Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 18th November 2017
Wednesday 29th January 2014, 8:20am
Overnight there has been 20cm of new snow at base level and substantially more at higher elevations.
A light breeze is present with overcast skies, and visibility is good. For tomorrow expect an increase in wind speed and temperatures will rise to just under freezing. The rest of the week looks set to deliver premium conditions with significant snow forecast continuously through until Monday. All this new snow means some fantastic powder skiing and fresh tracks for the early risers.
Just about to click into my bindings now an get first tracks....
Furano Ropeway 8:30am-3:40pm Furano Downhill Swift Lift #1 9:00am-8:00pm Downhill Romance #2 chair 8:45am-3:40pm Downhill Romance #3 chair 9:00am-3:40pm Prince Romance 8:30am - 4:00pm Read more ...
Wednesday 29th January 2014, 8:35am
Good morning from Hirafu and I have another 20cm or so to report. It's a cold morning and my initial impression is that the snow is lighter than what we had yesterday morning.
It has been snowing lightly this morning though right at this moment has eased off. We might even get to see the sun according to the local forecast. Fresh snowfall and new layer of goodness aside, it's more about wind this morning though...
Strong westerly winds on the mountain are affecting morning lift operations from the get go. At Annupuri, the Jumbo Number 3 and 4 as well as the Annupuri Gondilka are on hold. At Niseko Village the Gondola and top Wonderland chair are not moving and here in the Hirafu area the top King 3 and 4 and Ace Number 4 lifts are not moving as well as the top Hanazono lift.
Another mild spell due tomorrow but we should be back to cold come Friday.
Niseko Avalanche Report
Niseko base 6am: -8C, 25cm crush snow crystals in the last 12hrs. Moiwa 800m: -14C, 30cm new snow, snow drift development. Annupuri 1150m: -16C, wind NW25m/s, major snowdrift development. Hirafu 1000m: poor visibility, snowdrift development. Annupuri peak 1308m: -18.5℃, wind NW24m/s. Cape Benkei: NW18m/s, Cape Kamui: NW13m/s, wave 3.1m, pressure 1015hPa.
Due to the current winter weather pattern there has been major development of unstable snowdrifts. The avalanche danger is very high today. Do not ride open steep slopes or cornice slopes today. Gate openings yet to be decided. Please respect the Patrols decisions. Do not traverse from Gate 8 across Osawa to ride under the cornice on the other side of the bowl. In February 1993, under similar conditions, Japan had its first snowboarder avalanche death on that slope at about elev 850m. The weather is expected to clear around noon, however snow stabilty will be delayed due to snowfall transition. The forest is reset but the snow will be a little slow. Beware hitting trees, getting stuck at the bottom. Note also it is hard to see cracks under knolls from above.
Official snow depth numbers and lift news at time of writing:
Well I'm happy to report that we did get some new snow overnight on the mountains with the most being reported by Hakuba Goryu, Hakuba 47 and Happo-one - all saying 15cm of fresh up top. Other resorts are coming in with numbers up to 10cm, while down here in the village we just got a few cm or so.
It was a round lunchtime yesterday when the snow clouds moved in on the area and snow in the mountains, gradually coming down to village level.
There's lots of cloud hanging around this morning, but blue sky and sun as well. The forecast is for sun and I can believe it, we're on for a clear up I would say this morning. It's going to maybe warm up to a mild +5C today and tomorrow similarly mild. I hate to say it but rain looks likely before snowfall hopefully on Friday.
Back to right now - one of the Happo-one webcams is giving some pretty spectacular images at the moment with the lift rising above a thick bank of cloud but blue skies and the sun shining down on the slopes at the same time.
Official snow depth numbers and operations (as of 29th January 2014):
Hakuba Goryu: Reporting 5cm of new snowfall at Iimori; 10cm at Toomi and 15cm on upper slopes. Upper - 280cm Toomi - 160cm Iimori - 140cm
Hakuba 47: Reporting 5cm of new snowfall at base and 15cm on upper areas. Upper - 260cm Lower - 95cm
Happo-one: Reporting 15cm of new snowfall at Riesen area. Usagidaira - 245cm Nakiyama - 80cm Sakka - 100cm
It get rather mild yesterday and after a fine morning and some really nice conditions it clouded over bringing with it a bit of wet later in the day and thanfully turning into snow overnight.
