Mikuni Kaid? (?) was an ancient highway in Japan that stretched from Takasaki-juku (present day Gunma Prefecture) on the Nakasend? to Teradomari-juku (present day Niigata Prefecture) on the Hokurikud?.
The Mikuni Pass separated the Kant? region from Echigo Province in ancient Japan. As such, it has long been used as a major transportation hub for travelers going between those two areas. During the Edo period, the Mikuni Kaid? was established with the purpose of helping daimy? who were participating in sankin k?tai, which required daimy? to spend a portion of their time in Edo.
In 1902, the Shin'etsu Main Line was built, the first train line through the area. As a result, the economies of many of the post towns began to falter. However, the area between Nagaoka and Yuzawa was able to continue to flourish because the flat land allowed them to pursue agriculture. The area across the Mikuni Pass, however, received very little traffic.
In 1953, as cars became more common, so did long-distance transport, which led to a great rise in traffic in the area. However, for cars traveling between the Kant? and Echigo regions, it was very inconvenient to take the same detour as the train line, so the prefecture began major repair and construction work along the Mikuni Kaid?.
The Mikuni Kaid?'s path can be followed today by a large portion of National Route 17, or by the portions of the Kan-Etsu Expressway or the J?etsu Shinkansen that stretch from the Kant? region to Niigata.
There are 35 post stations along the Mikuni Kaid?.