Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 17th December 2017
Thursday 28th January 2016, 8:03am
The day started off with blue skies yesterday and it stayed sunny for most of the morning albeit with increasing amount of cloud over Yuzawa.
There was a dark bank of cloud to the north and apparently over in Uonuma a bit of rain as well but thankfully that stayed over there. Generally it was a fine day in Yuzawa and rather mild with a high of just over 5C degrees recorded in the town.
So it was another fine day but the feeling is that we could do with another refresh of snow.
This is one of the differences we are experiencing this season - usually we don't have much of a problem at all with regular and heavy snowfall in this area, but somehow this season that regular and consistent snowfall just isn't happening like usual. I'll add a hopeful 'yet' in to remain hopeful that we will get some of that.
There has been no new snowfall overnight and this morning there's more cloud from the get-go over Yuzawa - it's mostly cloud cover in fact, with just a few small patches of blue sky to be seen in a few places.
It's going to be a little warmer still today which is a bit of a worry, perhaps rising to around 6-7 degrees in town. Cloud is forecast for the day with the chance of some rain/sleet/snow later on in the day; to be followed hopefully by snow tomorrow -- if it can keep cold enough. You can probably guess what might happen if it doesn't...
Resort official snow depths (Thursday 28th January 2016) and any specific news at time of writing:
All resorts in the area are either mostly or fully open.
Resorts in Yuzawa:
GALA Yuzawa 170cm The South Area is now part open and downhill Falcon course is also open
Yesterday saw a mix of cloud and blue skies with sunshine during the day.
No new snow to report this morning.
It feels very cold out early on this morning, but is destined to warm up to around 3 or 4 degrees at base during the day. This morning again we have some cloud but blue sky and early sunshine as well.
There's really not much else to report. Ah, the forecast. It is looking promising still for decent snow later tomorrow and Saturday, fingers crossed we can avoid the lower-level rain that is on some forecasts for tomorrow.
Official info at time of writing on Thursday 28th January 2016 (subject to change):
The official base has been increased to 95cm and even though we received relatively little snow yesterday we are inching toward the century mark. The second and most important announcement today is the opening of the lower Sailer runs tomorrow (Friday 29th) and with it the Sailer Gondola. Great news for everyone here and I’m sure the weekend crowds will be just as excited as I am. What a surprise!
Outside it’s currently sunny with some very light snow falling and a base temperature of -5. Expect that to continue most of the day and into tomorrow with no predicted snowfall (except the stuff that is falling now). Yesterday was not pleasant at all with the wind picking up in the early afternoon and getting worse through the course of the evening providing some nice snow berms throughout the resort. Early on this morning wind might be affecting the gondola and top Number 4 lift this morning.
Still no forecast snowfall in the works for us though but the winds should die down a little and with temperatures steady in the -6 range we should have a few pleasant days ahead. Just make sure your spf50 is on.
Have a great day.
Currently planned operating lifts:
- Appi Gondola - Central Number 1 quad - Number 2 lift A - Number 3 lift B - Number 3 lift C - Number 4 lift - Sailer quad - Vista quad Read more ...
Thursday 28th January 2016, 8:30am
Apart from a few errant clouds it's another beautiful day today in Naeba. Although this does look like it could change for the afternoon.
Good morning from Naeba everybody.
Yet another bluebird morning today with perfectly groomed slopes ready to go all over the mountain.
In fact we've had so many bluebird days this year already that all the locals in town have stopped getting excited when they happen. It's heavy snow we want to get excited about now.
According to the weather forecast we're meant to receive small amounts of snow most days with a very decent amount of snow coming on Friday night/Saturday morning.
Just a little bit of fresh snow at base since my last report, 1cm of it in fact.
Wind caused some problems with lifts once again yesterday - early afternoon with the Gondola and two top lifts at Annupuri coming to a halt as well as the Niseko Gondola and top Wonderland lift at Niseko Village and the two top lifts at Niseko Grand Hirafu.
