Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 26th May 2019

Furano Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 7:15am
Weather conditions: Cloud cover/overcast
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 295cm
The wind that has been predicted has arrived and looking out the window the trees are moving around which is unusual for Furano in winter. Light in the village at the moment expect moderate gusts on the mountain this morning. Winds forecast to increase significantly by afternoon and be severe this evening. It would be wise to get out and have a ski earlier rather than later today I think.

There hasn't been any fresh snow since the report was posted yesterday morning and the next expected snow is a light dusting on Tuesday and Thursday. The skies are cloud today, but it is quite thin and you can see the brightness of the sun behind it.

I am about to wax up before heading out for the first lift of the day...wrap up warmly as it sure feels cold.
   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 8:24am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 16cm
Snow depth: 50cm
I wanted to get the report out as early as possible this morning to let you know about the fresh snow we have.

Resorts reporting 20-30cm on the mountain and a good layer down in the village as well.

Also, strong winds are affecting Happo-one, Tsugaike and Cortina resorts this morning. It looks like Hakuba 47 and Goryu are open at the time of writing but it's best to keep an eye on that. Or perhaps have a day in the onsen and watch the snow fall while hatching cunning plans on how to enjoy it...

It's great news about the snow, not so about the wind, but this is probably just what we need... hopefully the snowfall will continue falling like the forecast says it will do for the coming week.

This may well be turning point in the season. Expect lots of things to change over the next few days once the wind allows.

I'll bring you more news from around the resorts tomorrow.


Resort news as of 8:15am on Monday 18th January 2015 (where available, all subject to change due to weather conditions)

Hakuba 47:
Hakuba 47 is reporting 30cm of fresh snowfall.
All courses are now officially open.
Tree Riding Zone not yet open for the season.
Official snow depth
Upper: 165cm
Base: 50cm

Hakuba Goryu:
Hakuba Goryu is reporting 15cm of fresh snowfall at lower Toomi and Iimori areas and 30cm on upper areas.
All upper and Toomi areas are now open.
Soft Cream, Merry Land and Powder Snow courses in the Iimori area are open.
Planned lifts:
Telecabin Gondola
Alps Number 1 pair lift
Alps Number 3 pair lift
Toomi Sky Four lift
Toomi Number 1 pair lift
Toomi Number 2 pair lift
Milky Four lift
Iimori Number 1 high speed pair
Iimori Number 6 pair lift
Official snow depth
Alps: 150cm
Toomi: 50cm
Iimori: 70cm

Hakuba Happo-one:
Closed apart from the Nakiyama Number 3 triple lift at time of writing due to the gale conditions.
Planned lifts:
Official snow depth
Usagidaira: 115cm
Nakiyama: 35cm
Sakka: 15cm

Hakuba Cortina:
Hakuba Cortina reporting 20-30cm of fresh snowfall.
At 8am this morning all lifts at Cortina are closed due to the strong wind conditions.
Planned lifts:
All closed early morning.
Official snow depth
Top: 132cm
Base: 80cm

Tsugaike Kogen:
At 8am this morning all lifts at Cortina are closed due to the strong wind conditions.
Planned lifts:
All closed early morning.
Official snow depth
Tsuga-no-mori: 150cm
Maruyama: 40cm
Kane-no-naru-oka: 50cm

Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field:
Reporting up to 10-20cm of fresh snowfall.
No updates on operations yet for the morning.
Planned lifts:
Official snow depth
Upper: 100cm
Lower: 30cm

Hakuba Norikura Onsen:
Official snow depth
As of yesterday all lifts apart from Number 8 lift are operating and 8 of the 12 courses are open at Hakuba Norikura Onsen.
No further updates as yet this morning.

Hakuba Sanosaka:
Official snow depth
Part open with the Number 1 triple lift, Number 2 quad and Number 5 pair lifts operating.   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 8:28am
Weather conditions: Generally grey clouds
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 160cm
Good morning from Niseko.

