Niseko Now daily snow and weather - Saturday 31st December 2011

Niseko Now (Archive Report)

Independent and trustworthy daily snow and weather reports from Niseko region, Japan
ARCHIVE REPORT: Posted at 8:13am on Saturday 31st December 2011
Current weather conditions
Observed fresh snowfall AT BASE
weather condition
A bit windy at 15 m/s and the clouds are moving pretty quick over Niseko peak which is currently clear.
Base temp:
0°C

Top temp:
0°C
Precipitation Wind Visibility
precipitation condition
-
wind condition
15 m/s at the peak 12 m/s down lower.
Sunny, but deceiving. Likely to change by late morning/early afternoon.
PLEASE READ THIS
This report
Saturday 31st December 2011, 8:13am
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Archive report: Posted at 8:13am on Saturday 31st December 2011
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Yesterday brought us snowfalls of around 15cm in some of the heavier hit areas. Most of Niseko saw around 10cm. Peak gates 2, 3, 6 should be open at 9:30 so head out on, it should be nice out there! If you can find any leeward slopes be aware of the present wind loading. The warm temperature layer that you can feel as a hard layer will act as a perfect slipping layer.

Moving to the brighter side of things, the trees in wind favored terrain will have a fairly good layer. Also the backside of Niseko will have been favored in last night's wind. So if you are going to get out to the peak, make sure you know how to get back! It's easy to get lost in all that snow, and before you know it you've already gone past the traverse.

Also tonight is New Year's Eve, so stay safe and have a great 2012. The town of Hirafu will have a lot going on tonight and you can expect to see quite a good amount of people out and about.

Current Official Snow Depths:

Grand Hirafu / Hanazono:
Top - 290cm
Bottom - 150cm

Niseko Village:
Top - 260cm
Bottom - 170cm

Annupuri:
Top - 265cm
Bottom - 170cm

Niseko Avalanche info reads:

Niseko base 6am: 0C, 5cm of crystal snow since dawn and 20cm total in the past 12hours. Coastal data: NW9m/s at Benkei cape, 2m waves and 1020hPa atmospheric pressure at Kamui cape. Annupuri peak wind: NE12m/s. A moderate 15m/s wind and snow is continuing above 800m altitude, making snowdrifts consisting of hail and crushed particle snow developing slowly in leeward slopes. Two notable layers of hail (12/30 layer) and warm temperature (12/31 layer) are present in the snowpack. Those layers could trigger a surface slab avalanche of up to 50cm thickness in open & steep leeward slopes with snowdrifts. Riding in terrains with knolls and cornices, such as found around coordinate H7 (north of Higashi-One) and CD4&5 (Moiwa area) is strongly discouraged. Peak gates 2, 3 and 6 are scheduled to open at 9:30am. Follow the ski patrol’s instructions. A fatal avalanche accident occurred in north F6 Backbowl area on January 1st 2011. Whether the snowfall amount is big or small, avalanches happen when the conditions are right. Beware of sudden weather changes. The snow in the trees is shallow but good, remain in control and be careful not to hit trees. Always remember that the area outside the gates is outside resort’s management and responsibilities.

---

Evening update:

Well today brought some on and off showers. I commend you if you hiked the peak and did the back bowls of Niseko. Simply stated, they were amazing. The snow was very surfy and smiles at an all-time high.

It got a bit warm today, which means you should keep in mind what the layer will become once it freezes again. The back bowls were pretty safe today. I ski cut quite a few slopes and there was minimal to no slabbing at all on the wind loaded sides. This is not to say there is no danger, however what the skiing showed was good today.

Please be safe as we welcome 2012. There have been several incidents around Niseko that have caused serious injury and we don't wish that upon anybody. It's New Years Eve, so embrace or move past 2011 and welcome in another year of awesome snow soon to come!

Archive report: Posted at 8:13am on Saturday 31st December 2011
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Niseko Now ski lift operation notes:

All lifts are open and running as normal exceptions.

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