Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 30th May 2020

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 7:56am
Weather conditions: Mostly cloudy
New snowfall: 25cm
Snow depth: 200cm

After the limited lift operations and courses open yesterday, we seem to be back to where we were with the top runs once again open today and the Gondola scheduled to start it's day of work at 8:40am.

Here's what the resort reports this morning in terms of new snowfall since yesterday afternoon:

Yamabiko - 50cm
Uenotaira - 40cm
Hikage - 25cm
Nagasaka - 25cm

It's calmer this morning now that storm has passed but there's still lots of cloud hanging around for the moment. So it's not sunny from the start of the day, but we are still expecting conditions to clear up as the day moves on.

A cold start though it's -3 here in the village and Yamabiko area reporting a temperature of -8 degrees as of 8am.

Tomorrow looks set to be milder and we may some rain falling at lower levels before it hopefully ends up snowing once again with snow forecast for Sunday. I don't think we're expecting a snow storm anything like what we seen over the last few days though.

No confirmed news of the resort opening up more tomorrow. With more people surely going to turn up this weekend, I'm expecting the resort to be as good as fully open. Let me emphasise that's just a guess at this stage. I will update this report later in the day if and when I have more firm news on that front.



Yes, so tomorrow will be the Grand Opening of the resort. Which means a few event like things going on and more importantly... the resort will be almost all opened up. All but a few steeper areas seem to be planning to be open tomorrow. I'll have more info in the morning.

A few photos added below from today. What a fine day it was too.


Courses open:

Yamabiko A
Yamabiko B
Yamabiko C
Yamabiko D
Yamabiko E
Mizunashi A
Mizunashi B
Yunomine B
Nagasaka connect


Lifts moving:

Nagasaka Gondola
Yamabiko Four Lift
Yamabiko Number 2 Four Lift
Uenotaira Four
Yu Road (Moving walkway)


Official snow depths:
Yamabiko - 290cm
Uenotaira - 290cm
Hikage - 200cm
Nagasaka - 200cm
Karasawa - N/A


Nozawa Onsen 6 day weather and snow forecast
Nozawa Onsen main resort data   Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 8:13am
Weather conditions: Cloudy overcast - bit of sun in Naeba area
New snowfall: 50cm
Snow depth: 200cm
Hello from Yuzawa and for once it's not snowing. Locals breath a sigh of relief as they continue to dig themselves out of their houses and find their cars under all of the snow. I didn't move the snow from my car yesterday and I think I can just about make it out under a huge blob of marshmallow outside my house.

Yesterday while it snowed for most of the day once again it wasn't quite as full on as it was the previous day. Still, another 40-50cm or so I would say.

Kagura report 80cm since yesterday.

For the moment it is mostly cloudy and overcast over the town area but quite bright. I can see that down in the Naeba area there's some blue sky and the sun seems to be shining down on the lower slopes of the resort. And there's just now some blue sky visible from here in town as well. Perhaps it will clear up today here too?

More resorts opening for the first time this morning. Or should I say 'pre-open' with some, which kind of seems to mean 'open a bit'. Or maybe even 'part open'. Sounds like an event though! Though I do see that at Kandatsu Kogen this morning... it's free! Yes, a full day of free skiing on offer over there which can't be bad. It's good to see Kandatsu Kogen back after a year with the lifts taking a rest. I think it was a bit of a shock for Kandatsu not to be open. But anyway, back to normal now.

And more resorts opening tomorrow as well as can be seen in the list below. In fact, come tomorrow there'll only be a few places left to get open for the season (one of those being the famous Mt Granview).

Just looking round for information and as expected from tomorrow more lifts and courses will be open. Maiko Snow Resort, for example, will have all of the top Okusoeji area open and also the Nagamine area with part of the Maiko area... basically most of the resort.

I can't see much reason why resorts that are open at at least close to fully open from tomorrow and it would surprise me if places continued to hold back. There's enough snow!

Tomorrow it will warm up slightly - highs as high as 8 degrees in town? Rain in the evening? Nooooo! If we get that rain lets hope it quickly turns into snow - which is what is forecast to happen. Wouldn't want to spoil all of this lovely fluffy light snow that we have.


