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Found 11 results

  1. Hi Would you advise against taking a beginner to Kagura in Yuzawa? (Especially in the next week or two in this last season?) Thanks
  2. Hi! Not as question as such, hope that is ok! I have decided to have one last day of the season and Kagura in Yuzawa is the place. I plan to be going on Monday. So if anyone else is going or thinking of going, let's meet up. I'll be at Mitsumata Ropeway for the first lift of the day. Let's Kagura.
  3. Hi I'm looking forward to going to Kagura in a few weeks for the first time. Wondering where to start off Mitsumata or Tashiro and keen to hear any thoughts on that. Thx
  4. Resort Spotlight The Resort Spotlight for the Kagura resort in Yuzawa, Niigata Prefecture can be found here: https://www.snowjapan.com/japan-ski-resorts/kagura
  5. I've been looking at options for some slackcountry/ easy backcountry in early Feb (7th-). Some of the reviews of the terrain accessed from the number 5 romance lift (the top lift) sounded very appealing. The in bounds sounds a little mellow but as it's the start of the trip I'm sure we'll enjoy a warm up run or three. But looking further it seems that lift (also called Kagura Pair Lift No. 5) is not actually open in early Feb. Was this the case this year? If it is the case is there anything there to appeal to a crew that likes the getting into the trees and some easy back country (on snowboards so prefer to ride out but carry full avi gear and snowshoes).
  6. When: March 26-27 Where: Kagura Snow conditions: boot-knee deep spring powder, hard pack, slush, mochi. Another lucky win for my wife and I from the SJ giveaway sent us up to Kagura for two days. We spent the previous day at Sugadaira and drove up through Gunma-ken, which was a lovely and scenic drive. There were some nice looking little ski-jos along the way as well. As we approached Yuzawa Machi, not far from Naeba, the snow started coming down pretty heavily. We went from solid spring conditions to winter in only a few short hours. As it was our first time in this area I was quite impressed by the massive infrastructure at both Naeba and Kagura. It was obvious that these places were huge and rangy, even from the road. Driving into Yuzawa Machi is easy and straight-forward and everything is clearly marked and relatively logically laid out. We had booked a little hotel called Takehana at the base of Nunoba ski-jo, a part of Yuzawa Kogen ski-jo. It was a typical little Japanese style place with very helpful mom and dad running the show. You get what you pay for and this place was cheap but the breakfast was good and the views from our room were fantastically stoke inspiring. Just a hundred meters or so down the road from our hotel was the famous Ninjintei tonkatsu restaurant that Muikabochi had recommended. It was certainly a good place to eat and one of my favourite restaurants in a while. I had the hire katsu teishoku and she had the ebi teishoku (or something like that). I also enjoyed the dai-jyoki of beer... it was big and beery. One was almost enough. March 26: It snowed all night. Out the window from our room we could see about 5cms (or more) of snow. It was easy to finish breakfast quickly and we were at the Mitsumata ropeway by 8:15. From the base area it is almost impossible to get any idea of the vastness of Kagura. Even from the top of the ropeway you don't see much. It's not until you board over to the Kagura gondola and are half way up the hill that you can begin to gauge the size of the place. I was really chomping at the bit to get to boarding after seeing boot to knee deep snow all over the piste. It remained cold all day as well which kept the snow nice and fresh the entire day (and even most of the next morning). Kagura is basically three areas: Mitsumata, Kagura and Tashiro. The Mitsumata area has a couple of beginner runs and a terrain park, the Kagura area has advanced and intermediate runs (and a little park with a giant jump that they were just beginning to build), and the Tashiro area is basically a beginner area with some long flat runs that can catch you out if you are not paying attention. After spending the morning smashing up the pow in the Kagura area, which has great side/slack/back country runs and loads of treed areas, we made our way over to the Tashiro area. On our first day we basically boarded every run at the ski-jo and just on our way back from the Dragondola area of Tashiro we cover 17.5 kms (according to my GPS) to get back to our car. Going from Kagura over to Tashiro involves a lot of flat annoying runs but on the way back the lift system gets you higher up the hill and there are some pretty fun lines to hit. It was a little cloudy and snowy the entire day so it was somewhat difficult to get a good understanding of what we were getting into. It made the side/back country options much