Snow and weather reports posted on Monday 1st May 2017
Friday 22nd November 2013, 9:19am
Cloud, light snow higher
The lifts are moving, 2013-2014 is on! So this morning the Gondolas at Goryu and Happo-one kicked the season off in Hakuba at 8:30am, at least with what Happo are calling 'pre-open'. Sounds like open to me that - it's just the Panorama course at Happo and the actually the same named course over at Goryu.
No new snowfall to report since yesterday in the village and there's a lot of cloud hanging around this morning but resorts reporting some snowfall on higher elevations. There seems to be a chance of some snowfall especially higher up today but we are looking at clearer weather for the weekend and a run of milder days going into next week.
For the moment it is +3C in the village area now.
From tomorrow some more of Happo should be open (more of the top area) as well as the first lifts moving over at Tsugaike Kogen.
It will all depend on the weather and snow conditions of course, but from now on we can expect those resorts to try and open up as much as is possible. We'll try to keep you updated on the situation every day from now on.
Apologies for the lack of updates over the last few weeks. Reports will be regular from now and then daily once we get into December and most of Shiga Kogen opens.
Today I do bring good news though - the season is underway here in Shiga Kogen. One lift is open - that lift being the Number 2 pair lift at the Kumanoyu area. It did in fact open from last Saturday (16th), for the record. While there's not a whole lot of snow - and it's a mix of man-made and natura, there is a 600m or so area of runs open. They are reporting a 30cm base on the open run and there is actually complete cover of the runs of the resort - but just that stretch of the Number 3 and 4 courses open for now. Snowboarders beware.... Kumanoyu is a skiers-only area, I'm afraid.
We'll be keeping an eye now open for further lift openings and report them here. There doesn't look like much chance of decent snowfall in the coming week unfortunately, with more sun likely. Still, very early still - welcome to the 13/14 season! Read more ...
Friday 22nd November 2013, 16:21pm
Unfortunately with the snow as it is, Grand Hirafu won't be opening tomorrow either. In fact, they have even announced that they are now hoping to be open by 30th November a full week away... no doubt not encouraged by the lack of decent snowfall on the forecast in the coming few days. They are reporting 50cm on the upper areas and 20cm down below, but that's not enough for the decision to open.
So the milder conditions and sometimes rain have conspired against an opening. Taking a look at the forecast, by mid week next week we might see snow clouds back over the region and bringing us some decent snowfall, so hopefully things will look different by next weekend.
We'll keep you updated.
Well, here we are on the 22nd November with tomorrow as the target opening date for the 2013/2014 season for a number of the resorts here - specifically Niseko Grand Hirafu and Niseko Annupuri.
This morning I have some news from Annupuri - who say they will unfortunately not be able to open tomorrow. Due to the snow over there and lack of it on the forecast for the moment they will not be opening tomorrow and will just be in standby mode to open up as soon as they can. No news currently from Grand Hirafu but if I get any information today I will update this report later on.
OK on to the weather. Right now it is about +2 degrees, it's cloudy with some sleet or rain likely during the day. Clearer skies, some sun and milder temperatures are forecast for the weekend as well. As the forecast stands now it is looking like the next snowfall we can expect is perhaps going to be with us around Tuesday and Wednesday next week.
Planned resort opening dates:
Niseko Grand Hirafu - 23rd November Niseko Annupuri - open as soon as snow allows Niseko Village - 1st December Hanazono - 7th December
(Apologies for the previous posted mistake regarding the opening date of Hanazono - they plan to open on the 7th December, not the 23rd November).
Niseko Grand Hirafu has posted some information about night skiing for the new season. Night skiing is a highlight for many in Hirafu and definitely some of the best on offer in Japan. This coming season nighta will be operating from December 14th until March 22nd, from 4:30pm until 8:30pm. So there's enough time to hit the bars after a ride... highly recommended especially when the snow is in top condition. Anyway, here's what they plan to have open for nighta:
The following courses should be normally open for nighta:
Family Sennoki Green Alpen Furiko Super Kogen Boyo King area connection Kokutai
As with all of these things - subject to change depending on the weather and snow conditions at the time. Read more ...
Friday 22nd November 2013, 16:35pm
Furano Ski Area had planned to open tomorrow on 23 November, but the opening will now be delayed until further snowfall.
There is reasonable snow cover at the top of the mountain but another substantial snowfall will be needed before operation can commence.
The forecast doesn't show a much in the way of snow over the next few days but lets keep our fingers crossed. Read more ...
Friday 22nd November 2013, 16:52pm
A bit more news this evening as we are now just one sleep away from Kagura opening for the season - they plan to open up both the main course and the Technical Course tomorrow morning - so that's 1500m plus another 500m run to enjoy. Lifts and other arrangements as I mentioned yesterday.
So what about the weather? Touch of rain today here in Yuzawa and some rain and perhaps sleet overnight but it looks like we can expect the sun to be shining down on the opening tomorrow morning, or soon after. Not a whole lot of snow on the short range radar right at the moment with slightly milder conditions prevailing perhaps into the middle of next week. Read more ...