Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 7th May 2017

Niseko Now!

Wednesday 27th April 2016, 8:17am
Weather conditions: Clear blue skies and sunny
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Hello and good morning from Niseko.

And it is a beautiful morning here with clear blue skies all around.

What else can I mention this morning... yes, rain is still due Friday with some forecasts still promising the chance of snow higher up on the mountains.

Things should be clearing up again Saturday with sunny conditions forecast beyond then, and perhaps once we get into next week it will start getting that bit warmer as well. Usually does when we get into Golden Week.

Oh yes, one more thing. Niseko Village of course have been planning to re-open for Golden Week but they have announced that the top Wonderland Chair lift will not be operating due to some dangerous cracks up there in the remaining snow. That seems to mean that while the Niseko Gondola at the resort will be operating from 29th April until 5th May, it's function will be to get skiers and snowboarders over to the open Niseko Grand Hirafu slopes as well as just for sightseeing.

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'Golden Week' officially starts from Friday.

Golden Week is a number of national holidays that happen close to each other giving lots of people a nice holiday in late April and early May. Most tourist spots get very busy as a result! Depending on what days they fall, some years it is a considerably long period. This year, the actual national holidays are 'Showa Day' on Friday 29th April, 'Constitution Day' on Tuesday 3rd May, 'Greenery Day' on Wednesday 4th May and 'Children's Day' on Thursday May 5th. This means that this year Golden Week looks like this:

* Friday 29th April - Sunday 1st May (3 day long weekend)
* Tuesday 3rd May - Thursday 5th May (3 day holiday mid-week)
* Saturday 7th May - Sunday 8th May (normal weekend)

No doubt some folk will be taking Monday 2nd May and Friday 6th May as a holiday as well giving them a 10 day break.

Thursday 5th May is scheduled to be the last day of the snow season here in Niseko.

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Resort specific lift opening news at time of posting:

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Niseko Annupuri
Expect the two resorts to be open as planned this morning.

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Official resort snow depths as of Tuesday 26th April 2016:

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Top - 250cm
Base - 0cm

Niseko Annupuri
Top - 230cm
Base - 10cm

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Resort operations - subject to change due to snow and weather conditions

Niseko Grand Hirafu resort area lift operations:
Ace Number 2 Center Four Quad (* this lift now used to get to and from the open courses - you can no longer ride back to base)
Ace Number 3 Pair
Ace Number 4 Pair

The resort is 'upgrading' the King Number 3 triple lift in time for next season. As part of that work the Hirafu Gondola, King Number 3 and 4 lifts have all now closed for this season. Niseko Grand Hirafu plans to remain open until Thursday 5th May.

Niseko Annupuri plans to be open until Thursday 5th May with the Gondola, Jumbo 1 and Jumbo 4 lifts operating.

Niseko Village is currently closed. The Gondola will be open between Friday 29th April until Thursday 5th May, acting as a way to get to Niseko Grand Hirafu (and also just for sightseeing). The resort has announced that the top Wonderland Chair will not be opening as originally planned.

Niseko Hanazono has now closed for the season.

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Niseko Grand Hirafu 6 day weather and snow forecast   Read more ...
 

Hakuba Now!

Wednesday 27th April 2016, 8:37am
Weather conditions: Blue sky, some thin cloud, hazy
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Hello from Hakuba.

The sun is out and we have blue skies and/or a hazy spring like feel depending on which direction you are looking this morning.

But overall it's another feel-good late spring morning.

That is not forecast to last though, with more cloud expected and rain from this afternoon.

It will still get rather warm before the rain cool things down though, with temperatures set to rise above 20 degrees again. Rain is forecast through the day tomorrow and then what happens on Friday still looks uncertain. Might we get some snow falling higher up on the mountains?

It will be interesting to see how that all unfolds...


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Upcoming Golden Week holidays:

* Friday 29th April - Sunday 1st May (3 day long weekend)
* Tuesday 3rd May - Thursday 5th May (3 day holiday mid-week)
* Saturday 7th May - Sunday 8th May (normal weekend)

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6 day forecast for Happo-one:

6 day snow and weather forecast for Happo-one

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Resort news as of 8:35am on Wednesday 27th April 2016 (subject to change due to snow and weather conditions)

Hakuba 47:
Only the top Route 8 course by Line E lift remains open (along with the top Panorama course of Hakuba Goryu).
Top Line E lift only operating.
Access is via Hakuba Goryu - the base area of Hakuba 47 resort is now closed.
47/Goryu lift tickets are now 2500 yen for adults and 1350 yen for children.
Line E plans to be operating until 5th May.
Official snow depth:
Upper: 90cm
Base: -cm

Hakuba Goryu:
Just the top Panorama course remains open (along with the Route 8 course of Hakuba 47).
Gondola and Alps Number 1 pair lift operating.
The lower main Toomi and Iimori areas are now closed.
Get the Gondola back down to base.
47/Goryu lift tickets are now 2500 yen for adults and 1350 yen for children.
Hakuba Goryu plans to be operating until 8th May.
Official snow depth
Alps: 95cm
Toomi: -cm
Iimori: -cm

