Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 7th May 2017
Friday 18th March 2011, 9:07am
It is looking like another great day here in Furano. Currently below freezing and high cloud. If the cloud passes, as it looks like it will, and the sun comes through, expect it to be a warm day. There is no new snow to report today but the slopes are in great condition offering packed powder that has been beautifully groomed. Furano Ski Area has announced that Kitanomine Zone will close on Monday 21 March at 5pm, so get out there and make the most of the long weekend coming up.
4:10pm update: Furano Ski Area have just amended the closing dates of Kitanomine again as follows: Kitanomine night skiing will finish on March 20. Kitanomine Zone will close on March 27 5pm.
It is looking like another great day here in Furano. Currently below freezing and high cloud. If the cloud passes, as it looks like it will, and the sun comes through, expect it to be a warm day. There is no new snow to report today but the slopes are in great condition offering packed powder that has been beautifully groomed. Read more ...
Friday 18th March 2011, 9:50am
Things are back and operating again today — mostly — Ikenotaira, Seki and Kyukamura are closed today; Myoko Ski PArk is now closed for the season. It's a great day to get out there, though, with at least 40cm of new on the ground, probably 70 or so since Wednesday night. It just snowed and snowed all day yesterday, with light snow still falling.
Ski Resort Operations
Akakura Onsen: Ginrei No. 3 and 5; Kumado No. 2, 3, 4; Chuo Triple; Yodel Super Quad. Contact for night ski information
Akakan (Akakura Kanko): Sky Cable, Hotel No. 3 and 5, Champion 3
Myoko Suginohara: Gondola only
Seki Onsen: Closed
Myoko Ski Park: Closed for the season
Kyukamura: Closed; decision today on the rest of the season
Those winter conditions continued overnight and there was another 30cm or so of fresh snow on the car this morning. Kagura is reporting a whopping 60cm of fresh snow. It's lmost mid-winter like conditions again and the last few days means that the slopes will be excellent out there today. Still extremely quiet and only a handful of options available. The last few days we had electricity stoppage planned in the early evening but it was cancelled.
Resorts that are currently part of: Naeba Kagura Yuzawa Park Iwappara
Clouds hang on but just to the north in Minamiuonuma it's quite a lot of blue skies and sunny at the moment and that is forecast for here too as the day moves on. Tomorrow looks like it will be clear and sunny.
There doesn't seem to have been much announced in the way of what will be open tomorrow and so I will post another report later on today with updates. Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Friday 18th March 2011, 10:20am
Cloud and clearing up
More snow overnight and the snow depth numbers are looking more like January than mid-March. 380cm on Yamabiko! If only that area was open (see below), the conditons would be top notch. They're certainly not bad elsewhere on areas of the resort that remain open.... see yesterdays report.
Weather looks like it will be good and sunny on Saturday with more cloud on Sunday and a chance of rain as temperatures rise.
Looking forward, tomorrow is the first day of a three day weekend in Japan (Monday is a national holiday) and the resort will be operating as below.
Lifts operating from Saturday 19th March - Monday 21st March:
The following lifts were damaged in the earthquake that we experienced in northern Nagano on Saturday 12th March: Uenotaira quad, Yamabiko No2 Four, Yamabiko Four, Nagasaka Gondola upper station. These lifts and courses will unfortunately be closed for the rest of the season. Read more ...
Friday 18th March 2011, 10:28am
Wow. 50cm yesterday morning and this morning Kagura is reporting 60cm of fresh snow. So that's over a metre in the space of two days. So absolutely excellent snow conditons up there and more like Jan/Feb than where we are now. Go out there and you will be treated to almost endless amounts of untouched powder as the resorts remain very quiet.
It will be interesting to see how many people turn up for the weekend. It's a three day weekend coming up with Monday as a holiday in Japan and so usually quite busy. With the current circumstances we will have to see how it turns out.
The resorts have announced that due to saving electricity, the Tashiro area of Kagura (including the Ropeway) will be closed until 15th April. They will decide whether to re-open beyond that nearer the time. They have also decided that the Dragondola will now be closed for the remainder of the season.
At Naeba shadows from the clouds are seen on the lower slopes but it is generally bright with poorer visibility up top. The snow clouds are now moving on and it looks like the day will get clearer as we move on.
Meanwhile, operations remain the same as yesterday.
Kagura is open from 8am-4pm and the following lifts open: - Mitsumata Ropeway - Mitsumata No1 Quad - Mitsumata No2 Pair - Kagura Gondola - Kagura No1 Quad
Limited operations also at Naeba and the same 4pm closing time - just the number 3 and 5 quads moving this morning.
Operations at both Naeba and Kagura similar to yesterday.
Though not quite as cold as yesterday, it is another cold morning here in Shiga Kogen but clearer than yesterday and blue skies up above us at the moment so it should get a fair bit warmer than that sharp blast of winter we experienced yesterday. More fresh snow means really great conditions on the slopes.
Tomorrow should be fine as well and also much milder as temperatures rise. We may even see some rain on Sunday night but hopefully we might be spared and it be snow especially higher up. We should see more snow into next week again though, so fresh topups will be on their way.
