Snow and weather reports posted on Monday 1st May 2017
Friday 27th April 2012, 9:15am
Overcast and grey again - it is spotting with rain but reasonably mild temperatures. Soft spring snow after the rain of the last couple of days but it is still pretty good out there for late April. Sporadic rain is the forecast for today but from tomorrow we are looking at several days of great spring weather - sunshine and warm temperatures well into Golden Week.
Earlier on this morning there was a lot of cloud and for hanging around the mountain but as I write this things have cleared up a fair bit and there is quite a bit of blue sky and I can just about see most of Yotei as well. Less wind than yesterday thankfully but still a moderate wind up there. Looks like things might clear up further this afternoon and we should have generally sunny conditions over the weekend as well.
Quite a lot of snow has gone from lower areas these last few days and it is quite noticeable around town now... more patches of ground on show on some of the lower slope areas as well, though still a lot up top and good cover.
Jumbo No3 lift at Annupuri isn't moving today - whether that's just for today or if the lift has seen the last of the season I'm not quite sure. We'll see tomorrow, that being the first official day of the Golden Week period.
As noted before the Grand Hirafu gondola will be operating tomorrow through Monday and then from 3rd-6th May as well. The Niseko Village area also will be opening up from Sunday for the final week of the season.
Current lift operations (27th April 2012 @ 9am):
Grand Hirafu: Ace Quad Lift No2 King Hooded Triple Lift #3 [SLOW OPERATION] King Lift #4 [STANDBY] The Hirafu Gondola will operate on 28th, 29th, 30th April, and also from 3rd May until 6th May.
Grand Hirafu and Annupuri both plan to be open until 6th May. The Hanazono and Niseko Village areas are now closed. Niseko Village plans to re-open for the Golden Week holiday period from Sunday 29th April until Sunday 6th May.
Looking out the window it looks like a glorious day to be on the slopes today. The snow is bathing in the sun and there is a moderate breeze blowing which will help cool things down. Read more ...
Friday 27th April 2012, 11:25am
Well the rain of yesterday has gone and this morning it is just cloudy over Hakuba. The lower areas of the resorts are visible but upper areas covered in cloud. One or too sightings of blue sky every now and again but it's pretty much going to be cloud for the day I think. The weather yesterday didn't help snow conditions and I think a fair bit will have melted away. Not much wind today and a high of around 14C a bit later.
How about the weekend then? Looks like it should be fine and sunny and start to warm up again.... a high closing in on the mid-20's tomorrow afternoon? It's possible. What seems pretty certain is that for this first long weekend of the Golden Week holidays it should be good clear weather conditions. Anyone for some late spring skiing or boarding? It will probably be busy out there, but I hope you can come and enjoy it while things are still open.
Just over a week left!
Official snow depths and operations @ Friday 27th April 2012 AM:
Hakuba Goryu: Gondola and Alps daira No1 and No3 lifts operating. The Toomi lifts are now closed but you can still ski down the course to the Gondola. Official snow depths: Alps daira - 170cm; Toomi - 50cm
Hakuba 47: Top to bottom skiable. All lifts apart from Line D operating. Official snow depth: Upper - 120cm Lower - 65m
Happo-one: Top areas open (lower slopes now all closed) - you need to get the Gondola back down to base. Lifts normally operating daily for spring are: Gondola Grat quad Alpen quad Panorama pair Skyline No2 pair Kurobishi No2 quad Other lifts: Kokusai No3 pair lift plans to be open from 28th April until 6th May. Usagidaira pair lift plans to be open from 28th April until 6th May. Kurobishi No3 pair lift plans to be open from 28th April until 6th May. Official snow depth: Usagidaira - 130cm
Tsugaike Kogen: Top to gondola base skiable. Planned lifts operating are Ropeway, Gondola, Tsuga No2 pair lift and the Hannoki pair. Official snow depth: Upper slopes - 210cm Lower - 80cm
Planned ski resort closings in Hakuba and Otari, all subject to change:
Hakuba Goryu: Upper area plans to be open until 6th May.
Hakuba 47: 47 plans to be open until 6th May.
Happo-one: Upper slopes plan to be open until 6th May.
Tsugaike Kogen: Plans to be open until Golden Week
The Hakuba Cortina, Norikura, Iwatake, Sanosaka and Minekata resorts are all now closed for the season. Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Friday 27th April 2012, 11:44am
Good morning from Nozawa and it's a cloudy one today. It's not as warm today but over the last few days we have had some warm conditions and there has been a quick retreat of the snowline with lots of ground on show now on the lower slopes. I'd say it's half/half snow/ground on show just at the base of the gondola now - if you take a look at the webcams in the Webcam Center you will see.... It's always interesting just how fast the snow melts away when it gets thinner on the ground, though only to be expected of course.
So, Golden Week starts tomorrow. A 3 day weekend and then next weekend a '4 day weekend' (sort of), starting on Thursday. And the last 9 days of the season. A few more lifts operating for this last run of days as noted below and there will probably be a fair few people in Nozawa to enjoy a last chance slide of the season.
Clear, sunny conditions are forecast for the weekend and it should be nice and warm as well.
