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Had a great day today. Jackson's was awesome with fresh tracks in knee deep powder all day. Still very windy up top and sections are still scoured back to an icy base but in the gullies it's collected nicely. They are forecasting a sunny day tomorrow, am thinking of heading out to Chisenupuri for some backcountry.

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In the words of Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson and Tim Rice, "you know him so well" smile

 

 

Thursday 29 January 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

0cm in the past 24 hrs reported by the Niseko Avalanche Information web site.

 

 

Thursday 29 January 2009

Rusutsu Resort

 

8cm in the past 24 hrs at Hotel Romulus.

 

Warm and foggy. We made the most of it though.

 

 

 

Friday 30 January 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

0cm in the past 24 hrs reported by the Niseko Avalanche Information web site.

 

 

Friday 30 January 2009

Rusutsu Resort

 

12cm in the past 24 hrs at Hotel Romulus.

 

The Lovelock Family's last day. Glorious sunshine and fresh pow all over the mountain.

 

 

Rusutsu sunrise

 

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Abandoned house in Rusutsu

 

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Frosted birch trees on East Mt

 

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Lovelock Family with Lake Toya in the background

 

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Neil skiing the trees

 

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Hayden making his way to the base of East Mt at day's end

 

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The panorama from the top of the East Mt gondola station at day's end.

Left to right, Mt Yotei, West Mt, Shiribetsu-dake

 

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Originally Posted By: Go Native
Mike were you using a telephoto lens for the shot with Toya in the background? I don't remember it seeming that close.


70-300mm lens from the other side of the piste.

Thanks for the thumbsup all
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Saturday 31 January 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

0cm in the past 24 hrs reported by the Niseko Avalanche Information web site.

 

 

Saturday 31 January 2009

Rusutsu Resort

 

0cm in the past 24 hrs at Hotel Romulus.

 

 

Was due to head back to Hirafu last night but I was having such a great time in Rusutsu and at Hotel Romulus I decided to extend my 'holiday'.

 

With no lessons planned and a day to myself I set the alarm for a dawn ascent of Shiribetsu-dake, the very aesthetic peak to the right of West Mt (please see the panorama from yesterday).

 

Set off in darkness at 4:45. Took an hour to bootpack to the top of 'Elite' on West Mt and from there it took another hour along the ridge to the summit of Shiribetsu-dake.

 

The walking was easy with the ridge line scoured and sun baked.

 

Caught up with 4 Japanese skiers and boarders on the ridge who'd snowshoed and skinned up below the south facing bowl.

 

The previous 5 days of sunshine had baked the slopes leaving a solid and fast descent.

 

Dropped down to the road, across the fields and clicked out at the front steps of Romulus for a well earned Japanese style breakfast. Gorgeous and just what the doctor ordered.

 

Disappointed that I didn't get the fresh snow and sunrise of yesterday, but very happy to have finally skied the face that dominates the skyline above Rusutsu.

 

 

The ascent line for Shiribetsu-dake along the ridge. Lake Toya and the ocean in the background.

 

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The view from Shiribetsu-dake. Rusutsu's East and Isola Mts in the background

 

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The view of the south face of Shiribetsu-dake

 

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After a day of socked in cloud I enjoyed a spectacular sunset over West Mt and the hope of a bluebird Sunday.

 

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Sunday 01 February 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

10cm in the past 24 hrs reported by the Niseko Avalanche Information web site.

 

 

Sunday 01 February 2009

Rusutsu Resort

 

5cm in the past 24 hrs at Hotel Romulus.

 

 

Great feed last night at The Pirateman izakaya, with the wind and snow blowing horizontal.

 

Wasn't expecting much out of the day when I hit the hay at 3am, but woke to a calmish sky unloading featherlight flakes.

 

So another day playing away it was smile

 

Andy & Pam Laidlaw made the trip over from Hirafu to avoid the weekend crowds at Niseko.

 

Snowed most of the day dropping around 15cm and then on the way back home the sun came out.

 

 

Andy in the trees skier's right of Isola-A

 

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Monday 02 February 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

3cm in the past 24 hrs reported by the Niseko Avalanche Information web site.

 

 

Monday 02 February 2009

Rusutsu Resort

 

22cm in the past 24 hrs at Hotel Romulus.

 

Shiribetsu-dake was on.

 

Cost me 960 yen for the 2 tickets up West Mt to the start of the hike. Started hiking at 9:45 am. Got to top of first face at 11:15. Bluebird and knee deep on the up.

 

Cornice forming on the hike up

 

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South face of Shiribetsu-dake

 

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The views were fabulous.

 

Mt Yotei from the summit plateau of Shiribetsu-dake

 

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Kyogoku from the summit plateau of Shiribetsu-dake

 

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Mt Yotei from the summit plateau of Shiribetsu-dake

 

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Two Japanese snowboarders on the summit plateau of Shiribetsu-dake

 

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Mid-thigh pow on first half of descent. Corn on bottom half.

 

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Boot packed up for another run. Great. Great bowl, and the north facing stuff looks superb.

 

The second run on the south face of Shiribetsu-dake

 

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Superb day on the mountain. Didn't want to head back to Hirafu but my time was up. Thank you Rusutsu

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Tuesday 03 February 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

11cm in the past 24 hrs at MQ

 

Glorious morning skiing with Hornster's missus Claire.

 

 

 

Wednesday 04 February 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

17cm in the past 24 hrs at MQ

 

Superb morning skiing with Hornster. Headed out through Gate 4 in sunshine and skied boot top pow down to Jackson's. Very big cracks skier's left in Jackson's. Took pics on Hornster' camera. He'll post on his return to the UK.

 

 

 

Thursday 05 February 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

2cm in the past 24 hrs at MQ

 

Another great morning skiing with Claire. Warmed up dramatically and the pow got heavy.

 

Notched up my 50th day skiing Niseko United this season smile

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Friday 06 February 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

12cm in the past 24 hrs at MQ

 

With the snow getting heavier yesterday afternoon and relatively little falling overnight we - Jeremy, Jack, Andy & I - decided to take a trip to Kiroro Snow World for the day.

 

We left under blue skies but only got about 15 mins past Kutchan before the heavens opened and powder started tumbling out of the sky.

 

By the time we got to Kiroro 10cm had already accumulated.

 

Went up the gondola for one run and then headed over to the Nagamine area. And stayed there all day.

 

Over the day at least 30cm fell and we skied untracked run after run.

 

 

Jeremy

 

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Jack

 

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Andy

 

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Yours truly

 

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It was great to get back to skiing deep powder.

 

It was still snowing when we left but only got as far as Akaigawa before the skies cleared. Kiroro was in its own little powder cloud smile

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Saturday 07 February 2009

Grand Hirafu, Niseko Resort Area

 

7cm in the past 24 hrs at MQ

 

Kiroro part deux

 

With little new snow in Hirafu, blue skies and the knowledge that Kiroro was excellent, Andy and I headed back for second helpings.

 

South facing slopes went off quickly in the sunshine, but the north facing gullies were still light and dry at closing time.

 

Kiroro Panorama

 

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Andy Laidlaw

 

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