Yesterday was a truly excellent day out there on the mountain with good weather conditions and all of that fresh snow to play in. The biggest problem of the way was probably 'where to go' or in my case having to stop for lunch and the energy boost.

There is just a dusting of new snowfall this morning here at base - not enough for me to award the '1cm' status and unfortunately breaking that fabulous run of new cm of snow every day since January 1st. But there you go, those be the rules!

It is a calm morning here but remaining very cold and with grey clouds all around. After no new cm of snowfall overnight, it is not snowing at the moment either. How can things go so wrong so quickly?

I'm just kidding. There's lots more snow on the way and it should be starting sometime around lunchtime today and likely continue for most of the coming week. Lots of Japan is probably going to be experiencing snowy and windy conditions over the next few days. Lots of snow all round please.


The Niseko Grand Hirafu resort has installed a beacon checker at the G3 gate which lets you know it's working good before you make your way into the snow. As they say on their official website it is not compulsory to carry a beacon for backcountry - but strongly recommended.

Take care out there.


Resort specific lift opening news at time of writing - subject to change during the day:

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Niseko HANAZONO Resort
Niseko Village
Niseko Annupuri
All resort areas appear be opening as planned this morning.


Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6am: -9℃, sprinkle of new snow, surface hoar. Moiwa 800m: -10℃, mild wind, light sprinkles. Mikaeri 740m: -9.8℃, NE1.5m. Annupuri 1150m: -11℃, westerly3m/s, light snow. Hirafu 1000m: -13℃, no snowfall. Coastal data: Benkei cape SSE11m/s, Kmaui cape E4m/s, 1020hPa, 0.9m waves.

Calm morning before the storm, no notable snowfall or snowclouds can be observed. The surface has transformed into a hoar layer under the radiative-cooling and will form a notable Jan 18th layer in the future snowpack. The wind is predicted to drastically pick up as the next low-pressure system approaches. Beware of sudden weather changes. Peak gates are scheduled to open. Old tracks aren’t filled in, tricky condition, be careful. Listen to the patrol’s instructions.

A small experiment set up by the Avalanche Institute and Nagoya University is being prepared in the Mikaeri cat track area. The gate will stay open, but please be careful. It is a fact that avalanches are likely to occur in unstable snowdrift during and just after storms. Researches are being done to scientifically back up this theory. More than 1000 people step out of the gates everyday, but accidents hardly occur. It is a surprising fact and we very much appreciate that people seem to acknowledge and respect the Niseko Rules.


Official resort snow depths as of Monday 18th January 2016:

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Hanazono
Top - 340cm
Base - 160cm

Niseko Village
Top - 260cm
Base - 150cm

Niseko Annupuri
Top - 230cm
Base - 160cm


Lifts planned to be open for night skiing:

Niseko Grand Hirafu:
Ace Family Pair lift, Ace Number 2 Center Four lift, Hirafu Gondola, Holiday Number 1 Pair lift
(There is no night skiing at the Hanazono area)

Niseko Village:
Community Chair and Banzai Chair

Niseko Annupuri:
Jumbo Number 1 Quad


Niseko Grand Hirafu 6 day weather and snow forecast   Read more ...

Grandeco Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Storm clouds
New snowfall: 8cm
Snow depth: 160cm
Grandeco is closed today because of the heavy storm we are experiencing - very strong wind is blowing.

It is very hard to drive around Ura bandai area this morning. I think today is the day to do something else in anticipation of the fresh snow that will be available soon.

The strong winds are expected to continue through tomorrow as well.

Lots of snow on the way though, it's going to be good!


Lifts operating:

All lifts closed due to storm

Courses open:

All courses closed due to storm


Snow and weather forecast:

6 day snow and weather forecast for Grandeco   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 90cm
Storm conditions here in Madarao this morning.

The conditions are preventing Madarao Kogen from opening at the moment but the strong winds are expected to possibly ease off a bit later on today so there is a chance that they will start up again. Connecting Tangram Ski Circus is looking like it is able to open.

