It’s March and the days are getting longer, but it’s still cold.
New Metropolitan Expressway opens in Kohoku-ku, Yokohama.
The Yokohama North Line will open at 16:00 on March 18 as a new route connecting the Namamugi JCT on the Metropolitan Expressway Yokohane Line with the Yokohama Kohoku Interchange on the Daisan Keihin Road. From Namamugi JCT to Shin-Yokohama is an underground tunnel, and from Shin-Yokohama to the Kohoku Interchange, the route goes above ground and runs on an elevated track.
The opening of this line will improve access from the northern part of Yokohama City to the Port of Yokohama and Haneda Airport. In particular, it is expected to improve the efficiency of logistics.
As a resident of Kawasaki City, I may be able to benefit indirectly from the logistics at this point, but from the standpoint of traveling by car, there doesn’t seem to be much merit. However, this route will be connected to the Yokohama-Aoba Interchange of the Tomei Expressway in the future, so I think we can look forward to it separately.
Participating in an event to drive on the Yokohama North Line of the Metropolitan Expressway before its opening
Now, in commemoration of the opening of the Yokohama North Line, an event was held to walk or run along the newly constructed expressway before the first lap of its opening! The first one was a fun walk on Saturday 11th, and the second one is today 12th. The first event was a fun walk on Saturday 11th, and the second was a fun run on today 12th.
To participate in this event, you need to apply in advance, and if there are too many applicants, the lottery will be held. There were not only general quota but also Yokohama citizen quota and Kanagawa resident quota, but I was fortunate to pass through the lottery with Kanagawa resident quota. By the way, the participation fee was 1,000 yen.
About a week before the race, you will receive the following four-page document and a postcard-sized voucher that you will need to present to receive your bib and commemorative gift. Since this is a small marathon, you don’t have to register the day before like most marathons, but you just have to register at the site by the designated time on the day.
You can leave your luggage with them during the race. However, the venue, Shin-Yokohama, or more specifically Kodeke where Nissan Stadium is located, is not far from my house, so I packed a small backpack with minimal luggage and headed there dressed for a quick run.
Driving on a newly built road
On the day of the event, registration started at 8:30, and the pamphlet said that we had to be registered and lined up by 9:30. I got there just before 9:00, but I felt I had more time than I expected.
When was the last time you saw Nissan Stadium up close?
Reception and baggage storage on the day. The structure is roughly the same as that of other marathons.
It was a little early, but we lined up at the starting track. There were not many people so it was not crowded. The grass of the soccer field was very beautiful.
Then the opening ceremony, the big people (like the mayor of the ward) gave a speech, and finally the event started at 10:00.
After circling the track, you will be on a public road. It is on the sidewalk, but after about 2km, you will be inside the highway.
Let’s start with the tunnel. This is a course to experience the underground tunnel from Namamugi to here. It was downhill for a while, and we went down about 1km, then back up again for 2km.
The climb out of the tunnel was pretty tough. I’m not good at climbing.
And finally outside. From here, the course runs on the elevated track. It is about 4km here. It runs about 1km again.
And it is the turnaround point of the elevated part. It is almost near Kohoku JCT. The IKEA Kohoku store that I sometimes use is right there. You have been running quite a bit, haven’t you?
It’s all downhill from here. We could enjoy the scenery slowly from the high ground. The weather was good, but there was a little wind. Still, it was a good condition for running.
Then we finished the highway section. After running for the remaining 2km, we went back to the starting point, the stadium. The total distance of 8.2km is the same length as the Yokohama North Line, which will be opened this time. I think it was a good pace because I ran for about 55 minutes while taking photos.
Finishers are given finisher’s towels just like in a citizen’s marathon. It is quite cool.
You can also get a certificate for finishing the race. This is also a cool design related to highways.
I got a lot of souvenirs and memorabilia for the participation fee of 1,000 yen. I was a little concerned that the cost was too much.
It was only a short event in the morning, but we worked up a good sweat and made some good memories. Thank you very much to everyone involved.
SUNNYCAM SPORT EDITION: Sunglasses with built-in video camera
By the way, back in late February, I had purchased these sunglasses. I received them last week, just in time to receive an invitation to attend the event in the mail.
This is a pair of sunglasses, but there is a lens on the top of the lens between the two eyes, and you can shoot HD video with it! I decided to buy this product because I thought I could use it for sightseeing since I could take a picture from my own perspective and also use it as sunglasses.
When I put it on, it looks a little bit like I have a big mole on my forehead, so I’m a little concerned about it lol. The data is saved in microSD.
And here’s the edited version of the video I took from those sunglasses. It’s a very wide angle lens, so I was worried that the brim of the cap I was wearing might show up, but as you can see in the video below, it was only slightly visible in the upper right and upper left at times, but it wasn’t an issue at all.
I’ve lowered the quality for YouTube uploads, but this could work for travel! I don’t take many videos these days. I don’t take a lot of video these days, especially when I’m walking around town, so I thought I’d give it a try. By the way, iMovie is as easy to use as ever.