Niseko Now daily snow and weather - Monday 1st February 2016

Niseko Now (Archive Report)

Independent and trustworthy daily snow and weather reports from Niseko (Hokkaido), Japan
ARCHIVE REPORT: Posted at 8:34am on Monday 1st February 2016
Current weather conditions
Observed fresh snowfall
weather condition
Cloudy
Base temp:
-9°C

Top temp:
-13°C
Precipitation Wind Visibility
precipitation condition
Snow currently falling
wind condition
SW 1m/s - E 2m/s (Hirafu)
Fair
This report
Monday 1st February 2016, 8:34am
12cm
Sunday 31st January 2016, 8:33am 8cm
Saturday 30th January 2016, 8:45am 1cm
Friday 29th January 2016, 8:39am 6cm
Thursday 28th January 2016, 8:41am 1cm
Wednesday 27th January 2016, 8:36am 16cm
Tuesday 26th January 2016, 8:20am 14cm
Last 7 reports (total): 58cm
Last 14 reports (total): 88cm
Current month (February 2016) total: 12cm
2015/2016 season so far total: 623cm

Archive report: Posted at 8:34am on Monday 1st February 2016
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Good morning to you and this morning I have another 12cm of fresh snowfall overnight to report which makes for a decent start to February.

The last day of January saw some nice blue skies in the morning with clouds moving in and then some fresh snow falling. Snowfall overnight is the kind I like best - fill in the tracks... reset the mountain... nice. (Just one thing, bring us 20+cm each night, ok?)

Actually, I see that the Avalanche Report is reporting 20+cm on the mountain. So all is good.

It is another very cold morning here, but I doubt that will put people off wanting to get up for early tracks and enjoy the conditions. Snow continues to fall and I expect visibility to be somewhat limited in places at the moment but once again the snow is expected to stop and leave us with a cloudy day; perhaps even a bit of blue sky again? The Hanazono webcam is showing hints of that just now...

The Early Morning lift service at Niseko Grand Hirafu has now finished for the season. It sounds a bit odd thinking about things already finishing up for the season, but then we can remember that lifts and runs are scheduled to be open until early May. So like I mentioned yesterday, we have over 3 months to go!

---

So here we are in February 2016 already and it's time for my monthly look back - and forward - to see where we stand this season.

First of all, here are my observed snowfall numbers. As always, recorded here near Hirafu base:

Observed snowfall during January 2016: 303cm
Observed snowfall during January 2015: 257cm
Observed snowfall during January 2014: 461cm

Total observed snowfall for the 15/16 season up until end January 2016: 611cm
Total observed snowfall for the 14/15 season up until end January 2015: 806cm
Total observed snowfall for the 13/14 season up until end January 2014: 859cm

So I observed nearly 50cm more snowfall during January 2016 than I did in January 2015, but it was still over 1.5m less than in January 2014.
Looking at the season as a whole, we are still 2-2.5m behind the previous two seasons - the main reason this time round of course being the late/poor start to the season.

How will February shape up? Here's what I observed last season and the one before:

February 2015: 196cm
February 2014: 178cm

I always like to emphasise this so forgive me for repeating it. More snow falls higher up on the mountain than does here at base. The popular thinking is that there's probably up to/around 1.5 times the amount up there. It would of course be ideal to be able to report a number from there as well, but unfortunately it's just not possible to do that every morning...

Let's also take a look at the official snowfall numbers that are published by the Japan Meteorological Agency. These numbers are taken from their point in Kutchan town which is a bit lower than here at Hirafu base, so you would expect them to be less than the snow that I observe myself.

January 2016: 246cm
January 2015: 230cm
January 2014: 317cm
January 2013: 268cm
January 2012: 290cm
January 2011: 420cm
January 2010: 331cm
January 2009: 286cm
January 2008: 336cm

15/16 season so far at end of January 2016: 476cm
14/15 season so far at end of January 2015: 658cm
13/14 season so far at end of January 2014: 674cm
12/13 season so far at end of January 2013: 672cm
11/12 season so far at end of January 2012: 721cm
10/11 season so far at end of January 2011: 668cm
09/10 season so far at end of January 2010: 680cm
08/09 season so far at end of January 2009: 612cm
07/08 season so far at end of January 2009: 621cm

It is a 'danto' (mild winter) season for most of Japan this time around. Lots of popular ski regions - mostly on the main island of Honshu - are this season getting much less snowfall than they usually enjoy. Take a look at the Yuzawa Now report today and tomorrow for some similar 'analysis' of what is going on down there. Last season the Yuzawa Now reports recorded over 13m of snowfall, which was actually over 1.5m more than I observed for these Niseko Now reports!

Happily for us up here in Hokkaido, we have been doing well once the season got going and have enjoyed regular fresh snowfall for the most part. But still, for the season so far we also have been getting less snowfall than we usually get.

Let's hope that February brings with it some good numbers - not just for here in Niseko, but for all of the ski resort regions of Japan.