Hopefully there'll be a good haul of snow to report tomorrow as well. It's raining down in the valley but snow due for the next few days and particularly heavy later on tomorrow into Wednesday.


Madarao Kogen 6 day snow and weather forecast


Madarao Kogen lifts operating (planned at time of writing):

All lifts closed

Tangram Ski Circus lifts operating (planned at time of writing):

All planned lifts operating

Madarao Tree Run Courses:

Closed   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 8:45am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 3cm
Snow depth: 25cm
Morning from Nozawa.

Light snowfall this morning with the resort reporting 5cm across the mountain since yesterday.

What about this storm, I hear you ask. Well, snow is forecast for the day today as well as tomorrow and indeed actually through until at least the weekend. So we should be getting regular fresh snowfall. How much? I'll just let you know each day as the various forecasts just don't seem to be particularly reliable at the moment and often say different things. It does look most likely that we will see the heaviest snowfall here in Nozawa around tomorrow night and into Wednesday. It's still tagged as 'heavy snow', so fingers crossed. I'm saving my thoughts until we see what happens over the next few days!

I'll update you tomorrow morning with the latest.


Official info at time of writing on Monday 18th January 2016 (subject to change):

Official snow depths:

Yamabiko: 100cm
Uenotaira: 95cm
Hikage: 25cm
Nagasaka: 25cm
Karasawa: 15cm

New snowfall as reported by the resort since yesterday:

Yamabiko: 5cm
Uenotaira: 5cm
Hikage: 5cm
Nagasaka: 5cm
Karasawa: 5cm

All lifts now planned to be operating except:

- Yunomine pair*
- Mizunashi triple*
- Challenge pair*
- Utopia pair*
- Kandahar pair
- Hikage Number 2 pair B line*
- Karasawa pair

(Lifts marked * are usually operating on weekends and holidays)

The following courses are not currently open:

- Skyline
- Paradise connection
- Schneider
- Utopia 2
- Challenge 39
- Hikage no kabe
- Kurokura
- Grand Prix
- Jumping
- Hachiman
- Mukoubayashi
- Kandahar West
- Kandahar East
- Kamoshika
- Tanuki
- Usagi
- Karasawa
- Nagasaka connection


Nozawa Onsen 6 day weather and snow forecast

Nozawa Onsen main resort data
   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 9:05am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 26cm
Snow depth: 90cm
Morning from Zao.

And heavy snow it is!

Strong winds mean that there's less/more in different places but a few measurements in places round the back of my place tell me 26cm is a fair representation of what has fallen since my last report. That's more like it, isn't it?

It is a cold, windy and snowy morning here in Zao but having to shovel snow is not stopping people from smiling as this kind of snow is exactly what we need. A few days of it and things should be full on. Today does look like it might bring the most snow during this storm but snow clouds are due over the mountain for at least the next few days. It might remain windy as well.

At the time of writing all of the Ropeways are stopped and all of the lifts - except it would appear the Onsen Number 1, 2 and 3 lifts.

Whiteout conditions out there. Time for a good soak in an onsen I think.

More... more... more... please!


Information as of Monday 18th January 2016 (subject to change)

All lifts apart from three Onsen lifts are closed as of 9am.

Official snow depths:

Utopia: 70cm
Chuo: 90cm
Paradise: 70cm
Uwanodai: 45cm


6 day Zao Onsen snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 9:10am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: 50cm
Well the snow has finally arrived here at Appi and from the forecast the snow gods are going to allow 40+ cm of snow to fall on our mountain today. Thats the great news!

Yes there’s a catch as always….the winds this afternoon are going to get a little strong. In fact we’re bracing for 20 M/S winds later this afternoon. That coupled with the heavy snow fall expected is going to make for nearly white out conditions on most of the mountain. Lets hope I’m wrong. The strong winds will also hamper the main gondola operation too so I’d suggest getting on the slopes early before the wind picks up.

