Snow and weather reports posted on Wednesday 21st March 2018
Thursday 11th January 2018, 7:20am
We haven't had too many typical Furano winter days this season, but today is certainly one of them. It is cold this morning, currently -15c in the village and the skies are crystal clear from the ski area right across the valley to the Daisetsuzan Range. Mt Tokachi is looking beautiful bathed in the orange morning light against the blue of the sky. There is no new snow to report and only the slightest of wind. I would expect the pistes will be firm after the warm weather and now this cold snap, but should be skiing very nice and fast. Have a good day but don't be surprised if you feel the need to go and buy some new gloves at these temps. Read more ...
Thursday 11th January 2018, 7:55am
Cloud, clearing (9:15am)
UPDATE AT 9:15am
I feel I should update the report - the snowfall I reported at the time of the original report eased up and right now clouds are clearing and the sun is breaking through!
** The original webcam images remain.
Good morning from Yuzawa.
The weather is acting... a little odd in our region just at the moment.
As I mentioned yesterday the snow clouds appear to be moving across Niigata Prefecture to the north of us - and giving our region something of a miss in the process. Yesterday was a windy and snow-free day here, and even after hearing that it was snowing fairly close by in Tokamachi when I made my way over there yesterday afternoon, I was still a bit surprised to see a decent amount of fresh snow on the ground over there. There was still none over here when I got back. And it was really strange hearing about snow down in Kyushu and western Japan - areas that usually hardly get any.
There is actually is a bit of fresh snow on the ground here this morning... 4cm on the roads around town to add to the report. (Just outside of Yuzawa in neighbouring Minamiuonuma remains dry).
Higher resorts are also reporting fresh. Kagura are reporting between 10-15cm of fresh snowfall; Naeba and Maiko Snow Resort are both reporting 5cm.
So it would seem that today is definitely a day when 'go high' is the best advice for better snow conditions. Lower areas could still do with a good refresh. Actually, higher areas could also do with it.
I'm not going to try and say what we'll get served up today. We are hoping snow on and off during the day and that is what local forecasts say; but they said that yesterday!
Early on it has been generally cloudy - and as I am about to post the report this morning there is good news: I am happy to report snow has started falling in higher areas. Let's hope it continues.
Images today from GALA Yuzawa, NASPA Ski Garden and Yuzawa IC exit.
Updated: Thursday 11th January 2018
** Official snow depths (where available) and resort specific information. Note that while we manually check this information each morning, sometimes official information is updated later than the time of these reports and so at times there may be an apparent delay.
Yesterday was dust on crust and one of the worst days of the season so took a troop of people under the mountains to Kagura and found the same there.
It has snowed a little overnight at the base of Tenjin so hopefully more up top but hearing Minakami town got the same amount as here which often indicates a Pacific dominant weather system and likely another bust of a day.
It is actually snowing lightly now at the base of Tenjin but looking down valley to the town I see blue skies so my fingers are firmly crossed but I have strong suspicions it ain't going to be great.
The Tenjin forecast is for light snow over the next four days, Minakami town forecast is for clear weather. We need a good reset so hopefully its forthcoming!
Please note that the snowfall numbers posted in this report will be observed from close to the base Tenjindaira Ropeway station - which is often much more than in the central town area of Minakami. Read more ...
Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:09am
Soft on freezing slush. It’s getting a little nicer on the snow surface; some people were reporting great powder on top of the icy remains of the rain, especially around Suginohara, and not too high up. The trees are white again, and it looks like there was more than the 7 cm that we got with a poke of the stick in the study plot this morning.
Light snow began to fall again around 7am, so hopefully the reset will continue.
The ski areas should be really good, though! Nice and cold again, with a little fresh continuing to season the slopes...
I have a good 10cm of fresh snowfall to report this morning. It's a cold morning and the snow delivered to my door looks to be suitably lovely dry quality. The kind we like!
It should be a really nice morning actually as there is a mix of cloud, blue sky and sunshine at the start of the day.
And happily the wind seems to have calmed down.
Some local forecasts are showing the chance of some sunshine in the day tomorrow as well, though there's regular snowfall sprinkled across the forecast into early next week as well. So perhaps we can expect modest regular top-ups?
I'm not wishing my days away though; I think I am going to go out and sample the goods this morning. Hope to speak to a few of you on the lifts!
The general weather is calm under a low pressure zone, except some area closer to the center of the Low pressure such as Kamui cape near the Sea of Japan. The snowdrift development has settled during the night and snowdrifts are stabilizing. No notable weakness has been observed in the snowpack during the morning pressure test. The general avalanche risk is low. All gates are scheduled to open from the morning. Listen to the skip patrol’s instructions and prepare yourself to the backcountry. The snow is in excellent condition. Hazards of slides from deeper layers are still present, do not stimulate knolls and cornices and do not stay put at the bottom of the valleys.
