Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 1st April 2018

Yuzawa Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 7:35am
Weather conditions: Cloudy skies
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Yuzawa.

Clouds gradually moved in again yesterday leaving us with a generally bright but overcast feel to the day later in the afternoon.

It was mild but we avoided rain, though I hear there was some overnight - and it has been raining/sleet lightly early this morning and the roads are looking wet (though light snow is reportedly falling higher up).

Kagura are reporting 2-5cm of snowfall and Maiko Snow Resort are reporting 3-5cm (I'm presuming that is up top), with Ishiuchi Maruyama reporting 0cm.

I am measuring 0cm.

Today is going to remain on the mild side of things but less so than yesterday, hopefully not getting too much over zero during the day. Snow is forecast but at the moment, those clouds seem to be doing that thing where they hang out to the north of Yuzawa.

I'll just let you know how it all turns out tomorrow morning.


Images today from GALA Yuzawa, NASPA Ski Garden and Yuzawa IC (Route 17).


Updated: Sunday 11th February 2018

Ski resorts in Yuzawa:

Checked and updated every morning. Note that some ski resorts may not have updated their own info at the time this report is published.

GALA Yuzawa
- 310cm

- 205cm

- Kagura area: 350cm
- Mitsumata area: 250cm
- Tashiro area: 300cm

Kandatsu Kogen
- 240cm

- 240cm (base)

NASPA Ski Garden
- 230cm

Yuzawa Kogen
- Top: 280cm
- Base: 230cm

Yuzawa Park
- 190cm

Yuzawa Nakazato
- 165cm


Ski resorts in Minamiuonuma (just to the north of Yuzawa):

Ishiuchi Maruyama
- 240cm

Joetsu Kokusai
- 240cm

Maiko Snow Resort
- Top: 230cm
- Base: 150cm

Muikamachi Hakkaisan
- Closed on Wednesdays until 14th March
- 340cm   Read more ...

Grandeco Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:01am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Grandeco.

It is a little warm morning and there is some fog around the base areas meaning that visibility is poor.

There's some strong wind blowing on the top area of the resort.

Currently, snow is falling but it is not heavy.

All lifts will open today but pay attention to the ski ground announcements regarding wind.

It is the middle day of the three days long holiday, so all ski hills in the region will be busy.


Lifts operating:

- All lifts operating

Courses open:

- All courses open

Official snow depth:
- 300cm

- Grandeco snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Geto Kogen Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:06am
Weather conditions: Overcast
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
It’s looking a little bleak out there this Sunday morning.

We saw sunshine yesterday with a drizzle of rain into the afternoon and clouds rolling in, but none of the predicted snow ended up falling overnight. Looks like we’re set to get that tonight, with around 20cm predicted by the morning.

Headed for tops of -1C with some moderate snow to fall, heavy into the evening and at times, moderate winds. Wind chill will hit -16C at some point, so rug up. With no fresh snow to report I will recommend tree runs (provided you’re wearing a helmet), though remember that for safety reasons last runs down the zones will be 2pm.

Otherwise, sit tight and wait for the snow! Around 35-40cm by Tuesday...

Monday: moderate snow, moderate winds, tops of -7C
Tuesday: light/mod snow, moderate winds, tops of -7C
Wednesday: moderate/heavy snow, moderate winds, tops of 0C


Official snow depths:

Top: 440cm
Base: 300cm

Night skiing operations are scheduled at Geto Kogen on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until 25th February 2018

The Number 2 Gondola is currently open on weekends and national holidays   Read more ...

Myoko Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:09am
Weather conditions: Cloudy and snowing
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Man, it started out awful today. Put the aging dog out at 4:30 am; dog came back dripping wet. The sound of rain off the eaves. Not a good sound.

Luckily, it’s changed to snow now, with some of the resorts reporting accumulations of 15cm up high on the hill. Looks like it’s going to be cold again, and stay cold until around Wednesday. Even so, the freezing line isn’t forecasted to go much more than 1000 meters, so with luck we won’t have another washing of rain. Could be some wind coming up a few times in the coming days, so keep an eye on wind closures of some of the high lifts and gondolas.


