Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 30th May 2020

Yuzawa Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 7:52am
Weather conditions: Clear blue skies for now
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Yuzawa.

Well, yesterday was a lovely spring day. Hold on, spring!? Yes, the sun was out and it warmed up. The local news last night said that temperatures rose to 8C in Yuzawa. For a first hand report, the temperature reading by the side of Route 17 in Ishiuchi said 11C as of 2pm.

I was hearing reports ranging from 'spring snow conditions' to 'pretty decent up at Kagura' yesterday... as you might expect, we're not going to get away with that warmth not affecting the snow.

This morning is again starting with sunshine and clear skies over Yuzawa and we are again expecting temperatures to approach double digits, and perhaps get slightly higher. We're also expecting some rain by lunchtime and potentially some strong wind blowing about, and then looking at a quick drop in temperatures by this evening. And eventually rain turning to snow. All sounds very complicated doesn't it?

The main thing today is to probably get out for first tracks to enjoy the better early morning snow conditions and before the weather turns.

Hopefully, there might be some fresh snow to play with tomorrow morning. Let's hope the temperature drops quickly and enough later on today.


Official snow depth information as of Friday 17th February 2017

GALA Yuzawa
Upper part of $2,600,000 closed today due to avalanche danger.
Official snow depth: 410cm

Ishiuchi Maruyama
Official snow depth: 300cm

Official snow depth: 240cm

Joetsu Kokusai
Official snow depth: 300cm

Official snow depth:
Kagura - 360cm
Mitsumata - 310cm
Tashiro - 330cm

Kandatsu Kogen
Official snow depth: 330cm

Maiko Snow Resort
Official snow depth:
Upper - 330cm
Base - 180cm

Muikamachi Hakkaisan
Official snow depth: 380cm

Official snow depth: 300cm

NASPA Ski Garden
Official snow depth: 290cm

Yuzawa Kogen
Official snow depth:
Top - 330cm
Base - 240cm

Yuzawa Park
Official snow depth: 240cm

Yuzawa Nakazato
Official snow depth: 215cm


'Nighta' (floodlit night operations)

Below are details of the planned 'nighta' operations at ski and snowboards resorts around Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma this season.
This information is subject to change due to snow and weather conditions.
*** Please note that this section will not be updated every day.

Ishiuchi Maruyama
Daily until 19th March 2017.
Nighta is from 5pm until 8:50pm.
The Chuo Number 1, Chuo Number 2 and Kanko Number 3 Express lifts are open daily.
The Kanko Number 1 Express lift, Hatsukaishi Entrance lift and Hatsukaishi Number 2 pair lifts are also open on weekends and holidays.

Daily until 20th March 2017.
Nighta is from 5pm until 9pm on Saturdays and until 8pm on weekdays and Sundays.
The Main course, Grand course and West courses are open during nighta.

Joetsu Kokusai
Daily until 20th March 2017.
Nighta is from 5pm until 9pm.
The area in front of the main base hotel is open for nighta.

Kandatsu Kogen
'Hobo All Night' ('Almost All Night') is on Fridays, Saturdays and nights before holidays until 1st April 2017.
The nighta opening times on those days is from 6pm until 4am the following morning.

Maiko Snow Resort
Daily until 19th March 2017.
Nighta is from 4pm until 8pm.
The Maiko center quad lift on the Maiko Side of the resort operates for nighta.

Daily until 26th March 2017.
Nighta is from 4pm until 8:30pm.

NASPA Ski Garden
'Thanks' (extended) opening on Saturdays in January and February.
On those days the Number 1 lift is open until 6pm.

Yuzawa Nakazato
Every Saturday until 11th March 2017.
Nighta is from 5pm until 8:30pm.
The Number 2 pair lift operates during nighta.   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 8:03am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fine - for now!
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Hello from Madarao.

As expected it was a mild day yesterday and it felt very spring-like. Lovely weather, just a bit too warm for where we want things to be in mid February. Happily, after today things should be getting colder once again and more winter-like.

Going to be interesting to see how today develops and if we do get any rain/snow. Fingers crossed for some fresh snowfall to report tomorrow morning.


Operating status for the day at Madarao Kogen (at time of report):

- 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
- Moving walkway
- Kids Park
- Free Ride Park

- Powder Wave I
- Powder Wave II
- River Line
- Powder Theater
- Adventure Aisle
- Crystal Bowl
- Ninja
- Sawa
- Rabbit
- Kamoshika
- Bear

- Nighta at Madarao Kogen is every Saturday until 25th March (and also on 19th March)

Official snow depth:

- 300cm   Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 8:30am
Weather conditions: Clear
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Blue bird here yesterday and today and its the first sun we've seen in weeks so a welcome change, but things really heated up yesterday afternoon with temps approaching double digits up at 1300m.