Just leave us alone wind, ok?! That's what I said yesterday, but it doesn't seem to be listening for now as at the start of the day top lifts at Hirafu, Village and Annupuri are at a standstill, as noted below.
This morning light snow is falling and visibility seems fairly decent. The forecast is still telling us of regular snowfall on and off through the coming week, maybe more around Sunday than other days.
...and hopefully less wind! Naughty wind.
Just a few more days left in January and so far for this month I have observed 288cm of snowfall here at base. 31cm more than January last year. The running total for the season so far is 596cm; at the end of January last year the running total for the season so far was 806cm. So we're currently just over 2m of snow behind where we were last season.
One interesting thing is that if you look at the numbers you'll see that last season the snowfall was somewhat front-loaded with the most falling in December and then less each month from then on. Let's hope for a bumper February.
I'll look back over the statistics once again once we get into February.
Resort specific lift 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 not starting the day as planned due to strong winds. King Number 3 is operating but at a slower speed.
Niseko Village The Niseko Gondola and top Wonderland lift are not starting the day as planned due to strong winds.
Niseko Annupuri The Annupuri Gondola and top Jumbo Number 3 and Number 4 lifts are not starting the day as planned due to strong winds.
Niseko Avalanche Report:
Niseko base 6.00am: -5°C, trace new snow, minor snowdrift development. Moiwa 800m: -10°C, W8m/s, trace new snow, snowdrift development. Mikaeri 740m: -8°C, SW3.7m/s, Annupuri 1150m: -11°C, W10m/s, poor visibility. Hirafu ridge line -12°C, W18m/s. Coastal data: Benkei Cape:NW15m/s. Kamui Cape WSW12m/s, 1020hPa, wave 2.1m.
A steep atmospheric pressure gradient is producing a westerly wind 10-18m/s above 1000m. Although only a trace of snow has fallen, due to the strong wind there has been significant cornice and snowdrift development above 900m. Groomed runs higher on the mountain are hard. From observation Kozan no sawa(backbowl) side wall 1000m and Osawa SE side 1000-1100m, Higashi One (east ridge)1000m cornice slopes, the avalanche risk is high, surface slabs fracturing at about 50cm depth. Do not duck ropes to enter these areas. Gates 2,3 will be closed. Until the current weather system changes please be patient. Below 1000m don't carelessly ride open steep slopes, cornices, knoll terrain, you may have an accident. The snow in the trees is reset. Have a good day.
Official resort snow depths as of Thursday 28th January 2016:
Light snowing is falling at the moment but there's 20cm of fresh down at base this morning and probably more higher up on the mountain so it should be a fine morning out there. The snow is good though perhaps slightly heavier and wetter than best Grandeco quality. That's just trying to find fault though - 20+cm fresh is always good.
There's a fairly strong westerly wind blowing about as well at times and forecast for today, but at the start of the day the gondola and lifts are all moving as planned. On days like today you appreciate the hooded quads!
More snow is expected tonight and tomorrow perhaps heavy snow later on tomorrow. We still might get to see some sunshine on Saturday so the weekend should be excellent.
Some clouds far off to the north over the ocean, but blue overhead
Another sunny day in Myoko.... regular readers will know how I feel about nice weather versus the joy of pounding, blinding snow where you get cocooned by your warm clothes and goggles and helmet, and the sound of your skis is...well, there is no sound because the snow is so deep and soft and...
Dreaming a bit there, as we really haven't had that this season. Hopefully there will be a bit more added tomorrow and into the weekend, as the freezing line comes down.
Luckily it didn't go as high as the 1600m earlier predicted. Cross fingers, everyone! Do a snow dance! We need to get a bigger base built up, or we might see some early closures in March... we're already seeing declining snowpack in some of the resort reports though that will surely be temporary until the next snowfall.
After a wind-affected day yesterday, we are enjoying a much calmer start today. And some beautiful blue skies as well with just a few clouds here and there around the mountains.