The ski patrol stopped some people as they tried to skin up from closed Gate 6 in Moiwa. Gates are being closed for good reasons and Niseko Rules does not allow anyone going out of bounds when gates are closed. The Niseko Rules are implemented for the safety and freedom of all resort users. Touring safely in bad weather conditions require considerable experience, knowledge and commitment. The gates are within the resort and anyone using the resort facility must abide by the resort’s regulations, which are the Niseko Rules. Have a nice day.
Thursday 11th January 2018
Resort specific information (operations subject to change):
Lifts scheduled to be operating: - All lifts are generally operating - 'Early Morning' services from 8:00am until 8:20am (Ace Number 2 Center Four quad lift). Until 28th January. 500 yen special ticket required.
Lifts scheduled to be operating: - All lifts except Country Road Chair are generally operating - 'Early Gondola' service from 7:30am until 8:30am (Niseko Gondola). January 13th-14th, 20th-21st, 27th-28th; February 3rd-4th. 1,400 yen special ticket required.
Official snow depth: - Top: 260cm - Base: 160cm
Floodlit 'nighta' skiing:
Night skiing is planned for every evening at the Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri areas. There is no nighta at the Niseko HANAZONO area. Ski lifts that are scheduled to be operating for nighta are noted below (subject to change):
* Niseko Grand Hirafu - Ace Family quad, Ace Number 2 quad, Hirafu Gondola, Holiday Number 1 pair * Niseko Annupuri - Jumbo Number 1 quad lift * Niseko Village - Village Express, Upper Village Gondola, Community Chair, Banzai Chair Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:28am
Good morning from Nozawa, and nature is serving up some rather confusing weather conditions right now. And perhaps not just in this region - was that heavy (for them) snow down on the southern island of Kyushu on the news last night?!
I'm not seeing any reported snowfall numbers from Nozawa Onsen resort this morning other than 3cm at Nagasaka, but I can clearly see that the trees on the upper areas have snow on them and they didn't yesterday so there's definitely some fresh snow up there. There's a little bit down here too now as snow is currently falling and I am measuring 4cm.
Let's hope it continues.
I'll update you again tomorrow. Keep an eye on the forecast; which may or may not be correct!
Thursday 11th January 2018
Fresh snowfall since yesterday (as reported by the resort):
- Challenge 39 - Grand Prix - Mukobayashi - Kandahar East Read more ...
Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:28am
Good morning from a very snowy Grandeco.
It was snowing heavily through the whole day yesterday and it is still falling this morning. There's a good 50cm of fresh snow at base to report.
It is a light soft snow that is fun to dive into. As can be seen in the images today (below).
Some lifts won’t be able to open on time because of the heavy snowfall as it is taking time to prepare the platform. But don’t worry, all lifts and gondola will be opening today and the wind is gentle.
Visibility is a little poor because of the snowfall but today will be a great day to enjoy large amounts of fresh snow!
Complicated weather at the moment it would seem and I have 7cm to report since yesterday. Better than none but not as much as I was hoping for. It has started snowing again this morning so hopefully there will be more today and over the next few days.
The Powder Wave I, River Line and Crystal Bowl tree run areas won't be open today due to the current conditions. Hopefully they will get to re-open again with a good refresh.
The Madarao Fire Festival is on Saturday. Expect (controlled!) fire, torch lit skiing display, food, drink and fireworks.
Official snow depth: 180cm
Number 1 lift Number 2 quad lift Number 3A lift Super quad lift Number 11 lift Number 12 lift Number 13 lift Number 15 lift
Powder Wave II Free Ride Park Powder Theater Adventure Aisle Ninja Sawa Rabbit Kamoshika Bear
Kids Park Snow Mobile Land
Planned nighta operations this season:
11th February 2018 Every Saturday between 4th January and 24th March 2018 Read more ...
Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:42am
Good morning from Hakuba.
Yesterday it was all about the snow with the wind giving us a breather to just enjoy the fresh out there.
With more snow overnight, here's the fresh snowfall headlines.
Hakuba Happo-one: 50cm (top of Gondola) Hakuba Cortina: 15-20cm (base); 20-25cm (top) Hakuba Goryu: 15-25cm Hakuba 47: up to 20cm (maybe up to 30cm)
Way to go Happo-one! I like it when a place reports an impressive 50cm of snow. That is up by their upper gondola station. I feel the need to check that out myself. ;)
Good numbers around the other resorts too so conditions should be good this morning.
The forecast continues to be good too with the snow clouds likely to continue being over our lovely Hakuba and delivering through Saturday.
Visibility looks limited out on many slopes this morning. Fresh powder and limited visibility. Difficult to not be really excited about it, but an extra need to be careful whilst having all that fun.
Enjoy yourself and take care.
Ski resort information on Thursday 11th January 2018 (at time of writing):
Night time skiing (nighta) at resorts in the region - weather & conditions permitting The below 'nighta' information will not be updated every day - please check with resorts if you plan to go!