Looks like the same weather this morning though the forecast is for precipitation to arrive imminently. No sign of it at present.

Going out further tonight it looks like we get some decent snow and hopefully not too much. Saturday night is looking like big snow so if that eventuates, Sunday is likely to be Hodaigi or Okutone.


Fresh snowfall:

0cm Tenjin
0cm Hodaigi
0cm Okutone

Temps at 8am

Official snow depth:

410cm Tenjin
240cm Hodaigi
250cm Okutone


Resorts in Minakami (forecasts available from each page):

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


Please note that the fresh snowfall number being reported on this report is taken from the ‘base area’ of Tenjindaira - which is just by the top station of the Ropeway at that resort. Other snowfall numbers and commentary will be mentioned within each report when available.   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog, light wet snow
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning everyone.

OK here's what I have to report.

Heavy rain.

Oh dear!

But don't worry, the rain was while most of us were probably sleeping (it woke me up), and it has been turning into snow. There's a thin layer of snow dusting on my car outside now and it is snowing.


It is actually forecast to be relatively mild during the day today with temperatures dropping by this evening and tomorrow should be much colder. Forecasts haven't really been spot on of late, but they tell us to expect snowfall through the weekend and into early next week - and possibly heavy at times. With wind joining in on the action too.

Poor visibility outside right now and it looks like the mountain is covered in fog. Take care out there.

So is this the start of the storm that we are hoping for? Come on Nature - give us the best you got!


If I have time today I'll be preparing a few answers to questions that have been sent in. If you have any burning questions about these reports, send them in to SnowJapan and I might get round to answering them. Thanks.


Niseko Avalanche Report:

Mountain base: +1°, 3cm wet snow. Moiwa 800m: -1.1°, SW7m/s, 5cm new snow, snowdrift development, poor visibility. Annupuri 1150m, -2°, W13m/s, 5-10cm new snow, poor visibility. Hirafu 1250m, -3°, poor visibility, no new snow. Coastal data: Kamui Cape:WSW6m/s, 1006hPa, wave 1.5m, Benkei Cape: NW10m/s.

New slabs formed from inflow of warm air and southerly wind are fracturing easily on the 14 Feb layer. Be careful above 800m elevation around cornices and knolls on SE slopes. As the low pressure system passes westerly winds are expect to become stronger and the avalanche risk will dramatically increase. Below 800m elevation, cliff areas, under lift lines, and other steep areas heavy avalanches are likely to occur. Visibility is bad.

Most gates are expected to be closed. Don't not duck ropes to try and ride of the course. To many people are entering strictly off limits area Yu no sawa. This is completely unacceptable, not to mention the dangers to you and other riders. The weather is expected to cool off and deteriorate today and tomorrow. Avalanches are a natural occurrence and only become accidents when people are involved. Have a good day.


Resort specific opening news at time of writing (subject to change during the day):

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Niseko HANAZONO Resort
Niseko Village
Niseko Annupuri
All four resorts appear to be opening as planned this morning. Changeable conditions forecast for the day though.


Official resort snow depths as of Friday 17th February 2017:

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Hanazono
Top - 300cm
Base - 115cm

Niseko Village
Top - 280cm
Base - 140cm

Niseko Annupuri
Top - 315cm
Base - 140cm


Night skiing is planned until Monday 20th March 2017 at the Niseko Annupuri, Niseko Grand Hirafu and Niseko Village resort areas. There is no nighta in the Hanazono area.   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 8:32am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fine. Changeable conditions ahead.
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Nozawa.

After the fine weather of yesterday and almost spring-like conditions, this morning there is more cloud now and rain moving into snow later on when it gets colder looks like what we have ahead of us. We're hoping that come tomorrow morning I'll have some fresh snow on the ground to report.

It looks like stronger winds forecast for the day on the mountain and the resort have announced that a bunch of top lifts will be closed for the day - Nagasaka Gondola, Yamabiko quads, Skyline connecting pair and Uenotaira quad. That means that the courses up there won't be available for today.

All other lifts appear to be opening as planned at the start of the day.


Friday 17th February 2017

Fresh snow reported by resort since yesterday morning:
- Yamabiko: 0cm
- Uenotaira: 0cm
- Hikage: 0cm
- Nagasaka: 0cm
- Karasawa: 0cm

Official snow depths:
- Yamabiko: 385cm
- Uenotaira: 295cm
- Hikage: 210cm
- Nagasaka: 200cm
- Karasawa: 160cm

Lifts operations:
- All lifts operating except
- Nagasaka Gondola, Yamabiko quads, Uenotaira quad and Skyline connecting (wind conditions)
- Yunomine pair (usually closed on weekdays)
- Mizunashi triple (usually closed on weekdays)
- Challenge pair (usually closed on weekdays)
- Utopia pair (usually closed on weekdays)

Courses not open today are:
- Challenge 39
- Kandahar East
- Grand Prix
- Note top lifts closed and so those courses not available   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 8:39am
Weather conditions: Rain
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Morning all from here in Hakuba.

