Planned closing dates of lifts at Zao Onsen (subject to change due to snow conditions)
Open daily until Thursday 5th May: Chuo Number 1 pair lift AB Chuo Number 2 pair lift AB (* Sat/Sun and holidays only) Katakai triple lift (* Sat/Sun and holidays only) Paradise pair AB lift (* Sat/Sun and holidays only) Utopia Number 2 pair lift
Also open only on Saturdays and holidays until Thursday 5th May: Chuo Number 2 pair lift AB Katakai triple lift Paradise pair AB lift
The Zao Ropeway, Sky Cable gondola and Chuo Ropeway are all open throughout the year (apart from specific maintenance periods)
Lifts not mentioned in the above list have closed for the season. Read more ...
Friday 15th April 2016, 8:23am
Hello and good morning from Yuzawa.
Some rain lingering this morning but it's due to be a fine day with sunshine though temperatures not getting much higher than about 10 degrees - which is what it is now.
There are some strong winds up on the mountainsides though this morning. While GALA Yuzawa does not seem to be affected (and open as planned), Kagura is affected - open from the Mitsumata Ropeway to Kagura Number 1 lift. The Tashiro area is closed.
Sunshine and warmer conditions are forecast for tomorrow, with temperatures rising to maybe around 20 degrees. There should be less wind as well and so expect both Kagura and GALA Yuzawa to be open as normal.
Resorts that remain open in Yuzawa on Friday 15th April 2016):
GALA Yuzawa GALA Yuzawa resort plans to be open until Sunday 8th May. Two (Edelweiss and Melody) of the six courses in the Central Area, the 'playing in the snow area', and the Broadway course in the Northern Area currently remain open. The downhill Falcon course back to the Cowabunga base is now closed. Official snow depth: 70cm
Kagura The Tashiro Ropeway plans to be open until 8th May. The Kagura area via Mitsumata Ropeway plans to be open until 29th May. Most courses remain open apart from the Gondola east course The downhill course to Mitsumata car park is now closed. Official snow depth: Kagura area - 190cm Tashiro area - 160cm Mitsumata area - 90cm
Resorts that are not listed below are now closed for the season.
Yesterday wasn't the nicest of mornings... and neither is this morning.
It's snowing higher up apparently, but it's wet and rainy here at base. What's more there's some strong winds that are affecting lifts so even if you wanted to get out there's very limited choice. It's a day for an onsen or a trip to somewhere with shops for many I think.
Tomorrow should at least be less windy but while sun is on some forecasts, rain clouds may also not be too far away (but lets hope they are).
Resort specific lift opening news at time of posting:
Resort operations - subject to change due to snow and weather conditions
Niseko Grand Hirafu resort area lift operations: Ace Family Pair - until 17th April Ace Number 2 Center Four Quad Ace Number 3 Pair Ace Number 4 Pair
The resort is going to be 'upgrading' the King Number 3 triple lift in time for next season - as part of this work the Hirafu Gondola, King Number 3 and 4 lifts have all now closed for the season. Niseko Grand Hirafu plans to remain open until Thursday 5th May.
Niseko Annupuri plans to be open until Thursday 5th May with the Gondola, Jumbo 1 and Jumbo 4 lifts operating.
Niseko Village is currently closed but plans to be open again for Golden Week from Friday 29th April until Thursday 5th May.
What are you going to be doing today then? There's no ski lifts moving this morning as far as I can tell due to strong winds up there and so it has to be something other than skiing or snowboarding. Doesn't look like there's much chance of that changing either...
Wind aside it's sunny and a fine morning!
More sun is expected tomorrow and more importantly, less wind, so at least places should be open as planned. Some more rain might be falling before/during Sunday as well, so if I were choosing one day over the weekend it would be Saturday.
Resort news as of 8:50am on Friday 15th April 2016 (where available, all subject to change due to weather conditions)
Hakuba 47: *** Closed this morning due to adverse weather conditions *** Most courses at Hakuba 47 remain open. The lower part of R1 course is closed - but all courses are still available top to bottom. Beginners are recommended to use the Gondola to get back to base. The Tree Riding Zone is now closed for the season. Official snow depth: Upper: 85cm Base: 30cm
Hakuba Goryu: *** Closed this morning due to adverse weather conditions *** The top area of Goryu - Panorama, Grand Prix and Super courses - remain open. The lower main Toomi and Iimori areas are now closed. Get the Gondola back down to base. Official snow depth Alps: 166cm Toomi: -cm Iimori: -cm
Hakuba Happo-one: *** Closed this morning due to adverse weather conditions *** The lower areas of the resort - apart from part of Nakiyama South - are now closed. Riesen Slalom Course and the lower Nakiyama South courses are now closed, there is no longer any courses open back down to base. Upper Riesen Grat Course, Usagidaira, Kurobishi, Skyline and Panorama course areas remain open. Official snow depth: Usagidaira: 95cm Nakiyama: -cm
Tsugaike Kogen: *** Closed this morning due to adverse weather conditions *** The top Tsuga-no-mori and Upper Han-no-ki areas remain open. All other courses are now closed. The top Tsugaike Ropeway is open for spring season (note: extra charge required). Official snow depth: Tsuga-no-mori: 145cm Maruyama: -cm Kane-no-naru-oka: -cm
Presently we have strong NW winds and the occasional flurry of snow. The temperature at base is 3 degrees.
Unfortunately the ropeway is not operational today due to high winds. The Romance lift is operating.
There is still some snow on the forecast in the coming week for higher elevations though there is a good chance it will be falling as rain at base. Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Friday 15th April 2016, 13:38pm
It hasn't been so warm here today even with the sun out. It has been windy though.
Tomorrow will also be sunny but warmer and less windy. Should be a fine day actually, though skiable area is getting less now with lots of patches showing through down to Paraside now. Cover on Uenotaira and Yamabiko - while relatively thin - is still good and the resort are putting a lot of effort into trying to keep things going smoothly. There's still fun to be had out there.
Some rain is expected around Sunday according to the forecasts.
Official info at time of writing on Friday 15th April 2016 (subject to change):