Akakura Kanko:
300 cm, -2°

Akakura Onsen:
365cm, -2°

Ikenotaira Onsen:
255cm, -1°

Myoko Suginohara:
210cm, -10°

Seki Onsen:
430 cm, -3°

Myoko Ski Park:
280 cm, -1° (yesterday’s report)

Kyukamura RunRun:
330 cm, 0°

Tangram Ski Circus:
220 cm, 0°

Madarao Kogen:
230 cm, -4°

Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 3cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning.

It's Sunday and the middle of this three day long weekend sandwich (or in my case, toastie).

Just a bit of snow to report to you - 3cm - and it is cloudy as I write this report. Light snow was falling earlier, but that has eased off now. A little disappointing perhaps, but hopefully things are going to start getting more exciting later on today. The forecast is still looking promising for snow - though strong winds might well be an issue.

Anyway, let's see what develops.


It's busy-busy-busy here at the moment. I went out to meet a some friends for a few drinks last night and was reminded at just how busy Hirafu can get, particularly in this peak part of the season. I usually don't venture out in the evening during this period - one less person at the bar is probably better for everyone! There's certainly a party atmosphere though, and everyone where I was seemed to be having a blast.

And with the Chinese New Year holidays from this week, things are being ramped up that bit more.

This year Chinese New Year is on 16th February - please correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that the festival period lasts for 15 days from Chinese New Year Eve to Lantern Festival on the 15th day of the Lunar New Year with holidays from 15th-21st February.

The slopes, the bars, the restaurants... are going to be busy! Planning for all these things is recommended.

Here's to large doses of fun (and fresh snow) for everyone.


Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6.00am: -5°, 3cm new snow. Moiwa 800m: -6.8°, NNW1.1m/s, 5cm new snow, no snowdrift development. Annupuri 1150m: -8.5°, light winds, 5cm new snow, no snowdrift development, foggy around 700m. Snowpack 1000m: 330cm. Hirafu 1250m: -9°, gusty light winds, trace new snow, bad visibility at peak. Coastal data: Benkei Cape:NNE8m/s. Kamui Cape: NNW7m/s, 1003hPa, wave 0.7m.

We are in the middle of a low pressure system, the pressure gradient is shallow and mountains and seas are both calm. There is dense fog on the mountain between 700m and 900m and only a little new snow with no snowdrift development. From observation general avalanche risk is low. All peak gates are expected to be open. Prepare before going out of bounds. Yesterday all peak gates were closed and slopes are covered with low pressure snowfall.

If the low pressure snowfall continues, flow type avalanches could occur on steep slopes over 30deg, including forested slopes. Also be careful around 1000m in Kozan no Sawa. These slopes will be even more dangerous if wind slabs start to form. Be aware, even in the forest.

Do not ignore Niseko Rules and enter strictly off limits area Haru no Taki. There is no avalanche control work done in Haru no Taki and there is always the danger of an avalanche. With this winters large snowpack, there is risk of a large scale full depth avalanche at anytime, regardless of temperature or time. Do not disregard the danger. You also need to careful entering Kozan no Sawa, Osawa, Mikaeri Sawa and Higashi One for same reason. To avoid accidents keep away from cracked slopes and the valley bottoms. Have a good day.


Sunday 11th February 2018

Resort specific information (operations subject to change):

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Niseko HANAZONO Resort

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts (apart from King Number 2) should be operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 425cm
- Base: 210cm

Niseko Annupuri Kokusai

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts should be operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 360cm
- Base: 230cm

Niseko Village

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts (apart from the Country Road Chair lift) should be operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 360cm
- Base: 230cm


Floodlit 'nighta' skiing:

Night skiing is planned for every evening at the Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri areas. There is no nighta at the Niseko HANAZONO area. Ski lifts that are scheduled to be operating for nighta are noted below (subject to change):

* Niseko Grand Hirafu - Ace Family quad, Ace Number 2 quad, Hirafu Gondola, Holiday Number 1 pair
* Niseko Annupuri - Jumbo Number 1 quad lift
* Niseko Village - Village Express, Upper Village Gondola, Community Chair   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 3cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Nagano.

