Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 24th March 2018
Saturday 11th February 2017, 7:46am
Gray and snow
We got snow throughout the day yesterday: it can be hard to find a really good total figure when wind is blowing, and some things get cleared and some don't - and you end up spending six hours doing shoveling around several locations. Ah, the other excitements of living in Snow Country (yes, I read the fine print in the contract before I signed on).
Looks like snow throughout the day; the Niigata prefectural website gives a very good prediction on its site and says 20cm. Other TV weather reports were mentioning the possibility of high winds in the region, although things are peaceful at the moment.
Even had a moment of sun there earlier, although it's turning pretty gray out there now.
It's an overcast kind of start to the day though very light snow just about seems to be starting to fall - and snow is forecast for today and into tomorrow morning. It doesn't look like it will be anything major but let us cross our fingers and hope.
I have observed and recorded just 7cm of fresh snow here over the last eight days. Oh dear, after that nice start to the month that is... well, I'll let you insert your word. I know that perhaps one of two of you reading this don't choose Niseko to ski and board on groomers, but they are at least looking in good shape this morning. (Go on, give them a try!) ;)
Otherwise we really could do with a mountain-wide reset.
Let's see what tonight brings.
Have a fun Saturday, wherever you may be.
Niseko Avalanche Report:
Niseko base 6am: no snowfall. Moiwa 800m: -7℃, no snowfall, N8m/s wind. Annupuri 1150m: -9℃, N13m/s, no snowfall and good visibility. Hirafu 1250m: -10℃, N5m/s, no snowfall. Sea of Japan Kamui cape: ENE2m/s, 1002hPa, 1.6m waves.
The little low-pressure present over the sea of Japan is flattening the pressure gradient. No snow-clouds are forming and no snow is falling. A moderate northerly wind is blowing at high elevation and the visibility is bad in western side above 1000m. The general avalanche risk is low. Peak gates will open from the morning. The out of bounds area is tracked out, ride carefully.
Do not duck ropes to step out of bounds. Enter strictly off-limits areas and you’ll be refused from any of the ski resort facilities.
This information is drafted based on observations and impact tests with a snow cat at Mikaeri sawa area at 5am, Japan Meteorological Agency’s data, Japan Coast Guard weather data and other relevant data. It is made for accidents prevention in the out of bounds areas and the hazard level is evaluated based on various elements such as snowfall transition and development of snowdrifts.
Today’s surface will remain as a notable hoar layer in the future snowpack.
The groomers condition is wonderful this morning.
Resort specific opening news at time of writing (subject to change during the day):
Night skiing is planned until Monday 20th March 2017 at the Niseko Annupuri, Niseko Grand Hirafu and Niseko Village resort areas. There is no nighta in the Hanazono area. Read more ...
Saturday 11th February 2017, 8:32am
Cloud, light snow, some blue sky - mixed conditions early on
Morning from Yuzawa.
Yesterday it was a mixed bunch of weather conditions in the area - light snow, cloudy, some blue sky, bit of sunshine. It couldn't make up it's mind. The snow didn't amount to much in the end, though snow clouds moved in overnight. As of 8:30am, there's 5cm to report here in town and this is how much fresh snowfall that resorts are reporting:
Just this last hour or so has been mixed conditions as well actually and right now there's even a bit of blue sky over parts of Yuzawa...
The forecast though is for snowfall, with heavier conditions likely later on in the day and tonight with light snow forecast for the day tomorrow too. A good decent fresh layer is always welcome so let's hope we get that overnight.
All resorts in the area appear to be opening as planned this morning.
Official snow depth information as of Saturday 11th February 2017
Some data not updated for today due to the early report.
Below are details of the planned 'nighta' operations at ski and snowboards resorts around Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma this season. This information is subject to change due to snow and weather conditions. *** Please note that this section will not be updated every day.
Ishiuchi Maruyama Daily until 19th March 2017. Nighta is from 5pm until 8:50pm. The Chuo Number 1, Chuo Number 2 and Kanko Number 3 Express lifts are open daily. The Kanko Number 1 Express lift, Hatsukaishi Entrance lift and Hatsukaishi Number 2 pair lifts are also open on weekends and holidays.
Iwappara Daily until 20th March 2017. Nighta is from 5pm until 9pm on Saturdays and until 8pm on weekdays and Sundays. The Main course, Grand course and West courses are open during nighta.
Joetsu Kokusai Daily until 20th March 2017. Nighta is from 5pm until 9pm. The area in front of the main base hotel is open for nighta.
Kandatsu Kogen 'Hobo All Night' ('Almost All Night') is on Fridays, Saturdays and nights before holidays until 1st April 2017. The nighta opening times on those days is from 6pm until 4am the following morning.
Maiko Snow Resort Daily until 19th March 2017. Nighta is from 4pm until 8pm. The Maiko center quad lift on the Maiko Side of the resort operates for nighta.
