Just posted this story about visiting the Hacchoro fishing boats in Yaizu, Japan. Woody Joe makes a great kit of the Hacchoro. It runs about $180, sometimes you can find it for that price INCLUDING shipping, so watch the pricing online. It’s a pretty easy build, and makes a nice looking model. But, I’ve decided to learn more about these traditional bonito fishing boats, and to build a more detailed model after seeing the real (replica) boats.
Yaizu is a coastal city on Suruga Bay, 10 miles south of Shizuoka, and about 50 miles southwest of Mt. Fuji. On a clear day, you can see Fujiyama. I visited Yaizu during typhoon season, and the mountain was obscured by clouds. Yaizu is the home of two Hacchoro (hot-choro), fishing boats that got their claim to fame as boats of these types were once commissioned as escort boats for the retiring Shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu.
Hacchoro at the port of Yaizu, wrapped up for the season.
The story goes that the Shogun liked to hunt game using a falcon. Travel to the hunting grounds required a trip by sea. So, to provide escort, 24 fishing boats were commissioned. But, the fishermen operating the boats had a difficult time keeping up with the Shogun’s boat due to strict limitations in place on the number of oars that could be implemented on fishing…
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