Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 30th May 2020

Furano Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 7:20am
Weather conditions: Bluebird
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
We haven't had too many typical Furano winter days this season, but today is certainly one of them. It is cold this morning, currently -15c in the village and the skies are crystal clear from the ski area right across the valley to the Daisetsuzan Range. Mt Tokachi is looking beautiful bathed in the orange morning light against the blue of the sky. There is no new snow to report and only the slightest of wind. I would expect the pistes will be firm after the warm weather and now this cold snap, but should be skiing very nice and fast. Have a good day but don't be surprised if you feel the need to go and buy some new gloves at these temps.   Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 7:55am
Weather conditions: Cloud, clearing (9:15am)
New snowfall: 4cm
Snow depth: --
UPDATE AT 9:15am

I feel I should update the report - the snowfall I reported at the time of the original report eased up and right now clouds are clearing and the sun is breaking through!

** The original webcam images remain.



Good morning from Yuzawa.

The weather is acting... a little odd in our region just at the moment.

As I mentioned yesterday the snow clouds appear to be moving across Niigata Prefecture to the north of us - and giving our region something of a miss in the process. Yesterday was a windy and snow-free day here, and even after hearing that it was snowing fairly close by in Tokamachi when I made my way over there yesterday afternoon, I was still a bit surprised to see a decent amount of fresh snow on the ground over there. There was still none over here when I got back. And it was really strange hearing about snow down in Kyushu and western Japan - areas that usually hardly get any.

There is actually is a bit of fresh snow on the ground here this morning... 4cm on the roads around town to add to the report. (Just outside of Yuzawa in neighbouring Minamiuonuma remains dry).

Higher resorts are also reporting fresh. Kagura are reporting between 10-15cm of fresh snowfall; Naeba and Maiko Snow Resort are both reporting 5cm.

So it would seem that today is definitely a day when 'go high' is the best advice for better snow conditions. Lower areas could still do with a good refresh. Actually, higher areas could also do with it.

I'm not going to try and say what we'll get served up today. We are hoping snow on and off during the day and that is what local forecasts say; but they said that yesterday!

Early on it has been generally cloudy - and as I am about to post the report this morning there is good news: I am happy to report snow has started falling in higher areas. Let's hope it continues.


Images today from GALA Yuzawa, NASPA Ski Garden and Yuzawa IC exit.


Updated: Thursday 11th January 2018

** Official snow depths (where available) and resort specific information. Note that while we manually check this information each morning, sometimes official information is updated later than the time of these reports and so at times there may be an apparent delay.

Ski resorts in Yuzawa:

GALA Yuzawa
- 220cm

- 150cm

- Kagura area: 320cm
- Mitsumata area: 220cm
- Tashiro area: 270cm

Kandatsu Kogen
- 180cm

- 210cm (base)

NASPA Ski Garden
- 160cm

Yuzawa Kogen
- Top: 220cm
- Base: 160cm

Yuzawa Park
- 150cm

Yuzawa Nakazato
- 150cm


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

Ishiuchi Maruyama
- 180cm

Joetsu Kokusai
- 200cm

Maiko Snow Resort
- Top: 230cm
- Base: 130cm

Muikamachi Hakkaisan
- Closed on Wednesdays between 10th January and 14th March (!)
- 240cm   Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 7:55am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Yesterday was dust on crust and one of the worst days of the season so took a troop of people under the mountains to Kagura and found the same there.

It has snowed a little overnight at the base of Tenjin so hopefully more up top but hearing Minakami town got the same amount as here which often indicates a Pacific dominant weather system and likely another bust of a day.

It is actually snowing lightly now at the base of Tenjin but looking down valley to the town I see blue skies so my fingers are firmly crossed but I have strong suspicions it ain't going to be great.

The Tenjin forecast is for light snow over the next four days, Minakami town forecast is for clear weather. We need a good reset so hopefully its forthcoming!


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 ...

Myoko Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:09am
Weather conditions: Overcast
New snowfall: 7cm
Snow depth: --
Soft on freezing slush. It’s getting a little nicer on the snow surface; some people were reporting great powder on top of the icy remains of the rain, especially around Suginohara, and not too high up. The trees are white again, and it looks like there was more than the 7 cm that we got with a poke of the stick in the study plot this morning.

Light snow began to fall again around 7am, so hopefully the reset will continue.

The ski areas should be really good, though! Nice and cold again, with a little fresh continuing to season the slopes...


Akakura Kanko:
240 cm, -6°

Akakura Onsen:
280cm, -6°

Ikenotaira Onsen:
225cm, -4°

Myoko Suginohara:
190cm, -6° (top)

Seki Onsen:
290 cm, -5° (old report; they went back two days….)