Yes, I'm not actually in Hakuba this morning and so my report is being helped by some helping helpers.

The good news is that it seems the news this morning is (wet) snow rather than rain - and I'm not totally sure if my helpers are fully disclosing what happened yesterday afternoon but we can get past that! On to this morning and here is how much snow the ski resorts are reporting this morning:

Hakuba Happo-one: 10cm (top Gondola station)
Hakuba Goryu: up to 10cm on top areas
Hakuba 47: up to 5cm
Hakuba Cortina: 2-4cm

So it certainly could be worse given the forecast and warmer conditions yesterday. Today is set to be colder than yesterday with temperatures hopefully once again able to get down below zero.

And the forecast seems to be looking positive for snow for the next few days, so I'm feeling good about returning to Hakuba this evening.

This morning ski resorts appear to be opening on schedule though visibility is looking rather limited at the start of the day.


Ski resort information on Sunday 11th February 2018 (at time of writing):

Hakuba Happo-one

Operating lifts:
- Lifts should be operating as normal

Courses open:
- All courses should be open as normal
- Happo Banks is now open

Official snow depth:
- Kurobishi: 385cm
- Usagidaira: 225cm
- Lower: 120cm


Hakuba Goryu

Operating lifts:
- Lifts appear to be operating as normal
- The top Alps Number 2/4 pair lifts are now scheduled to be open daily until 18th March

Courses open:
- All courses should be open as normal

Official snow depth:
- Top: 380cm
- Toomi: 135cm
- Iimori: 107cm


Hakuba 47

Operating lifts:
- All lifts operating as planned
- Line D usually operates only when the Gondola is not operating

Courses open:
- All main courses available

Official snow depth:
- Top: 335cm
- Base: 140cm


Tsugaike Kogen

Operating lifts:
- Should be open as normal

Courses open:
- All course areas are open

Official snow depth:
- Tsuga-no-mori: 310cm
- Han-no-ki: 305cm
- Maruyama: 120cm
- Shirakaba: 255cm
- Champion: 150cm
- Oya-no-hara: 145cm
- Kane-no-naru-oka: 160cm


Hakuba Cortina

Operating lifts:
- All lifts are operating

Courses open:
- All courses open (some restrictions on Itadaira Ridge and Warabi)

Official snow depth:
- Top: 335cm
- Base: 205cm


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field

Operating lifts:
- Most lifts are operating with most courses open

Official snow depth:
- Top: 220cm
- Base: 130cm


Hakuba Norikura Onsen

Operating lifts:
- All lifts should be operating as planned

Official snow depth:
- 230cm


Hakuba Valley Kashimayari

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart should be operating

Official snow depth:
- 190cm


Hakuba Sanosaka

Operating lifts:
- All three lifts are operating

Official snow depth:
- 150cm


Night time skiing (nighta) at resorts in the region - weather & conditions permitting
The below 'nighta' information will not be updated every day - please check with resorts if you plan to go!

Hakuba Happo-one
Daily from 5pm until 9pm in the Nakiyama 2 area
Adults - 2,000 yen; children - 1,200 yen

Hakuba Goryu
Daily from 6pm until 9:30pm in the Toomi area until 31st March
The Sky Four quad operates daily; the Number 2 pair mostly on Saturdays and holidays
Adults - 1,900 yen; children - 850 yen

Hakuba Cortina
Daily from 5pm until 8pm (until 9pm on Saturdays)
Adults - 1,500 yen; children - 1,000 yen

Tsugaike Kogen
Kane-no-naru-oka area from 6pm until 8:50pm on 3rd, 10th, 11th February
Karamatsu Shirakaba area from 6pm until 9pm on 10th, 11th, 17th February; 3rd, 10th March
Adults - 2,200 yen; children - 1,700 yen

There are no other nighta operations at other ski resorts in the region   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Overcast Low Cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Naeba! It's a dark and damp morning here, with a relatively warm air temperature of -4°C and some very light, wet snow falling. There is a significant layer of cloud hanging to the side of the mountain, reducing visibility significantly above here. We can expect the wind to pick up somewhat as the day presses on, with small accumulations of around 4-5cm this morning, this afternoon and overnight tonight. The temperature will drop this afternoon, with overnight lows predicted to be as chilly as -12°C. The pistes are a little sticky this morning, due to the warmer temperatures yesterday and last night, but we can expect them to freshen up with the new snow falling today.

