Waking up at five in the morning started day number three. We left the dorm at around six in the morning and headed for the Ishizawa Ranch for a study tour and observation. I was feeling particularly excited since I’ve always wanted to see cows and be on a farm in person, rather than always experiencing it via photos, videos, and readings.
Seeing the process and actually having an on-hand experience of actually being on a dairy farm felt very invigorating. Mr. Ishizawa showed us the ropes and the basics of what it’s like to be a dairy farmer for the day – we even got to witness cow-milking and all the other routines. After saying our goodbyes, we headed back to Minshuku Akkeshi Inn for breakfast then checked out.
After a filling breakfast, we headed for Mitomo Ranch, where we got a more immersive experience of the environment, happiness, and – of course – cows. We learned about the techniques and habits of a dairy farmer in such a short amount of time! In fact, Mr. Mitomo even let us sample some homemade yogurt with fresh melons and some fresh cheese!
We left afterwards and headed for Country (Niijibetsu) for lunch – in which I ordered the Ebi Furai Set (or tempura set, in short).
We headed for Shiniwa Kaikain for a lecture by Mr. Tate (for the Niijibetsu Kor-Kamuy Society) on community-based owl conservation in the Konsen region. It followed up with a study tour – first, to the site of the reforestation event then we headed for the Donaldson’s Trout Farm and adjacent riparian forest.
Unfortunately, it was raining very hard – so we had to cancel the Niijibetsu River Hatchery and headed straight for the inn, Ikoi no Ie. After an early start today, everyone was looking forward to having a free day tomorrow to either explore Kushiro or sleep in. Today was a very interesting and educational day where my eyes were opened to more things and new memories were created!