Myoko Ski Park:
190 cm, -1°

Kyukamura RunRun:
240 cm, 0° (yesterday’s report)

Tangram Ski Circus:
190 cm, -1°

Madarao Kogen:
180 cm, -4° (yesterday’s report)

Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:25am
Weather conditions: Some cloud, blue skies
New snowfall: 10cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from my Hirafu base.

I have a good 10cm of fresh snowfall to report this morning. It's a cold morning and the snow delivered to my door looks to be suitably lovely dry quality. The kind we like!

It should be a really nice morning actually as there is a mix of cloud, blue sky and sunshine at the start of the day.

And happily the wind seems to have calmed down.


Some local forecasts are showing the chance of some sunshine in the day tomorrow as well, though there's regular snowfall sprinkled across the forecast into early next week as well. So perhaps we can expect modest regular top-ups?

I'm not wishing my days away though; I think I am going to go out and sample the goods this morning. Hope to speak to a few of you on the lifts!


Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6am: -7, 10cm snowfall, calm. Moiwa800m: -11.9℃, 15cm snowfall, calm. Annupuri 1150m: -12℃, 20cm snowfall with snowdrift development. Hirafu 1250m: -15℃, 15cm snowfall, SW10m/s, spots of snowdrifts. Coastal data: Benkei cape SW3m/s, Kamui cape SSW20m/s, 1001hPa, 2.2m waves.

The general weather is calm under a low pressure zone, except some area closer to the center of the Low pressure such as Kamui cape near the Sea of Japan. The snowdrift development has settled during the night and snowdrifts are stabilizing. No notable weakness has been observed in the snowpack during the morning pressure test. The general avalanche risk is low. All gates are scheduled to open from the morning. Listen to the skip patrol’s instructions and prepare yourself to the backcountry. The snow is in excellent condition. Hazards of slides from deeper layers are still present, do not stimulate knolls and cornices and do not stay put at the bottom of the valleys.

The ski patrol stopped some people as they tried to skin up from closed Gate 6 in Moiwa. Gates are being closed for good reasons and Niseko Rules does not allow anyone going out of bounds when gates are closed. The Niseko Rules are implemented for the safety and freedom of all resort users. Touring safely in bad weather conditions require considerable experience, knowledge and commitment. The gates are within the resort and anyone using the resort facility must abide by the resort’s regulations, which are the Niseko Rules. Have a nice day.


Thursday 11th January 2018

Resort specific information (operations subject to change):

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Niseko HANAZONO Resort

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts are generally operating
- 'Early Morning' services from 8:00am until 8:20am (Ace Number 2 Center Four quad lift). Until 28th January. 500 yen special ticket required.

Official snow depth:
- Top: 360cm
- Base: 160cm

Niseko Annupuri Kokusai

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts are generally operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 270cm
- Base: 150cm

Niseko Village

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts except Country Road Chair are generally operating
- 'Early Gondola' service from 7:30am until 8:30am (Niseko Gondola). January 13th-14th, 20th-21st, 27th-28th; February 3rd-4th. 1,400 yen special ticket required.

Official snow depth:
- Top: 260cm
- Base: 160cm


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, Banzai Chair   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:28am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds...
New snowfall: 4cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Nozawa, and nature is serving up some rather confusing weather conditions right now. And perhaps not just in this region - was that heavy (for them) snow down on the southern island of Kyushu on the news last night?!

I'm not seeing any reported snowfall numbers from Nozawa Onsen resort this morning other than 3cm at Nagasaka, but I can clearly see that the trees on the upper areas have snow on them and they didn't yesterday so there's definitely some fresh snow up there. There's a little bit down here too now as snow is currently falling and I am measuring 4cm.

Let's hope it continues.

I'll update you again tomorrow. Keep an eye on the forecast; which may or may not be correct!


Thursday 11th January 2018

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

- Yamabiko (1407m): -cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): -cm
- Hikage (660m): -cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 3cm
- Karasawa (563m): -cm

Official snow depth numbers:

- Yamabiko (1407m): 245cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 180cm
- Hikage (660m): 140cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 135cm
- Karasawa (563m): 120cm

Lifts operations:

- All scheduled lifts should be open as normal

All courses open except the following:

- Challenge 39
- Grand Prix
- Mukobayashi
- Kandahar East   Read more ...

Grandeco Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:28am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 50cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from a very snowy Grandeco.

It was snowing heavily through the whole day yesterday and it is still falling this morning. There's a good 50cm of fresh snow at base to report.

It is a light soft snow that is fun to dive into. As can be seen in the images today (below).

Some lifts won’t be able to open on time because of the heavy snowfall as it is taking time to prepare the platform. But don’t worry, all lifts and gondola will be opening today and the wind is gentle.

