Crossing the broad Arakawa River, the modern highway executes a gentle curve, carving through an extensive industrial area. The old Nakasendo, on the other hand, followed a more tortured route, crossing and recrossing the modern road. Traces of the old highway can still be found, including dosojin, but for much of the way, the route is blocked by factories and high-rise residential developments.
After nearly two miles, the Nakasendo passes an “ichirizuka” which is dwarfed by a pedestrian overpass. The ichirizuka is preserved behind a fence in a well-manicured garden. The twin mounds are the first ichirizuka outside of old Edo and present an eerie reminder of past times amid the bustling industrial suburb of modern Itabashi. From here the Nakasendo follows the busy six-lane highway until it comes to an even more recent section of elevated expressway. The roar of traffic abates thankfully, as the old highway turns down a gentle hill to a bridge which lent it’s name to the last post-town on the Nakasendo – Itabashi (lit. ‘Bridge of Wooden Planks’).