Resort lift operations remain limited but courses remain open.
Official resort snow depths as of 18th March 2011 AM:
We've had lots of fresh snow over the last day or so - another 30cm overnight and the official snow depth of the resort is now at 240cm. At least half of a meter of snow over the last few days. If things were different it would be busy out there with these top conditions but things remain very quiet. There are two lifts moving still and that is how opening status will remain until Monday (the last day of the season at Madarao). Monday is a natioanl holiday in Japan and so that is why the last day will be that day.
Today started off snowy and cloudy but things have started to clear up.
Looks like the weather will be clear and sunny tomorrow with maybe more cloud on Sunday. Fairly mild conditions likely though.
So if you fancy taking your mind off the current events in other regions of Japan and having a slide on excellent snow conditions, hope to see you out there. Last chance this weekend! Read more ...
Friday 18th March 2011, 14:48pm
Partly cloudy with snow showers
The snow showers yesterday turned into some fairly heavy and widepread snow throughout the region in the late aftenoon adding another 10-15cm of fresh powder. The winds though up high remained very strong and the avi report below indicates drifts of up to 150cm have developed over the last couple of days. So although more exposed areas have been stripped of any new snow there is some fairly deep stuff to be found on lee slopes and gullies. There's the added bonus of an almost deserted mountain meaning fresh tracks all day long for those lucky enough to still be here.
Current Official Snow Depths:
Grand Hirafu: Top - 400 Bottom - 200
Niseko Village: Top - 390 Bottom - 190
Annupuri: Top - 400 Bottom - 200
Maximum development of snowdrifts reached up to 150cm at some areas above 800m yesterday. The snow on the ridges are mostly blown away. According to various data and present status, avalanche risk in Osawa, Kozan no sawa (Backbowl), Goshiki Onsen area, Mikaeri area and Higashi-One cornice area is high during the morning. The snow is starting to stabilize however avalanche due to skiing stimulation is to be highly considered around cornices and knolls terrain. Avalanches are most likely to occur during and just after storms, whether in January or March. The hazard may also rise as slabs form due to temperature rising and sun effect. Avalanches rarely happen with mild-wind snowfall, but are most likely to happen with highly wind-affected snow. Peak gates are scheduled to open at 10am, please refer to the ski patrol’s advice before stepping out of the gate. Annupuri peak 6am: NW 9.1m/s, -12.9℃. Coastal data: WNW11m/s at Benkei cape, 1.7m waves at Kamui cape. Have a nice day.
The day started off with a fair amount of cloud but soon started to clear up and by around lunchtime things were clear and blue skies.
Resorts are still very quiet and with gasoline restrictions and shortages and everything that is going on, it will surely be difficult for many people to get here this weekend even if they wanted to, or even advisable. But the resorts seem to be planning on being open over the coming three day weekend so if you want to be riding the snow there's lots on offer and quiet slopes.
Please do check with resorts beforehand for the latest updates if you plan on visiting.
Official snow depths and operations @ Friday 17th March AM:
Hakuba Goryu Goryu is open as normal today though no nighta. 20cm of fresh snow reported up top, 10cm at base (Friday morning). Alps daira - 330cm; Toomi - 165cm; Iimori - 120cm.
Hakuba 47: Hakuba 47 is today operating close to normal. Gondola running but slowly to conserve energy. 20cm of fresh snow on uppper slopes again on Friday morning. Snow depth (upper) - 234cm.
Happo-one: Happo is open today. Some lifts closed and the Gondola is not operating. No nighta. Usagidaira/Kurobishi - 250cm; Sakka - 90cm; Shirakaba - 90cm; Nakiyama - 85cm.
Tsugaike Kogen: Another impressive snowfall overnight taking the snow depth at Tsugaike to 350cm. Excellent snow conditions. Most of the resort is open though the Gondola/Ropeway are still not operating. Snow depth - 350cm Maruyama area - 135cm Champion - 240cm
Hakuba Iwatake: Upper - 195cm Lower - 125cm
Hakuba Cortina: Resort is mostly open, and another 10-20cm since yesterday. Upper - 385cm Lower - 265cm
Fine weather after some fresh snow again this morning. More fine weather forecast for the weekend.
The current situation to the east continues to heavily disrupt things in the Minakami and Katashina region. Just a few places open but more planning to be open for the three day weekend that we have in front of us (Monday is a national holiday in Japan).
Here's a round up of what we are seeing in the area
Marunuma Kogen - part open and plan to be open until early March (apart from 23rd/24th March); Okutone - plan to be open (2 lifts) until 27th March; Norn Minakami - opening from Saturday 19th, one quad lift White World Oze Iwakura - part open from 19th - 21st March, will decide on after that nearer the time Tanigawa Tenjindaira - closed until at least Friday 25th March Kawaba - closed until at least 25th March; Houdaigi - closed until 25th March; Minakami Kogen 200 - unconfirmed.
As many of you may know, gasoline supply is limited in many nearby regions. Whether people will be able to, or wanting to, visit this weekend is yet to be seen. Whatever you choose, stay safe and have as best a weekend as you can.