Yesterday was a beautiful sunny day with relatively light winds most of the day. All runs were actually quite busy with the weekend crowds arriving but they stayed in good shape for most of the day.

Today we’re expecting snow...ALL DAY. Temperatures have warmed up somewhat and will give us a steady -4 most of the day at the base but the wind-chill will kick in this afternoon with the forecast windy conditions. Tomorrow brings much of the same but the winds should decrease somewhat making sure the snow that falls stays where it belongs and that's on the ski slopes.

Have a great snowy day.


Currently planned operating lifts:

- Appi Gondola
- Central Number 1 quad
- Number 2 lift A
- Number 2 lift B
- Number 3 lift B
- Number 4 lift
- Sailer quad   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 9:14am
Weather conditions: Blizzard conditions
New snowfall: 28cm
Snow depth: 40cm
Real storm conditions this morning here in Shiga Kogen.

28cm outside my base here in the place where I always take my measurements. It's windy out there and the wind is blowing the snow around and so there's more in some places and less in others.

Lifts are definitely going to be affected this morning - in fact it looks like at the moment pretty much all lifts are on hold - but with these conditions I can't imagine actually wanting to be out there in them myself! I think I will wait until the storm passes to enjoy the new snow.

The official snow depths have for the most part hardly budged so just ignore them for the moment and think of that lovely new fresh snow that has fallen - and is continuing to fall.

The snow and wind is expected to continue over the next few days though perhaps some easing off from time to time allowing some places to part open.

By the end of the week though if this all continues as per forecast, we're going to be enjoying some great conditions and be fully open - at last!

Here's to lots of snowfall.


Official snow depths at Shiga Kogen resort areas (Monday 18th January 2016):

Sun Valley






Takamagahara Mammoth


Tannenomori Okojo

Ichinose Family


Ichinose Diamond

Ichinose Yamanokami


Okushiga Kogen


Yokoteyama & Shibutoge


6 day snow and weather forecasts:

Ichinose Family 6-day snow and weather forecast
Okushiga Kogen 6-day snow and weather forecast
Yokoteyama 6-day snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Myoko Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 9:28am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 7cm
Snow depth: 130cm
I'm waiting for the official report here; 9:30 and it still isn't out which is terrible on a completely bizarre weather day like today.

Luckily the Akakura Kanko sends out its own report, so I can tell you that only the No. 1 and 2 lifts are running. Everything else is closed due to the crazy strong winds coming in from the west at base level.

Also weird because the Coast Guard report shows winds offshore coming in strong from the east, which would make sense with the massive cycle bringing snow to the Pacific side. Right here, now, at this moment, the word in Myoko is driving rain - but don't panic, as the freezing line should come down later today from nearly 1500 meters to sea level. This means much colder temperatures, and very possibly some good snow (but I hate to even risk jinxing it by saying anything).

I'll try and get as much information as I can from all the different area websites - a bit of a pain, to be honest, but part of that outstanding SnowJapan service (I'm not being sarcastic; we take this seriously!)

Akakura Kanko:
Only No. 1 and 2 lifts operating
-2° / 130cm

Akakura Onsen:
Ginrei No. 3 and 5 only
-2° / 130cm

Ikenotaira Onsen:
Shirakaba Capsule, Ikenotaira Quad, Ikenotaira Chuo Pair all closed
-3° / 70cm

Myoko Suginohara:
Gondola, Mitahara No. 2 and No. 3 high-speed all closed
-5° (top)/ 70cm

Seki Onsen:
-5° / 180cm

Myoko Ski Park:
1° / 110cm

Kyukamura RunRun:
Running, but watching the weather
-2° / 140cm

Tangram Ski Circus:
Most lifts running
-3° / 95cm

Madarao Kogen:
Closed at least for the morning due to wind
-5° / 90cm

   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 9:35am
Weather conditions: Solid cloud cover today.
New snowfall: 20cm
Snow depth: 70cm
Good morning everybody from Naeba.

