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Feb. 8 - 11, 2008: 4 full days


Took the overnight bus from Osaka to Hotel Moc, near Akakura Kanko. The bus to Myoko area is very comfortable compared to the buses that go to Hakuba area. However, there are many stops along the route to Myoko.


Fri., Feb. 8, Day 1: Myoko Suginohara. Great day for cruising the mountain. No lines and fresh snow all day long. Myoko Suginohara has a tremendous long run from the top to bottom. They claim 8.5km. The best courses are on the Mitahara side (left of the gondola) of Suginohara. For freerides, the course directly below the upper hooded lift (lift cars are green) will allow your imagination to run. There are fresh powder stashes on both sides, if you take the time to look. Also, there are many jumps, jib points and mini-pipes to try some flavor on your ride down.


Suginohara also has 3 terrain park areas. One dedicated to kickers and the other two having a variety of boxes, rails and walls.


Sat., Feb. 9, Day 2: Seiki Onsen until 230pm. Akakua Kumado for evening 6pm to 9pm.


Seiki Onsen has two lifts. The highest lift closing at 2pm. There is a weird vibe at Seiki Onsen. From the English advertisements, it appeared that any area surrounding the lifts were inbounds. However, as we found out, there is mixed enforcement. We were yelled at after making one run through the trees, yet we saw several other riders make the same run without receiving the verbal abuse. Yes, the park ranger dude saw them. Anyway, if you want to do Seiki, get there early and only for a couple of hours. The italian restaurant at the base sucks. There is a great ungroomed powder run at teh top and there are nice powder lines to pick off in the trees, but look out for the park ranger.


Akakura Kumado has one lift operating from 6pm to 9pm. Lift price was 2000 yen. The run is a straight run with a considerable length for a single lift. There are kickers and rails in operation during the night session. We had some great snowfall during the night session, so we decided to practice switch riding the whole night, including accessing the lifts switch. Good place to practice your technique as it is not very busy and the course is well lit.


Sunday, Feb. 10th, Day 3: Best day of the trip. The snowfall we experienced at Kumado continued mostly over the entire night. We decided to go to Akakura Kanko. Great resort for the tree riders. The top most hooded lift has great access to off-piste tree runs, on both sides. There are keep-out signs, but there is no enforcement. Also, the location of the lift, keeps most beginners away. Great hidden gem.


Monday, Feb. 11th, Day 4: Back to Myoko Suginohara, not by choice. We had made prior arrangements to meet a friend. Beautiful sunny day, but warm and horrible conditions for the snow. The snow continued to melt throughout the day and late in the day ice was forming with the cooling temperatures.



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 Originally Posted By: MOFOFUNC
THanks Samui. Ill be heading there for a day mid march too. Which mountain would you recomend if we only have one day there?

One day? Meaning a full day of riding?

If I had a single day I would do the following:

Myoko Suginohara for the 6am to 8am lift ticket. I think it was 1000 or 1500 yen.

Then, depending on the weather conditions and anticipated crowds, I would consider (1) staying at Suginohara, (2) heading to Akakura Kanko or (3) Seiki Onsen.

The decision would be based on your skill level and riding desires.

Seiki has more uncompressed snow depth than Suginohara and Kanko.

Kanko has nice off-piste runs.

Suginohara, has a little bit of everything, but you must stay at the top of the mountain on a crowded day to avoid the long lines.

If you like long runs, Suginohara would be first and Kanko would be second.

If you like tree runs and going off-piste then Kanko, but there has to have been some fresh snow for you to really enjoy Kanko. Also, you need to get on the lift before 830am (8am opening).

If you want to try a few hour session go to Seiki Onsen and then go to Kanko.
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Originally Posted By: spook
so is it easy enough to move between resorts then?

Yes, with a car. The shuttle bus service between Kanko and Suginohara is not that often.

Alternatively, if you stay at a place where free private shuttle service is included in your stay, then it is easy.

Most places are within 15-20 minutes of each other.
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I had an absolutely awesome weekend at Suginohara. Its my new favourite place in the world, I have never seen as much snow as I did this weekend. Saturday was fantastic, nice and light and fluffy on the piste, and plentiful pockets at the side for me to find my powder legs and get my first true face shots. The sun is out and I can see for miles around, the nearby mountains are gorgeous shrouded in a blanket of snow. Cutting across the trees that divide the slopes I am cutting up the powder like there is no tomorrow, little jumps and kickers and I am gaining in confidence. We head off under the chairlift to find waist deep conditions, fantastic!! This is the first time I have ventured off the beaten track (I'm with 2 experienced friends)and I am loving every ton of light fluffy snow that is pounding my face each turn!! Can it get any better?


The answer is, yes it can!! Sat night it started to snow and it didn't let up until...well I dunno cos it was still snowing when we left on sunday night!! Found ourself a bar that was hosting a dj night, had some beers, chatted to some locals and almost missed the best day of riding I have ever done!!


The plan was to get up for the 1st gondola which is at 6am, my mates wake me but I choose to sleep it off. 1 hour later my mates phone me and demand I get my ass outa bed, their tales of the snow is enough....I'm up! I couldn't believe the snow, it was knee deep on piste and waist to tit off it....looks like many people are sleeping off sat night as its not so busy, thankfully the Top lift was closed until 11am for ski patrol, so I didn't miss the deepest and lightest snow, I still can't believe it at times. I have fallen in love and Myoko is her name!!! Although it got busy by the end of the day, I had such an awesome time, if you haven't been to Myoko then I say you should go, hopefully during a crazy snow fall like we had!!


The only question now is.....where to next?

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Here are some pics that I got from Suginohara, they aren't great, but as I said before I was kinda busy!! \:D Also I didn't take my camera out on the Sunday when the snow was crazy

















Guinness trees being grown in Myoko



Myoko hasn't had so much snow this year


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yeah mate they were. The people in the Pension were very helpful and friendly, the people we met in the bar as well were good crack. We got some help from a couple of girls who worked in the on mountain cafe's as well. i totally loved the place

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TBH it was pretty busy, but not so that you couldn't get your fix. If you could go midweek, like yesterday would've been awesome because it had been snowing all sunday, you would have the place to yourself I reckon with endless face shots on piste all day long. Even so there are plenty tree areas in-bounds to get those magical deep pockets.

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