---

Resort specific lift opening news at time of writing (subject to change during the day):

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Niseko HANAZONO Resort
Niseko Village
Niseko Annupuri
All resort areas appear to be opening as planned this morning

---

Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6.00am: -10°C, 20cm new snow. Moiwa 800m: NE8m/s, 20cm new snow, snowdrift development. Mikaeri 740m: -12.9°C, WSW2.7m/s, 30cm new snow, snow drift development. Annupuri 1150m: -15°C, NW15m/s, 20cm new snow, snow drift development. Hirafu 1000m -16°C, 20cm new snow. Coastal data: Benkei Cape:NW13m/s. Kamui Cape WNW6m/s, 1019hPa, wave 1.3m.

Currently we under the influence of typical winter weather pattern. Light winds and snow continue, On upper sections of leeward slopes above 700m, there has been 40cm of snowdrift growth. Above 900m snowdrift growth has been faster, forming soft slabs likely to fracture on the Jan 30 layer. From observation and data, general avalanche risk is low, but risk can be higher depending on aspect and elevation. Avoid cornices and knolls. All gates are expected to be open. If you ignore Niseko Rules and enter Strictly Off Limits areas expect to be banned from all Niseko ski areas. For your own safety follow the rules. Once one person ducks the ropes, other follow, increasing risk of an accident. This cannot be tolerated. Snowfall is expected to continue. Take care falling into cracks when visibility is poor. It's cold today, beware frostbite. Have a good day.

---

Official resort snow depths as of Monday 1st February 2016:

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Hanazono
Top - 325cm
Base - 140cm

Niseko Village
Top - 280cm
Base - 170cm

Niseko Annupuri
Top - 285cm
Base - 160cm

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Lifts planned to be open for night skiing:

Niseko Grand Hirafu:
Ace Family Pair lift, Ace Number 2 Center Four lift, Hirafu Gondola, Holiday Number 1 Pair lift
(There is no night skiing at the Hanazono area)

Niseko Village:
Community Chair and Banzai Chair

Niseko Annupuri:
Jumbo Number 1 Quad

---

Niseko Grand Hirafu 6 day weather and snow forecast

Archive report: Posted at 8:34am on Monday 1st February 2016
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Niseko Now ski lift operation notes:

All resort areas appear to be opening as normal this morning

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Sunday 31st January 2016
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Monday 1st February 2016
Tuesday 2nd February 2016
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THANK YOU
Thanks for reading our reports through the 16-17 season. If you are planning a trip to Japan, please do make use of our extensive reporting archives (links below) and the Snowfall Analysis page (tab at the top of this page).

Our exclusive daily snow reporting will be back in late autumn.
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Japan snowfall data
(updated daily during winter)
Niseko Now observed snowfall data: Recent Niseko Now reports
The data displayed is correct up to and including Monday 1st February 2016
This graph shows the amount of observed snowfall recorded in the 21 Niseko Now reports up until Monday 1st February 2016
(View the latest Niseko Now report here :: View more analysis here)
Niseko Now observed snowfall data: Recent season comparisons
The data displayed is correct up to and including Monday 1st February 2016
This table shows the amount of observed snowfall recorded in the Niseko Now reports during same period over the last three seasons
(View the latest Niseko Now report here :: View more analysis here)
  2015/2016
*as of Monday 1st February 2016
2014/2015
Season
2013/2014
Season
1st February 12cm 15cm 20cm
31st January 8cm 0cm 10cm
30th January 1cm 3cm 10cm
29th January 6cm 10cm 20cm
28th January 1cm 3cm 20cm
27th January 16cm 0cm 15cm
26th January 14cm 0cm 2cm
Previous 7 days total 58cm 31cm 97cm
Previous 14 days total 88cm 90cm 144cm
November observed snowfall total 61cm 30cm 123cm
December observed snowfall total 244cm 519cm 275cm
January observed snowfall total 303cm 257cm 461cm
February observed snowfall total 12cm 196cm 178cm
March observed snowfall total - 139cm 113cm
April observed snowfall total - 3cm 13cm
May observed snowfall total - 0cm 0cm
Season observed snowfall total 623cm 1144cm 1163cm
Niseko Now observed snowfall data: Monthly and annual accumulation
The data displayed is correct up to and including Monday 1st February 2016
This table shows the amount of observed snowfall recorded the Niseko Now reports for each month and total season accumulation
(View the latest Niseko Now report here :: View more analysis here)
  October November December January February March April May
2017/2018 season - - - - - - - -
2016/2017 season - - - - - - - -
2015/2016 season 3cm
[3cm]
61cm
[64cm]
244cm
[308cm]
303cm
[611cm]
12cm
[623cm]
-
[623cm]
-
[623cm]
-
[623cm]
2014/2015 season 0cm
[0cm]
30cm
[30cm]
519cm
[549cm]
257cm
[806cm]
196cm
[1002cm]
139cm
[1141cm]
3cm
[1144cm]
0cm
[1144cm]
2013/2014 season 0cm
[0cm]
123cm
[123cm]
275cm
[398cm]
461cm
[859cm]
178cm
[1037cm]
113cm
[1150cm]
13cm
[1163cm]
0cm
[1163cm]
2012/2013 season 0cm
[0cm]
118cm
[118cm]
418cm
[536cm]
443cm
[979cm]
316cm
[1295cm]
164cm
[1459cm]
32cm
[1491cm]
2cm
[1493cm]
  October November December January February March April May
Niseko Now reports before Monday 1st February 2016
Niseko Now reports from the same period last season
Niseko Now archived reporting
View previous reports posted to Niseko Now by clicking on the month

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002