Kita-Akita City lies in the north of Akita Prefecture. It is a land of mountains and thick forests. The Akita Nairiku Line runs north-south through this wild terrain. On this edition of Journeys in Japan, Michael Keida visits two areas that can be accessed along this railroad. Since ancient times, there has been a long tradition of hunting in the Ani district. Known in Japanese as matagi, these hunters developed their own language and customs, many of which have been passed down to the present day. Michael meets a modern-day matagi, and learns how these hunters continue to live in harmony with the forests and the animals there. In the Takanosu district, an annual festival is held, in which gigantic drums are played to pray for rain and abundant harvests. On this edition of Journeys in Japan, Michael meets the people of Kita-Akita, and joins them in celebrating their close connection with the natural environment.