Along with subways, some of the railways are annoying for rail photo lovers in the Tokyo metropolitan area. The Joshin Line of Joshin Electric Railway is a typical example. Joshin is a small private railway company in Gumma Prefecture, some 100 km north of Tokyo. Connecting Takasaki on the Joetsu Shinkansen and Shimonita, a mountainfoot town of Mt. Myogi, the route penetrates some beautiful countryside in the northern part of Kanto Plain.
What are the problems of the Joshin Line for rail photo lovers?
Firstly, there are very few separate platforms in the stations on the line. A separate platform is an idealized condition, because we can shoot the whole train from the opposite platform. As far as I know, only Joshu-Tomioka Station has a separate platform, but that place is in the shade all day long.
Secondly, almost all overhead wire polls stand on the southern side of the single track on the line. It means that the photo images of trains on the sunny side are interrupted by overhead wire poles and their shadows.
After exploring the whole route, I have eventually found the best photogenic spot on the line. It is a gentle curve located between Sano-no-watashi and Negoya stations. Although it takes about 20 minutes from Negoya Station by walking, the place is worth a visit. In the morning, we can obtain beautiful photo images of the whole trains in a direct light condition.
There is no stopping me taking railway photos.