We're planning to return to East Hokkaido to cover the areas we didn't manage to do so in February, and catch a little of the fall colours. We were hoping this was a good time to explore Shiretoko, the UNESCO site, but it seems the places of interest there - the boardwalk at Shiretoko Five Lakes, and driving through Shiretoko Pass, may be closed - does anyone know where I could check these, or if they are open in late Oct?
Are there also other moderate hiking trails around Shiretoko National Park that are worthwhile? I've read that climbing up Mt Rausu and Mt Shiretoko are strenuous, 10-hour hikes which may be too much for us, are there moderate 3-6 hour hikes people have enjoyed?
We were planning to stay 1-2 nights in Utoro for Shiretoko, and then 2-3 nights at Lake Kussharo for Lake Mashu and Akan as well, before heading down to Kushiro for a night and flying off. Would there be other spots in East Hokkaido that we should include?