Not much to report down low but top runs getting a slight refresh with 5cm being reported from Uenotaira, Hikage and Nagasaka areas; and 3cm on the Yamabiko runs. (Add a zero after those numbers please!) But still head up top to find the fresh this morning.
While it's still quite cloudy, there's lots - and increasingly more - blue sky appearing and it looks like today should be a mix of cloudy and sunny conditions. Hopefully it will remain below zero for the day.
Tomorrow, well, milder conditions again and late in the day a chance of rain again I'm afraid. In the village at least, hopefully it will click into snow gear quickly.
For those planning to visit over the weekend, right now the forecasts seem to agree on cloud/sun on Saturday and then another mild day on Sunday that might bring rain across the mountain. If that happens Saturday would be the pick for the weekend.
Sorry to have to talk about the 'r' word - we can hope these forecasts are just wrong!
Lifts All lifts operating except: Yunomine pair Mizunashi triple Challenge pair Utopia pair Hikage Number 2 pair B
Courses All courses open except: Kandahar East Kandahar West Read more ...
Wednesday 29th January 2014, 9:19am
So yesterday morning started off clear and sunny with blue skies all round and icy conditions.
It was a very fine morning though by noon thin clouds had started to appear and by mid afternoon it was an overcast and cloudy cover over the region.
By evening we got rained on, but overnight it was snowing.
There's not a huge amount down in town, but resorts around town are this morning reporting around 10cm - with the most up at Kagura which is reporting 20cm of fresh snowfall overnight.
Snowfall has eased off in the last half hour or so, and while it's still very cloudy you can see the sun trying to break through. The forecast is indeed for the snow to ease off, just be cloudy and then some sunshine later on this afternoon. So it looks like that might well be what happens.
As of 9am it was -3C in town, a high of +2 forecast.
Tomorrow is unfortunately likely to be warmer again and by the end of the day it it likely to rain, before turning into snow. Damage limitation please!
Todays photos taken at Kagura yesterday morning. Thanks to muikabochi.
Lots of cloud around this morning, but they seem to be deciding to leave after giving us another 15cm or so of fresh snowfall overnight. Resort is reporting 15-20cm on the mountain. After a bit of wet on my head last night the snowfall is a relief and I look forward to getting out there this morning.
So it looks like it's clearing up and more blue sky on show.
Tomorrow though, warmer conditions ahead and a good chance of a bit of rain again too later in the day I'm afraid. Fingers crossed not for long again as snow shouls follow into Friday.
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
A good new amount of snow to report this morning from here in Zao. 20cm or so I would say, which hopefully means something more than that on the mountain. (Of course, officially they have only added 5cm, but...!)
There's a wind with us still today meaning that there's some windblown areas and more (or less) depending on where you are. Care needed.
For the moment it's just cloudy but might we see some sun later on? Looks like more decent snow later on tomorrow into Friday after a milder day during the dayime.
Temperatures a bit up and down at the moment as if we can't decide where to go. What we want really is consistent low and consistent snowfall. Please. Thank you!
Official snow depths (29th January 14): Utopia: 250cm Chuo: 195cm Paradise: 225cm Uwanodai: 140cm Read more ...
Shiga Kogen Now!
Wednesday 29th January 2014, 9:45am
Just a thin dusting of snow overnight and this morning lovely blue skies over Shiga Kogen.
After a bit of a warm up yesterday it's a cold morning though we are expecting mild again tomorrow, to be followed by snow into Friday.
We seem to be up and down with temps at the moment and the forecasts are all a bit vague. Of course, what we like best is when it's clearly going to puke down over the area... though we don't seem to have any of that on the horizon at the moment.
Official snow depth data, as of Wednesday 29th January 2014, 9am):
It was a scary sight last night, as a bit of precipitation began falling just as it got dark - and it wasn't snow.
Luckily, that very light rain soon turned to snow, and we got perhaps 10cm of fresh stuff by morning.
Hard to tell what it's going to do today. It's cloudy, and the forecast says we might indeed have some light rain tomorrow, as the freeze line moves way up the mountain. So far this year rain forecasts have resulted in snow, so let's hope for the white stuff, at least from the base of the resorts up.