Current Official Snow Depths Numbers:
Normal spring lift operations (scheduled): Nagasaka Gondola Yamabiko Four Yamabiko Four No2 * Skyline Link -- open from 28th April until 6th May * Uenotaira Four -- open 28th April until 6th May * Paradise Four -- open 28th April until 6th May
Normal courses open (scheduled): Yamabiko A Yamabiko C Yamabiko D Yamabiko E Uenotaira Paradise Schneider Utopia courses Yunomine A, B Challenge Bunabayashi Rinkan
The Uenotaira Snow Park plans to be open from 28th April until 6th May
Good morning from Zao. And this morning there's really not much to see out there - cloud and fog is the order of the morning and visibility out on the mountain is very poor. It's mild though with even the top of the mountain reporting a temperature of about +6C.
Tomorrow is of course the first day of "Golden Week", and the good news is that we look set to enjoy clear and sunny conditions through until probably at least Tuesday, along with warm conditions - might warm up to around 20C.
A few more lifts are scheduled to be open for this weekend but the Kurohime quad has now finished for the season it seems.
As I mentioned in the previous report, the Zao Echoline road has re-opened this morning allowing people to get direct to Zao Onsen via the Miyagi mountain road.
Have fun over this first part of Golden Week! I'll post another update on Tuesday.
Official snow depths (27th April 12) Utopia - 125cm Chuo - 120cm Paradise - 120cm Uwanodai - 20cm
Operating lifts (27th April 12) Limited lifts now open.
Current planned lift operations at Zao, as of 27th April - subject to change:
Uwanodai Area Sky Cable (open all year, but closed from 7th May for maintenance)
Chuo and Paradise Area Zao Chuo Ropeway (closed for maintenance 9th-25th April except Saturdays and Sundays) Chuo No1 pair lift (open 28th April until 6th May) Chuo No2 pair lift (until 6th May) Katakai triple lift (open 28th April until 6th May) Paradise No1 pair lift (open 28th April until 6th May)
Yokokura and Utopia area Zao Ropeway (open all year, closed for maintenance 7th-18th May) Utopia No2 pair lift (dependent on snow but latest until 6th May)
We have had a few really warm days this week, though it has cooled down somewhat today. Definitely cooler, almost chilly overnight last night, and after some rain later on in the day yesterday this morning is just cloudy. Calm with not much of a wind at all.
From tomorrow (Saturday) until Monday, here's the lifts that are scheduled to be open at Kagura:
So as you can see, pretty much all open - expect crowds, and an early start is recommended... there will definitely people waiting for those first Ropeways of the day. Those will be at 7:30am.
Naeba of course will be open for Golden Week from tomorrow until Sunday 6th May. The No2 Gondola and Takenokodaira pair lift will be operating over there, starting at 8:30am.
The official snow depth numbers have not changed much in the last week but there has definitely been a lot of snow melt going on. The lower slopes of Naeba are now more bare than covered in snow, but still plenty to play in up top.
The forecast for the weekend is good. Sunny skies, warm temperatures, just some cloud perhaps.
Resort Operations, 27th April (subject to change) Naeba: Naeba re-opens for Golden Week (April 28th - May 6th) - No2 Gondola and Takenokodaira pair lift. Kagura: Pretty much all of Kagura should be open for the weekend. Official snow depths Naeba: 160cm Kagura: 320cm Read more ...
Shiga Kogen Now!
Friday 27th April 2012, 12:38pm
Cloud, rain, mist
It's a colder morning than it has been and cloudier and foggier too.... there's a real murky kind of feel to the day today so far with a bit of wind blowing about the fog and cloud. Not the friendliest of conditions that's for sure.
Things should be much better for the weekend though and the start of Golden Week. We are promised clear skies and the sun warming things up for pretty much all of the coming long weekened. So it should be a good first half to Golden Week (remember Monday is a national holiday).
It has been very quiet this week in Shiga Kogen, but especially with the good forecast weather we can expect many more people out on the slopes tomorrow.
I'll post another update on Tuesday with news on how the second half of Golden Week looks to be shaping up. Enjoy the weekend.
Resort areas in Shiga Kogen that plan to be at least part open for the Golden Week holiday period:
Ichinose Diamond: Quad and moving walkway until 6th May
Yakebitaiyama: Gondola and No2 high quad lift until 6th May
Okushiga Kogen: Gondola, No2, No3 and No4 lifts until 6th May
Kumanoyu: No1 and No3 quad pair until 6th May No2 pair until 13th May
Yokoteyama: No1 Sky, No2, No3 Sky, Shibutoga lifts plan to be open until late May Read more ...
Friday 27th April 2012, 15:11pm
A very cloudy start to the day in Yuzawa and while some of the fog and low cloud has lifted since this morning it is still a cloudy afternoon. We have been keeping dry though which is good - got rained on again last night for a while there.
Weather conditions for the start of the holidays tomorrow looks good. The forecast is for sun and clear skies as well as it being very warm. Some forecasts predict that the temps will rise to perhaps around 24 degrees tomorrow afternoon.
From tomorrow we have 4 resorts open for the Golden Week period, up until 6th May - Naeba, Kagura, Gala Yuzawa and Kandatsu Kogen. Kagura offers by far the biggest area with most of the resort able to remain open even at this late stage which is great news. The other resorts plan to finish on 6th May but Kagura will carry on until late May.
Planned Kagura lifts for Golden Week, opening at 7:30am: