Hello from a still snow-less Hirafu as we await all of the action to begin.
Yesterday, Niseko Grand Hirafu resort announced the inevitable postponed opening of the resort. The original plan of course was this coming Saturday, but it's now basically a case of 'as soon as there's enough snow'.
It's definitely colder this morning, but for the moment quite a lot of blue sky, out to the east towards Mt Yotei anyway - there's more cloud over the mountains in this direction, but no snowfall. The forecast is looking more encouraging though going forward over the weekend with cold conditions and a good chance of snow... how much remains to be seen of course.
I will be bringing you news of any snow of course as and when. From this weekend I am on standby for daily duties throughout the season.
I hope you will join me every day. Please do tell your friends about these Niseko Now reports too - the more readership we have, the more pressure on me to deliver! ;)
Planned opening dates for the Niseko resorts:
Niseko Grand Hirafu: as soon as there's enough snow Niseko Annupuri: Saturday 28th November Niseko Village: Tuesday 1st December Niseko HANAZONO: Saturday 5th December
'Nighta' should be starting on Saturday 12th December
Another new page on SnowJapan - along with the "observed snowfall charts" that were launched mid-season in February, there's now an archive page here:
Yesterday was rather mild but it is colder this morning here in Zao.
White-out conditions as well... though sadly with fog rather than with snow! So no snow to report right now - and nothing looking likely in the upcoming week - but locals are busy still with preparations for the upcoming season.