Late August 2021

Norikura, Nagano

Athlete Entitlements

Samurai Sports Advantage

  • Easy registration

    Register in English without creating an account

  • Modify & transfer your entry

    Change waves, transfer entry, and self-edit up until 3-5 days before registration closes *fees may apply

  • Translated English event guide

    Information you need to complete your race safely

  • English email support

    Ask questions - and get answers!

  • Post event follow-up

    Receive links to photos

Race Standard

  • Category awards

  • Event insurance

  • Saturday race packet collection

  • Sunday race packet collection (fees apply)

  • Race commemorative towel

  • Finish area food and snacks

  • Timed race results

    View official results online

about the ride

The Norikura Hill Climb takes cyclists on a 20.5KM course through Norikura Kogen (Norikura Highlands) on the border between Gifu and Nagano prefectures. With more than 4,500 cyclists expected, the Norikura Hill Climb is a popular bike race on the Echo Line held in the late summer each year.

With an average incline of 6.1%, cycling up Japan’s highest paved road is no joke! Even the fittest cyclists will be out of breath at high altitude – at the peak, you’ll reach an elevation of 2,720 meters or about 8,924 feet. The air will be thin and the temperatures will drop significantly so we recommend an extra layer for the descent – don’t forget to enjoy the view and savor your personal victory at the peak! 

• Take your bike up to Japan’s highest paved roads – very few climbs compare to scaling Mt. Norikura!
• Roads are closed to vehicular traffic for duration of race (including shuttle buses and taxis, which are normally permitted on the Echo Line and Sky Line)
• Love a challenge? Nagano is a haven for cyclists and the Norikura Hill Climb offers the opportunity to learn new routes that will keep you coming back for more!
•Most bikes and ages welcome – just make sure to read all of the details and remarks to be fully prepared

サムライスポーツは日本国籍以外を対象とした外国人向け専用受付サイトです。日本国籍の方は日本語サイトからお申込みください。日本国籍以外の方がエントリーした場合、無効となる場合があります 。無効となった場合には、返金手数料を差し引き、参加費をご返金させていただきます。

  • 00Days

Registration Period

TBA (March 7, 2020 - April 20, 2020)

August 29, 2020 (Saturday)
at Norikura Highland Information Center parking lot
1100…Parking lot opens
1300-1700…Reception & race packet pick up
1400…Stage events
1900…Parking lot closes

August 30, 2020 (Sunday)
at Norikura Highland Information Center parking lot
0400…Parking lot opens
0500-0600…Race day race packet collection
0600-0630…Bag deposit (all bags will be taken to the finish area)
0600-0700…Cyclists to start area
0630-0700…Opening ceremony
0730…Race starts
0930…CP 1 COT
1030…CP 2 COT
1130…Race COT
1300-1500…Awards, lucky draw
*schedule may change without prior notice

Champion (12+; men and women)
• Men A (16-20)
Men B (21-30)
• Men C (31-40)
• Men D (41-45)
• Men E (46-50)
• Men F (51-60)
• Men G (61-70)
• Men H (71+)
• Women (16+)

• Junior Boys (middle school only) 
• Junior Girls (middle school only) 

Additional Surcharges
・If total cost is ¥10,000 or less, you will incur a flat fee service charge of ¥1,000.
・If total cost is more than ¥10,001, you will incur a service charge amounting to 10% of total cost.
Why does Samurai Sports implement a service charge? They help us cover the cost of operating the registration platform, translation of athlete guides/event information, labor hours required to answer your event inquiries, etc. Depending on the event, the surcharges help to cover the cost of our physical presence at the event. Learn more about Samurai Sports’ service charge. 

