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World's largest tsuba?

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Bird and fish design is "Ukai" 鵜飼

Seki is famouse for Sword smithing and "Ukai" at the Nagara-gawa(river)

"Ukai" is an old traditional sepcial fishing by using birds.


* They take a few years to train, and they are taking care as family member of owner. about 1300 years old tradition. Toyotomo Hideyoshi and Tokugawa Ieyasu had supported this finishing tradition.

The owner of the birds (U-sho) are hereditary genarationed masters, they have received title as "Shikibu shoku U-sho" by Kunai-cho (The imperial house agency of Japan).


And All cities and towns in Japan have original design manhole cover !!!


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That's pretty interesting. I've never heard of people using birds to fish for them...


I wonder how they keep the birds from eating the fish themselves :?:


Edit - After watching the youtube vid, I assume they make the birds regurgitate the fish. Yum :D

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From what I remember, they tie a rope around the fish's neck so it can't swallow it...


More or less correct.

I've watched them fish this way in Yangshuo, China, where they use a ring around the neck which restricts the gullet. The ring is removed after several fish are caught and the bird rewarded.

They use a hinged metal ring as a rope would chafe the neck with the constant movement and being wet.

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Hey, Lee, I stayed there a couple of weeks about 15 years ago. I didn't see the cormorant fishing until up by Guilin, still the Yulong River, I believe. I stayed in a little farm by where the Dragon caves are and not far from Moon Hill, the mountain with the hole in it. I hear it is really growing on the tourist trade. John

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Hi John.

Yangshuo has really taken off with the tourist trade. The main drag is now called 'Western Street'.

Last time I was there was 7-8 years ago, so probably even more so now.

Was there several times as head rigger for adventure races in the area, then the last time with my girlfriend from Guilin and my brother from the UK.

Stephen - looks like I've had the dubious distinction of abseiling down the world's largest tsuba, then. I like that... :D

Had the pleasure(sarcasm) of having to run up Moon Hill to perform an abseil rescue on a racer who lost his bottle halfway down. By the time I hit the top, I needed rescuing myself.

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Just getting to the top winded me, now, I'd probably need a nap half way. Did you visit the caves as well? I became claustrophobic in there. I am sure my ancestors came from the plains of Africa, no caves for my bunch. Lee, as your girlfriend comes from Guilin, does she speak a Cantonese dialect? Most people I came across in the area wanted to speak Mandarin, at which I am hopeless. John

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Yes, went in the caves and rolled around in the mud pits at the end...much fun...

One of our races went through 600m of cave system in the area which had never been accessed except by a few local farmers.

Spent three days underground rigging ladders and some short abseils for that race so glad I'm not claustrophic.

For the race, I was marshall/tally man at the exit point where I had to wait several hours with the only English speaking local marshall, who became my girlfriend... ;) now ex...

She spoke Mandarin with a smattering of Cantonese and fluent in English.

My language skills leave me struggling with my native English... :(


After posting earlier, I tried to access some old pics on disc but they've degraded and most of the pics are gone...gutted...

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