Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 30th May 2020

Myoko Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 7:33am
Weather conditions: Cloudy and gray
New snowfall: 40cm
Snow depth: 260cm
I didn't send a report yesterday (apologies, etc.)... the day was, well, sort of uncertain.

There was the possibility of some heavy snow, but we basically had a day of light fall through the day, not much accumulation, and then increasing snowfall in the evening.

By this morning, though, we had about 40cm of fresh, with a pretty strong, steady wind from the north. At the moment it doesn't look strong enough to interfere with lift operations, but you never know. The Coast Guard reports that the wind has been coming down since yesterday, and the atmospheric pressure going up, so maybe things will stabilize during the day (you thought I was just looking out the window to do these reports, right?)

No reports in this morning from the resorts, except for Ikenotaira - but these are pretty much still correct:

Akakura Kanko:
230cm, -2/-6°
All lifts operating

Akakura Onsen:
150cm, 0°
Yodel No. 1 Triple, Kumado No. 1 Quad, Kumado No. 4 Triple, Kumado No. 2, Ginrei No. 3 Pair, Ginrei No. 5 Pair

Ikenotaira Onsen:
170cm, -2°
Shirakaba Capsule, Ikenotaira Quad, AB No. 1, AB No. 2, Karamatsu Pair

Myoko Suginohara:
190cm, -5/-8°
Gondola, No. 1 Romance, No. 2 high-speed (yesterday's report; nothing in yet)

Seki Onsen:
230cm, -1°

Myoko Ski Park:
170cm, 0°

Kyukamura Myoko:
Runrun Pair Lift

No. 1 Pair, No. 3 Quad, No. 5 Quad, No. 6 Quad

120cm, -2°
No. 1, No. 2 Quad, Super Quad, No. 11, No. 12, No. 15
   Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 8:12am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 20cm
Snow depth: 165cm
Snowfall remained half-hearted for much of the morning at least and into the afternoon, though around 2pm it started snowing more heavily... didn't amount to that much snow on the ground though. So it was surprising to see on the news how much snow had been falling elsewhere in Niigata to the north of us here - the clouds had kind of missed us out of the main event.

My friend over in Tokamachi said he had to move over 40cm off his car yesterday evening, that had fallen during the day.

So the forecast was for 50cm and over in the mountains of the region for overnight, so we were looking forward to that. Didn't quite turn out like that though. There's 15cm of snow on the top of my car this morning; I'd guess that resorts around town saw about 20cm upwards.

Kagura are reporting 30-40cm; Naeba reporting 20-40cm.

Nice to get the layer of fresh, but let's have more today ok?!

Today is a national holiday in Japan - Emperor's Birthday - so I would expect places to at least be busier than a normal Tuesday. The weekend didn't see too many crowds so just how many people will turn out for today, I don't know.

Christmas isn't a holiday here in Japan and while people might eat a cake and friend chicken on Christmas Eve (as is the 'tradition' here), for most it's just another day. Indeed you'll probably see Christmas trees taken down late on the 24th, to be replaced with New Year gear. Oh yes and lots of ski hills will get visited by Santa. Busy guy.

The forecast for today remains snow and it is snowing now, so hopefully we can get some more fresh snow on the runs. Tomorrow looks set to be milder with some forecasts telling us that we might have clearer sunny skies (others just cloudy).

Itsukamachi resort in Minamiuonuma opens from today.


Official snow depths:

GALA Yuzawa:
Ishiuchi Maruyama:
Joetsu Kokusai:
Kandatsu Kogen:
Maiko Snow Resort:
NASPA Ski Garden:
Yuzawa Kogen:
200cm (Kogen)
150cm (Nunoba)
Yuzawa Nakazato:


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

All resorts not noted here are now at least part open.

Thursday 25th December:

Saturday 27th December:
Ishiuchi Hanaoka

Late December
Mt Granview


Ski resorts in Yuzawa town
Ski resorts in Minamiuonuma City   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 8:27am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog higher, poor visibility
New snowfall: 25cm
Snow depth: 155cm
A lot of snow up on the top areas of Nozawa - 35-37cm being reported by the resort on the top Uenotaira and Yamabiko areas respectively, so conditions should be great up there in particular this morning. Lower runs reporting up to 25cm, so good conditions all round and about that much since yesterday at base.

Forecast isn't for that much snow today though it is falling from the skies at the minute. The clouds may even clear and the sun say hello later on according to a local forecast. Tomorrow is due to be a bit warmer with temps rising to around 4 degrees but we should be back to snow again as we move into Wednesday.

Poor visibility at the start of the day on the upper areas in particular.

Santa was at Nozawa yesterday and he's here today as well, having a leisurely breakfast and hitting the slopes at 10am. First 100 people get a present off him as well, so give him a shout if you see him!

Today is a National Holiday in Japan for the Emperors Birthday.


