Photo: screenshot via Vice.com
The dense and mysterious Aokigahara Forest, located at the foot of Mount Fuji, is Japan’s most popular place to commit suicide–more than 100 bodies are found every year and it’s estimated that many more corpses lie undiscovered.Azusa Hayano is a geologist who has studied the forest for 20 years and has found more than 100 bodies in that time. He took a camera crew from Vice.com for a tour of the grim forest.
A quick walk-through revealed abandoned supplies, nooses, suicide notes and bodies.
“I don’t know why people kill themselves in such a beautiful forest,” Hayano says in the video. “I still haven’t found an answer to that.”
You can watch the video at the Vice website or check out some of the most poignant parts here. WARNING: Graphic content ahead.
Geologist Azusa Hayano plans to take a Vice camera crew inside the forest, but there are already ominous sights to see in the parking lot.
This car appears to have been abandoned for several months, meaning its owner went into the forest and never left.
A sign at the entrance urges people to consider their parents, spouses, children and siblings before they commit suicide.
This man's body is surrounded by supplies including a map, food and water. He probably took sleeping pills.
A doll, nailed upside down on a tree, is a symbol of cursing society left by a visitor who probably intended to commit suicide.
This is a decomposed human skeleton, which Hayano estimates rotted in the forest for a couple years.
A man in a tent claims to be a forest ranger, and Hayano pleads with him to leave. He is removed via ambulance later that day.
Family members and friends of the deceased often visit the forest to leave notes and flowers like these.
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