Snow and weather reports posted on Monday 1st May 2017
Appi Kogen Now!
Friday 24th February 2017, 7:44am
Hello from Appi,
This morning doesn’t look good at all people. The winds are howling outside and we’ve got near whiteout conditions where I live let alone what’s happening on the mountain. We can expect this most of the day and I believe there won’t be many lifts operating at all. It’s going to be chilly for those brave enough to head onto the mountain and you can expect a wind chill factor of -25 at least.
Thankfully tomorrow the winds will die down and the temperatures should increase slightly here. We’re expecting cloudy skies most of the weekend but with that comes some snowfall in the 15-25cm range.
Monday sunny skies should prevail with light and variable winds heading our way.
*** Update: all lifts currently closed due to the conditions!
Planned operating lifts at time of report (subject to change due to weather conditions):
The storm brought the goods with 36 cm of new snow at the base and 51 cm at the peak over night. Not much fell during the day yesterday and it pretty much all came after 9 pm or so. Unfortunately, it's also quite windy, so the gondola and Asari No. 2 are on hold right now. Hopefully the wind will die down a bit as expected midday and they'll open up. That leaves the Nagamine side the only one open to the top for now.
Significant winds are expected through Sunday, with Sunday morning possibly shaping up to be very similar to today since heavy snow is also expected Saturday night.
Morning from Yuzawa and an improvement on yesterday, which turned out to be a proper wet and rainy day - in town anyway and I am hearing of wet conditions higher up too though it being wet snow in places. It was really belting it day at times. :(
But anyway, definitely better this morning with 11cm of fresh snow on the ground in town at our measuring point and here is what the 'resorts that report' are reporting:
Kagura: 15cm (20cm at Tashiro) Maiko: 10-15cm
Not the driest of snow by any stretch of the imagination, but way better than rain that's for sure!
There was some quite noisy wind earlier on and indeed it looks like wind is affecting Kagura again. At the start of the day, Kagura is planning to open from the Mitsumata Ropeway up to the Kagura Number 1 pair lift. Other areas of Kagura are on a stand-by 'see how the weather goes' kind of status and might open if the wind situation improves.
It looks like all other ski resorts in the area are opening as planned this morning.
We can expect light snow for the day today and perhaps tomorrow morning too - though we probably shouldn't expect anything significant.
Official snow depth information as of Friday 24th February 2017
GALA Yuzawa Upper part of $2,600,000 closed today due to avalanche danger. Otherwise open as planned. Official snow depth: 370cm
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 ...
Friday 24th February 2017, 8:31am
Good morning from here in Hirafu.
A nice layer of snow this morning.
Yes, 13cm of it here at base and the report below is mentioning up to 25cm on mountain, so it should be a decent new layer to enjoy this morning. And I see a lot of activity out there with people eager to get up and enjoy it. I hope they didn't sacrifice their toast.
Pesky wind is causing problems for top lifts at the start of the day I'm afraid.
Anyway, (as always) take care out there and have fun. Looks like it will be just cloudy once this light snow stops sometime during the day today.
I would say the forecast is looking pretty good for some snowy conditions over the weekend (starting just cloudy in the morning tomorrow?) and it should be keeping cold too.
So here's to a good upcoming weekend!
Niseko Avalanche Report:
Niseko base: -5℃, 15cm snowfall. Moiwa 800m: -8.1℃, W13.2m/s, 3am 23.2m/s, 20-25cm snowfall with large development of snowdrifts and cornices. Annupuri 1150m: -12℃, W29m/s, large snowdrift development. Hirafu 1250m: -12℃, strong westerly wind with large snowdrift development. Kamui cape lighthouse: NNW13m/s, 1002hPa, 3.7m waves.
A strong westerly wind is blowing towards the low-pressure system laying on the sea of Okhostsk. Snowdrifts and cornices are developing big. The snowdrifts have reached 100-150cm thickness in leeward areas around 800m elevation and are very prone to collapse with a slight stimulation. The general avalanche risk is high today. Predicted trigger layer is Feb 23rd’s low-pressure snowfall. All peak gates will be closed. The hazard level will remain high a while after the wind calms down.