more daunting than they actually are. All in all, it was a fantastic day of boarding and there were almost no indications that it was the end of March (other than a few places where it was dust on crust). We drove back into Yuzawa completely satisfied after a long day on the slopes. Unfortunately, we were unable to find a restaurant as nice as the first one and ended up at a little izakaya down the road from our hotel that was pretty standard fair. Anyway, a few beers helped me get over that small disappointment. March 27: We woke up to clear blue skies. The morning had an unmistakeable spring feel to it and the forecasts were calling for warmer temperatures than the day before. Because of work commitments, I had to admit to myself that this was going to be my last day of the season on the slopes. Time to swap snow for ocean! Anyway, we got up the hill at about the same time and the blue skies gave way to massive views up and down the valley as well as the surrounding peaks and back country areas. Kagura is a beast of a mountain. Every time I rode a different lift I counted almost endless runs down from the peak in different directions. I made mental notes of the lines I wanted to hit and banked quite a few for future reference. I'm not sure what the ski-jo's policy is towards riding 'out of bounds areas' but there were almost no ropes anywhere and ski patrol was nowhere to be seen. I'm definitely going to go back there during my February holidays and do some guided tours to get a fuller appreciation of what is on offer. There is a lot of fun terrain for those who like to venture further afield. The morning had stayed cool enough not to degrade the quality of the snow too much. We lapped some fun little tree runs and bombed some funs lines down wide fast groomers. I even spent a few runs on my wife's small, super flexible board hitting up some fun little features. Unfortunately, by the time we decided to ski back down to the Mitsumata area the warm weather had taken a toll on the snow and it was like boarding on mochi, which over flat areas is a massive pain in the ass. While I didn't have to unstrap at times I felt like it would be less of a bother to just walk down the course. I really like this ski-jo and feel like I should have gone here a long long time ago. Unfortunately, it's a bit of a pain to get to from where I live because it's difficult to avoid driving through Tokyo traffic to get there... and while we had no problems using the Kanetsu I can see how this highway could be a massive pain in the ass. One bonus of driving this road is that there was an awesome burger truck at the Akagi Kogen PA. Will I go back there? Absolutely! I can't wait to see what fun there is to be had after some epic Niigata style snow.
  7. Here's a new video I put together of some of my recent trips to Kagura (plus some from a trip I did last year). I tried to include more footage from times I went when it was sunny - actually the last two times I went there I was lucky enough to get beautiful blue skies and some deep powder. Hope you enjoy it! BTW - I tried to upload it to the SnowJapan TV site but I couldn't get it to work - not sure why - videos I made before using the exact same process went up fine. I spoke to the editors about it and they couldn't get it to work either but they are very busy right now with the new website so I'll probably until that's up and try it again then.
  8. Enjoyed my last day for the '11/'12 season with some spectacular weather at Kagura. http://vimeo.com/40771931
  9. Friday 9th December 2011 until Thursday 15th December 2011 The prizes: 10 one-day lift ticket vouchers - each one can be exchanged for a one-day 'Mt Naeba' lift ticket (valid this season) Who can enter? Any active, logged in members of SnowJapanForums can enter this Giveaway. (You need to have made at least a few posts on the Forums, and join in - not just simply register). >> If you are logged in, click here to enter. >> If you need to register, please do so here. The winners: 10 people will be chosen and notified within four days of the Giveaway period closing. Mt Naeba website Mt Naeba Resort Spotlight on SnowJapan We would like to thank the kind people at Mt Naeba and Prince Hotels for taking part in this Giveaway. Please do take a few moments to post some comments on the form when you enter... each year your comments help us try to improve SnowJapan. Thank you.
  10. Just got the automated Yuzawa Now email..... Kagura will be opening a small part of their main run on Wednesday http://www.snowjapan.com/e/daily/yuzawa-now.php
  11. Went for a bit of a drive today. All the snow gone from Kagura now, but it is looking very pretty up there. I think it needs perhaps another week to be full on autumn colours, but a few snaps from today. Kagura Gondola Recognise this course? Cheeky monkey

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