Age Eligibility
・Champion: Must be 12 or older.
・Junior: Must be in middle school (grades 6-8)
IMPORTANT: Your age group is determined according to your age on August 30, 2020

About the Champion category
・Register only if you feel confident in completing the course within 80 minutes
・2019 podium winners are automatically part of the Champion category
・Champion category athletes are timed by GROSS TIME, i.e. your time starts as soon as the first person crosses the timing mat (rather than when you cross the timing mat)

Cut-Off Time (COT)
・Checkpoint 1: 2 hours 30 minutes (by 0930)
・Checkpoint 2: 3 hours 30 minutes (by 1030)
Finish: 4 hours 30 minutes (finish by 1130)

・All participants must be respectful of the natural course environment and demonstrate good cycling manners.
・Be mindful of other cyclists and vehicles on the road. You should understand laws in Japan pertaining to cycling on public roads and cycling insurance.
・Be a responsible athlete. Please make sure you have the physical ability to complete the course.

・helmet (should be JCF or SG approved; common cycling helmets will be accepted)
・gloves (cycling gloves recommended)

・nutrition/hydration (if necessary)
・proof of health insurance
・mobile phone/smartphone (not for use while cycling)
・sleeves or (water resistant) windbreaker
・tools to fix a flat
・water bottle(s)
・lights (front/rear)

・road bicycles
・cross bicycles
・mountain bicycles
・mama-chari/city bicycles, incl. battery-assist types (must have kick stand and basket removed)
・recumbent bicycles
・mini-velo bicycles (tires with a diameter of 24 inches or less)

・tandem bicycles
・battery assisted bicycles
・recumbent bicycles
・fixies, single gear bicycles

・drop bars
・flat handles

・bullhorn handles
・aero bars, incl. clip on types
・Spinacci handles

・bottle cages
・saddle bags 
・portable pumps
・mobile cups 
・bike computers
・cold weather gear
・small backpack or napsack
・spare tire and/or tube
・spare wheels may be checked at bag deposit (for those who want to swap out wheels for the descent)

・kick stand 
・child/baby seats
・construction helmets
・earbuds and headphones, incl. bone conducting types 
・music players, radios, and noise-emitting devices

View course map/elevation profile here

Elevation profile: +2,720m (+8,924 ft)

General Route
Norikura Highland Information Center (start) -> Sanbon Falls (in front of the resthouse) -> Kuraigahara Sanso Hut -> Nagano-Gifu prefecture border (finish)

Norikura Highland Information Center (start)
4306-5 Azumi, Matsumoto, Nagano 390-1520
Google Maps

Nagano-Gifu prefecture border (finish)
Google Maps (approximate area on the Echo Line)

Please ensure you have lodging AND transportation plans figured out BEFORE registering for this event.

 By Car
From Tokyo, about 3 hours 40 minutes (293km / 182 miles)
From Yokosuka, about 4 hours (261KM / 162 miles)
From Yokota AB, about 3 hours 20 minutes (231KM / 143.5 miles)
From Nagoya, about 3 hours 15 minutes (220KM / 136.7 miles)

Though most easily accessible by car, the Norikura Highland Information Center also operates as a convenient bus terminal for those using public transportation.

By Train & Bus

• From Shinjuku station, take the Chuo Line Limited Express Train to Matsumoto station. Alternatively, take the Alpico Bus from Shinjuku Bus Terminal to Matsumoto Bus Terminal (about 3 hours). View the Shinjuku <-> Matsumoto time table here.
• From Matsumoto station (walking distance from Matsumoto Bus Terminal), take the Alpico Bus to Norikura Kogen Tourist Information Center (N-29) (about 90 minutes). View the timetable here

*More information on access here. (Japanese)


Individual Awards
・Top 6 in each category

2019 Results…click here

Road Rules
・Keep left – unless passing. If passing, alert the cyclist you are doing so.
・If you do not make a checkpoint COT, your race ends there. Follow the instructions of race staff and volunteers. You may be asked to return your bib and timing chip.
・Please be considerate of other riders, spectators, and pedestrians.
・There will be bike mechanics, mechanic vans, and SAG vans roaming for those who cannot finish, do not meet designated cut off times, or encounter mechanical failure.
・Beware of potholes, manholes, grates, slick road paint, and debris on the road.

