Snow and weather reports posted on Thursday 22nd March 2018
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 8:33am
Good morning from Hirafu.
And what do we have to report this morning? Another similar kind of story really this morning. Cloudy skies and very light snow has been falling, and there's just slightly over 1cm of fresh snow on the ground.
All resort areas are opening as planned.
What else is there? That's about it really.
We're still looking towards the end of the week for the next decent snowfall.
I hope you have a good day wherever you may be.
Niseko Avalanche Report:
Mountain base : -4°, 5cm new snow. Moiwa 800m: -5°, NW5m/s, 5cm new snow, minor snowdrift development. Annupuri 1150m, -10°, light winds, trace new snow. Hirafu 1250m, -10°, light winds, trace new snow. Coastal data: Kamui Cape:ENE2m/s, 1020hPa, wave 1.8m.
There is no significant snowdrift development and general avalanche risk is low. All gates are expected to be open. Please listen to the patrols advice before going out of bounds. The frost layer formed due the warm air yesterday will become a notable layer in future snowpack. Avalanches can happen easily on slopes subject to strong winds where rapid snowdrift growth occurs. Don't rely on this avalanche report for all your decision making, slopes need to be assessed individually to make the appropriate judgments. There is no safe place in the winter mountains.
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 ...
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 8:42am
Overcast with light snow
Good morning from Naeba everybody.
Today looks like it is going to be a reasonable day weather wise. It is currently snowing but not too heavily, and whilst visibility isn't perfect it certainly isn't terrible either.
There is a little powder around from yesterday although only 4 cm fell during the night so don't expect any bottomless today.
Looking on, the weather forecast is currently predicting snow up until Thursday, with Thursday itself being a clear day. Hopefully some nice groomed skiing available that day. Then from Friday, we are expecting a little rain then back to powder snow!
Another cloudy morning here and calm. Not much else to report than that really.
It is keeping pretty cold which is a good thing and there may be a bit more snow later today and into tomorrow.
After that perhaps some clearer skies and it does look like temperatures are going to be warming up late week. Hopefully not by too much...
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 - 135cm Paradise - 220cm Chuo - 220cm Utopia - 180cm Uwanodai - 130cm Yokokura - 160cm
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 ...
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 8:46am
Lots of blue sky, some cloud
Morning everyone from here in Hakuba.
No fresh snow to report from base though a few resorts are reporting a few cm higher up (see individual info below).
It's another cold morning but the snow clouds have gone for now. There is some cloud still around but there is a lot of blue sky above Hakuba this morning. The mountains are looking very enticing. I wonder if the clouds will clear up today... the local forecast for today is generally cloudy, perhaps even some slight snow later on, but the forecast for tomorrow is clear from the start; looks like it could be a real beauty!
Temperatures are forecast to get a bit warm Thursday and Friday and while snow is due Friday, there might be some rain before it (at lower elevations anyway). A bit of a concern but in the meantime today and tomorrow should be great if you can get here to enjoy it.
Resort news as of 8:40am on Tuesday 14th 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 0cm of fresh snowfall this morning. The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth Upper: 290cm Base: 155cm
Hakuba Goryu: Hakuba Goryu is reporting 0-3cm of fresh snowfall. The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth Alps: 345cm Toomi: 180cm Iimori: 140cm
Hakuba Happo-one: Hakuba Happo-one is reporting 5cm of fresh snowfall (Riesen quad top). The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth: Usagidaira: 255cm Kurobishi: 265cm Lower: 160cm
Tsugaike Kogen: The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth: Tsuga-no-mori: 340cm Han-no-ki: 340cm Maruyama: 175cm Oya-no-hara: 185cm Kane-no-naru-oka: 170cm
Hakuba Cortina: The resort is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall. Official snow depth: Top: 370cm Base: 250cm
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 Katamatsu-Shirakaba area February 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 ...
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 8:46am
Generally overcast, bit of blue sky in places, bright
Morning from Yuzawa.
The snow continued for lots of the day yesterday, though somehow it didn't build up to much in terms of new cm (or not as much as I thought it would). Anyway just under 10cm to report. Kagura are reporting 5-10cm of fresh snowfall and Maiko Snow Resort are also reporting 5-10cm.
This morning, perhaps surprisingly, it is calm and overcast. But at the same time quite sunny. The local forecast still shows snow for the day, so it will be interesting to see if it starts falling once again. For the moment, it doesn't feel like it will.
It feels relatively mind for the moment and today temperatures are likely to rise into low positive numbers.
Taking a look beyond tomorrow, I noticed that some warm conditions are forecast Thursday and Friday. Perhaps rising to around 8C. The good news there is that come later Friday temperatures should be dropping once again and there should be more fresh snow on the ground by Saturday morning.
It is great to see the official snow depth at GALA Yuzawa break through to over 4 metres. While day-by-day snow depths don't mean much really (it's fresh snow that counts when you're out skiing), they are important for a long season. The bigger the base the better if you want to be open until early May like GALA and Kagura.
Official snow depth information as of Tuesday 14th 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 ...
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 8:56am
Mostly blue skies, some cloud
Lovely morning here in Madarao.
There's lots of blue sky, just some cloud and the sun is out. Perfect day to be skiing or boarding.
Change of light snow this afternoon perhaps? Even if it does I wouldn't expect much and generally we should be seeing more sun than snow over the next few days.
Keep an eye on the forecast too for some warming up late week but it does not look like it should last for long with temperatures dropping once again overnight Friday.
