Snow and weather reports posted on Friday 4th May 2018

Geto Kogen Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 7:13am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: --
We saw a fairly calm morning with the sun in the sky yesterday, but fairly quickly it turned into light to moderate snow, and then before we knew it there were 85km/h winds hitting us. Temps got down to about -7C in the late afternoon and those winds certainly packed a punch...

Today we’re in for a far calmer day than what we saw yesterday – though it will be cold with tops of -4C, the winds are light and for the most part, the sun will be out all day, with some light snow showers in the morning.

If you’ve not been reading the daily reports lately (as I’ve said this almost every day, hoping for some snow) our next snowfall is likely Tuesday evening, with about 10cm at least to hit the ground for us come Wednesday morning...

Monday: clear and sunny, light winds & tops of -2C
Tuesday: mostly sunny, light snow & tops of -1C
Wednesday: snow showers, moderate winds easing & tops of 0C


Official snow depths:

Top: 530cm
Base: 360cm

Night skiing operations are scheduled at Geto Kogen on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until 25th February 2018

The Number 2 Gondola is currently open on weekends and national holidays   Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 8:02am
Weather conditions: Cloudy skies
New snowfall: 7cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Yuzawa.

After that clear start to the day, the skies quickly got overcast during the morning yesterday.

It was raining for a while just to the north of Yuzawa, but it was quick to snow in Yuzawa itself - though a rather wet variety as it was fairly mild. (I suspect it wasn't quite as mild as we were told to expect it to be).

Anyway this morning we actually have some fresh cm of snow to report and here is what the resorts are reporting:

Kagura: 15-20cm
Maiko Snow Resort: 15-20cm

Not bad! Quality needs investigating but the snow on my car this morning looked pretty decent actually. I have measured 7cm to add to the totals for here in town.

It is a cloudy start to the day and that is what the forecast is, with the chance of the sun showing up tomorrow.

There's not much in terms of snowfall on the forecast over the coming week especially at lower levels and we'll need to keep an eye on that chance of rain sometime around Wednesday-Thursday. Hopefully forecasts can adjust in our favour.

Have a good Sunday.


Sounds like Hakkai-san had a problem with their Ropeway yesterday but they have fixed that up and it should be operating as normal today.


Images today from GALA Yuzawa, NASPA Ski Garden and Maiko Snow Resort.


Updated: Sunday 25th February 2018

Ski resorts in Yuzawa:

Checked and updated every morning. Note that some ski resorts may not have updated their own info at the time this report is published.

GALA Yuzawa
- 340cm

- 205cm

- Kagura area: 370cm
- Mitsumata area: 270cm
- Tashiro area: 320cm

Kandatsu Kogen
- 275cm

- 250cm (base)

NASPA Ski Garden
- 265cm

Yuzawa Kogen
- Top: 320cm
- Base: 250cm

Yuzawa Park
- 210cm

Yuzawa Nakazato
- 200cm


Ski resorts in Minamiuonuma (just to the north of Yuzawa):

Ishiuchi Maruyama
- 270cm

Joetsu Kokusai
- 260cm

Maiko Snow Resort
- Top: 280cm
- Base: 160cm

Muikamachi Hakkaisan
- Closed on Wednesdays until 14th March
- 370cm   Read more ...

Grandeco Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 8:23am
Weather conditions: Cloudy, some blue sky
New snowfall: 7cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Grandeco.

7cm of very light new powder snow has fallen. It is so light you can blow it.

Most of the courses are perfect groomed but as always if you want to enjoy the fresh ungroomed snow, take the Number 4 lift and turn to the right when you get off. The Lavender 28 course is also left ungroomed.

There is no more snow lined up there on the forecast until we get into March, so today is a good day to enjoy the fresh snow conditions.

Have a nice Sunday.


Lifts operating:

- All lifts operating

Courses open:

- All courses open

Official snow depth:
- 330cm

- Grandeco snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 8:33am
Weather conditions: Cloudy...
New snowfall: 8cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Niseko.

Well, this morning I have 8cm of fresh snowfall to report to you, mostly from overnight. I believe that takes me to 269cm for the month - would be nice if we could get that up to 3m. (Just for the fun of it; and fresh snow is always fun). But it's not looking like we can expect significant snowfall over the coming few days, more like some regular light snowfall. Let's see.

As you can see from the third image below looking towards Mt Yotei (which is just to the south of the ski resort bases), it's quite bright looking towards the east though currently we can't see the beautiful mountain from there.

And it is generally cloudy here at base now.

The Chinese New Year holiday peak-peak period is now behind us and while Niseko of course remains busy, things are going to start settling into the next phase of the season from this week as we enter March.

Remember, the lifts (* not all of them) move right through until Golden Week in early May. So I have a lot more reports to write! And I will of course let you know the spring plans at a later day.