Naeba Daily until 26th March 2017. Nighta is from 4pm until 8:30pm.
NASPA Ski Garden 'Thanks' (extended) opening on Saturdays in January and February. On those days the Number 1 lift is open until 6pm.
Yuzawa Nakazato Every Saturday until 11th March 2017. Nighta is from 5pm until 8:30pm. The Number 2 pair lift operates during nighta. Read more ...
Saturday 11th February 2017, 8:35am
Good morning from Madarao.
Not a huge amount of fresh to report this morning after a day of rather mixed weather conditions yesterday.
The resort is reporting 5cm and I have just a bit more than that measured to report.
It's good and cold this morning and light snow is falling at the moment. Conditions should be good out there. Sadly once I post this I have to make my way to Nagano city. Not that I don't like Nagano city, of course. ;)
Anyway, we are expecting heavier snowfall later on today and tonight with things easing off once again as we get into tomorrow. That's what the forecast says anyway and that should be followed by a run of days with clearer skies expected. As long as it keeps cold, that sounds fine with me - let's get a good thick new layer tonight first shall we?
Have fun today. Tomorrow should be great.
Operating status for the day at Madarao Kogen (at time of report):
- Number 1 lift - Number 2 quad lift - Number 3A lift - Number 5 lift - Super quad lift - Number 11 lift - Number 12 lift - Number 13 lift - Number 15 lift - Moving walkway - Kids Park - Free Ride Park - Snow Mobile Land
- Powder Wave I - Powder Wave II - River Line - Powder Theater - Adventure Aisle - Crystal Bowl - Ninja - Sawa - Rabbit - Kamoshika - Bear
- Nighta at Madarao Kogen is every Saturday until 25th March (and also on 19th March)
It is snowing heavy this morning here at Grandeco. With 20cm of new snow fall last night, the conditions are fresh across the resort. Today the trails are powder and packed powder. With a base of just under 3m, Grandeco is now 100% operational. The 3rd and 4th Lift should be especially good today for those who like deeper-snow skiing and boarding.
Also for people looking to climb Mt. Nishidaiten, please be sure to fill in the mountain climbing sheet located by the inforamtion desk next to the ticket counter. Take the gondola and the lift 3 or 4 to hike up. It takes about an hour and a half from the top of either lift to reach Mt. Nishidaiten peak on foot. Snowshoes or skinned skies are highly recommended for the hike up.
The Fukushima Local Government is hold a campaign for overseas visitors.
A. People who were born between 1993-1998, foreign passport holders can get a free lift pass during 1 December 2016 - 31 March 2017. B. Australian passport holders of all ages can get a one day lift ticket for 2,000 yen per person during 1 Dec. 2016 - 31 Mar. 2017.
If you are eligible and want to take advantage of this, please show your passport when you buy a ticket at Grandeco or any of the other 22 ski areas, located throughout Fukushima.
Snow Park Information:
[E-Park] Waves, bank, 7m kicker, 8m kicker
[Decoboco-Park] 4m straight rail, 5m straight rail, drum can, 6m straight box, 8m straight rail, 3m kicker, 5m table top. *Newly added to the park is a large 3.5m high x 8m long J-Curve Snowbank, as well as three volcano jumps. The Snow Park Team has built a second park on the lower part of Lavender 3500 with a 7m and 8m kicker. New items coming soon.
- Gondola - Number 1 quad lift - Number 2 quad lift - Number 3 quad lift - Number 4 quad lift
All courses now open
Official snow depth: 290cm
Road Condition to Grandeco: Inawashiro through Goshikinuma: snow Goshukinuma through Grandeco: snow Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Saturday 11th February 2017, 8:46am
Morning from Nozawa.
It is cold and light snow is falling this morning.
Heavier snow is forecast for later on this afternoon and tonight and I predict some very nice fresh snow numbers in my report tomorrow.
All lifts moving. All good. That's about it really, it should be a fine weekend.
Most courses at Nozawa Onsen are open. Courses not open are: - Kandahar West - Kandahar East - Grand Prix Read more ...
Saturday 11th February 2017, 8:48am
Hello, and it's another snowy morning in Hakuba.
Going back to yesterday, in the afternoon we enjoyed a sometimes dramatic mix of cloud, blue skies and sunshine - beautiful views for some folk, all depending on where you were at the time! I was over at Hakuba Iwatake and the low cloud with blue skies above it made for some stunning scenery mid-afternoon.
Anyway, on to today and here's the headlines from around the resorts. This is how much fresh snowfall they are reporting this morning:
I am measuring 18cm since my report yesterday morning up until the time I am posting this.
So a decent new layer out there, snow falling now and also forecast for the day today and tomorrow. Perhaps heavy snowfall tonight. Sounds good, right?
If you like sunshine, looks like there might be a few days to enjoy that this coming week. Fingers crossed temperatures remain low.