Fresh snow this morning:

Yamabiko - 35cm
Uenotaira - 37cm
Hikage - 25cm
Nagasaka - 25cm
Karasawa - 25cm

Official snow depths:

Yamabiko - 260cm
Uenotaira - 235cm
Hikage - 165cm
Nagasaka - 155cm
Karasawa - 140cm


Courses open:

All courses are now open except:

Hikage no kabe
Grand Prix course
Jumping Course
Challenge 39
Kandahara West
Kandahara East
Kamoshika Course


Lifts open (subject to weather conditions):

All lifts operating except:

Kandahar Pair
Hikage Number 2 Pair A line


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

Niseko Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 8:36am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 30cm
Snow depth: 105cm
Lots of light fresh snow to report again this morning from the Niseko area - 30cm outside my place - which should make for excellent conditions today.

It's not quite as cold this morning as it was yesterday, but still right down there in negative numbers and -6 degrees here in the village base area.

It's not quite as windy either, and lifts should be less affected this morning. Yesterday as conditions improved slightly most of the lifts seemed to be operating.

The peak lifts and gates are of course still not open. No doubt there's a lot of people keeping their eyes on that situation and I can imagine the rush that will happen when they do open. Be sure to check out the Avalance Report below for more information.

Niseko continues to getting busier. Christmas might not be a major holiday for Japanese, but it is of course with lots of other folk and many want to spend their holidays here in Niseko. As you would.

It's worth adding that 23rd December (ie. today) is actually a national holiday here in Japan. It's the Emperors Birthday, so... happy birthday!


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

Niseko Grand Hirafu:
Niseko Grand Hirafu looks set to start the day as planned.

Niseko Hanazono:
Niseko Hanazono looks set to start the day as planned.

Niseko Village:
Niseko Gondola running at reduced speed.

Niseko Annupuri:
Annupuri Gondola not operating due to wind conditions.


Niseko Avalanche Report

Moiwa base:-10C, 25cm of crystal snow. Moiwa 600m: -13C, 30cm of fresh in 12 hours. Annupuri 1150m: -14C, W16m/s, 25cm of fresh. Coastal data: Benkei cape WNW15m/s, Kamui cape W11m/s, 1007hPa and 2.6m waves.

The atmospheric pressure gradient is shelving, snowdrift development around 800m is slowing down and the snowpack is stabilizing. However, avalanche risk is still high especially in leeward 1100m slopes. The avalanche control in Mizuno no sawa (Niseko Village) has started yesterday and a 40cm slab avalanche from Dec 20th layer running all the way down to the bottom has been reported from the ski patrol. Stay away from south facing strictly off-limits areas.
Peak lifts are scheduled to open as the wind calms down, but peak gates are yet to open. Please follow the ski patrol’s instructions. Never duck ropes to step out of bounds. The snow in the trees is even better than yesterday, but beware of branches and bushes lurking just underneath the surface. Have a nice day.


Official snow depth numbers and any notes at time of writing:

Grand Hirafu / Hanazono:
Top - 250cm
Base - 105cm

Niseko Village:
Top - 160cm
Base - 120cm

Niseko Annupuri:
Top - 140cm
Base - 110cm


Lifts open for night skiing (planned):

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 ...

Hakuba Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 8:50am
Weather conditions: Mostly cloudy still but expecting clearer conditions
New snowfall: 30cm
Snow depth: 195cm
First of all, happy birthday to the Emperor of Japan - to celebrate we all get a holiday today!

Snow still falling this morning mountain side, a bit clearer over by the roads on the other side of the valley. That's not the headline though...

Loads of snow falling yesterday and large amounts of lovely fresh snow to report this morning. Here's what the resorts say this morning for the overnight haul:

Hakuba Goryu: up to 50cm
Hakuba 47: up to 40cm
Hakuba Cortina: 30-40cm
Hakuba Norikura: 30cm
Hakuba Iwatake: 10-20cm

Very nice.

And the rest, I reckon. Just, lots. Enough for everyone that's for sure.

Do I need to say that conditions should be excellent this morning? :)

OK so yes snow clouds hanging on this morning but we are expecting them to clear up somewhat today and move on. Just how much it clears up remains to be seen of course but we could be on for some dramatic views later in the day.

Expecting milder weather tomorrow maybe just cloud, maybe clearer, and then back to snow falling into Christmas Day.

Lots of people arriving in Hakuba now for their Christmas break. I'm noticing lots of folk from all over the world, it's great to hear lots of different languages being spoken, even if I can't understand them.

Have fun everyone and remember, take special care in all that snow out there.


Official snow depth numbers and operations as of 23rd December 2014. Subject to change during the day:

Hakuba Goryu:
Reporting 50cm of new snowfall at Alps Daira and 20-30cm lower down.
All lifts operating except Alps Daira 2&4 and Toomi Number 2 Pair lift.
All courses open except Adventure Course.
Night skiing at Toomi every day until 31st March.

- Alps Daira - 275cm
- Toomi - 195cm
- Iimori - 150cm


Hakuba 47:
Reporting 40-50cm on mountain and 10-20cm of fresh snowfall at base.
All courses open.
Tree Riding Zone not open yet.