It is one of those mornings when you are just happy to be able to be here. (I must admin, I have lots of those!)
There's no new snow to report alas, but if the forecast is correct we are in for some heavy snowfall tomorrow and Saturday (some seem to be showing very heavy, that would be fun). Might we get wet sleet before the snow though? A somewhat mixed forecast picture, so let's see what nature brings us.
While resorts around Hakuba are now mostly open with decent to good cover, we could still do with a few days of heavy snow to bring the base numbers up; and of course we all love regular fresh snow to play in.
Resorts now start to think about how deep the snow base is and how that will affect the length of the season... less base = potentially shorter season.
Anyway, we are still in January with lots of the story of the season still to be written, so there is a long way to go yet!
Enjoy the lovely weather today and then hopefully the even lovelier snowfall over the coming few few days.
Resort news as of 8:45am on Thursday 28th January 2015 (where available, all subject to change due to weather conditions)
Hakuba 47: Hakuba 47 is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall. All courses are now open. The lower part of the Tree Riding Zone is now open. There is no 'nighta' at Hakuba 47. Official snow depth: Upper: 180cm Base: 60cm
Hakuba Goryu: Hakuba Goryu is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall. All courses except Snow Diving are now open. The Toomi area will be open until 9:30pm tonight for 'nighta'. Official snow depth Alps: 210cm Toomi: 95cm Iimori: 95cm
Hakuba Happo-one: Hakuba Happo-one is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall. All courses apart from the Kurobishi Off Piste Area are now open. The lower Nakiyama area plans to be open for 'nighta' every day until 9pm. Official snow depth: Usagidaira: 180cm Nakiyama: 65cm Sakka: 40cm
Hakuba Cortina: Hakuba Cortina is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall. All courses are now open. The Ikenota area will be open for 'nighta' until 8pm tonight. Official snow depth: Top: 180cm Base: 110cm
Tsugaike Kogen: All course areas are now open. Note that the top Tsugaike Ropeway only opens from spring. Official snow depth: Tsuga-no-mori: 208cm Maruyama: 80cm Kane-no-naru-oka: 70cm
Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field: Hakuba Iwatake is reporting up to 0cm of fresh snowfall. Most of the Village Side is now open but parts of the Mountain Side not yet available (Dangan, Kamo4, East, View A, View B). There is no 'nighta' at Hakuba Iwatake. Official snow depth: Upper: 140cm Lower: 50cm
Hakuba Norikura Onsen: All courses except Snake and Expert are now open. There is no 'nighta' at Hakuba Iwatake. Official snow depth: 100cm
It's another beautiful early morning here in Madarao.
Blue skies all around and the sun shining through the windows and it should last for the day. It's not going to be as cold today with temperatures getting into low positive numbers, we just hope that it doesn't mild up too much though.
We might get some snow falling before we enter Friday morning and then I like the look of the forecasts that say moderate to heavy snowfall expected tomorrow especially later on in the day.
For now though, a wonderful morning to enjoy the snow.
And another fine clear morning here in Shiga Kogen. It's a similar story to what we had yesterday really.
Tomorrow should see a change. Is that heavy snow I see on the forecast? Yes, I believe it is. Heavy snowfall on a Friday and early morning Saturday would be just perfect for people visiting for the weekend. Exciting stuff. Fingers crossed the forecast is right.
For today though, it's fine sunny blue skies and a cold start to the day.
Official snow depths at Shiga Kogen resort areas (Thursday 28th January 2016):
There is excellent news to report this morning with snow coming down moderately and 12cm of accumulation in the village already. Up on the mountain people are reporting substantially more than this! To sum up the conditions...powder day! If you have the choice of selecting carvers or powder skis today, go with the powder skis.
Visibility conditions are okay but obviously not perfect. The snow is expected to continue for the next 6-days, so for those who have just arrived in town the week ahead should deiver some very pleasing conditions indeed.
The wind is not as strong as was forecast, and is currently around 3km/h in the village and 10km/h at the top of the resort.