Anyway should be a good weekend. Get wrapped up well and I might meet a few of you out there on the lifts.
Resort news as of 8:45am on Saturday 11th February 2017:
All information as available and subject to change during the day due to weather and snow conditions.
Hakuba 47: Hakuba 47 is reporting 20cm of fresh snowfall this morning (and 10cm during the day yesterday). The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth Upper: 295cm Base: 155cm
Hakuba Goryu: Hakuba Goryu is reporting 10cm of fresh snowfall. The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth Alps: 340cm Toomi: 180cm Iimori: 140cm
Hakuba Happo-one: Hakuba Happo-one is reporting 15cm of fresh snowfall (Riesen quad top). The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth: Usagidaira: 245cm Kurobishi: 270cm Lower: 155cm
Tsugaike Kogen: The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth: Tsuga-no-mori: 340cm Han-no-ki: 340cm Maruyama: 185cm Oya-no-hara: 170cm Kane-no-naru-oka: 165cm
Hakuba Cortina: The resort is reporting 10cm of fresh snowfall. Official snow depth: Top: 360cm Base: 235cm
Planned nighta operations - be sure to check with resorts for latest:
Hakuba Goryu: Planned to be open daily from 6pm until 9:30pm
Tsugaike Kogen: Planned at the Kane-no-naru-oka area on February 11th (6pm until 8:50pm) Planned at the Katamatsu-Shirakaba area February 11th, 18th; March 4th, 11th, 18th, 19th (6pm until 9pm)
Hakuba Cortina: Planned to be open daily from 5pm until 8pm (until 9pm on Saturdays)
Hakuba Happo-one: Planned to be open daily until 9pm on the Nakiyama area.
Kashimayari: Planned to be open daily.
There is no night skiing at the other resorts in the area. Read more ...
Appi Kogen Now!
Saturday 11th February 2017, 8:51am
Some high clouds today with a fairly brisk -6 outside my door. We are expecting some snow today but not much at all.
The snow that was forecast for the last two days seemed to have other plans and decided to visit somewhere else instead. The whole weekend will be cloudy with chances of snow showers and perhaps an increase in temperature on Sunday. Overall not a bad weekend but the snow would certainly have helped somewhat.
All runs but one are open and expect the morning groomers to get a good workout. If you’re not at the summit before 9am then it’s going to be too late. They’ll be well worn in by mid morning.
Enjoy the first day of the weekend.
Planned operating lifts at time of report (subject to change due to weather conditions):
Appi Gondola Central quad Central number 1 Central number 2 Central number 3a Central number 4 Central number 5 Central number 6 Sailer Gondola Sailer quad Vista quad Nishimori
A colder morning this morning and snow falling from the skies.
Snow is forecast for today and tomorrow, perhaps easing off during the day tomorrow.
Looks like we are on for a busy weekend in Zao.
All lifts apart from the following appear to be operating today:
Paradise Number 3 pair
All courses apart from Kotan are open.
Official snow depths (as published by the resort itself): Summit - 125cm Paradise - 210cm Chuo - 210cm Utopia - 160cm Uwanodai - 125cm Yokokura - 135cm
Juhyo 'Ice Monsters' Light Up night time Zao Ropeway operations
Every day until 5th March 2017. Operating from 5pm until 9pm; last ropeway up at 7:50pm. Ropeway return charges are 2,600 yen for adults and 1,300 yen for children. In the event of poor weather conditions, operations are sometimes cancelled. Read more ...
Saturday 11th February 2017, 11:04am
The day started off very cold with low valley cloud settling on the lower half of the mountain. From above halfway temperatures were noticeably warmer, and being above the cloud below meant there was blue sky and sunshine. From 10am the cloud lifted completely to leave a great day with clear sky and plenty of sunshine from the top to the base of the resort...but still fairly cold. The pistes are firm powder, but not icy, but we will definitely appreciate any fresh snow that comes our way. Read more ...
Saturday 11th February 2017, 13:02pm
Significant cloud cover but generally sunny
The wind closure yesterday at Tenjin has given way to beautiful conditions here today with plenty of fresh snow, clear skies and light winds.
The weather looks to be heading our way this afternoon or tonight though and its shaping up to be a lot of snow.
Just hope the winds don't come in too aggressively.
If the forecast delivers weekend warriors might be better served at Hodaigi and Okutone tomorrow though who knows till the morning.
25cm Tenjin 5cm Hodaigi 5cm Okutone
Temps at 8am
Official snow depth:
385cm Tenjin 200cm Hodaigi 230cm Okutone
Resorts in Minakami (forecasts available from each page):
Please note that the fresh snowfall number being reported on this report is taken from the ‘base area’ of Tenjindaira - which is just by the top station of the Ropeway at that resort. Other snowfall numbers and commentary will be mentioned within each report when available. Read more ...