Visibility is a little poor because of the snowfall but today will be a great day to enjoy large amounts of fresh snow!


Lifts operating:

- All lifts operating

Courses open:

- All courses open

Official snow depth:
- 240cm

- Grandeco snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:35am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 7cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Madarao.

Complicated weather at the moment it would seem and I have 7cm to report since yesterday. Better than none but not as much as I was hoping for. It has started snowing again this morning so hopefully there will be more today and over the next few days.

The Powder Wave I, River Line and Crystal Bowl tree run areas won't be open today due to the current conditions. Hopefully they will get to re-open again with a good refresh.

The Madarao Fire Festival is on Saturday. Expect (controlled!) fire, torch lit skiing display, food, drink and fireworks.


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 II
Free Ride Park
Powder Theater
Adventure Aisle

Kids Park
Snow Mobile Land

Planned nighta operations this season:

11th February 2018
Every Saturday between 4th January and 24th March 2018   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:42am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 18cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Hakuba.

Yesterday it was all about the snow with the wind giving us a breather to just enjoy the fresh out there.

With more snow overnight, here's the fresh snowfall headlines.

Hakuba Happo-one: 50cm (top of Gondola)
Hakuba Cortina: 15-20cm (base); 20-25cm (top)
Hakuba Goryu: 15-25cm
Hakuba 47: up to 20cm (maybe up to 30cm)

Way to go Happo-one! I like it when a place reports an impressive 50cm of snow. That is up by their upper gondola station. I feel the need to check that out myself. ;)

Good numbers around the other resorts too so conditions should be good this morning.

The forecast continues to be good too with the snow clouds likely to continue being over our lovely Hakuba and delivering through Saturday.

Visibility looks limited out on many slopes this morning. Fresh powder and limited visibility. Difficult to not be really excited about it, but an extra need to be careful whilst having all that fun.

Enjoy yourself and take care.


Ski resort information on Thursday 11th January 2018 (at time of writing):

Hakuba Happo-one

Operating lifts:
- Some top lifts look like they are on hold at the start of the day

Courses open:
- All course are now open (as long as the lifts are moving!)

Official snow depth:
- Kurobishi: 320cm
- Usagidaira: 210cm
- Lower: 105cm


Hakuba Goryu

Operating lifts:
- All lifts operating as planned (Alps Number 2 and 4 lifts usually operate on weekends only)

Courses open:
- All courses are open

Official snow depth:
- Top: 305cm
- Toomi: 120cm
- Iimori: 85cm


Hakuba 47

Operating lifts:
- All lifts operating as planned (Line D usually operates only when the Gondola is closed)

Courses open:
- All courses available

Official snow depth:
- Top: 290cm
- Base: 105cm


Tsugaike Kogen

Operating lifts:
- Most lifts operating as planned - some delayed due to snow removal

Courses open:
- All course areas are open apart from some parts of Sawa-one and Kane-no-naru-oka Number 2

Official snow depth:
- Tsuga-no-mori: 270cm
- Han-no-ki: 265cm
- Maruyama: 110cm
- Shirakaba: 240cm
- Champion: 140cm
- Oya-no-hara: 130cm
- Kane-no-naru-oka: 130cm


Hakuba Cortina

Operating lifts:
- All lifts are operating

Courses open:
- All courses should be opening

Official snow depth:
- Top: 260cm
- Base: 180cm


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field

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

Official snow depth:
- Top: 170cm
- Base: 80cm


Hakuba Norikura Onsen

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Alps Number 7 are operating

Official snow depth:
- 180cm


Hakuba Valley Kashimayari

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Number 8 and 10 are operating

Official snow depth:
- 145cm


Hakuba Sanosaka

Operating lifts:
- All three lifts are operating

Official snow depth:
- 105cm


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 13th, 20th, 27th January; 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 ...

Geto Kogen Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:57am
Weather conditions: Mostly sunny
New snowfall: 15cm
Snow depth: --
Well, its a cracker of a day out there today I can tell you that much for free. Since yesterday’s heavy snow into this morning we’ve seen 12cm hit the slopes, and today we’ve got some absolutely unreal conditions.

Expecting tops of -5C with some very light winds to cool it down a little more, and scattered cloud cover giving us some incredible light to work with. The vis, therefore is flawless. Sunny skies mixed with a fresh pow day? I really have to finish writing this report soon so I can get out there.

Not much else to say except enjoy — plenty of areas to find to make your own tracks, and some beautifully slick groomed runs to get those carves in on.


Zones open include Summit, Rabbit, Beech & Stream. At this stage Shooter will remain closed until the main gondola is open.

News on Main Gondola:

At this time unfortunately the Main Gondola (Gondola 1) is closed for repair. The resort is working on the repairs, but it will require the next few weeks until it is back in operation. They estimate late January, early February for it to be back in action.


