About Kurobe Dam
Construction: Arch Dome
Height: 186 m, the tallest in Japan
Span at crest: 492 m
Width at crest: 8.1 m
Width at base: 39.7 m
Dam Volume: about 1,580,000 cubic meters
Lake Volume: about 200 million cubic meters
A total of 10 million people worked on the dam from the start of construction until its completion 7 years later.
The Kurobe Dam is located in the Chubu Sangaku National Park. We appreciate your co-operation in preserving the flora, fauna, and scenery of this beautiful park.
・Please try to avoid damaging plants and do not attempt to capture wildlife while within the National Park.
・Smoking is only permitted at designated locations.
The power plant facilities were built 10 km downstream of the dam to minimize environmental impact and the danger of avalanche damage.
The names of the 171 people who lost their lives during the dam’s construction are engraved on a memorial.
Water Discharge, a Powerful Sight
The plumes of mist created by a powerful discharge of 10 tons of water per second is one of the dam’s principle attractions.
It is possible to see a large rainbow on clear days.
You can view the discharge between June 26th and October 15th at the following daily drainage times.
* The discharge may be canceled due to unfavorable weather conditions.
June 26th thru July 31st 6:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
August 1st thru September 10th 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
September 11th thru October 15th 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Viewing Kurobe Dam
Dam Observation Deck
The Observation Deck offers views of the dam, of course, but also of the Northern Japan Alps. From Kurobe Dam station there is an underground passage that climbs 220 steps, taking about 10 minutes to reach the deck. The deck is also accessible via an exterior staircase that allows you to enjoy changing views as you climb. You can see a pulley and bucket that was used to carry concrete during construction, half way up this route. There is a spring on the deck providing cool fresh water for your refreshment.
Water Discharge Observation Deck
There is a barrier free observation point, suitable for wheelchair and stroller users, close to the discharge area.
New Observation Area
You can see the water discharge right before your eyes at the new observation area, accessible from the staircase below the discharge viewing stage.
You can appreciate the magnitude of the dam by taking a leisurely stroll on its crest.
Wheelchair users and those concerned about walking have no need to worry.
When negotiating the stairs and vehicles at each station, please feel free to contact a member of staff for assistance. If you have any other concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Attractions around Kurobe Dam
Dam Lake Trekking
Enjoy a leisurely walk along this mountain path beside the lake. The route crosses a suspension bridge in addition to a paved promenade and sloped sections. The 3-kilometer course takes about 1 hour to walk. Proceeding further along the path you will find a large 800- or 1,000-year-old tree, also named “Kurobe”. Why not go and receive the power of this tree, which takes about 8 adults to encircle hand in hand.
Lake Kurobe Cruise Ship “Garube”
To commemorate your trip to the dam
Photo Dam: These systems let you take a commemorative photo with the dam and are located at the New Observation Area and the Kurobe Dam right bank wing.
Kurobe Dam Stamp Rally: Collect 10 stamps you can find in various locations around the dam, starting from Ogisawa Station, and you’ll receive an extra souvenir.
Enjoy the Trolley Bus
In the middle of the trolley bus route connecting Ogisawa Station and Kurobe Dam Station, you can see a fracture zone, illuminated by a blue light. Although the trolley bus covers this 80-meter section in no time, this was the hardest part of the tunnel’s construction. A feat of civil engineering construction in its time, the tunnel finally broke through after seven months of struggle.
About the “Fracture Zone”
In May 1957, about 1,600 m from the tunnel entrance, 660 liters/second of ice cold groundwater and a large amount of sediment gushed into the tunnel. In this fracture zone, fine cracks in the bedrock had created a soft strata that stored the groundwater. The excitement and drama of the tunnel breakthrough here was captured in novel and film.
Kuroyon Memorial Room
Located on the 3rd floor of the Kurobe Dam Rest House, this room exhibits construction materials and models detailing the construction of the dam. Additionally there is a continuous screening of the movie “Kuroyon Story”. (Entrance is free of charge)
There are excellent views of the dam from Kurobe Dam Rest House. In the 1960s, Ogisawa Rest House created its “Arch Curry”, the originator of the Kurobe Dam Curry. Whichever you choose, this taste can only be experienced here.
Kurobe Dam Curry
While, of course tasty, this curry’s design is also a feast for the eyes. Making it twice as delicious.
See also here.
In addition to tasty curry and rice crackers, there are many other souvenirs of the Alpine Route.
How about some to remind you of your trip?
Kurobe Dam Rest House 1st Floor Drinks Corner
The perfect place to take a break and enjoy a cool drink or a popular mountain strawberry soft-serve ice cream!