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Castle Hiraga Clan Castle

This article is in the series Walking the Japanese Castles
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The Hiraga Clan Castle Site (平賀氏城跡 Hiraga-shi-jō seki) is located in Saku City, Nagano Prefecture. It was the residence of the local lord of the Saku district. At the end of the 12th century, Minamoto Moriyoshi, a son of Minamoto no Yoshimitsu (源義光, 1045-1127), became the lord of Hiraga Village and changed his name to Hiraga Moriyoshi (平賀盛義). However, in the Jōkyū Rebellion ( (承久の乱 jōkyū no ran) of 1221, the Hiraga clan took the side of the retired Emperor Go-Toba (後鳥羽上皇) and was defeated. Afterwards, other local clan seemed to have taken the name Hiraga. Also, Hiraga Gennai, a famous scholar and inventor in the middle of the Edo era, was a descendant of the Hiraga.


Visiting the castle site

I tried to climb the castle site from the northern side and parked my car on the parking lot of Saku Hōju Cemetery. However, I failed as I was unable to locate the path to the castle. And while there were no signboards, I managed to reach the top of the mountain but got completely lost on my way back.


The map is based on GSI Map powered by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan. All locations are estimated.

① The good thing was that I came across many enclosures on the backside of the mountain. The whole mountain - though not that tall - had been turned into a fortress.



Below the stone wall of the third enclosure (三の丸 sannomaru).


② Arriving at the sannomaru.


③ After more climbing, I reached the inner bailey (本丸 honmaru).


This was another enclosure situated on the backside.


Date of visit: 13 October 2013


  • Address: Hiraga, Saku-shi, Nagano
  • Transport: *Omitted as the entrance of the site was unconfirmed
  • Parking: Toshimaen Parking
  • Other sights: Uchiyama Castle
Next article in the series 'Walking the Japanese Castles': Taguchi Castle
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Hiroto Uehara
Hiroto is an ordinary Japanese office worker, but his true mission is searching for castles on the weekend.


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Hiroto Uehara
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