Resorts currently open:
* Apologies - at the time of writing this report it is proving difficult to confirm full details for the resorts that are opening for the first time this morning

Kagura - fully open
Naeba - part open
Iwappara - part open, 2 central area lifts operating
Joetsu Kokusai - part open, 5 lifts operating
Maiko Snow Resort - part open, top Okusoeji area, Gondola and 2 Okusoeji lifts operating
Ishiuchi Maruyama - lots open
Muikamachi Ski Resort
Yuzawa Nakazato
Yuzawa Kogen
Yuzawa Park


Official snow depths:

GALA Yuzawa:
Ishiuchi Maruyama:
Joetsu Kokusai:
Kandatsu Kogen:
Maiko Snow Resort:
NASPA Ski Garden:
190cm (opens tomorrow)
Yuzawa Kogen:
Yuzawa Nakazato:


Planned opening dates for resorts in Yuzawa Town and Minamiuonuma City (by date):

Saturday 20th December:
Chateau Shiozawa
GALA Yuzawa
Kandatsu Kogen
Ludens Yuzawa
Nakazato Snow Wood
Muimamachi Hakkaisan
NASPA Ski Garden
Yuzawa Kogen (Nunoba area)

Tuesday 23rd December:

Thursday 25th December:

Saturday 27th December:
Ishiuchi Hanaoka

Late December
Mt Granview


Ski resorts in Yuzawa town
Ski resorts in Minamiuonuma City


A reminder that there are lots of of Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma lift tickets in the SnowJapan Prize Draw here:   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 8:40am
Weather conditions: Cloud cover
New snowfall: 30cm
Snow depth: 90cm
A bit of relative calm after the storm is the feeling this morning.

Was a bit wild yesterday with the wind messing around with lift movements.

Less wind this morning, less snow falling, and not quite as cold either. 'Just' -3 here at base according to my trusty thermometer, and indeed the resorts report similar temperature at their base levels, Niseko Village recording -7C on their upper slopes.

Snow is forecast to ease off during the day today - might the sun make a bit of an appearance? - and a milder conditions due tomorrow. Looks like it might even rain a bit before turning into snow later in the day tomorrow. Let's hope not.

OK anyway so 30cm or so of fresh snowfall to report since yesterday. It's diffucult to read this morning with all of the wind that we had yesterday blowing it around. Just think lots of fresh snow to play in and you've pretty much got the picture.

Over the last week or two it has been getting gradually busier in Niseko, from now on there'll be more and more people arriving daily so I would expect things to be noticeably busier. With everyone hopefully having the time of their lives, it should be a fun atmosphere. Make it so, everyone!


Niseko Avalanche Report

Moiwa base: -3C, 15cm of crystal snow in 12hours. Moiwa 600m: -4C, calm wind and 25cm of broken crystal snow with development of snowdrifts. Coastal data: Benkei cape NW 12m/s, Kamui cape WNW7m/s, 1023hPa, 1.9m waves. Annupuri 1150m: -6℃, mild NW wind, good groomers conditions and snowdrift development. The current snowpack is 130cm at Annupuri 1000m.

The atmospheric pressure gradient is small over the Sea of Japan, and the wind is mild around Niseko area. Yesterday’s northerly wind made snowdrifts develop slowly above 800m altitude. The Backbowl’s sidewalls are loaded with heavy snowdrifts. The avalanche hazard is high around 1100m Kozan no sawa (Backbowl) slopes, 900m Osawa cornice slopes. The gates are yet to open and peak hike is still restricted. The snow in the trees is a bit humid and in good condition. Beware of over-speeding and hitting trees. Do not duck ropes; one track left under a rope will lead many others to follow and unnecessarily increase the chances of accidents to happen. Crossing ropes is severely prohibited by the Niseko Rules. We’d like to call all accommodation facilities to inform their guests about the Niseko Rules. Have a nice day.


Lifts planned to be operating, subject to change due to weather conditions. Any news at time of writing is noted in the main report above:

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Ace Family Lift, Ace Number 2 Center Four lift, Ace Number 3 lift, Holiday Number 1 Pair lift, Hirafu Gondola, King Number 3 Triple lift, Swinging Monkey.
Night skiing lifts:
Ace Family Pair lift, Ace Number 2 Center Four lift, Hirafu Gondola, Holiday Number 1 Pair lift

Niseko Hanazono
Hanazono Number 1, Hanazono Number 2, Hanazono Number 3
Night skiing lifts:
No night skiing at Hanazono

Niseko Village
Niseko Gondola, Community Chair, Banzai Chair, Morino Chair.
Night skiing lifts:
Community Chair and Banzai Chair

Niseko Annupuri
Annupuri Gondola, Jumbo Number 1 Quad, Jumbo Number 2 Pair, Jumbo Number 3 Pair
Night skiing lift:
Jumbo Number 1 Quad


Official snow depth numbers at the time of writing:

Grand Hirafu / Hanazono:
Top - 210cm
Base - 90cm

Niseko Village:
Top - 150cm
Base - 110cm

Top - 135cm
Base - 110cm


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

Myoko Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 8:49am
Weather conditions: Clear for the moment, although clouds look likely!
New snowfall: 25cm
Snow depth: 240cm
Cold and clear this morning; Akakan and Ikenotaira picked the perfect day to start the season! Just a little extra snow overnight—maybe 25-30cm (funny when a foot of snow seems like "just a little").