This info is issued in hopes to prevent accidents and is not for reporting make any comments of any avalanches or accidents. Niseko have been through bitter experiences in the past and know that analyzing the cause of an accident after it happened would not help much about preventing further similar cases. There has been 8 fatalities in the decade between 1980 and 1990 in this small mountain.
Some good snow can be found in the tree runs. Have a safe day.
Resort specific 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. Looks like the Ace Number 2 Center quad might be a bit delayed opening too.
Niseko HANAZONO Resort The top Hanazono Number 3 lift is on hold at the start of the day due to wind and fog/poor visibility.
Niseko Village The Niseko Gondola and top Wonderland Chair lift are on hold at the start of the day.
Niseko Annupuri The Annupuri Gondola, Jumbo 3 and Jumbo 4 lifts are on hold at the start of the day.
Official resort snow depths as of Friday 24th February 2017:
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 ...
Friday 24th February 2017, 8:36am
Blue sky, sun, but a fair bit of cloud too esp. on mountain
Morning from Hakuba.
So... yesterday. Rain, clouds, some sunshine, some rainbows. Kind of odd weather, and late yesterday afternoon the field of snow behind my place was looking rather pockmarked due to it all.
There has been a bit of snowfall overnight to make things look a bit more pleasing - and resorts are reporting varying small layers of fresh, the most being reported by Hakuba Cortina (10cm). So I would imagine rather varied conditions this morning, some fresh snow on some hard scratchy ice and the wind blowing it around will make it more hit and miss. We must seek out the best.
Oh yes, the wind. Some fairly strong winds higher up appear to be stopping some top lifts at Goryu and Happo-one from opening at the start of the morning.
Down at village level this morning the sun is out and there's some nice blue skies as well as the cloud that is covering lots of the upper parts of the ski course areas. Webcams are showing limited visibility in places on mountain due to that cloud. Perhaps it will clear up... let's see how things go.
We might get a bit of snow overnight tonight but don't expect much. And a decent chance of sunshine during the day tomorrow and fingers crossed it'll keep chilly.
Resort news as of 8:35am on Friday 24th 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 3cm of fresh snowfall. The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth Upper: 265cm Base: 130cm
Hakuba Goryu: Hakuba Goryu is reporting 3-5cm of fresh snowfall. The resort appears to be opening as but top lifts are on hold due to strong wind. Official snow depth Alps: 330cm Toomi: 180cm Iimori: 120cm
Hakuba Happo-one: Hakuba Happo-one is reporting 2cm of fresh snowfall (Riesen quad top). The resort appears to be opening but Gondola and top lifts on hold due to wind conditions. Official snow depth: Usagidaira: 265cm Kurobishi: 320cm Lower: 150cm
Tsugaike Kogen: The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Part of Champion not open; Uma-no-se closed. Official snow depth: Tsuga-no-mori: 385cm Han-no-ki: 375cm Maruyama: 170cm Oya-no-hara: 160cm Kane-no-naru-oka: 150cm
Hakuba Cortina: Hakuba Cortina is reporting 15cm of fresh snowfall. The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning. Official snow depth: Top: 350cm Base: 240cm
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 on 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 ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Friday 24th February 2017, 8:49am
Hello from here in Nozawa.
And once again we can quickly (try to) forget the rain with a fresh blanket of snow this morning.
The resort is reporting 10cm across the mountain (15cm at Uenotaira) and indeed I agree. It is not top season dry snow, but sure beats the wet of rain. Probably not going to last long today with the snow clouds due to retreat and while we may get a slight bit of snow again overnight tonight, I think there's probably a decent chance of some sunshine tomorrow.
Apologies for my mistake yesterday. While I was clearly mentioning the rain in the report (and I think that was clear), I mistakenly assigned one incorrect weather icon (it showed snow rather than rain). I hope that wasn't too confusing - it has now been corrected.
Kitanomine Gondola and Downhill Romance #3 chairlift ***CLOSED DUE TO WIND***
Welcome to a windy Friday. As the forecast predicted the winds increased from late last night and are now moderate at base, gusting to strong intermitantly. On the resort itself expect very strong winds. The ski area has just anounced Kitanomine Gondola on the Kitanomine side, and Downhill Romance #3 chair on the Furano Zone side are closed due to wind. Visibility is poor due fog and high winds whipping up snow, and at times whiteout is occuring.
