Hakuba Now daily snow and weather - Saturday 4th February 2012

Hakuba Now (Archive Report)

Independent and trustworthy daily snow and weather reports from Hakuba & Otari region, Japan
ARCHIVE REPORT: Posted at 7:32am on Saturday 4th February 2012
Current weather conditions
Observed fresh snowfall AT BASE
weather condition
Cloudy and snowing
Base temp:

Top temp:
Precipitation Wind Visibility
precipitation condition
wind condition
Slight wind
Poor to Variable
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Saturday 4th February 2012, 7:32am
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Archive report: Posted at 7:32am on Saturday 4th February 2012
The latest Hakuba Now report can be found here

It is currently snowing at about 2cm per hour and should continue with consistent snowfall throughout the day. Yesterday we saw some bright blue skies and sunshine for the majority of the day. It was quite the change from the stormy weather we have been getting. Winds have affected the ski resorts with wind packed crust on many exposed ridges and pistes. But this new dusting will help soften up the terrain everywhere.

This morning the valley temperature is -6.5 C in the valley maintaining the cold trend from this week. Freezing levels are rising over the next couple of days but will remain mild through today. We are expecting a range between -2 C and -4 C with a wind chill making it feel like -11 C. Winds will get up to 4m/s and will run from the WSW, W and NW.

5cm of new snow has been reported on the resorts this morning adding to the great 3m plus base that we have on the resorts throughout the valley. At the moment, visibility is poor and a cloud layer should stick around all day.

The forecast is looking like a warming trend for the next two days which will provide us with some sunshine. There is even a chance of some rain late Monday into Tuesday so fingers crossed we miss out on that particular event. It should be back to snow by late Tuesday and from Wednesday though, as it cools back down and a new weather system makes its way in.



Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern. Natural avalanches unlikely; human-triggered avalanches possible; Small avalanches in specific areas; or large avalanches in isolated areas.

Thaw crust will be present on east and south aspects after yesterday's slight warming and strong solar radiation. These crusts will be most prominent at lower elevations and steep southern slopes. Surface hoar and near surface faceting is present on more shaded slopes where radiated heat loss was prevalent during clear skies at night and through the days due to the low temps. Areas lower in elevation that did not receive as much wind as higher elevations and close to water sources in the valley will see greater facet creation.

Today's new snow may collect enough to cause small loose slides later in the day. Stay clear of steep slopes with scouring around ridges and rocky outcrops that might have shallow areas that may be more reactive to skier and rider triggering from the persistent weak faceted melt freeze layer around the January 22nd thaw crust. Cornices have been getting big in the Alpine and at Tree Line and should be avoided. Stay to simple terrain away from steep convex slopes.

This low density surface snow combined with near surface faceting and hoar frost may produce a weak interface with the new snow falling today and continuing through to the weekend.

Expect the avalanche hazard to rise with new snow and wind affect.

There is still the possibility of very large slab avalanches at Tree Line and above. Take due care if traveling in the Hakuba and Otari backcountry.

ALPINE: Considerable
TREE LINE: Considerable


Official snow depths and operations @ Saturday 4th February 2012 AM:

Hakuba Goryu:
Goryu reported 5cm of new snow on upper slopes and a 1cm on lower slopes. All lifts operating.
Official snow depths:
Alps daira - 305cm;
Toomi - 160cm;
Iimori - 140cm.

Hakuba 47:
Hakuba 47 reported 5cm of snowfall earlier this morning. All lifts operating.
Official snow depth:
Upper - 236cm
Lower - 130cm

Ski lifts/courses:
All lifts apart from Happo No1 pair, Central Pair and Kita One No3 lifts are operating today.
Official snow depth:
Usagidaira - 230cm;
Sakka - 150cm;
Nakiyama - 150cm.

Tsugaike Kogen:
Official snow depth:
Upper slopes - 290cm
Champion - 220cm

Hakuba Cortina:
Cortina was reporting 5cm of new snowfall this morning. All open.
Official snow depth:
Upper - 370cm
Lower - 270cm

Hakuba Norikura:
Official snow depth:

Hakuba Iwatake:
Official snow depth:
Upper - 170cm
Lower - 120cm

Hakuba Sanosaka:

Hakuba Minekata:

Archive report: Posted at 7:32am on Saturday 4th February 2012
The latest Hakuba Now report can be found here

Hakuba Now ski lift operation notes:

See main report for details.

Friday 3rd February 2012
This report
Saturday 4th February 2012
Sunday 5th February 2012
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