Snow and weather reports posted on Friday 17th April 2020
Tuesday 16th April 2019, 7:49am
Clear and sunny
Good morning from Yuzawa.
It was rather windy yesterday but the only disruption to planned operations (as far as I could tell) was the top Number 5 romance lift at Kagura which was stopped because of the wind.
This morning things seem to be calmer and we have clear blue skies from early on. It is going to be a fine day warming up to around 16C in town. Similarly fine weather is forecast for tomorrow - just warmer as temps approach/reach 20C.
We are now in the last week of the ski season for the Kandatsu Kogen resort which is open until Sunday 21st April.
Beyond that GALA Yuzawa and all of Kagura will be open until Monday 6th May, and then from the 7th May just the main Kagura area of that resort will remain open until their planned closing date of Sunday 26th May.
These Yuzawa Now daily reports will continue until Monday 6th May and after that we plan to post a few updates until Kagura closes.
Photos from GALA Yuzawa and the now closed Ishiuchi Maruyama.
As you can see, still excellent snow cover up at GALA.
The last remaining snow around town areas will quickly be disappearing in the warmth of the next few days.
Updated: Tuesday 16th April 2019
GALA Yuzawa - Official snow depth: 240cm - The Central Area and part of the Northern Area of GALA Yuzawa remain open - The Gondola, Barouche quad, Phaeton pair, Coach pair and Victoria quad lifts are operating - The downhill Falcon course is closed for the season - take the Gondola down - GALA Yuzawa plans to be open until Monday 6th May
Kagura - Official snow depth: 260cm (Kagura); 230cm (Tashiro); 200cm (Mitsumata) - Kagura remains almost fully open - Tashiro Ropeway plans to be open until Monday 6th May - Kagura via Mitsumata Ropeway plans to be open until Sunday 26th May
Kandatsu Kogen - Official snow depth: 155cm - Kandatsu remains mostly open - The Tozawa pair, Onaka quad and Ikenodaira quad lifts are operating - Kandatsu Kogen plans to be open until Sunday 21st April
All other ski resorts in the Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma region are now closed for the season Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Tuesday 16th April 2019, 7:57am
Hello from Nozawa.
The sun is out and it is going to be a lovely and quite warm spring day here, with similar kind of weather due tomorrow and Thursday too. Temperatures at base may be nudging towards 20C by Thursday; more like mid teens is forecast for today.
A fine day to be out and about and on the mountain. Not many people around now as well.
Golden Week is approaching and it's a mega Golden Week this year with 10 days holiday for lots of people. So expect more people to be around for those last 10 days of the season up until Monday 6th May.
Tuesday 16th April 2019
Fresh snowfall reported by the ski resort (since yesterday morning):
- Yamabiko (1407m): 0cm - Uenotaira (1230m): 0cm - Hikage (660m): no longer reporting - Nagasaka (615m): no longer reporting - Karasawa (563m): no longer reporting
Official snow depth numbers (reported by resort):
- Yamabiko (1407m): 280cm - Uenotaira (1230m): 205cm - Hikage (660m): no longer reporting - Nagasaka (615m): no longer reporting - Karasawa (563m): no longer reporting
The following lifts are normally operating:
- Nagasaka Gondola (8:10am - 3:30pm; last one down 3:30pm) - Yamabiko Four (8:30am - 3:20pm) - Yamabiko Number 2 Four (8:25am - 3:30pm)
The following courses are open:
- Yamabiko B - Yamabiko C - Yamabiko D - Yamabiko E - Kokenashi - Uenotaira - Paradise
The Utopia A, Challenge, Mizunashi, Ushikubi, Rinkan, Bunabayashi and Kumataka courses are also available for coming down the mountain. Other courses now closed.
The Uenotaira Cross country course (3km) and Snow Park are both open.
The village shuttle bus will be operating from 27th April until 6th May for Golden Week.
Parking is now free every day.
Spring season cheaper lift tickets are now in effect (3700 yen adult one day; 2700 yen adult half day).
