Snow and weather reports posted on Thursday 14th December 2017
Wednesday 3rd March 2010, 9:17am
Cloudy, light rain town, snow higher up
Yesterday just after I posted the report the clouds cleared up and we had a short while where there was a lot of blue sky up above Yuzawa, but the clouds soon came back and by the end of the afternoon there was lots of low cloud and at times spots of rain falling.
Overnight it seems that higher areas have had a sprinkling of snow and in the last hour the tops of the mountains have become covered in cloud once again --- it may even be snowing up there. Light snow and perhaps rain lower down in town on the forecast for the day with things clearing up again later in the day and into tomorrow.
That cold snap I mentioned yesterday still seems to be on the way but perhaps pushed back to around Sunday/Monday... before then it looks like a mix of cloud/sleet/light snow higher up is on the cards.
Right now it is 3 degrees in town and has actually started to drizzle.
It's the Yuzawa Snow Festival on Saturday night centered around the main onsen road from the west exit of the station. There should be a fair few events going on for that - fresh snow would be good!
Strong winds today and with clouds overhead moving fast the weather has been fairly changeable - blue skies and sunshine this morning, overcast with some blue patches right now. It is not so cold with Goryu recording -1 at 1500masl this morning, but with strong N/NW gusts exposed areas at altitude are several degrees lower than this and the air temp outside is on the chilly side.
Rain or snow is forecast tomorrow depending on where you look but the freezing level isn't too low so its more of a fingers crossed thing.
For the weekend ahead it looks like precipitation is coming in on Saturday but temps will still be faily warm, just beginning to drop, so we will be lucky if everything falls as snow; temperatures dropping back into the minuses Sunday/early next week.
It is -2 degrees in Zao village this morning so it is colder than it has been, and another cloudy start to the day. We have 1-2cm or so of fresh snow to report as well. Not much else to report this morning, I would say today will be very similar in conditions as yesterday.
Snow or perhaps even rain especially lower down the mountain is expected tomorrow night but after that it looks like we can look forward to some proper colder conditions bringing more snowfall around Sunday into Monday.
Put a hold on that snowy weekend - looks like it has been delayed, though we can perhaps still expect the snow to be with us on Sunday along with some colder temperatures. Come on bring it on!
Yesterday ended up being cloudy after a brief clear up in the morning and Kagura are reporting another 1cm of snow this morning. Down in the village no snow to report but some wet roads so it was either raining or sleeting overnight. Right now it is just cloudy both down here and on the mountain with poor visibility up there at the top covered in cloud. It is -1 degrees in the village and according to the forecast there is a chance of snow later on... if it does it won't be anything significant.
Late last night it started to snow and I was hopeful we'd awake this morning to plenty of fresh powder but unfortunately it was not to be. Most of the snow missed our area and moved through a bit further south and east of us. Hakkodate and Chitose actually had quite reasonable falls but that doesn't help us here. We ended up getting a few cm's it's currently snowing but conditions on the mountain haven't really improved much at all. Up high reasonably strong winds have actually stripped the surface back to ice. Some of the protected gullies may have some reasonable snow but overall the off-piste is not great and the groomers will be the best choice today. The peak gates are open but with cloud, strong winds and little prospect of any good snow it's probably not worth the effort. Hopefully the snow will continue throughout today and the predicted falls tomorrow night are bigger than expected. At this stage it looks like next week will be cold and snowy with a much more normal winter pattern looking likely to establish itself over the region.
Current Official Snow Depths:
Grand Hirafu: Top - 290 Bottom - 165
Niseko Village: Top - 380 Bottom - 205
Annupuri: Top - 350 Bottom - 220
Avalanche Information: (Information as of this morning)
Niseko Avalanche Info No.78
Strong southerly breeze (15m/s+) has persisted during the night at the peak and fresh snow is blown away in most places. The surface is mostly rock hard ice crusts in high altitude slopes and a thin layer of fresh snow is covering re-frozen sun crusted slopes in slopes below 1000m. Peak gates are scheduled to open at 9:30, however the out of bounds condition is horrible. Yesterday’s tracks remain and are frozen, not suitable for pleasant skiing. Some cracks/crevasses have been covered with a thin layer of fresh snow and are not visible from above. Please ride carefully.
It is a cloudy morning early on with some dark clouds but bright skies behind them - all looking very dramatic out there as I write this! Having said that I was driving through the area this morning and there were pretty variable conditions in different places - so there's a feeling that we are in a period of really easily changing weather conditions at the moment.... though the clearer skies may wellwin out today.
It certainly feels more chilly this morning even though temperatures are still hovering just below freezing. (We expect colder here!)
Before that promised (!) snowfall on Sunday, the variable conditions like like they will continue. Cloudy with possible light snow tomorrow followed by cloudy/clear on Friday.
Nighta this evening planned at the following resort area:
It's soupy out there, but at least it's not rain. You can call it snow—it's more like tiny ice particles—but what's falling from the skies is not immediately wet, at least.
Temperatures are down, which is good news at least for the snowpack, as the melting has stopped for the time being. The long-term forecast is for some more snow, a reminder that the season certainly isn't over, and there is good skiing out there. Today just might not be the best time to try it out....
Things just keep getting better in Furano. There has been 5cm of new snow in the village over night and it is still snowing. The quality of the fresh snow is very good; light dry powder. On the ski area itself there is up to 10cm in certain places on top of a packed powder base. The skiing this morning was very good for this time of year. There is a moderate wind on the upper part of the mountain, and this has meant that operation of the Kitanomine Gondola has had to be suspended until the wind quitens down. Lower mountain visibility is good while on the upper mountain it is varying between good and fair. With a firm base underfoot an edge sharpen will add quality to your day. Read more ...
Wednesday 3rd March 2010, 13:22pm
Yesterday's "glorious spring weather" didn't last for very long at all as the clouds quickly came in as well as some low mist which led to some of the resorts closing the higher slopes due to bad visibility.
Today continues in much the same vein with cloud everywhere and even some light rain falling down in the valley. It feels colder than yesterday and when some sleet started late morning a few people got excited about the possibility of snow but it soon turned back to rain again.
The forecast for the run up to the weekend continues to be dominated by cloud and the odd shower. Read more ...