Photographer captures fantastical images of a fire-walking festival in northern Japan -- Sep 20
Japan has no shortage of festivals for every season, from the weird and wacky, to the absolutely magical. One such festival that would fall into the latter category is the Tengu no Hi-watari (天狗の火渡り), which takes place annually in Japan’s northern-most prefecture of Hokkaido.

The festival -- held at the Ebisu Shrine in the town of Furubira -- features a tengu, among others, running through a bonfire of towering flames. Tengu, if you're not familiar, are creatures found in Japanese folklore, usually localized as "goblins" in English, and often depicted with a red face and distinctively long nose.

Many cultures throughout the world have their own fire walks, which normally involves participants walking across hot coals or embers. The towering flames involved at this fire walk in Hokkaido certainly make for a more impressive spectacle, which was captured and shared on Twitter by musician and photographer Katsu (克), who goes by @katuka2 online. In the photos, Katsu captures the intense contrast between the dark shadows of night against the bright blazing flames, as the masked fire walker emerges from the fire in a hellish scene. The photos immediately received the attention of the Twitter community -- and rightfully so -- wracking up 37,000 retweets and nearly 70,000 likes since they were published on September 12.

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