Hakuba Happo-one Daily from 5pm until 9pm in the Nakiyama 2 area Adults - 2,000 yen; children - 1,200 yen
Hakuba Goryu Daily from 6pm until 9:30pm in the Toomi area until 31st March The Sky Four quad operates daily; the Number 2 pair mostly on Saturdays and holidays) Adults - 1,900 yen; children - 850 yen
Hakuba Cortina Daily from 5pm until 8pm (until 9pm on Saturdays) Adults - 1,500 yen; children - 1,000 yen
Tsugaike Kogen Kane-no-naru-oka area from 6pm until 8:50pm on 3rd, 10th, 11th February Karamatsu Shirakaba area from 6pm until 9pm on 13th, 20th, 27th January; 10th, 11th, 17th February; 3rd, 10th March Adults - 2,200 yen; children - 1,700 yen
There are no other nighta operations at other ski resorts in the region Read more ...
Geto Kogen Now!
Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:57am
Well, its a cracker of a day out there today I can tell you that much for free. Since yesterday’s heavy snow into this morning we’ve seen 12cm hit the slopes, and today we’ve got some absolutely unreal conditions.
Expecting tops of -5C with some very light winds to cool it down a little more, and scattered cloud cover giving us some incredible light to work with. The vis, therefore is flawless. Sunny skies mixed with a fresh pow day? I really have to finish writing this report soon so I can get out there.
Not much else to say except enjoy — plenty of areas to find to make your own tracks, and some beautifully slick groomed runs to get those carves in on.
Zones open include Summit, Rabbit, Beech & Stream. At this stage Shooter will remain closed until the main gondola is open.
News on Main Gondola:
At this time unfortunately the Main Gondola (Gondola 1) is closed for repair. The resort is working on the repairs, but it will require the next few weeks until it is back in operation. They estimate late January, early February for it to be back in action.
Official snow depths:
Top: 325cm Base: 245cm
Nighta skiing operations are planned at Geto Kogen on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until 25th February 2018. Read more ...
Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:59am
Sun and Cloud
Good morning from Naeba! It's a bright and crisp morning up here and the sun is shining! We have been gifted 5cm of fresh snow overnight, which will freshened up the crusty pistes from yesterday nicely. However, there is a slight sense of disappointment and 'dust on crust' in the air... perhaps we have all already been spoiled this season by the fantastic snow we received throughout December!
There are a few low but light clouds clinging on to the mountains this morning, but it seems as though the sun will take care of those before lunchtime. The forecast suggests that we should expect light snow throughout today, however I'm not sure any moisture-bearing clouds will make it as far as the Mikuni valley during the daytime.
You may notice that the piste under Prince Gondola No. 2 has been closed for a couple of days now. This is because of the fabulous glide cracks which have opened up under the gondola during that warm spell earlier this week. As you may know, once these have formed there isn't much anyone can do to manage them, meaning this piste may stay closed for sometime. Fortunately, however, temperatures are expected to remain firmly below 0°C for the next few days, giving the snowpack a chance to reconsolidate and hopefully stabilize somewhat.
The forecast looking forwards still determinedly suggests snow through until as far as Sunday afternoon, however it doesn't seem as though there will be much accumulation. Temperatures will consistently remain below 0°C at the base of Naeba until after the weekend, meaning that any moisture which does get into the valley will fall as snow. The wind is forecast to remain light throughout the week.
Floodlit night skiing for the 2017-2018 season is planned as follows:
In the Uwanodai area: Daily until Sunday 4th March 2018 Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 9th March until Sunday 18th March 2018.
In the Yokokura area: Daily until today Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 12th January until Sunday 18th February 2018. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 2nd March until Sunday 11th March 2018.
Night time 'light up' sightseeing ropeway is planned for the following dates:
January 2018: 13th-14th, 20th-21st, 27th-31st February 2018: every day March 2018: 1st-4th Read more ...
Appi Kogen Now!
Thursday 11th January 2018, 10:08am
Mostly clear skies
Good morning from Appi,
It is a relatively clear and cold morning here at Appi. The forecast for snow yesterday and today was dreadfully wrong unfortunately. The 30+cm that we were supposed to receive overnight must have visited a different resort entirely.
The next few days will hopefully give us 10-20cm so we’ve got our fingers crossed for that. Stable temperatures in the -6 to -13 zone until late Sunday when it will warm up a few degrees. Light winds are also forecast into the start of next week.
As far as the open runs go no real change to speak of. The second quad and vista gondola are closed until Saturday.
Enjoy the mountain and take an extra layer up with you. It may be sunny at times but it’s chilly at the summit.
Planned lift operations on Monday 8th January 2018 (subject to change):
- APPI Gondola - Central quad - Central number 2 lift - Central number 3 lift A - Central number 5 lift - Central number 6 lift - Sailer quad - Nishimori lift
Note: The Sailer Gondola, Central Number 4 lift and Vista quad are usually rested on normal weekdays