Yesterday was a beauty from the start to the end of the day. It got warmer than we would like of course, but still, the (spring-like) weather was fantastic.

We could be getting back to some fresh snow now though, so what's up for today?

Unfortunately it has started raining. And it looks like it is raining higher up on the slopes too. That's not totally unexpected of course and we are expecting temperatures again to rise to around 8C in the village later today.

It should get colder later on in the day today though with snow expected overnight. Just how much - different forecasts say different things. So we'll just have to wait and see how the next 24 hours develops...


Resort news as of 8:30am on Friday 17th February 2017:

All information as available and subject to change during the day due to weather and snow conditions.

Hakuba 47:
Hakuba 47 is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall this morning.
The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning.
Official snow depth
Upper: 270cm
Base: 150cm

Hakuba Goryu:
Hakuba Goryu is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall.
The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning.
Official snow depth
Alps: 335cm
Toomi: 175cm
Iimori: 130cm

Hakuba Happo-one:
Hakuba Happo-one is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall (Riesen quad top).
The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning.
Official snow depth:
Usagidaira: 235cm
Kurobishi: 245cm
Lower: 150cm

Tsugaike Kogen:
The resort appears to be opening as planned this morning.
Official snow depth:
Tsuga-no-mori: 310cm
Han-no-ki: 325cm
Maruyama: 160cm
Oya-no-hara: 175cm
Kane-no-naru-oka: 170cm

Hakuba Cortina:
The resort is reporting 0cm of fresh snowfall.
Official snow depth:
Top: 350cm
Base: 220cm

Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field:
Official snow depth:
Top: 200cm
Base: 120cm

Hakuba Norikura Onsen:
Official snow depth:
Top: 240cm

Official snow depth:
Top: 205cm

Hakuba Sanosaka:
Official snow depth:
Top: 145cm


Planned nighta operations - be sure to check with resorts for latest:

Hakuba Goryu:
Planned to be open daily from 6pm until 9:30pm

Tsugaike Kogen:
Planned at the Katamatsu-Shirakaba area February 18th; March 4th, 11th, 18th, 19th (6pm until 9pm)

Hakuba Cortina:
Planned to be open daily from 5pm until 8pm (until 9pm on Saturdays)

Hakuba Happo-one:
Planned to be open daily until 9pm on the Nakiyama area.

Planned to be open daily.

There is no night skiing at the other resorts in the area.   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 8:52am
Weather conditions: High thin overcast
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Appi,

Well, not a good morning to wake up to today. A little rain overnight and higher than seasonal temperatures yesterday washed away 10cm of the official base layer. I don’t anticipate any more rain today thank goodness and the temperatures by mid afternoon should be back to normal around -6 or something close.

The good news today is we should get a fair amount of snow starting by mid day and continuing throughout the night. We may even see 25+cm today if we’re lucky.

Cloudy skies for the next few days with brisk winds and summit temperatures of -10 making it fairly chilly at the summit.

Today you can expect a fair bit of ice in the morning covering most runs but they should be in good shape as by mid morning.

Have fun up there.


Planned operating lifts at time of report (subject to change due to weather conditions):

Appi Gondola
Central quad
Central number 2
Central number 3a
Central number 4
Central number 5
Central number 6
Sailer Gondola
Sailer quad
Vista quad
Nishimori - suspended early on due to wind conditions


Official snow depth:

200cm   Read more ...

Grandeco Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 9:04am
Weather conditions: Fair blue skies
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Grandeco.

Blue skies this morning again.

There was no fresh snowfall last night, the temperature is rising and it is basically like a lovely spring morning.

According to the forecast, it will be snow again from Saturday night.

There is a snow festival "Eco night fantasy" in Kita Shiobara village tonight and tomorrow night. More than three thousand candles will blink in front of the Urabandai sight station. It starts from 5:30pm and there's some fireworks too.


Snow Park Information:

[Dekodaira E park]
7m kicker and 8m kicker.

[Deokoboko park]
6m straight wide box, 6m straight box, Wave, Volcano, 6m straight box, 8m straight rail, 6m arch box, 3m table top and 6m table top.


Lifts operating:

Lifts Operating:

- Gondola
- Number 1 quad lift
- Number 2 quad lift
- Number 3 quad lift
- Number 4 quad lift

Courses open:

All courses now open

Official snow depth:

Road Condition to Grandeco:
Inawashiro through Goshikinuma: dry
Goshukinuma through Grandeco: icy in parts   Read more ...