It probably won't last, though, as the forecast for the near future is for continued snowfall.    Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 8:52am
Weather conditions: Partly cloudy, blue sky too
New snowfall: 50cm
Snow depth: 150cm
Madarao is open! Hurray! And doesn't it look lovely (see photos below).

Yes, here we are once again at the beginning of a new season.

Not much to say really other than it's a close to perfect start to the season with the large amounts of snow (another 30-50cm) and weather this morning. Some cloud around but clearing up with some blue sky as well.

Nice and cold so the snow conditions will remain excellent.

I almost don't want to say this but before the snow that's due again on Sunday, there's a chance it might rain. Whoever's in charge of the weather, please no!

More lifts open tomorrow.


Lifts open:

Number 1 lift
Number 2 quad lift

Special price today of 2000 yen for adults and seniors, 1000 yen for elementary school age children


Madarao Kogen 6 day weather and snow forecast
Madarao Kogen main resort data   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 9:05am
Weather conditions: Lovely blue skies
New snowfall: 20cm
Snow depth: 175cm
It's a lovely morning in Hakuba.

15-20cm or so on the ground here since yesterday. More on the mountains. Blue skies. Calm conditions after the storm. Cold though, brrr.

What more could we want. More of Happo opening now with more lifts operating and runs open.

Could this weekend by the first weekend that sees resorts pretty much all fully open? I think it might!

Expect quite a few people to turn up to enjoy it all as well. As well they should. Cloud with snow returning in the evening is what the forecasts have for us.

I can't think of much else to say this very fine morning. As some folk seem to say... it's 'The Day'!


Information from around the resorts - at the time of writing

Reporting 30+cm of fresh snow this morning.

Official Snow depths:
Base - 120cm
Usagidaira - 210cm

Open lifts:
-Alpen Quad
-Happo Risen Quad
-Nakiyama Number 3 Triple
-Adam Gondola
-Kokusai 3
-Sakka Kitaone Quad


Hakuba 47
30cm at base, 60cm of fresh on the mountain this morning. The Gondola, Line C and Line E lifts on hold due to wind. Route 1 Upper, Route 2, 3 and 8 not open.

Official Snow depths:
Base - 140cm
Upper - 210cm

Open lifts:
-Line A.B
-Line C
-Line E

Open courses:
-All courses open except Route 4 where they're preparing Snow Park items and the Tree Riding Zone


Hakuba Goryu
Reporting 5cm at Toomi, 20cm at Iimori and 10cm on upper slopes this morning.

Official Snow depths:
Iimori - 150cm
Toomi - 175cm
Alps Daira - 230cm

Open lifts:
-All lifts operating except Alps Daira 2 & 4

Open courses:
-All courses apart from Adventure Course are open.


Hakuba Iwatake
Open from this morning. Part open.

Official Snow depths:
Base - 100cm
Top - 160cm

Tsugaike Kogen
Gondola doesn't seem to be moving this morning early on - due to 'adverse weather' (?). Perhaps dealing with large amount of snow or something...

Official Snow depths:
Maruyama - 250cm
Oya-no-hara - 200cm
Tsuga-no-mori - 305cm

Planned open lifts:
-Shirakaba Quad
-Maruyama Number 1 Quad
-Tsugaike Chuo Triple
-Karamatsu high speed pair

Open course areas::


Hakuba Cortina
Cortina reporting 10-13cm of fresh snow this morning. Back to how we were before the storm. Just more snow!
Sorry, yesterday I had the base at 2000cm of snow - Cortina is famous for getting lots of snow but that would be shocking! The correct number was 200cm of course. I've changed that for the record.

Official Snow depths:
Base - 205cm
Upper - 275cm

Open lifts:
-Number 2 Quad
-Number 4 Pair

Open course areas:
-Mt Hieda Forest
-Mt Hieda Ridge
-Mt Hieda 1
-Mt Hieda 2
-Mt Hieda 3


Part open, fully open from this weekend.

