Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 26th May 2019

Yuzawa Now!

Friday 22nd April 2016, 7:06am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Good morning from Yuzawa.

Sadly it did start to rain in the afternoon yesterday and while it was on and off at times, heavy rain was falling later on last night. It's still wet though should be drying up this morning and it should be clearer skies by the end of the day.

Tomorrow should be dry and there's a chance that the sun will be making an appearance (sun/cloud on the forecast) and once again temperatures should be rising to around 20 degrees during the day.

It was in the local newspaper the a few days ago how visitor numbers to ski resorts in Yuzawa and Minamiuonuma have generally decreased this season - not really surprising given the shorter season and lack of the consistent snow that we usually have. The same report though did note that the number of foreigners visiting increased by 50% which is impressive. No doubt that number will continue to increase in the coming years.

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Resorts that remain open in Yuzawa on Friday 22nd April 2016):

GALA Yuzawa
GALA Yuzawa resort plans to be open until Sunday 8th May.
The Melody course remains open - with artificial 'snow mats'. The sledging area is also still open.
Note that skiing and snowboarding on natural snow is now no longer possible at GALA.
Special lower prices are now available (adults 2600 yen, children 1300 yen).

Kagura
The Tashiro Ropeway plans to be open until 8th May.
The Kagura area via Mitsumata Ropeway plans to be open until 29th May.
The Mitsumata area is now used as a 'connecting course' to get to and from the main Kagura area with some snow remaining, under which is the artificial 'snow brush'.
Most of the main Kagura courses remain open with natural snow.
Note that the top Kagura Number 5 pair lift will be open through Sunday 25th April.
Official snow depth:
Kagura area: 160cm
Tashiro area: 130cm
Mitsumata area: -cm

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Resorts that are not listed above are now closed for the season.

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

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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 ...
 

Hakuba Now!

Friday 22nd April 2016, 7:50am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Good morning from here in Hakuba.

It was a decent morning but rain started falling early in the afternoon yesterday, as expected.

And as can only be expected, the rain hasn't done the snow conditions -- and indeed the amount of snow still remaining -- any favours unfortunately.

There's lots of cloud around this morning with fog as well. And while we were hoping for things to be dry, light rain is still with us early morning unfortunately. Hopefully things will dry up fairly quickly though.

Lifts either seem to be shrouded in low visibility conditions and cloud.

The forecast actually says that we may well be seeing some sun during the day today, and similarly tomorrow.

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Thanks to my friend up in Niseko for providing an explanation of Golden Week in his Niseko Now reports on SnowJapan:

'Golden Week' is fast approaching.

So what exactly is Golden Week? For those of you who don't know, Golden Week is a number of national holidays that happen close to each other giving lots of people a nice holiday in late April and early May. Most tourist spots get very busy as a result!

Depending on what days they fall, some years it is a considerably long period. This year, the actual national holidays are 'Showa Day' on Friday 29th April, 'Constitution Day' on Tuesday 3rd May, 'Greenery Day' on Wednesday 4th May and 'Children's Day' on Thursday May 5th. This means that this year Golden Week looks like this:

* Friday 29th April - Sunday 1st May (3 day long weekend)
* Tuesday 3rd May - Thursday 5th May (3 day holiday mid-week)
* Saturday 7th May - Sunday 8th May (normal weekend)

No doubt some folk will be taking Monday 2nd May and Friday 6th May as a holiday as well giving them a 10 day break. Nice.

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6 day forecast for Happo-one:

6 day snow and weather forecast for Happo-one

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Resort news as of 7:40am on Friday 22nd April 2016 (where available, all subject to change due to weather conditions)

Hakuba 47:
The following courses are now closed: Upper part of Route 1, Route 3, Route 4 and Route 6.
Official snow depth:
Upper: 55cm
Base: 25cm

Hakuba Goryu:
The top area of Goryu - Panorama, Grand Prix and Super courses - remain open.
The lower main Toomi and Iimori areas are now closed.
Get the Gondola back down to base.
Official snow depth
Alps: 125cm
Toomi: -cm
Iimori: -cm

Hakuba Happo-one:
All lower areas of the resort are now closed.
The upper Riesen Grat Course, Usagidaira and Kurobishi areas remain open; Skyline and Panorama are now just part open.
Official snow depth:
Usagidaira: 80cm
Nakiyama: -cm

Tsugaike Kogen:
The top Tsuga-no-mori and Upper Han-no-ki areas 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: 100cm
Maruyama: -cm
Kane-no-naru-oka: -cm

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Other resorts are now closed for the season.   Read more ...
 