Looking forwards, we can expect the light snow to continue through until Wednesday when the skies are expected to clear. Temperatures will be comfortably below 0°C until Wednesday also, with daytime highs predicted to be around -5°C. The wind is expected to pick up significantly later tonight and into tomorrow morning, but this should ease off into Tuesday. On Wednesday we get a brief break from the wintery weather with some warmer air temperatures and clear skies, but we will be plunged back into storm mode on Wednesday night.

Hadasamui!   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:38am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds are back
New snowfall: 4cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Madarao.

And what's this?! Limited visibility this morning for a change rather than those blue skies and some fresh snow on the ground. The resort is reporting 5cm and I am able to measure and post 4cm to the report. Not a huge amount but welcome all the same with more snow due over the next few days.

It isn't as mild as yesterday, but still a little more than what we expect - though it should be getting colder today and more so from tomorrow.

It was busy out there yesterday and with today being the middle day of the long weekend I would expect a similar story today. Things should start to get quieter again around tomorrow afternoon as people make their way back home.

Special night time nighta operations this evening.


Official snow depth:

Operating lifts:

Number 1 lift
Number 2 quad lift
Number 3A lift
Super quad lift
Number 11 lift
Number 12 lift
Number 13 lift
Number 15 lift

Powder Wave I
Powder Wave II
River Line
Free Ride Park
Powder Theater
Adventure Aisle
Crystal Bowl

Kids Park

Planned nighta operations this season:

Every Saturday until 24th March 2018
11th February 2018   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 8:46am
Weather conditions: Cloud and...
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Nozawa.

The resort is reporting up to 10cm of snow on the upper slopes this morning which is good to hear - and definitely the place to be, I would say. Though be warned - visibility looks very limited up there, at least early.

It's a bit more 'wet' down at base early on - sleet and wet snow outside my window now, though I see the always-friendly Nasuki is still smiling. I think he/she has news on the forecast which is still telling us to expect snow along with dropping temperatures.

So I should have more exciting numbers to report tomorrow.

Remember, tomorrow is a national holiday so will be busier than a normal Monday. And today there are a lot of people around too.

Bring on the cold and snow!


Sunday 11th February 2018

Fresh snowfall since yesterday (as reported by the resort):

- Yamabiko (1407m): 10cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 6cm
- Hikage (660m): -cm
- Nagasaka (615m): -cm
- Karasawa (563m): -cm

Official snow depth numbers:

- Yamabiko (1407m): 315m
- Uenotaira (1230m): 255cm
- Hikage (660m): 190cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 190cm
- Karasawa (563m): 155cm

Lifts operations:

- All scheduled lifts appear to be operating as normal.
- The Yunomine pair, Mizunashi triple, Challenge pair and Utopia pair lifts usually rested on weekdays.

The following courses either closed (or not fully available):

- Grand Prix
- Kandahar   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 9:01am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog
New snowfall: 10cm
Snow depth: --
Hello from Appi,

It’s quite foggy here this morning due to the rise in temperature but it's snowing at least and it look s like it’s going to be a great day out there. The temperatures have certainly risen overnight and it’s made our usually extra dry snow a tad bit wet.

We’re expecting cloudy skies all day with constant snowfall and a lot more to follow this week. It’s shaping up to be a very white week indeed up here and we’re looking forward to the extra snow.

Temperatures overnight will drop off the cliff down to the -8 to -10 zone which may mean icy conditions tomorrow , but that’s another day.

Enjoy the holiday weekend.


Planned lift operations (subject to change):

- APPI Gondola
- Central quad
- Central number 1 lift
- Central number 2 lift
- Central number 3 lift A
- Central number 4 lift
- Central number 5 lift
- Central number 6 lift
- Sailer gondola
- Sailer quad
- Nishimori lift

Note: The Sailer Gondola, Central Number 4 lift and Vista quad are usually rested on normal weekdays


Official snow depth:

250cm   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 9:11am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 4cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Shiga Kogen

A little (wet) snow overnight and while it had eased off earlier on, it is snowing once again now and coming down at quite a rate actually here in Hasuike as of 9:10am. A look around webcams show some varying conditions at the moment, but hopefully we will see some more snow during the day today.