Official Snow depth:


Hakuba Norikura Onsen
Part open

Official Snow depth:


Other planned opening dates:

Hakuba Sanosaka - Saturday 20th December


SnowJapan is running a lift ticket prize draw with 400+ lift tickets to send out to site members - 50 of those are for resorts in the Hakuba area, so lots to win. For details on the prize draw, check out this page:
   Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 9:29am
Weather conditions: Overcast clearing in afternoon
New snowfall: 20cm
Snow depth: 200cm
The snow has now come to a stop with 50cm in the Valley and 200cm in the Upper Mountains, overcast with light winds.

Looking at a sunny morning tomorrow with snow showers beginning from the afternoon through till Monday night.


New snowfall

Valley 20cm
Upper Mountains 20cm


Snow depths

Valley 50cm
Upper Mountains 200cm


Planned opening dates:

Tenjindaira - OPEN
Houdaigi - part OPEN
Norn Minakami - part OPEN
White Valley- OPEN
Okutone - OPEN
Minakami Kogen - December 20th
   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 9:56am
Weather conditions: Cloud but lots of blue sky and sun
New snowfall: 40cm
Snow depth: 80cm
More snow overnight and it's calmer this morning.

Lovely conditions in fact. Not only lots of fresh snow for us to play in, but also the sun is out this morning. Keeping cold hopefully for the day.

Expected to get a bit warmer tomorrow but possibly windy as well. But we may get more sun to enjoy as well.

Snow clouds are forecast to be back in the evening (tomorrow) and snowfall for Sunday.


Resort areas status with official snow depths:

Okushiga Kogen:
Part open

Part open

Ichinose Family
Part open

Ichinose Yamanokami:
Part open

Ichinose Diamond:
Part open

Takamagahara Mammoth:
Part open

Part open

Plans to open on 20th December

Plans to open on 20th December

Plans to open on 20th December

Plans to open on 20th December

Sun Valley:
Plans to open to public on 14th December

Plans to open on 20th December

Plans to open on 20th December

Almost all open (note: skiers only resort area)

Most open now. Shibutoge not yet open.


Planned night floodlit skiing at Shiga Kogen resort areas this season:

Sun Valley:
December 20th, 29th-30th; January 1st-2nd, 11th; Every Saturday from January 3rd to March 21st

December 29th-31st; January 1st-3rd, 10th, 11th

Takamagahara Mammoth:
December 20th-22nd, 27th-31st; January 1st-3rd

Ichinose Family:
Every day from December 20th until March 29th

Ichinose Diamond:
December 27th-31st; January 1st-3rd, 11th; Every Saturday from January 3rd until March 28th

December 27th-31st; January 1st-3rd, 11th; Every Saturday from January 3rd until February 21st

December 20th-23rd, 27th-31st; January 1st-3rd; Every Saturday from January 3rd until March 28th   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 10:04am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 160cm
Wild conditions yesterday. Is it really still what we might call mid December?

Tons of fresh snow out there. I even heard someone complain that it was 'too deep'. Silly person! ;)

Cloudy and calmer this morning with more lifts back open.

From tomorrow all of the mountain and lifts should be open, so it's full season ahead!

May it be a classic. Certainly early season is a good start for that.


Planned operating lifts today (subject to change):

Sky Cable Gondola
Zao Chuo Ropeway
Zao Ropeway
Onsen Number 1 pair lift
Onsen Number 2 quad
Mikaeri pair lift
Chuo Number 1 pair lift
Chuo Number 2 pair lift
Katakai triple lift
Diamond Number 1 pair lift
Diamond Number 2
Zao Paradise Pair AB lift
Yokokura Number 1 pair lift
Yokokura Number 2 pair lift
Utopia Number 2 pair lift
Kurohime Number 1 Quattro lift


Official snow depths (19th December 14):

Utopia: 160cm
Chuo: 160cm
Paradise: 150cm
Uwanodai: 130cm


Night skiing operations at Zao this season

Uwanodai area:
From Sunday 21st December until 22nd March

Yokokura area:
From Friday 26th December until 4th January;
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Friday 9th January until 15th March

Open times from 5pm until 9pm and the cost is 2000 yen for adults and 1000 yen for children.   Read more ...

Furano Now!

Friday 19th December 2014, 13:29pm
Weather conditions: Cloud cover/overcast
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 70cm
Another cold day in Furano with overcast skies but there is no new snow to report overnight. The good news is that there is little wind, and all the snow that fell over the last couple of days has allowed the resort to open Sailer Course from top to bottom. This is great news for the intermediates and advanced skiers who can now get in a few kilometres of turns in the one run. Night skiing is operating until 8pm tonight on the Prince Romance chair.   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