Niseko Now!

Friday 22nd April 2016, 8:03am
Weather conditions: Fine and clear
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 20cm
Good morning once again from Niseko.

There's not too many reports left for this season now - by reckoning there's 13 more daily reports left to go after today. And then I get to take a 5 month rest. (Well... a rest from daily morning report duties anyway!)

OK so let's talk about today. It is a fine spring morning here with blue skies and warm conditions continuing, with a high temperature of 18 degrees forecast for Kutchan town. With the warmth the snow close to base is now quickly drying up and disappearing. Always a sad thing to see.

There's not much of a wind at all and I expect the planned lifts to be operating as normal this morning.

After today it looks like temperatures should drop a little and while sun is still on the forecast for tomorrow, there might be a chance of a bit of rain early morning as well.

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'Golden Week' is fast approaching.

So what exactly is Golden Week? For those of you who don't know, Golden Week is a number of national holidays that happen close to each other giving lots of people a nice holiday in late April and early May. Most tourist spots get very busy as a result!

Depending on what days they fall, some years it is a considerably long period. This year, the actual national holidays are 'Showa Day' on Friday 29th April, 'Constitution Day' on Tuesday 3rd May, 'Greenery Day' on Wednesday 4th May and 'Children's Day' on Thursday May 5th. This means that this year Golden Week looks like this:

* Friday 29th April - Sunday 1st May (3 day long weekend)
* Tuesday 3rd May - Thursday 5th May (3 day holiday mid-week)
* Saturday 7th May - Sunday 8th May (normal weekend)

No doubt some folk will be taking Monday 2nd May and Friday 6th May as a holiday as well giving them a 10 day break. Nice.

Thursday 5th May is scheduled to be the last day of the snow season here in Niseko.

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Resort specific lift opening news at time of posting:

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Niseko Annupuri
Both resorts will likely be able to open as normal this morning.

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Official resort snow depths as of Friday 22nd April 2016:

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Top - 285cm
Base - 20cm

Niseko Annupuri
Top - 280cm
Base - 20cm

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Resort operations - subject to change due to snow and weather conditions

Niseko Grand Hirafu resort area lift operations:
Ace Number 2 Center Four Quad
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.

Niseko Annupuri plans to be open until Thursday 5th May with the Gondola, Jumbo 1 and Jumbo 4 lifts operating.

Niseko Village is currently closed but plans to be open again for Golden Week from Friday 29th April until Thursday 5th May.

Niseko Hanazono has now closed for the season.

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

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Friday 22nd April 2016, 8:28am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog on open areas
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 30cm
Morning from Nozawa.

Rain did happen yesterday and overnight but it has eased off early morning leaving us with cloud and fog higher up on the mountain.

Hopefully tomorrow we might get to see some sunshine. It should be a bit warmer tomorrow as well, with temperatures forecast to rise to around 19-20 degrees here in the village. Not quite that high today.

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Official info at time of writing on Friday 22nd April 2016 (subject to change):

The resort still aims to be open through until 8th May, though does say that there is a chance that they might not be able to make it until then.
We'll just have to see how the weather goes...

Official snow depths:

Yamabiko: 50cm
Uenotaira: 30cm
Hikage: -cm
Nagasaka: -cm
Karasawa: -cm

The following courses plan to be open:

Yamabiko A
Yamabiko B
Yamabiko C
Yamabiko D
Kokenashi

The following lifts plan to be operating:

Nagasaka Gondola
Yamabiko Four
Yamabiko Number 2 Four

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Nozawa Onsen 6 day weather and snow forecast

Nozawa Onsen main resort data   Read more ...
 

Zao Now!

Friday 22nd April 2016, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Fog, cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 40cm
Hello from Zao

It's cloudy and foggy this morning, but keeping rather mild/warm. Sunshine isn't looking likely at the moment but maybe later on, and there's a decent chance of seeing it tomorrow I think.