- Upper - 245cm
- Lower - 130cm


Most courses at Happo-one are now open. Grad Quad not open.
Snow Chao Kids Park open; Happo Banks The Snow Park not yet open.

- Usagidaira - 250cm
- Nakiyama - 120cm
- Sakka - 130cm


Hakuba Cortina:
Reporting 30cm of new snowfall at base and 40cm on upper areas.
Lifts 5 and 7 not open - resort mostly open... Rabbit, Snake, Kamoshika, Ipponmatsu now open.
Night skiing every day until 31st March.

- Upper - 290cm
- Lower - 200cm


Tsugaike Kogen:
Most areas of Tsugaike Kogen are now open, most notably the Uma-no-se course not yet open.
Next night skiing is from 27th December through 1st January in both Kane-no-naru-oka and Karamatsu-Shirakaba areas.

- Tsuga-no-mori - 260cm
- Maruyama - 160cm
- Kane-no-naru-oka - 180cm


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field:
Reporting 10-20cm of fresh snowfall.
Resort is part open.

- Upper - 200cm
- Lower - 120cm


Hakuba Norikura Onsen:
Reporting 30cm of fresh snowfall.
Resort is part open.

- 220cm


All areas now open.
Night skiing every day until 31st March.

- 130cm   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 9:02am
Weather conditions: Cloud cover
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: 110cm
Quite a strong northerly wind in areas this morning blowing around the snow that is continuing to fall. It's a bit calmer down here in the Maruike part of Shiga Kogen but still snow falling.

Very cold too.

Seems quite busy today, and I just remembered a good reason why... it's a national holiday today.

The Shibutoge area of Shiga Kogen - the far southern area, connected with Yokoteyama and run by the same folk - is now open.

Clearer skies are forecast for tomorrow with a good chance of snow falling on Christmas Day.


Resort areas status with official snow depths:

Okushiga Kogen:
Most open (note: skiers only resort area)

Most open

Ichinose Family
Most open

Ichinose Yamanokami:

Ichinose Diamond:
Part open

Takamagahara Mammoth:




Most open

Happo Bundaraia:

Sun Valley:



Open (note: skiers only resort area)

Most open.
Shibutoge now open.


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

Sun Valley:
December 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 27th-31st; January 1st-3rd

Ichinose Family:
Every day 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 ...

Madarao Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 9:10am
Weather conditions: Cloud cover
New snowfall: 30cm
Snow depth: 140cm
Let's great conditions!

Great to see over 30cm of fresh snow this morning. The resort is reporting 30-40cm fresh fluffy white stuff to play in.

Nice and cold too, so wrap up well and I hope you can enjoy the excellent conditions.

Snow isn't expected to continue all day with clearer skies by the end of the lift day forecast. And that should be how we start tomorrow as well.

Holiday in Japan today, and so expect more people around but still I don't expect it to be busy.


Lifts open:

Number 1 lift
Number 2 quad lift
Super quad lift
Number 11 lift
Number 12 lift
Number 15 lift
Moving Walkway
Kids Park

Tree Run Courses should be open


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

Furano Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 9:16am
Weather conditions: Cloud cover/overcast
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: 70cm
There is good news to report today with fresh snow overnight that has accumulated to 5cm at village level. The new snow combined with recent snow making efforts means the resort has been able to open Spies Course, which means there are now two courses skiable from the top of the Ropeway to base level. The opening of Spies will be great news for intermediate skiers as it offers a wider and more mellow terrain than Sailer Course.

The weather is cloudy with light winds increasing with elevation and temperatures around -11c at the top. There are light snow flurries at the moment but this look like it could change at anytime back to regular snow fall.    Read more ...

Zao Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 9:22am
Weather conditions: Cloud, poor visibility
New snowfall: 20cm
Snow depth: 170cm
Good haul of fresh snow this morning with over 20cm here in the village area and no doubt more than that up at higher elevations.

Fresh snow wherever you decide to ski or board this morning.

It's also blowing around a lot with strong winds and poor visibility, but looks like the resort is open as planned.

Going to clear a bit later on and tomorrow?


Official snow depths (23rd December 14):

Utopia: 170cm
Chuo: 170cm
Paradise: 170cm
Uwanodai: 125cm


Night skiing operations at Zao this season

Uwanodai area:
Daily 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.


Juhyo 'Ice Monsters' Light Up night time ropeway operations

December 2014: 27th-31st
January 2015: 1st-4th, 10th-12th, 17th-18th, 24th-31st
February 2015: 1st-28th

Operating from 5pm until 9pm; last ropeway up at 7:50pm.
Ropeway return charges are 2600 yen for adults and 1300 yen for children.
In the event of poor weather conditions, operations are sometimes cancelled.   Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Tuesday 23rd December 2014, 11:33am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 30cm
Snow depth: 220cm
Snow showers throughout the day today, with winds around 30km in the Upper Mountains.

Becoming fine this evening expected clear skys for tomorrow.


New snowfall

Valley 30cm
Upper Mountains 50cm

Snow depth

Valley 40cm
Upper Mountains 220cm
   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