Furano Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 9:07am
Weather conditions: Foggy
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
The daytime temperature hit +5c yesterday and snowpacks at base went slushy. It wasnt until evening when I went for a drive that I realised how warm it had stayed. Still +4c at 7pm. Roads had been melted clear of snow. Last evening light rain arrived, and persisted overnight. The temperature right now is +3c. The rain has turned into sleet and will be snow further up the mountain. The bad news is there is no snow to report this morning. The good news is temperatures will be back into negative figures today and overnight we can expected moderate falls of snow. The weather will remin cold for the next 6 days at least with continuous snowfall.

On the slopes today expect wet snow conditions underfoot. There is low cloud and mist covering the resort at the moment and visibility will vary between limited and poor.    Read more ...

Zao Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 9:11am
Weather conditions: Fine blue skies, some cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Some beautiful weather in the daytime yesterday with blue skies and fine views of the 'juhyo'.

It's a mild morning here. 5C and likely to warm up somewhat more, I would say the warmest of the year or perhaps even the season.

Another fine morning with the sun shining down and calm conditions.

Early tracks should be best before the snow warms up too much.

So we could do with a nice new layer of snowfall. And hopefully I'll have some of that to report to you tomorrow morning.


All lifts apart from the following appear to be operating today:

Paradise Number 3 pair
Karamatsu pair

All courses apart from Kotan are open.


Official snow depths (as published by the resort itself):
Summit - 125cm
Paradise - 220cm
Chuo - 220cm
Utopia - 170cm
Uwanodai - 130cm
Yokokura - 155cm


Juhyo 'Ice Monsters' Light Up night time Zao Ropeway operations

Every day until 5th March 2017.
Operating from 5pm until 9pm; last ropeway up at 7:50pm.
Ropeway return charges are 2,600 yen for adults and 1,300 yen for children.
In the event of poor weather conditions, operations are sometimes cancelled.   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 9:14am
Weather conditions: Fine clouding over
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Light grey skies gathering above Shiga Kogen at the moment - more than there were a couple of hours ago when it was sunny - and it looks like the weather is changing today.

It was chilly when I got up but getting mild quickly this morning - positive numbers now - and we may even get some spots of rain today... before it starts snowing. Phew.

Difficult to read but fingers crossed that tomorrow in my report I will be able to report fresh snow.


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

Please note that these numbers are the official numbers that ski resorts publish.
Also that they often don't update daily and don't reflect the amount of fresh snow falling!



Ichinose Family

Ichinose Diamond




Okushiga Kogen

Sun Valley

Takamagahara Mammoth




Planned nighta operations:

Sun Valley: Saturdays until 18th March (7pm-9pm)

Ichinose Family: Every day until 25th March (6:30pm-9pm)

Ichinose Diamond: Every Saturday until 25th March and 19th March (6:30pm-9pm)

Yakebitaiyama: Every Saturday until 4th March (6pm-8pm)

Kumanoyu: Every Saturday until 25th March and 19th March (6:30pm-9pm)   Read more ...

Myoko Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 9:31am
Weather conditions: Sun is still occasionally peeking out
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
OK, I can take a little time to sit down and talk weather in Myoko with you today. And it doesn't look so pretty, especially after such a nice day yesterday - for snowshoeing, at least, although I hear things got a bit sloppy out in the off-piste world.

The day started sunny but very windy; the wind is still blowing, but the storm clouds are gathering. It's already raining or snowing at the top of Mt. Myoko. If the freezing line forecast is accurate it could be rain almost all the way to the peak. Then once again that line is going to crash down to sea level, and the snow will be falling again. Pretty crazy. Hopefully the rain will move through quickly so we can get back to the white goodness.

With the winds, watch for potential lift closures, especially No. 3 at the top of Suginohara, and the gondola there and at Akakan (and I just heard that No. 3 is in fact closed...)


Akakura Kanko:
350cm, 1°

Akakura Onsen:
360cm, -4°

Ikenotaira Onsen:
290cm, 2°

Myoko Suginohara:
250cm, 0°

Seki Onsen:
500cm, 0°

Myoko Ski Park:
300m, 5°

Kyukamura RunRun:
320cm, -2°

Tangram Ski Circus:
270cm, 0°

Madarao Kogen:
300cm, 0°

   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Friday 17th February 2017, 10:45am
Weather conditions: Almost a bluebird
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Naeba everybody.

Well, it's another glorious day out there today. Blue skies with only a few clouds hanging about.

Conditions on piste are fairly firm today with ice in some places although as temperatures rise this should all melt away. It is meant to get fairly warm today so I would expect a little bit of spring-like skiing today.

The weather forecast is still predicting rain for this morning which will then turn into snow and remain snow for the rest of the week. At the moment however it doesn't look like anything is going to fall from the sky anytime soon. Stay tuned to find out what happened!

Mystery!   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