Hakuba Happo-one:
The Usagidaira, Kurobishi, Skyline and Panorama areas remain part open.
Check the webcam images below to get an idea of the snow remaining on Usagidaira (second photo).
The Riesen Grat course is now closed due to insufficient snow but the Grat quad lift remains operating - for climbers only.
All lower areas of the resort are now closed.
Get the Gondola back down to base.
Official snow depth:
Usagidaira: 40cm
Nakiyama: -cm

Tsugaike Kogen:
The top Upper Han-no-ki and part of Tsuga-no-mori courses remain open.
All other courses are now closed.
The top Tsugaike Ropeway is open for spring season (note: extra charge required).
Official snow depth:
Tsuga-no-mori: 45cm
Maruyama: -cm
Kane-no-naru-oka: -cm

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Other resorts are now closed for the season.   Read more ...
 

Yuzawa Now!

Wednesday 27th April 2016, 9:04am
Weather conditions: Fine, bright, sunny, overcast and hazy!
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
It is a fine but hazy and warm morning here in Yuzawa with the temperature at 9am around 17 degrees. It's forecast to warm up to around 22C (so given the way things have been throughout this season expect it to be a bit warmer than that!)

Rain is expected later on today though and through tomorrow as well, perhaps heavy at times. It might stay wet into Friday as well - the first day of Golden Week period.

Kagura may even be lucky enough to get some fresh snow as well. Hard to imagine with the warmth of the moment but that's what the forecasts say.

Talking of Kagura...

Kagura has announced that the Dynamic Course at Tashiro and the Technical Course at the main Kagura area are now closed for the season due to the retreating snow. They are also closing the Giant Course just for today so that they can move around snow in an effort to keep it open longer, and also the Gondola Course this morning but they plan on opening that on again by noon today.

Kagura are still stating that they plan to be open until 29th May. Is over one more month really possible?! Personally I'd not think that much beyond the end of Golden Week would be possible if I were planning on getting in a last slide on the snow... you know, just in case...!

This comment is not specific to any particular resort or even to resorts in this area, but more than a few resorts this season have suddenly cut short the season without much of an advanced warning. I suppose mentioning it too early might put some people off, though I would personally have thought that it might just encourage some people to get out for that last slide.

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Upcoming Golden Week holidays:

* Friday 29th April - Sunday 1st May (3 day long weekend)
* Tuesday 3rd May - Thursday 5th May (3 day holiday mid-week)
* Saturday 7th May - Sunday 8th May (normal weekend)

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Resorts that remain open in Yuzawa on Wednesday 27th April 2016:

Kagura
The Tashiro Ropeway and area plans to be part open until 8th May.
The Kagura area via Mitsumata Ropeway plans to be part open until 29th May.
Whether they can actually achieve that with the amount of snow left is another matter!

The following courses at Kagura remain at least part open:

- Gondola course
- Kagura main course
- Giant course (but closed today)
- Mogul bahn (until early May)
- Tashiro Ladies course (part open)
- Tashiro Alyeska Course
- Family Course (connecting, part snow mat)

Official snow depth:
Kagura area: 160cm
Tashiro area: 110cm
Mitsumata area: -cm

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All other resorts in Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma are now closed for the season.

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List of ski resorts in Yuzawa town
List of ski resorts in Minamiuonuma City

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Iwappara 6 day snow and weather forecast
NASPA Ski Garden 6 day snow and weather forecast
Kagura 6 day snow and weather forecast   Read more ...
 

Furano Now!

Wednesday 27th April 2016, 9:36am
Weather conditions: Fine
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 110cm
Snow cover remains very good on the upper areas and you can still ski top to bottom as we head into "Golden Week" though there's some ground on show on some lower areas n.

Friday this week is a national holiday and then next week Tuesday-Thursday are also national holidays - the whole period known as Golden Week.

The Furano Ropeway and Downhill Number 3 Romance lift remain operating in the Furano Zone of the resort and the resort plans to be open until 5th May.

Courses that remain open:

- Prince Course
- Speise Course
- Sailer Course
- Shirakaba Course
- Panorama Course
- Technical Course

Note that the Kitanomine Zone is closed.

Official snow depth numbers are 110cm at top and 30cm at base.

Photos added to todays report below.   Read more ...
 

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Niseko Now
20th Sep, 17:14pm
Minakami Now
17th Sep, 10:23
Madarao Now
22nd Jul, 13:05pm
Hakuba Now
14th Jul, 14:12pm
Myoko Now
01st Jul, 11:49pm
Yuzawa Now
29th May, 14:13pm
Shiga Kogen Now
29th May, 7:35
Furano Now
25th May, 9:01
Appi Kogen Now
18th May, 8:33
Grandeco Now
07th May, 19:56pm
Zao Now
07th May, 19:55pm
Naeba Now
07th May, 19:55pm
Nozawa Onsen Now
07th May, 19:53pm
Kiroro Now
01st May, 9:18am

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