Snow and weather reports posted on Thursday 25th May 2017
Tuesday 16th February 2016, 7:08am
It's basically bluebird, with heavy cloud cover still far off over the ocean, and scattered clouds to the east
A good day and night of snow - real Myoko-style, hard-to-drive snow.
It's hard to tell the total snowfall, as there was a lot of wind and drifting through the day (the cars in our drive were buried on the south/lee side, not covered on the north/windward side. Looking at quiet/level spots, the total was probably 50cm, although when it was really coming down it seemed like there would be more. On a drive up to Seki Onsen yesterday afternoon it was almost impossible to see at times, and there were a couple of cars unable to make the climb up the hill (get those chains on early, cityfolk!).
The snow is nice and soft, too. I can always tell when the snowblower cuts through the big drifts without struggling, and everything gets totally obscured by light blowing flakes. OK, it's not as scientific as when I was doing a regular snow study plot outside, but it works!
Tomorrow looks good as well, with the potential for another good heavy fall. Light snow is forecast for today as well, although at the moment it's clear over the mountains, with dark clouds off to the north over the ocean.
Good news this morning. The wind has dropped to 47km/h at the peak, allowing the Gondola, Asari #2 and Nagamine #2 lifts to open.
A further 4cm has fallen, helping to cover up the layer of ice that has formed after the weekends warm weather. That ice layer is still very present outside of the groomed runs, so caution is advised in steep terrain. Temperatures have fallen to -16°C so wrap up warm.
More snowfall is expected over the next 3 days, with a spike in wind tomorrow night before it calms down and clears up late in the week. Read more ...
Shiga Kogen Now!
Tuesday 16th February 2016, 8:24am
Clear and sunny
It's another calm-after-the-storm kind of morning.
Snow storm conditions yesterday with snow falling and strong winds blowing it around and so a number this morning is difficult to pin down but generally not as much as I was expecting there to be anyway... still, conditions should be better this morning.
It got really cold overnight and it's a cold morning too.
But there's blue skies above and the sun is shining.
There's more snow due later on today so expect things to cloud over sometime either this afternoon and this evening and snow to start falling; and perhaps a decent amount of snow to fall tomorrow.
If we get snow tomorrow Thursday should be great with clear skies and sun currently forecast.
Official snow depths at Shiga Kogen resort areas (Tuesday 16th February 2016):
Sun Valley 70cm Nighta on Saturdays until 19th March (7pm-9pm)
Takamagahara Mammoth 120cm
Tannenomori Okojo 120cm
Ichinose Family 120cm Nighta daily until 27th March (6:30pm-9pm)
Ichinose Diamond 120cm Nighta on Saturdays until 26th March (6:30pm-9pm)
Ichinose Yamanokami 120cm
Yakebitaiyama 140cm Nighta on Saturdays until 12th March (6pm-8pm)
Okushiga Kogen 110cm
Kumanoyu 100cm Nighta on Saturdays until 26th March (6:30pm-9pm) Also on 12th February and 20th March
Morning from Niseko and it's a much improved picture this morning.
There's 15cm of fresh snow to report this morning and with 20-30cm being reported in the Avalanche Report on mountain, I would expect a decent reset for this morning. I think I might just have to go and find out for myself. Looks like gates are going to be closed though.
The overnight snow brings my observed snowfall number here at base for the month of February up to 136cm. Remember, last February it was 196cm for the month. If the forecast is correct and we can expect steady (and sometimes heavy) snowfall on most if not all days over the coming week, we should be well placed to do better than last year. Not that it's a competition or anything of course, just a bit of fun. And of course the more snow the better, not just when you think about daily refreshes but also when you start thinking about the spring season.
So anyway it's snowing - and quite heavily just at this moment (though I see less so over at Hanazono from the webcam). But snow is forecast for the day and through the day tomorrow as well. We'll have to see how the winds shape up and if they are strong enough to affect lift operations again today - latest just before posting this report added below.
Have a fine morning.
Resort specific lift opening news at time of writing (subject to change during the day):
Niseko Grand Hirafu The top Ace Number 4 and King Number 4 lifts are on hold at the start of the day due to strong winds and poor visibility.
At elevations above 800m wind slab development continues and although the storm is weakening, the upper 30cm of newly formed slabs is easily fractured. Kozan no Sawa, Osawa, Mikaeri Bowl and Higashi One cornice face, if a fracture propagates down to the Feb14 layer low pressure snow layer there is possibility of large avalanche with very deep crown. Gates 1,2, 3,4 will be closed. 5 and 6 yet to be determined. Please respect the patrols decisions.
There are many people using the resort and it just takes one person to duck a rope and many others will follow, creating a serious safety issue for the patrol. This is how accidents happen. Don't make selfish decisions, don't duck ropes. The mountain is reset and snow in the trees is great. Today, at Mikaeri ridge road we will be conducting avalanche tests, the road will be closed during this time. Take care with frostbite, have a good day.
Official resort snow depths as of Tuesday 16th February 2016:
Good morning from Yuzawa... and what a lovely morning it is.
It's quite hard to believe just how good it was snowing at times yesterday when you think back to just the previous few days. But yes, it felt proper winter-like once again.
This morning there's 26cm of fresh snowfall built up here in town where I make my daily measurements. Very nice!
What's more, this morning we have mostly clear blue skies about us, so it should be a great morning to get out onto the slopes. It might get a bit mild in the afternoon but nothing like the crazy warmth of the weekend (hopefully).
New snow, blue skies, newly formed icicles dangling down from rooftops. Great morning I think.
Snow clouds are forecast to be back over the area later on today anyway with snowfall due once again overnight and through tomorrow... and perhaps even heavy snowfall again.
It's an impressive turnaround from the weekend, especially if we get another decent amount of snow tomorrow. I think I will have to strap on the skis and give it all a check-out this morning.
Resort official snow depths (Tuesday 16th February 2016) and any specific news at time of writing:
There's a few odd numbers being reported this morning, perhaps not updated. Anyway, take more note of the number mentioned in the report above!
Details of the 'nighta' operations at ski and snowboards resorts around Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma.
Ishiuchi Maruyama Open daily until 8:50pm (until 20th March). The Chuo No 1 and Chuo No 2 lifts are open daily. The Kanko No 1, Kanko No 2, Kanko No 3, Hatsukaishi Entrance lift, Hatsukaishi No 2 pair lifts are open on weekends and holidays. The basic charge is 2000 yen but various tickets are available.
Iwappara Open daily until 9pm on Saturdays and until 8pm on weekdays and Sundays (until 21st March). The charge is 1500 yen for adults and 1000 yen for children and seniors.
Joetsu Kokusai Open daily until 9pm (until 21st March). The charge is 1500 yen for adults and 1000 yen for children and seniors. On weekdays the area in front of the main hotel is open - a larger area (including Osawa and Atema) is open on weekends.
Kandatsu Kogen Open from 6pm until 4am on Fridays, Saturdays and evenings before holidays through 26th March. Open from 4:30pm until 11pm on weekdays until 24th March. Various tickets are available starting at 2000 yen for adults, 1700 yen for seniors and 1000 yen for children.
Maiko Snow Resort Open daily with the Maiko Center quad lift operating from 4pm until 8pm. The charge is 500 yen for everyone.
Naeba Open daily until 27th March. From 4pm until 8:30pm on weekdays and Sundays (2000 yen); until 9pm every Saturday and on 20th March (3000 yen). 'All Night' opening is planned for Saturday 26th March when Naeba will be open from 10pm until 5am.
NASPA Ski Garden Extended opening until 6pm (Number 1 lift) on Saturdays until 27th February. There is no special ticket available just for the extended time.
Yuzawa Nakazato Open on Saturdays from 5pm until 8:30pm (until 12th March). Tickets are 1500 yen for adults and 1000 yen for children and seniors.
Very changeable weather conditions continue but it's a happy story this morning... sunny blue skies with Madarao Kogen resort reporting 20-30cm of fresh snow on the mountain. And there is indeed a good 18cm of snow on the car to move once I get this report finished.
Conditions should be much improved this morning and the good weather should add to the fun.
There's more... heavy snowfall tomorrow? It might just happen. Snow is forecast to start falling again by the end of today, decent snowfall tomorrow, followed by more sun at the end of the week - and then more snow over the weekend.
That to me sounds like a great pattern - decent snowfall, sunshine, decent snowfall, sunshine, decent snowfall, sunshine. Yes, let's have some of that!
It should be a good morning.
Madarao Kogen lifts operating (planned at time of writing):
All lifts plan to be open today
Tangram Ski Circus lifts operating (planned at time of writing):
We did have light snow falling yesterday morning but there's just 1cm of fresh to report from here at base, with resorts reporting a few cm on average on mountain. That's not as much as we were hoping for (of course), but at least we enjoyed a return to colder conditions yesterday.
It's a cold start to the day again and we can probably expect some icy hard conditions early morning.
There's lots of cloud around this morning but a few breaks in the clouds too with some sun shining through in places.
We are expecting snow again later today and through the day tomorrow. I'm happy to (cautiously) report the 'heavy snow' on the forecast below...
Resort news as of 8:50am on Tuesday 16th February 2016 (where available, all subject to change due to weather conditions)
Hakuba 47: Hakuba 47 is reporting 2cm of fresh snowfall. All courses are open. The Tree Riding Zone is closed today due to poor conditions. There is no 'nighta' at Hakuba 47. Official snow depth: Upper: 195cm Base: 90cm
Hakuba Goryu: Hakuba Goryu is reporting 1-5cm of fresh snowfall. All courses except Snow Diving are open. The Toomi area will be open until 8:30pm tonight for 'nighta'. Official snow depth Alps: 245cm Toomi: 125cm Iimori: 125cm
Hakuba Happo-one: Happo-one is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall on mountain. All open (apart from the Kurobishi Off Piste Area). Happo Banks Snow Park is now open. The lower Nakiyama area is open for 'nighta' every day until 9pm. Official snow depth: Usagidaira: 210cm Nakiyama: 70cm Sakka: 40cm
Hakuba Cortina: Hakuba Cortina is reporting 3-5cm of fresh snowfall. All courses are open apart from Itadaira Ridge. The Ikenota area will be open for 'nighta' until 8pm tonight (9pm on Saturdays). Official snow depth: Top: 165cm Base: 110cm
Tsugaike Kogen: All course areas are open apart from Uma-no-se. Nighta at Karamatsu/Shirakaba on 20th February and 5th/12th/19th March. Note that the top Tsugaike Ropeway only opens from spring. Official snow depth: Tsuga-no-mori: 232cm Maruyama: 90cm Kane-no-naru-oka: 70cm
Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field: Reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall this morning. All of the Village Side is open but parts of the Mountain Side not open (Hikage A, Hikage B, Sonezawa, Dangan, Kamo 4, Five Side, View A, View B). There is no 'nighta' at Hakuba Iwatake. Official snow depth: Upper: 110cm Lower: 40cm
Hakuba Norikura Onsen: All courses are now open. There is no 'nighta' at Hakuba Iwatake. Official snow depth: 110cm
Well today has some really nice conditions to go riding in. With a collective snowfall of 10-20cm new snow yesterday and brilliant blue skies this morning you don't want to miss being out and about on the mountain today.
Eye protection is a must today so everyone get going on your goggle tans again!
The weather forecast is predicting snow starting this afternoon and carrying on all the way until Wednesday night with then a return to warmer temperatures and potentially rain on Saturday unfortunately.
Morning from Nozawa and yesterday we were treated to a Nozawa-like snowfall, I'm very happy to report.
The resort reporting up 20-30cm of fresh since 3pm yesterday and up to 11cm since the morning report yesterday - so I made that as meaning there must be up to 40cm of snow up there to enjoy this morning.
I have measured myself here near base a 32cm of fresh snowfall. It's the kind of number that we are used to getting!
So after that rubbish weekend, we find ourselves enjoying a good new layer or snow - and some sunshine and cold conditions to enjoy it in as well this morning. Nice.
More snowfall is forecast for later today and tomorrow; some forecasts tell us to expect a fair amount too. Fingers crossed.
Official info at time of writing on Tuesday 16th February 2016 (subject to change):
Good morning from Grandeco where we have lovely clear blue skies above the mountain.
There is no new snow to report but the temperatures are keeping low.
We're expecting snow clouds to move back over the region later today and they might bring some stronger winds as well overnight as well as potentially quite a lot of fresh snowfall through the day tomorrow.
Good news this morning. It is snowing at a moderate rate and there has been 4cm accumulaton overnight. The snowflakes are very fine so there is not as much build up on the ground as would be expected for the rate of precipitation. The snowfall should continue throughout today. Temperatures are back to winter and it sure feels cold outside compared to the tropical blip that we have just experienced.
The slopes are still hard under the layer of fresh. The groomed areas are skiing pretty nicely, but the ungroomed areas are very rough underfoot and Premium Zone is closed for today. Wind is present but is light. Strong winds are expect from Wednesday afternoon onwards.
It's a cold morning and there's just a light sprinkling of snow to report. Lots of cloud but also some sunshine this morning. I'd expect some icy scratchy like conditions out on the slopes this morning in particular.
Snow is forecast to be falling today and tomorrow as well and we're hoping for a decent amount out of it as well.
Come Thursday and Friday we're expecting clearer skies once again to be followed by more snow on Saturday.
Information as of Tuesday 16th February 2016 (subject to change)
All planned lifts are operating this morning. The Karamatsu pair lift does not operate on weekdays.
Well yesterday on the slopes was better than expected even though there was an icy sublayer. The limited open runs offered some nice powder and the few people that ventured out were treated to a great day.
Today it’s currently cloudy with light snow falling. We can expect the snowfall to intensify this afternoon and into tomorrow giving us a good helping of the stuff. Temperatures today are a little colder but the wind has died down somewhat so it should end up being a decent day. Unfortunately there are still only limited runs open and the main and Sailer Gondola are not operating. Most of the Second and Sailer runs are also closed. I think it may take another few days for them to open given the rain to ice combination we had a few days ago.
The next few days will see an increase in the temperature with snow forecast in the 10-15cm per day range. This weekend is shaping up to be a good one.