Snow and weather reports posted on Monday 1st May 2017
Tuesday 25th February 2014, 7:41am
An early(er) report today, as I have to be out and around - although not on the hill.
It's just started snowing lightly today; it's coming from the west at base, rather than the north, which points to the coming change in the weather. From today, that freezing line is going to go way up the mountain, meaning warmer temperatures and - brace for it - the very high likelihood of rain Thursday and Friday. Could even be fairly heavy toward Thursday night.
Well, we are maritime here; it means heavy snows and mild temperatures but also the chance of rain.
No official reports up yet, but no new snow since yesterday. Some of the areas are probably posting a reduction in snowpack after yesterday's occasional sun and mild temperatures.
It was a lovely day yesterday with the sun out and blue skies, but with that it warmed up and temperatures rose into positive numbers. Good for photos - not the best for snow conditions.
It was cold again overnight but with no new snow there's of course no refresh and we are set for another sunny and eventually warm day in the region - very likely similar to yesterday.
Next snow? Well, not today and not tomorrow either as this particular dry run continues, though there's hope for a bit of snow late in the week as we return to colder conditions. It doesn't look like anything major is lined up though in the coming week in terms of potential snowfall, so we have to make do with what we got for the moment!
Niseko Avalanche Report
Niseko base 6am: -8C, no overnight snowfall. Moiwa 800m: mild wind, -7C, no snowfall. Annupuri 1150m: mild wind, -8C, no snowfall. Hirafu 1000m: mild wind, -7C, no snowfall. Peak 1308m: WSW7m/s, -10.4C. Coastal data: Benkei cape W4m/s, Kamui cape SSW13m/s, 1.5m, 1018hPa.
Sunny morning without snowclouds, no development of snowdrifts can be observed. Peak gates will open from the morning. Carry proper gear when going out of bounds. The temperature is forecasted to rise during the day and risks of full-depth avalanches will rise in south facing steep/cliff areas below 800m. Do not cross boundary ropes to access strictly off-limits areas of Haru no Taki and Yu no Sawa. The snow in north facing slopes is still good, however second-action avalanches triggered from deeper weak layers (notably Feb 13-15th) are likely to occur in steep slopes. These types of avalanches are difficult to predict and can occur in fair weather, unlike first-action avalanches that are caused by rapid formation of snowdrifts during storms. Keep it in mind and be careful when riding north-facing slopes. Pit-checks are a good reference for decision-making. Beware of overspeeding, hitting trees and falling into cracks. The mountain seems mostly tracked out and in a tricky condition. Ride carefully.
Official snow depth numbers and lift news at time of writing:
Yesterday it was a lovely morning and warmed up around midday and then clouds moved in and we ended the day with a lot of cloud around.
Rather than the sunny start we had been expecting this morning, it was cloudy and grey and it has actually started snowing. Cloud/snow/sleet is forecast for the day at the moment with temperatures set to rise to about +4 this afternoon.
Tomorrow should be sunny and warming up to about +7. Since last week we have been looking at mid week this week to be warm and it looks like it will be. There might be some rain added to the mix around Thursday too.
Snow conditions will of course suffer for it with better conditions being found higher up. Lower down things are and will be increasingly spring like until we hopefully click back into winter.
A return to those winter conditions would be great by the weekend.
A curious mix of light snow flurries, cloud, fog and a bit of blue sky as I write this report. It's unclear which way things will go for today but tomorrow and Thursday seems more certain of a further warm up with sun tomorrow and cloud/rain due on Thursday.
After the warmer conditions of yesterday, I certainly wouldn't say that conditions are the best (as I have just read they are online!), but they're not spoilt just yet. Another few days of warm won't help though and unfortunately I can't see signs of heavy snowfall on the horizon either just now.
Operating lifts (planned):
Number 1 Number 2 Number 3A Number 2 quad Number 5 Super quad Number 11 Number 12 Number 13 Number 15 Moving walkway Kids Park
No sun that I can see early today as it has been cloudy and it even started to snow lightly for a bit - though no new cm to report. At the moment it's mixed conditions - light snow still falling in places, the sun out in places with some blue sky. Snow or perhaps sleet especially lower is likely according to forecasts later on, though it will be a mild +2C at base.
Going to warm up more tomorrow but be sunny with it followed by Thursday when it seems there's a chance of rain. Please no. Let's deal with that later.
So after all that snow we're quite quickly getting this warmer spell that isn't helping conditions. Lower slopes are somewhat spring-like in places already, though much better can be found at higher elevations. There's no major refresh in sight, but I have every confidence that March will deliver.
Lifts Weekday operations - all lifts operating except: Yunomine pair Mizunashi triple Challenge pair Utopia pair Hikage Number 2 pair A
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Tuesday 25th February 2014, 8:50am
Lots of sun and blue sky yesterday, with thin clouds forming later in the afternoon.
And apparently some snow clouds overnight as there's a bit of fresh snow to report this morning. Goryu and 47 both reporting up to 5cm on upper elevations and up to a few lower down.
No cm here at base but it is snowing lightly now and I can see limited visibility in some higher areas at the moment.
It's not that cold though and a high of +2 is likely down here in the village this afternoon.
Tomorrow it will probably be all change again with sun forecast and temps rising quite a bit - some local forecasts have a high of +7 degrees due. Thursday is going to remain warm and we are looking at the possibility of rain as well, perhaps even higher up the mountainsides and not only down here at village level.
It's all a bit all over the place at the moment. Changing of the seasons? That doesn't sound like a fun prospect. Hakuba has many times had excellent snowfall and conditions in March - so let's hope we can pull one of those out of the box this season. Snow dance, everyone!
Official snow depth numbers and operations (as of 25th February 2014):
Hakuba Goryu: Reporting 2cm of new snowfall at Iimori, 0cm at Toomi and 5cm on upper areas. Upper - 280cm Toomi - 175cm Iimori - 160cm
Hakuba 47: Reporting 3cm of new snowfall at base and 5cm on upper areas. Upper - 255cm Lower - 90cm
A bit of light snow falling right now, but at the same time - here in Maruike anyway - the sun is out and visibility is good. It's weak and might well clear up any minute now. That's how it feels anyway.
Keeping quite cold albeit not mid winter cold, but the warm up is going to be happening over the next few days - we are expecting temperatures nudging over the freezing point tomorrow and Thursday. Perhaps some light snow later on Thursday as we start to return to colder conditions. All quite difficult to read at the moment.
Official snow depth data, as of Tuesday 25th February 2014):
Yesterday's temperatures at base rose well above zero and there was quite a bit of melt going on around the village which was enough to clear roads of snow and ice. This is the first sign that spring is not too far away now.
This morning has started off cold and wintery again with temperatures just touching the double negatives. The good weather continues and there is a perfect clear blue panorama surrounding Furano and the sunshine is out in full force.
The slopes are well groomed and firm, and will be perfect for ripping some early morning carving turns.