All subject to change of course due to conditions.
Yesterday ended up being a generally cloudy day, along with some blowy wind which affected lift operations.
But what a beautiful start to the morning today. The sun is out and there are almost totally clear blue skies - just a bit of white cloud in a few isolated areas.
It is rather mild too. But the official info is showing that the top lift at Hirafu is on hold at the start of the day due to wind again.
It was on the national news last night about how the temperatures in parts of Hokkaido over the next day or so will be 'June-like' warmth, rising above 20C in places. It won't be that warm over here in Kutchan and Niseko of course, but it may well get up to between 15-20C tomorrow. Lower teens today?
Remember the sunscreen and appropriate goggles!
Someone sent in a question, asking... why do we continue with the Niseko Now (and other) reports once we get into April?
Well. It's still ski season, right?
Up until 6th May.
Typo yesterday: the course at Niseko Annupuri is of course called 'Shirakaba' (as in the beautiful tree), rather than my somewhat amusing 'Shirabaka' typo mistake.
My apologies for being baka!
Ski resort operation information: Tuesday 16th April 2019 Subject to change due to weather conditions
Niseko Village and Niseko HANAZONO areas are now closed for the 2018-2019 season Read more ...
Tuesday 16th April 2019, 8:40am
Clear and sunny
Good morning from Hakuba.
Yesterday wind did mess around with lift operations around Hakuba. The Gondola and upper lifts at Happo were closed due to strong winds with just the Nakiyama Number 3 triple lift operating, Tsugaike was closed and the top lifts at 47/Goryu were also closed with just base areas of both of those keeping open.
Thankfully this morning things appear to be calmer and it appears that resorts are opening as planned - though having said that, it would seem that the top lifts at Tsugaike are on hold.
It is sunny with blue skies all around and while it has been quite chilly early morning, it is going to be warming up as expected over the next three days or so.
Early start recommended before the sun gets to the snow!
I have added 'operating lifts' information for each of the ski resorts (below). I will be checking that information each morning and updating as necessary. Of course, do keep in mind that things might change in a day due to weather etc. Will do my best to provide the latest info at time of the reports.
Ski resort information on Tuesday 16th April 2019: The below info is checked manually each morning and believed to be correct at time of report.
Official snow depth (as reported by resort): - Kurobishi: 290cm - Usagidaira: 190cm - Nakiyama: 25cm
Notes: - Riesen Grat, Usagidaira, Kurobishi, Panorama, Skyline, Riesen Slalom and Nakiyama South Side areas remain open - Base areas are closed apart from Nakiyama South Side - Hakuba Happo-one plans to be open until Monday 6th May
Operating lifts (planned): - Grat quad - Alpen quad - Riesen quad - Nakiyama Number 3 triple - ADAM Gondola - Panorama pair - Kurobishi Number 2 quad - Skyline Number 2 pair
Official snow depth (as reported by resort): - Top: 260cm - Toomi: -cm - Iimori: -cm
Notes: - Top areas remain open - Alps Number 2/4 should be operating for Golden Week (27th Apr - 6th May) - You can still ride back down to base - Iimori and Toomi base area lifts are now closed - Hakuba Goryu plans to be open until Monday 6th May
Operating lifts (planned): - Goryu Telecabin (Gondola) - Alps Number 1 pair - Alps Number 2 pair
Official snow depth (as reported by resort): - Tsuga-no-mori: 265cm - Han-no-ki: 240cm - Oya-no-hara: 35cm - Others: -cm
Notes: - Tsuga-no-mori, Han-kou, Han-no-ki and Karamatsu course areas remain open - Other course areas are now closed - You can still ride back down to Gondola base - Tsugaike Kogen plans to be open until Monday 6th May
Operating lifts (planned): - EVE Gondola - Tsuga Number 2 pair lift (on hold at the start of the day) - Han-no-ki pair lift (on hold at the start of the day) - Tsugaike Ropeway (on hold at the start of the day) Read more ...