Excellent news today as the forecasted snow has arrived in style.

Since 23:00 last night we've received over 20cm of snow and it's still falling hard.

Although temperatures my appear quite mild today there is a very strong wind about so it is in reality much colder than the temperature suggests.

Due to this strong wind the top half of the mountain is closed today although this is subject to change if the wind drops later on today.

The weather forecast has only one worrying aspect to it today which is that it is predicting rain for this morning and afternoon. This has currently not materialized and let's hope that it doesn't. The rest of the week however though is promising large amounts of snow so get those skis and boards waxed!

Naeba 6-day snow and weather forecast    Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Monday 18th January 2016, 10:02am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 1cm
Snow depth: 40cm
Nature really isn't making these reports easy this season, that's for sure!

Yesterday ended up looking quite moody really with thin almost hazy like clouds and the sun sort of visible behind them for lots of the day. Then there was even a few times when some very light snow was falling in places.

Come late night and... it was raining down in town. Snow in Tokyo and rain in Yuzawa? That just isn't right!

Anyway, come this morning and high up at Kagura they are reporting 10-15cm of new snowfall up there this morning and Maiko Snow Resort are reporting 5-15cm. So it looks like higher areas have had a fairly decent new layer of snow.

Just earlier it was still raining/wet sleet/wet snow in town but things seem to be picking up and just as I started writing this it started to snow quite heavily. But hold on, as I am about to post the report it has stopped and it's more like sleet again.

The reason I have waited until 10am today is so that I can bring you the latest forecast for Niigata prefecture that they issue (at 10am) telling us how much snow to expect. For Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma area they are saying just 2-3cm from now until 4pm today, so it doesn't look like they are expecting this snow to continue like it is just now. Hopefully they are wrong - they have been quite a lot this season so far!

It is quite mild though this morning with a high of around 5C forecast for the middle of the day.

Heavy and consistent snowfall is still expected to be on the way this week with Wednesday being the day that we should get the most.


Strong winds are preventing the Kagura and Tashiro areas of the Kagura resort from opening this morning - it's just the Mitsumata area open for the moment, though they may open up part of Kagura if the conditions improve. Tashiro is closed for the day.

It looks like it's windy up at GALA Yuzawa as well and while they are open they are operating lifts at a slower than usual speed this morning.


Resort official snow depths (Monday 18th January 2016) and any specific news:

All resorts in the area are now generally open for the season, though please note that some areas and courses are not yet open.
Generally some steeper slopes that need more snow are still closed and some lower slopes are patchy, to varying degrees.

Resorts in Yuzawa:

GALA Yuzawa

Ishiuchi Maruyama


Joetsu Kokusai

90cm (Mitsumata)
120cm (Tashiro)
150cm (Kagura)

Kandatsu Kogen

Maiko Snow Resort
90cm (upper)
20cm (lower)

Muikamachi Hakkaisan


NASPA Ski Garden

Yuzawa Kogen

Yuzawa Nakazato

Yuzawa Park


List of ski resorts in Yuzawa town
List of ski resorts in Minamiuonuma City


Iwappara 6 day snow and weather forecast
NASPA Ski Garden 6 day snow and weather forecast
Kagura 6 day snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Yuzawa Now
14th Jun, 10:19am
Naeba Now
07th Jun, 10:08am
Aizu Bandai Now
31st May, 13:35
Shiga Kogen Now
27th May, 9:56am
Furano Now
08th May, 8:47am
Niseko Now
07th May, 19:19pm
Myoko Now
06th May, 9:33am
Hakuba Now
06th May, 9:09
Nozawa Onsen Now
06th May, 8:46
Minakami Now
06th May, 8:16
Madarao Now
06th May, 8:13am
Zao Now
06th May, 7:59
Appi Kogen Now
06th May, 7:59am
Geto Kogen Now
06th May, 7:12
Grandeco Now
02nd Feb, 12:34am