A little later than usual, it’s time for our photoblog for March 2022! After a fantastic winter of heavy snow, the weather in March has warmed quite quickly. While we’re still experiencing our usual fluctuation in the March weather – with some days still being cold while others are lovely and warm – the trend is very much one of warming days and spring is now taking hold.
With the change in weather, the monkeys’ brains switch from the survival mode of winter to a more relax and playful character. Much of the snow has now gone and the bare earth is exposed. While the park might not look its best during March, the first green shots are sprouting and it won’t be long before the once cold and snow-white park is a lush and verdant landscape.
For the time being, the monkeys fill their days by foraging for the first tasty shoots to eat, endless grooming and impromptu wrestling. The younger monkeys like nothing more than to rumble with their family and friends – something that’s tremendous fun to watch in close proximity without any barriers between them and visitors to the park.
As the days warm, you’re less likely to see large numbers of monkeys in the ‘onsen’ (hot spring), although with the fluctuating temperatures of March and April, there’s still a good chance you’ll get a couple enjoying a soak from time-to-time. The warmer weather means their longer winter coats are beginning to fall our, leading to ever-more grooming and preening and as they free themselves and their family members of tangled hair and random debris.
Our longest-running and most popular tour, 1-Day Snow Monkeys, Zenko-ji Temple & Sake in Nagano is available every day of year and combines an afternoon visit to the park with morning exploration of Nagano’s near-1400 year old Zenko-ji along with ‘sake’ tasting and lunch in Nagano City. With spring now coming-on fast, it’s a great time to book a tour with us! From late-April onward, the season’s first baby monkeys will appear in the park – one of the very best times to visit the Jigokudani Monkey Park. We hope to see you soon in Nagano!