It is still relatively mild - though keeping under zero - but much colder temperatures are due tomorrow, hopefully along with continue snowfall.

Limited visibility in places at the moment.


Official snow depths numbers reported by different areas of Shiga Kogen:

Please note that these numbers are the official numbers that ski resorts publish and we check and update them each morning.



Ichinose Family

Ichinose Diamond




Okushiga Kogen

Sun Valley

Takamagahara Mammoth



250cm   Read more ...

Furano Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 9:50am
Weather conditions: Foggy
New snowfall: 6cm
Snow depth: --
There is 6cm of new snow this morning but at village level it is very wet and heavy. Continuous light snow is on the forecast for today but there is nothing falling at the moment. The temperature is warm again and snow conditions are likely to be a bit heavy on the lower slopes with best conditions higher up. It is foggy with cloud rolling almost down to base and this will make visibility patchy in places and there will be flat light conditions.    Read more ...

Zao Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 10:05am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds, fog
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Zao and apologies for the missed report yesterday.

Not the reason why I had to miss a report but the queues for the Ropeway were looking pretty scary when I went past in the morning yesterday. I am hearing that there were waits of well over 1 hour for it. Yikes. That's a 3 day long weekend in peak season for you and today should be busy too.

It was a nice day and I didn't have any snow to report.

This morning it is keeping quite mild but temperatures are due to drop during the day and into tomorrow. Snow is falling and visibility is poor on parts of the mountain, just limited by base at the moment. There's some wind as well.

Hoping for more fresh snow over the next few days. Fresh snow would be good - lots of people... lots of tracks!


Lifts and course info:

- All lifts appear to be opening as scheduled
- Note: the Karamatsu pair lift usually only operates on weekends
- All areas open

Official snow depths:

- Summit area: 170cm
- Paradise area: 200cm
- Chuo area: 200cm
- Utopia area: 200cm
- Uwanodai area: 135cm
- Oomori area: 140cm


Zao Onsen forecast:

Zao Onsen 6-day snow and weather forecast

Floodlit night skiing is planned as follows:

In the Uwanodai area:
Daily until Sunday 4th March 2018
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 9th March until Sunday 18th March 2018

In the Yokokura area:
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only until Sunday 18th February 2018
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 2nd March until Sunday 11th March 2018

Night time 'light up' sightseeing ropeway is planned for the following dates:

February 2018: every day
March 2018: 1st-4th   Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Sunday 11th February 2018, 10:40am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Missed report yesterday on account of too much hiking to find decent snow. It was a waste of time down low by early afternoon as things warmed up to +6C in the valleys.

It froze over just barely last night and was a little above zero this morning but it's started snowing here and looks set to continue all week.


Ski resorts in Minakami:

Minakami Hodaigi
Minakami Kogen Fujiwara
Minakami Kogen Ski Resort
Norn Minakami
Okutone Snow Park
Tanigawadake Tenjindaira
Tanigawa Onsen White Valley


Resort Spotlights with more detail:

Norn Minakami
Okutone Snow Park


Please note that the snowfall numbers posted in this report will be observed from close to the base Tenjindaira Ropeway station - which is often much more than in the central town area of Minakami.
   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Madarao Now
12th Aug, 0:17pm
Grandeco Now
26th Jul, 8:14am
Niseko Now
25th Jul, 15:02am
Yuzawa Now
29th Jun, 17:50am
Furano Now
06th May, 9:04am
Hakuba Now
06th May, 9:02
Nozawa Onsen Now
06th May, 8:41
Shiga Kogen Now
06th May, 8:35
Myoko Now
06th May, 8:35am
Zao Now
06th May, 8:30am
Naeba Now
06th May, 8:28am
Minakami Now
06th May, 8:27am
Appi Kogen Now
06th May, 8:04
Geto Kogen Now
06th May, 8:01