The course at the Hakone Country Club was by designed by Shiro Akaboshi in the early 50s. This was before the game of golf really took off in the Empire of the Rising Sun. Prior to that, golf had a somewhat elitist image in Japan and was seen as a pastime of the favored few. Hakone is the product from the final years of that era. When they began the construction, they discovered that the soil under the proposed layout was inferior, they imported earth from the Mount Fuji region, darkened with ashes from the volcano. The result is a beautiful course with spectacular views of the Hakone mountains. Akaboshi made full use of whatever natural features he found. The course is reasonably long at 6451 meters from the back tees which, allied to small greens, makes for a most challenging layout.