New snow overnight is 21cm in the village, but due to winds the amount of fresh snow will be variable on the slopes and is likely to be inconsistent. Take care of the limited visibility and inconsistent snow.
The outlook is for continuous snow through the day with wind gradually reducing to a reasonable level by tomorrow morning.
Lots of cloud, but some blue sky and a bit of sun too
Hello from Shiga Kogen.
And I am happy to report that after that unwelcome spring storm, we're back to winter this morning.
It is colder and light snow is falling right now. Just a bit of fresh snow overnight, not enough for a full reset, but certainly better than yesterday. And while it is snowing lightly here in Maruike right now as I write this, visibility is good and I can actually see some blue sky over towards Ichinose and the sun is coming out in places so it feels like things are going to clear up.
The forecast currently seems to show some more snow on and off over the next few days, mixed in with some sun at times.
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 ...
Friday 24th February 2017, 9:37am
Good morning from a chilly Grandeco.
It was raining yesterday along with strong winds - like a Spring storm. The storm continued until this morning 9:00 with the gondola not being able to start as planned due to the wind. It has calmed down somewhat now and as if 9:30am and all lifts are moving.
It has got colder again, and without any fresh snow the courses are rather icy. Because of this hard snow condition, snow park "Dekodaira E park" with two 9m kickers will be closed today.
Hoping to have new snow soon - keep an eye on the forecast!
- Gondola - Number 1 quad lift - Number 2 quad lift - Number 3 quad lift - Number 4 quad lift
All courses now open
Official snow depth: 320cm
Road Condition to Grandeco: Inawashiro through Goshikinuma: icy in parts Goshukinuma through Grandeco: icy in parts Read more ...
Friday 24th February 2017, 9:57am
Increasingly blue sky, some cloud
After a rather wet and stormy day and evening yesterday - the evening light up operations were cancelled - early morning snow has stopped and the poor visibility is getting much better and things are clearing up nicely. There's actually quite a lot of blue sky up there now and the sun is shining down on us. Colder too this morning so I expect some rather icy slope conditions this morning.
Chance of light snowfall at times over the weekend though nothing too much and it should be keeping fairly cold.
All lifts apart from the following appear to be operating today:
Paradise Number 3 pair Karamatsu pair
All courses apart from Kotan should be open.
Official snow depths (as published by the resort itself): Summit - 145cm Paradise - 220cm Chuo - 220cm Utopia - 180cm Uwanodai - 130cm Yokokura - 145cm
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 ...
Friday 24th February 2017, 13:06pm
Plenty of snow overnight and its still falling moderately here this afternoon.
Winds were fierce earlier and Tenjin is having a closed Friday.
Should be on fire tomorrow and the forecast is for a bluebird morning and clouds to pull in later on. Next snow forecast for Sunday night.
All the Minakami resorts have had a decent snowfall so the last weekend of Feb is shaping up nicely.
25cm Tenjin 15cm Hodaigi 10cm Okutone
Temps at 8am
Official snow depth:
430cm Tenjin 260cm Hodaigi 260cm Okutone
Resorts in Minakami (forecasts available from each page):
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. Read more ...
Friday 24th February 2017, 13:19pm
Sun is peeking out from time to time
Sorry for the late day; high winds through the night filled in the front of my house (although we really didn't get that much more than the Niigata Prefecture prediction of 15cm), meaning a lot more snowplowing than I thought. That was compounded a bit with that wet, soft, warm snow underneath that was making cars slide and nice cold hard surfaces turning mushy. Anyway, got the clearing done, then time to take some folks out snowshoeing, and now I'm finally here at the keyboard!
It was pretty out there today, with all the snow sticking up in the trees. Lots of really beautiful drifts and swirls on the surface of the snow (snowshoeing does let you appreciate the woods and hills and animals and trees....). Not a lot of snow ahead, although we could use a good reset out there in the natural world. Plenty out there for snowshoeing, though.