Race Packet Collection Notes
Race packet collection is only on Saturday, August 29. For an additional fee (¥2,000), you may select the option to collect on Sunday, August 30.
Athletes are permitted to have someone collect his/her race packet for them.
・Athletes registered with a domestic address in Japan will receive a postcard from the race organizers in early July. The postcard must be exchanged at race packet collection to pick up your race packet. If you lose or do not receive the postcard, please show photo ID instead. 
・Athletes registered with an international address (incl. FPO/DPO/APO) will not receive a postcard. Please show photo ID at race packet collection to pick up your race packet.

Race Notes
・With the exception of the Champion category, times will be recorded according to NET TIME. This means your time starts and finishes when you cross the timing mats. 
・Use of headphones/earphones (including bone conduction types) during race is prohibited
・Use of cameras (such as a GoPro) while riding is only permitted if it is securely fastened.
・Bicycle inspections will not be performed, but if any poor maintenance or rule violations are found before the start, you may be disqualified.
・Athletes must comply with traffic rules and cycling rules. Know your cyclist etiquette and practice good manners at all times.
・Athletes MUST return timing chips. 
・There will be a bag deposit at the start area. Athletes may collect their bags at the finish area. Further details regarding bag deposit will be included in the athlete guide.

・ No refunds, deferrals, or credits will be issued. This applies to incidents in which the event is cancelled for any reason including personal participant circumstances of the participant (including illness and injury) and incidents in which the event is cancelled due to unforeseen weather conditions or natural disasters.
・Depending on the event, transfers and certain modifications to your entry may be permitted. Generally, entries may be transferable and/or permit modifications until 3-5 days before the last day of registration. After this period, all transfers are considered illegal and modifications will not be accommodated.
Participants determined to be violating the policies below may be disqualified without a refund:
・Any person found to be bib-swapping (illegal transfer of bib); the person will be held responsible in case of an accident arising from or provoked by the other person during the event.
・Any person found to be registering with inaccurate information, i.e. false declarations of the participants name, age, or gender.

・You will not sue the event organizers nor its affiliates (including Samurai Sports) for any injury or death caused during the event.
・ You consent to and will give all authorities and copyright to the event organizer and affiliates for the use of photography, motion pictures, articles, recordings or any other record of this event (including personal information such as name, age, gender, personal record, portrait, and etc.) for legitimate purposes and use in newspapers, TV, magazines, internet and any media publishing such as Facebook posts, Instagram posts, and pamphlets.

・ Those participating and coming from abroad must be enrolled in medical and/or travel insurance in case of accident, injury, and medical emergencies.
・ Before signing up, please carefully read all rules and regulations of the event. If the rules and regulations cannot be followed, participation may be denied by the event organizers. If anything is unclear, please do not hesitate to contact us – it is your responsibility to be prepared.

・The organizer is aware of the importance of your personal information. The use of personal information conforms to the organizer’s privacy protection law.
・Your personal information is used to provide you valuable services, such as race information, results, service from race affiliates, result ranking, and etc.
・The organizer may release your personal information when your life or body is in a life-threatening situation.
・The race organizer and its affiliates may contact you regarding your registration information.

Athlete Guides
・In most cases, athlete guides in English will be sent via email approximately 7-21 days before the event. However, the delivery of athlete guides is entirely dependent on the timeliness of the event organizers. Samurai Sports takes approximately one to two days from receipt of the Japanese athlete guide to translate into English.

Additional Surcharges
・If total cost is ¥10,000 or less, you will incur a flat fee service charge of ¥1,000.
・If total cost is more than ¥10,001, you will incur a service charge amounting to 10% of total cost.
Why the additional charges? They help us cover the cost of operating the registration platform, translation of athlete guides/event information, labor hours required to answer your event inquiries, etc. Depending on the event, the surcharges help to cover the cost of our physical presence at the event.

Norikura Hillclimb Race Executive Committee



Official Website (Japanese)