At 6AM my iPhone alarm rang. I raised my head off the futon, pulled the screen aside, and peered out the window at a world of driving rain. Yunomine Onsen is a country hot spring resort, so before starting up the trail I took a nice long soak, figuring as long as I was going to be wet, I might as well be warm AND wet.
Pack cover in place and umbrella in hand I started up the trail. At first the rain was heavy, then it subsided to a constant pitter-patter in the trees. Walking on a trail in the rain is fun, but it does lead to melancholy reflections, particularly when you pass settlements that were abandoned hundreds of years ago, as is often the case on the Kumano kodo.
Soon the trail started climbing towards a high pass, and I was blessed with a distant view of misty mountains as the storm began to clear.