This general message was posted on all our daily reports today (28th January 2019)
It is not specific to one report or region.
Here we are, closing in on the end of January. Normally we would be out playing in deep, fresh snow, watching the incredible snowfall, taking pictures of the huge snow walls along the roads (while the locals moan about having to shovel snow).
It is peak season, and lots of visitors are here enjoying themselves.
But we can't say it's a normal year almost anywhere in Japan. Even where the snow is falling, it’s way below what people have come to expect in Japan - even those who have been here all their lives. Take a look at our reports on the daily snowfalls and total depths and look at the links to individual ski areas.
Covering the winter season in our daily reports is normally a real joy. It’s a lot of fun to share all the amazingly deep snowfalls. And then, of course, going out to sample it ourselves!
So for us, too, many mornings this season have been something of a shock. We don't want to use words like "rain," "unseasonably warm," or "really shallow snowpack," but we're here to give you honest information. And those words, unfortunately, describe what we're seeing too often.
SnowJapan is not here to sell Japan as a destination, or to promote any one area over another. We are not a ski resort or a tourism association – we are 100-percent independent. Our commitment is to provide you with the most honest and accurate information we can, with the voices of our local reporters. We gather official information from the ski areas but also provide commentary and an inside view of what is really out there for you.
In this year of low (and still, sadly, no snow in some places), reporting is tougher than usual. We do not want to be negative or take away from the fun, because we know you are out on the slopes and there still is good skiing. We just try to keep a sense of balance, and sometimes that means commenting on the weather, or on overly enthusiastic snow depths being reported by resorts, or on developments in their local areas.
Our reporters are human, of course. We know that they bring good data to our pages but also interesting, even opinionated comments, and usually with a good sense of humour. They are all people who want to be with you out on the slopes, after all! Many of you have written in to tell us that you appreciate our reports, and the honesty we bring - and we thank you for this.
In fact, SnowJapan has seen a significant increase in traffic to our site this year. We believe a main reason is because people are looking for good information they can trust, and here is where they can find it. While that is positive news for the website itself, we would happily trade in some of it for heavy snow if we possibly could...
We do care very much about the Japan snow world, about the resorts and towns, and of course our readers, the most important reason why we do this work. SnowJapan has been here for over 20 years. This site has been developed with a lot of love, care and effort. I believe we can honestly say that we have played a major part in introducing the world to winter sports in Japan, and we are proud to have been recognized for this by the Japanese ski industry.
As we enter February, our hope is that the rest of the season will see more of what should be normal - heavy snow across the country - and that this year will go down as the exception to be looked back on and remembered.
Whatever happens, though, you can trust SnowJapan to report the real conditions to you. Not negative, but not sugar-coated. The truth, with a touch of original and hopefully interesting commentary.
Thanks, as always, for joining us on the site and reading our content.
If you do enjoy using our site, please do let others know about us. That does help us keep on doing what we are doing. And if you wish to contact us, you can do so using our Contact form.
Now, let’s get out in the snow!