Snow and weather reports posted on Monday 12th April 2021
Sunday 1st May 2016, 8:04am
Mostly cloudy at the moment
Hello from Yuzawa.
It ended up being more cloudy than expected yesterday, but it didn't rain. The roads around town are a bit wet this morning with some rain falling early on, though it's expected to be clearer.
Sun is still expected though along with temperatures rising to just under 20 degrees this afternoon. Currently it is about 12 degrees in town.
More sunshine is forecast for tomorrow as well, with things likely to get a bit warmer too.
Golden Week holidays after today:
* Tuesday 3rd May - Thursday 5th May (3 day holiday mid-week) * Saturday 7th May - Sunday 8th May (normal weekend)
Resorts that remain open in Yuzawa on Sunday 1st May 2016:
Kagura The Tashiro Ropeway / Tashiro area plans to be part open until 8th May. The Kagura area (via Mitsumata Ropeway) plans to be part open until 29th May. Whether they can actually remain open until those dates with the amount of snow left remains to be seen.
The following courses at Kagura remain at least part open:
- Kagura main course - Giant course - Mogul Bahn (until early May) - Tashiro Ladies (part) - Tashiro Alyeska - Family Course at Mitsumata (open just to connect to the Gondola - snow mats, no natural snow) - Kagura Park
Resort news as of 8:30am on Sunday 1st May 2016 (subject to change due to snow and weather conditions)
Hakuba 47: ** Lift on hold early on this morning due to strong winds ** Only the top Route 8 course by Line E lift remains open (along with the top Panorama course of Hakuba Goryu). Top Line E lift only operating. Access is via Hakuba Goryu - the base area of Hakuba 47 resort is now closed. Line E plans to be operating until 5th May. Official snow depth: Upper: 70cm Base: -cm
Hakuba Goryu: Just the top Panorama course remains open (along with the Route 8 course of Hakuba 47). Gondola and Alps Number 1 pair lift operating, all other areas now closed. Get the Gondola back down to base. Hakuba Goryu plans to be operating until 8th May. Official snow depth Alps: 70cm Toomi: -cm Iimori: -cm
Hakuba Happo-one: ** On hold this morning due to strong winds ** Just part of Panorama and Kurobishi areas now remain open. The Riesen Grat course is now closed but the Grat quad lift remains operating - for climbers only. Get the Gondola back down to base. Official snow depth: Usagidaira: 20cm Nakiyama: -cm
Tsugaike Kogen: ** On hold this morning due to strong winds ** The top Upper Han-no-ki and part of Tsuga-no-mori courses 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: 30cm Maruyama: -cm Kane-no-naru-oka: -cm
Today is the last day of the 2015-2016 season (with just one short run remaining open at Kumanoyu today).
Looking back over my archived Shiga Kogen Now reports here on SnowJapan, let's take a look at the closing dates for all resorts in Shiga Kogen over recent years:
14/15 season: 17th May 13/14 season: 25th May 12/13 season: 26th May 11/12 season: 27th May 10/11 season: 29th May 09/10 season: 30th May
So as you can see, this season has ended considerably earlier than usual. And it's actually interesting - and slightly worrying - to see that the last day of the season has also been getting progressively 'earlier' each season in recent years. The timing of the days+dates may well have something to do with that, but still...
For the season that has just finished, it's no real surprise with the weather and snowfall that we experienced this time round.
Resorts themselves are using phrases such as 例年に無い積雪不足 (snow shortages not experienced in previous seasons).
I was reading through the season end reports on Nozawa Now and Madarao Now, and it's a fairly similar story here.
This season the consistency that we are used to just wasn't there for the most part and there were more than a few times when we had to go back to discussing the 'odd weather' in these reports. Please be sure to look back over the season reports to get a clear picture of how it all happened. And as the other reports have mentioned, make sure to read the reports from previous seasons as well.
Still, it may not have been anything like a classic season but I enjoyed some very fine days out there on the snow, as did many people who I met visiting from overseas.
But here's to a return to more consistency and huge amounts of regular snowfall in 16/17!
Shiga Kogen is of course a fine place to visit throughout the year - especially the ability to escape the heat and humidity of the valleys and cities - and now that the snow is not blocking the roads you can approach the region from Gunma as well as from the Nagano side.
I hope you have a good few months, thanks for reading and I'll see you back here on Shiga Kogen Now before winter arrives.
Resort operations - subject to change due to snow and weather conditions
Niseko Grand Hirafu resort area lift operations: Ace Number 2 Center Four Quad (* this lift now used to get to and from the open courses - you can no longer ride back to base) Ace Number 3 Pair Ace Number 4 Pair
The resort is 'upgrading' the King Number 3 triple lift in time for next season. As part of that work the Hirafu Gondola, King Number 3 and 4 lifts have all now closed for this season. Niseko Grand Hirafu plans to remain open until Thursday 5th May.
Courses open - Large, Center, Shirakaba (Spring Park)
Niseko Annupuri plans to be open until Thursday 5th May with the Gondola, Jumbo 1 and Jumbo 4 lifts operating.
Niseko Village plans to be open for Golden Week until Thursday 5th May. The Gondola can be used as a way of getting to Niseko Grand Hirafu and for sightseeing. None of the courses at Niseko Village are open.