Operating status for the day at Madarao Kogen (at time of report):
- 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 - Moving walkway - Kids Park - Free Ride Park
- 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)
The forecast tells us to expect light snow today but for the moment the sun appears to be trying to peek through the clouds and it's quite bright. Feels like it could go either way.
Most forecasts seem to agree though that the next few days should bring some sunshine along with some milder conditions particularly on Thursday and Friday. Warming up a bit too much perhaps and a chance of rain but happily set to get colder once again by the end of Friday with more fresh snow forecast as we enter the weekend.
Lifts operations: - All lifts operating except - Yunomine pair (usually closed on weekdays) - Mizunashi triple (usually closed on weekdays) - Challenga pair (usually closed on weekdays) - Utopia pair (usually closed on weekdays)
Courses not open today are: - Kandahar East - Grand Prix Read more ...
Shiga Kogen Now!
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 9:10am
Light to moderate snow is falling this morning here in Shiga Kogen. More in places than others and we're not expecting anything major today, but it just seems to enjoy snowing over Shiga Kogen this season. And we like it too!
For those of you fed up with the snowfall: first of all, don't be silly (!); and then secondly you might want to be here tomorrow and Thursday as it looks like we can expect clearer and sunny skies. Bit warmer too, though we should be returning to colder temperatures by Saturday and snow currently forecast for over the weekend.
Official snow depths numbers reported by different areas of Shiga Kogen:
Please note that these numbers are the official numbers that ski resorts publish. Also that they often don't update daily and don't reflect the amount of fresh snow falling!
Ichinose Family: Every day until 25th March (6:30pm-9pm)
Ichinose Diamond: Every Saturday until 25th March and 19th March (6:30pm-9pm)
Yakebitaiyama: Every Saturday until 4th March (6pm-8pm)
Kumanoyu: Every Saturday until 25th March and 19th March (6:30pm-9pm) Read more ...
Appi Kogen Now!
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 9:10am
Partly cloudy skies
Hello from Appi,
Today brings partly cloudy skies and a temperature of -3 with a fair breeze blowing right now. Not enough snow yesterday fell to make any difference at all and we probably won’t see any today either. Its going to be windy here especially at the summit for the next three to four days so be prepared.
The bad news is the temperature is on the rise and we may, just may, see a little rain on the 16th. I know it doesn’t sound right but lets hope the forecast is incorrect. If it is we may see around 30+cm of new snow instead.
As soon as the weekend hits its gong to be very windy with temperatures of -12 or so making it feel like -25 or even colder.
Come and join us. Light crowds and well groomed runs await.
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
The morning looks very inviting with mainly blue sky and sunshine, and some cloud in the mix. It is a warm start to the day and temperatures look like they will go into positive territory. There was nothing more than a minimal dusting of fresh snow overnight. While the groomed runs are in good condition and providing nice skiing, the off piste areas are tired and chopped up and in need of fresh snow. It looks like the weather is going to give us a decent fall of snow with moderate precipitation forecast from Thursday night through to Saturday evening. Fingers crossed that comes through. Read more ...
Tuesday 14th February 2017, 9:40am
Good morning from Grandeco and it is blue skies all round this morning.
Beautiful morning skies for now though the forecast does tell us to expect snow within a few hours - doesn't feel or look like it for the moment!
The snow condition is keeping excellent quality. There's lots of snow moving and clearing activity going on while the weather is good today.
All courses perfectly groomed this morning except for Lavender28 and Center33.
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.
Mostly sunny; clouds around teh peaks and to the NE
It's a beautiful day out there in Myoko today. Opposite to the usual, it's sunny in the Myoko area, with clouds and what appears to be snowfall to the east and north of here. The kind of day that makes lots of people want to get out and enjoy the powder....
Which brings me to what might be a long posting. The Myoko search and rescue team had to go out again very late in the afternoon - into night, actually. A snowboarder going off the back of the area ended up in the wrong place. Very wrong, like near a river, and unable to climb back up. No gear. Alone. Clothing for a resort, not survival overnight. Luckily, she was found, brought out, uninjured, with all her fingers intact. It so easily could not have been the case.
We have been so concerned in seeing average people - instructors with students, all kinds of people - out in places where, let me put this bluntly, THEY SHOULD NOT BE. When you ski off a groomed run, you are in the backcountry. The same dangers people face high up in the hills are right there just off the runs. The problem is, the typical side/slackcountry skier doesn't have beacon, probe and shovel; doesn't have a map; doesn't have spare gear and clothing good enough to keep them warm overnight; doesn't have water; doesn't have any particular plan. And that puts rescuers into danger as well.
Again, I'll be blunt; our friends from Australia don't think about avalanches or sluffs or cracks or snow you can drown in because these things don't exist down under. These are everyday things here. They're not alone in being out there unprepared, but they are the majority. If I hear one more person say, "I know this slope. It's safe," in almost the same area where a guy was killed by a soft snow avalanche two years ago, I might have to give up my Zen-like, hermit existence as the old man on the hill and engage in some creative head bashing.
Ski people tend to be affluent, educated, not stupid. Powder too often brings out their ignorance, though. I'm sure the person yesterday is a very nice person, just out for fun, and I don't blame her for that. You read SnowJapan; you care about the quality of the snow and the places to ski. You think about your sliding. Help get out the word that it's great to go out there, and that while there are still risks, you must have the basic preparations in place first: gear, knowledge, experience, partners and a plan.
I think that's a big enough rant for this season.... Be safe, please!