Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 20th January 2018
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Friday 10th November 2017, 8:42am
A fine morning
Good morning from Nozawa Onsen, and welcome back to our Nozawa Now reports.
It’s a chilly Friday morning, 10th November 2017.
It certainly does not feel like it was six months ago when I posted my last report from the 2016-2017 season. Since that report we’ve had a rather uneven summer with probably more than our share of rain and less sun and clear skies than we usually get. I think that’s the story for the wider region and perhaps even most of Japan too.
Anyway, we are now just over two weeks away from the planned opening date of Nozawa Onsen… that planned opening being on Saturday 25th November. Obviously, that is going to depend on the weather and snowfall. If you look back at the archive reporting (links below) from previous season, you’ll be able to see how often Nozawa gets to open on that planned late November opening date. I highly recommend a read through reports from previous seasons.
We have had some snowfall on the mountain already, and as you can see from the images below there’s a bit of snow remaining up on the top slopes at the moment.
The sun is out this morning and it looks like it should be a fine day, though it won’t get much warmer than 12 degrees during the daytime.
I believe the biggest resort news for the upcoming season is the new course area that has been developed to connect the E Course on the top Yamabiko area with the top of the Skyline course. This change will mean that you won’t need to get the Skyline connecting pair when you want to ride the Skyline course. Sounds good to me and I am really looking forward to checking it out.
Can’t wait for the season to start now and highly anticipating a bumper snow season here in Nozawa.
I’ll be here with you every day once the lifts get moving and will post some updates over the next few weeks as that planned opening approaches.
Here we are in November once again, excitedly looking forward to the new snow season.
It really is a great time of the year. As always, the autumn ‘koyo’ leaves have been spectacular in the region. Really beautiful. Things get gradually colder, the leaves drop, the first snow falls on the mountain and anticipation of the ski and snowboard season grows… what’s not to like about all that?!
It’s always great to see that first snow of the season – a sprinkling on 30th October. There was also a sprinkling of wet snow down here last Sunday morning.
The Zao Echo Line road has now closed for the winter season, and is planned to be closed all the way through until late April 2018. The section of the road that is closed is between the Zao Liza World resort here in Yamagata and the Zao Sumikawa ski resort on the other side of the mountains in Miyagi Prefecture.
The official opening ceremony for the resort is planned for 11am on Saturday 9th December over on the Uwanodai base area. Hopefully, the ski lifts might be able to start operating before then… it’s all going to depend on snowfall.
If you want some pre-season reading and see how previous seasons went, do take a look back over the Zao Now archive reporting on SnowJapan. You can find links to them all below.
I’ll post some occasional updates over the next few weeks with any news. Of course, once the season gets going reports should appear on a daily basis.
So, here’s to a very snowy and successful 2017-2018 season.
How was your summer? I spent some of it here in Hakuba and some of it away. Summer didn’t bring us typical summer weather conditions this year, being rather wetter than usual. Let’s hope that we can get through all the ‘wet’, and that the upcoming winter will be very much ‘dry’... and powdery of course!
I’m glad to be back, all revved up and ready to report to you from Hakuba every day once again and I hope that I’ll be able to bring you lots of positive snow news. An early good start to the season would be a perfect start.
First up, here’s are the latest planned resorts opening dates:
In ski resort news, the main thing I can report is that this season Hakuba Sanosaka will not be part of the joint ‘Hakuba Valley’ ticket deal. There were various rumours going around about Sanosaka over summer… it will be opening but it looks like operations will be somewhat scaled down with just three lifts (Number 2 quad lift, Number 3 quad lift, Number 6 pair lift) scheduled to be operating. The ‘Hakuba Valley’ lift ticket prices for the 2017-2018 season have been updated on each of the 9 ski resort pages on SnowJapan.
In snow news, we have had some mountain snowfall already at times 20cm and more at higher elevations. The snow-capped mountain tops are looking lovely today. Check out the Happo webcam images below from earlier this morning.
Everyone is in pre-season ‘panic’ mode. Don’t worry, nothing to be concerned about - this is the norm! No matter how much time we sometimes seem to have, there always seems to be mad rushing about going on in the run up to the season starting. All part of the pattern, part of the fun.
Some of the official information sources are still not updated for the 2017-2018 season which, if I wasn’t used to being here, would seem odd. The ski resort pages on SnowJapan have generally been updated but will be updated further over the coming few weeks.
Hakuba Now will be updated daily once the ski lifts start operating, and I’ll be making some posts before then with news of snow. If you want more pre-season reading and info on how previous early seasons went, you can check the archive Hakuba Now reports using the links lower down this page.
That’s it for me for today. Next update next coming next week... Read more ...