Non ski related but at 11am this morning the Zao Echo Line road connecting us with Miyagi Prefecture will open (it is closed throughout the winter).

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Information as of day Friday 22nd April 2016 (subject to change)

Just top areas now remain open

Official snow depths:

Utopia: 25cm
Chuo: 40cm
Paradise: 40cm
Uwanodai: -cm

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6 day Zao Onsen snow and weather forecast

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Planned closing dates of lifts at Zao Onsen (subject to change due to snow conditions)

Open daily until Thursday 5th May:
Chuo Number 1 pair lift AB
Utopia Number 2 pair lift

Also open only on Saturdays and holidays until Thursday 5th May:
Chuo Number 2 pair lift AB
Katakai triple lift
Paradise pair AB lift

The Zao Ropeway, Sky Cable gondola and Chuo Ropeway are all open throughout the year (apart from specific maintenance periods)

Lifts not mentioned in the above list have closed for the season.   Read more ...
 

Shiga Kogen Now!

Friday 22nd April 2016, 8:40am
Weather conditions: Foggy
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 30cm
Good morning from Shiga Kogen.

Can't see much this morning with thick fog.

Mixed forecasts for the next day or two with some telling us to expect it to be wet, others not. And maybe some sun tomorrow. All a bit mixed.

After being closed for the whole of winter, this morning sees the re-opening of Route 292. Route 292 of course connects Shiga Kogen in Nagano with Kusatsu in Gunma and areas to the east, and it's a very fine road to drive/ride on during the 'green season'.

The road will be open from 10am this morning.

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Planned end of season dates for Shiga Kogen resort areas:

Please note that the below dates are all subject to change and of course dependant on snow conditions.
There's a good chance that any dates mentioning May might not be possible.
We'll try to keep this up-to-date with every new report posted...

Takamagahara Mammoth
The quad lift plans to be operating until Sunday 8th May (* Saturdays and Sundays only until 28th April).

Ichinose Family
The Ichinose quad lift plans to be operating until Sunday 8th May.
The Ichinose Number 2 pair B lift plans to be operating until Sunday 8th May.

Terakoya
The Terakoya lifts plan to be operating until Sunday 8th May (* Saturdays and Sundays only until 28th April).

Okushiga Kogen
The Okushiga Kogen Number 6 pair lift plans to be operating until Sunday 24th April.
The Okushiga Kogen Number 2 and 3 pair lifts plan to be operating until Sunday 8th May.
The Okushiga Kogen Number 4 pair lift plan to be operating until Sunday 8th May (* Saturdays and Sundays only until 28th April).
The Okushiga Kogen Gondola lift plans to be operating until Sunday 8th May.

Kumanoyu
The Kumanoyu Number 2 pair A and B lifts plan to be operating until Sunday 8th May.
The Kumanoyu Number 3 quad lift plans to be operating on 16th, 17th, 23rd, 24th April and from 29th April until 8th May.

Yokoteyama & Shibutoge
The Yokoteyama Number 2 and 3 Sky lifts plan to be operating until Sunday 24th April.
The Shibutoge lift plans to operate until Sunday 1st May.

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All other areas of Shiga Kogen not mentioned above are now closed.

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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 ...
 

Grandeco Now!

Friday 22nd April 2016, 8:48am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 65cm
Good morning from Grandeco.

A little rain falling this morning but that should be clearing up any time now.

Sadly, due to the snow disappearing the Center Course is closed from this morning. You now need to take the gondola to return back to the base as just the upper part of Rainbow 3500 course (approx. 1 km long) is now available. The No.2 lift is operating still operating to service that open course.

The sledging area for kids is located in the area near the top gondola station.

The sakura cherry blossom trees are blooming all over Inawashiro town (in the area to the south of Mt. Bandai), but Grandeco still has some snow to ride and not giving up on it just yet!

One day tickets (adult) are now discounted to 3600yen because of this condition.

Lifts operating:

Gondola
Number 2 quad

Courses that remain open:

[A-a] Rainbow 3500 (approx. 1km in length)

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Snow and weather forecast:

6 day snow and weather forecast for Grandeco   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

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