loveliest skiing and most beautiful views. The day this photo was taken we were snowshoeing along a ridge line trail. The weather was perfect, the company good, and the snow deep. We saw rabbits, a variety of birds, and tracks of plenty of other creatures that we didn't know. Clearly, though, we weren't alone out there.
This lovely beast of a tree caught my eye as it stood on the edge of trail, peering into the valley below and the mountains beyond. Given it's size and girth, it has done so for a long time. I'd like to hear it's stories and see who else visits throughout the year. Near a small mountain shrine, it must be a witness to much. I was glad for the chance to meet and be added to its register of guests.