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Some photos from around Myoko over the past few days - mostly Akakura area so far. There's a lot of snow here! Buried lifts and 4m+ snow walls around town, I've never seen so much snow before.

 

Enjoy!

 

 

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love the buried lift photos (:

I dont suppose you went to suginohara in your time there?

Im thinking of hitting it up as the first stop for my mate when he comes to japan just because i adore it and think its soooooo pretty.

BUT

They shut the quad at the base of mitahara. This is one of the most stupid decisions they could make in my eyes. It really kills the urge to ride the full top to bottom run when you know that massive flat at the base is waiting for you followed by the worlds slowest lift (actually second slowest - gala yuzawa has the worlds slowest), to get back up to the now bigger queues at the gondola because everyone is channeled over there. Please tell me they saw sense and reopened it?

 

ETA: coursemap_02.jpg

 

borroks.

And the parks been moved across to where the cross course used to be... actually i maybe remember that from last year but blocked it out of my mind. The old park area is now the "private nighta gelende".

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I'm here until the 19th, so still got a fair bit of time to explore.

 

I did go over to Suginohara on Saturday. I really enjoyed it! All the lifts on the map were running until about 3pm, when the wind really picked up and the top lift was closed. The snow was deep up on the top chair early on, but it was quite busy (being a weekend). I didn't take any photos over there as the visibility was very low. Planning to go back again before this weekend, maybe Thurs/Fri.

 

Starting to get warm today. Snow was good until lunch though, I was able to find some easy tree areas that weren't trashed from the weekend. Hopefully we don't take too much rain damage before it turns to snow tomorrow.

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by the worlds slowest lift (actually second slowest - gala yuzawa has the worlds slowest)

 

Oh no, don't think so ippy! I can name a few round these parts that easily beat anything in Gala of Akakan for slowness.

Some lifts at Mt Granview, Ishiuchi Hanaoka, Iwappara, Joetsu Kokusai come to mind!

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the lift at gala has the excuse that its the kiddy zone (even if it is the connection to ishiuchi...). The pair lift connecting back to the gelende at myoko is just crappy all round. It caused me to miss my bus the first time i ever went there... and if you know myoko you know theres only one vus out of suginohara (though you can catch later buses by heading down to suginosawa itself and hanging around).

 

And RedLotus, alas the lift i love isnt marked on the trail map any more. I took it from that, that it wasnt just an unlucky timing of events last year. They really have just decided to shut it down. Looks like if i come to suginohara again, ill either just ride the family side, or stay up above that middle line on mitahara. Its a genuine pity because every person ive dragged to suginohara comes away loving specifically that gentle path through the trees finishing off the powder mischief above it.

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well the Ropeway at Tenjindaira in Gunma must be pulled along by a monkey......that thing creeps up the mountain.......even un-Gnarly hikers with all their clothes on could run up faster than the Ropeway

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Wow that looks awsome

 

Imagine just charging down the lift and spraying people in snow (friends of course).

 

Cheers

 

Seemore

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access? You mean buses and trains or off piste? I can tell you about the former but not the latter.

 

Bus leaves from the information center just outside the train station at 8.58. Takes about 25 minutes and costs about 450ish yen.

There are other buses but those drop you in the small village at the bottom requiring a wee walk to get to the bottom lift.

 

just type in myoko in google and you should get their official site (its also in english).

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Went to Suginohara again today - I figured it had the highest elevation, and least chance of rain. However, the top lift wasn't running! It was raining most of the day at base, turning to wet snow about halfway up. Visibility was terrible, almost total white out at times.

 

Yesterday was actually quite nice out on the mountain, before the snow got too heavy. Nice blue skies:

gallery_11187_137_121241.jpg

 

 

If you are staying near any of the 'Big 4' resorts (Akakura Kanko, Akakura Onsen, Ikenotaira and Suginohara) there are free shuttle buses between the resorts. Roughly one per hour. If you are coming in by train, Myokokogen station was closed for several days because of the heavy snow. They have probably reopened it by now (with this warm weather), but you should probably check.

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Nice.

 

I was in Myoko last week but it didn't stop snowing, it was quite wild.

Everything was white.

I wanted to take photos but there was really nothing to take!

:lol:

 

Lovely snow.

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iiyamadude is good at taking pictures in those conditions, here's one of his now..........

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

:D

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Was a great day out on the mountain today with lots of powder and not many people. The snow is already quite deep in places, I saw many people getting stuck off piste.

 

I had a quick look over at Akakura Onsen to see if the top lift was running - but it wasn't :sadface: . The base of that lift was partially buried. After a skiing to the bottom I realised that more than half of Akakura Onsen's lifts are buried under all this snow! What really annoyed me is that they were digging out this tiny lift that didn't open any new terrain, but they just left their one interesting lift shut all day! :confused:

 

I didn't take many photos, as visibility wasn't great, but here are a few:

 

med_gallery_11187_137_29311.jpg

 

med_gallery_11187_137_8274.jpg

 

med_gallery_11187_137_2246.jpg

 

NHK's snow warning was for up to 90cm in Niigata mountain areas over the next 24hrs.

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The weekend was epic in Myoko, Saturday would have to have been my best day skiing ever. Off piste the snow was crazy deep, every turn was a face shot (if you could get up enough speed). My skis are 96mm at the waist, and it was hard to keep moving off piste. Watching the weekenders from Tokyo try to follow my tracks with carving skis was just hilarious. :lol:

 

I had a gut instinct that they would (finally) open the top chair at Akakura Onsen, and I timed my run just right - they were just starting to prepare the lift as I went past (~11am). I waited for like 20 minutes or so, and got to be first up there. This black run had been closed for almost a week, and had about a meter of untouched powder (well, except for two guys who hiked it). Just amazing! I must have done like 6 or 7 runs before it started to get a bit of traffic.

 

This morning was very sunny and a little warm. I went over to Ikenotaira. I'd heard that it was the least interesting of the Myoko resorts, but I quite enjoyed it. There are many nice mellow tree runs, and easy powder to be found all over the mountain. Not very steep, but just right for my skill level. They do have a big park there also, if you're into that kind of thing. Snow quality off piste was so-so today, but I'll definitely head back there if we get a decent snowfall later in the week.

 

Some pics from today:

 

med_gallery_11187_137_68084.jpg

 

med_gallery_11187_137_24354.jpg

 

med_gallery_11187_137_99924.jpg

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holy hell! have they moved the park at ikenotaira to the very bottom of the main gelend? Isnt it really shallow down there? Was it always there... i always remember it being over skiers right, but my brain plays tricks on me.

 

I used to love ikenotaira just because its soooooo cheap, and for an intermediate starting to ride under lifts or in very mellow trees its almost a paradise of new opportunities and access. It also seemed like the one part of myoko that was actively trying to stay afloat and move into the future. Suginohara looks like it got trapped in the 80s, akakan maybe the turn of the century and only because of its pasta restaurant at the base.

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