Official snow depths:

Top: 325cm
Base: 245cm

Nighta skiing operations are planned at Geto Kogen on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until 25th February 2018.
   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 8:59am
Weather conditions: Sun and Cloud
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Naeba! It's a bright and crisp morning up here and the sun is shining! We have been gifted 5cm of fresh snow overnight, which will freshened up the crusty pistes from yesterday nicely. However, there is a slight sense of disappointment and 'dust on crust' in the air... perhaps we have all already been spoiled this season by the fantastic snow we received throughout December!

There are a few low but light clouds clinging on to the mountains this morning, but it seems as though the sun will take care of those before lunchtime. The forecast suggests that we should expect light snow throughout today, however I'm not sure any moisture-bearing clouds will make it as far as the Mikuni valley during the daytime.

You may notice that the piste under Prince Gondola No. 2 has been closed for a couple of days now. This is because of the fabulous glide cracks which have opened up under the gondola during that warm spell earlier this week. As you may know, once these have formed there isn't much anyone can do to manage them, meaning this piste may stay closed for sometime. Fortunately, however, temperatures are expected to remain firmly below 0°C for the next few days, giving the snowpack a chance to reconsolidate and hopefully stabilize somewhat.

The forecast looking forwards still determinedly suggests snow through until as far as Sunday afternoon, however it doesn't seem as though there will be much accumulation. Temperatures will consistently remain below 0°C at the base of Naeba until after the weekend, meaning that any moisture which does get into the valley will fall as snow. The wind is forecast to remain light throughout the week.

Hareta!   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 9:09am
Weather conditions: Cloud, blue sky, sunshine
New snowfall: 6cm
Snow depth: --
Sunshine this morning here in Shiga Kogen.

Hold on.. sunshine?! Weird. Happily I am also able to report 6cm of snow but for the moment the clouds have cleared and the sun is out.

It's one of those periods when places in western Japan get snow and we don't get much. There's probably a name for that (one more technical than 'odd'!) but I don't know it.

Still, snow on and off is there on the forecasts over the next few days so perhaps things will keep on changing with speed.

All very interesting. (Though heavy snowfall is more interesting!)


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



170cm   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 10:07am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 22cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Zao.

Light snow falling as I write the report this morning and over 20cm to report as it continues to build up. Renewed conditions should be good again today, though visibility is limited again.

Hopefully more snow through the day today and tonight too.

It is expected to ease off somewhat by tomorrow.


Lifts and course info:

- All lifts operating at time of report apart from Karamatsu pair (closed on weekdays) and Zao Paradise Number 3 lift
- All areas open

Official snow depths:

- Summit area: 135cm
- Paradise area: 150cm
- Chuo area: 150cm
- Utopia area: 165cm
- Uwanodai area: 90cm
- Oomori area: 90cm


Zao Onsen forecast:

Zao Onsen 6-day snow and weather forecast

Floodlit night skiing for the 2017-2018 season 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:
Daily until today
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 12th January 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:

January 2018: 13th-14th, 20th-21st, 27th-31st
February 2018: every day
March 2018: 1st-4th   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Thursday 11th January 2018, 10:08am
Weather conditions: Mostly clear skies
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Appi,

It is a relatively clear and cold morning here at Appi. The forecast for snow yesterday and today was dreadfully wrong unfortunately. The 30+cm that we were supposed to receive overnight must have visited a different resort entirely.

The next few days will hopefully give us 10-20cm so we’ve got our fingers crossed for that. Stable temperatures in the -6 to -13 zone until late Sunday when it will warm up a few degrees. Light winds are also forecast into the start of next week.

As far as the open runs go no real change to speak of. The second quad and vista gondola are closed until Saturday.

Enjoy the mountain and take an extra layer up with you. It may be sunny at times but it’s chilly at the summit.


Planned lift operations on Monday 8th January 2018 (subject to change):

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

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


Official snow depth:

190cm   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Shiga Kogen Now
30th May, 10:10
Geto Kogen Now
06th May, 15:13pm
Appi Kogen Now
23rd Apr, 17:30
Furano Now
22nd Apr, 10:12am
Madarao Now
20th Apr, 9:52am
Zao Now
20th Apr, 9:52am
Nozawa Onsen Now
20th Apr, 9:51am
Niseko Now
20th Apr, 9:50am
Naeba Now
20th Apr, 9:49am
Myoko Now
20th Apr, 9:48am
Minakami Now
20th Apr, 9:47am
Hakuba Now
20th Apr, 9:40am
Aizu Bandai Now
20th Apr, 9:38am
Yuzawa Now
20th Apr, 9:37am
Grandeco Now
06th Dec, 14:16am