I don't like talking about spring. So let's not! :)


Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 5.00am: -10°, trace new snow. Moiwa 800m: -12.2°, WSW14.6m/s, trace new snow, snowdrift development. Annupuri 1150m: -14°, W15m/s, 10cm new snow, snowdrift development. Hirafu 1250m: -17°, trace new snow, strong intermittent westerly wind, snowdrift development. Coastal data: Benkei Cape: NW14m/s. Kamui Cape: W10m/s, 1024hPa, wave 2.1m.

From this mornings observation the general avalanche risk is low. All peak gates are expected to be open. Please listen to the patrols advice. Prepare before going out of bounds. Take care around new cornices, they are fragile and will break easily. Although only a little snow has fallen, leeward slopes are reset and snow is good in the forests. Is your beacon switched on? Probe and shovel? Do you have a map?

Be careful of falling into creeks, the water is cold. Also be careful of falling into cracks, they are everywhere and deep. Always make cautious decisions when out of bounds. Don't duck ropes to enter strictly off limits areas like Haru no Taki. Have a good day.


Sunday 25th February 2018

Resort specific information (operations subject to change):

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Niseko HANAZONO Resort

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts (apart from King Number 2) should be operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 505cm
- Base: 250cm

Niseko Annupuri Kokusai

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts should be operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 420cm
- Base: 250cm

Niseko Village

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts (apart from the Country Road Chair lift) should be operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 410cm
- Base: 280cm


Floodlit 'nighta' skiing:

Night skiing is planned for every evening at the Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri areas. There is no nighta at the Niseko HANAZONO area. Ski lifts that are scheduled to be operating for nighta are noted below (subject to change):

* Niseko Grand Hirafu - Ace Family quad, Ace Number 2 quad, Hirafu Gondola, Holiday Number 1 pair
* Niseko Annupuri - Jumbo Number 1 quad lift
* Niseko Village - Village Express, Upper Village Gondola, Community Chair   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 8:46am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 1cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Hakuba.

Apparently, today is 'Snow Day'. I must admit, I don't know what that means and have not had the chance to look into it. I promise I will for next year.

It would be a perfect day then to report a foot or so of snow; here's how much is actually being reported:

Hakuba Goryu: 2cm up top
Hakuba Cortina: 5-10cm

I can just about add 1cm to the reports from base.

So not a whole lot but it was snowing during the morning - and quite heavily with nice big flakes at times - while I was up at Hakuba 47.

Less wind this morning than yesterday and improved visibility.

Sunshine is likely tomorrow and a few days of generally milder temperatures. Watch out for rain around mid-week at base which will - all being well - turn into snow.

Anyway, time to enjoy today!


The Happo Banks part at Happo-one resort will be closed from Monday 26th February until Friday 2nd March for maintenance/renewal


Ski resort information on Sunday 25th February 2018 (at time of writing):

Hakuba Happo-one

Operating lifts:
- Lifts should be operating as normal

Courses open:
- All courses should be open as normal
- Happo Banks will be closed from Monday 26th February until Friday 2nd March for maintenance/renewal

Official snow depth:
- Kurobishi: 420cm
- Usagidaira: 245cm
- Lower: 120cm


Hakuba Goryu

Operating lifts:
- Lifts should be operating as normal
- The top Alps Number 2/4 pair lifts are scheduled to be open daily until 18th March

Courses open:
- All courses should be open as normal

Official snow depth:
- Top: 400cm
- Toomi: 150cm
- Iimori: 110cm


Hakuba 47

Operating lifts:
- All lifts operating as planned
- Line D usually operates only when the Gondola is not operating

Courses open:
- All main courses available

Official snow depth:
- Top: 365cm
- Base: 160cm


Tsugaike Kogen

Operating lifts:
- Lifts should be opening as normal; some lifts delayed opening due to weather

Courses open:
- All course areas are open

Official snow depth:
- Tsuga-no-mori: 325cm
- Han-no-ki: 320cm
- Maruyama: 125cm
- Shirakaba: 270cm
- Champion: 150cm
- Oya-no-hara: 155cm
- Kane-no-naru-oka: 165cm


Hakuba Cortina

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart should be operating

Courses open:
- All courses should be open. Ground cracks on Mt Hieda 3 and Itadaira Ridge

Official snow depth:
- Top: 365cm
- Base: 210cm


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field

Operating lifts:
- Should be opening as normal

Courses open:
- Most areas open

Official snow depth:
- Top: 220cm
- Base: 130cm


Hakuba Norikura Onsen

Operating lifts:
- All lifts (apart from Number 7) should be operating as planned

Official snow depth:
- 210cm


Hakuba Valley Kashimayari

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart should be operating

Official snow depth:
- 230cm


Hakuba Sanosaka

Operating lifts:
- All three lifts are operating

Official snow depth:
- 150cm


Night time skiing (nighta) at resorts in the region - weather & conditions permitting
The below 'nighta' information will not be updated every day - please check with resorts if you plan to go!

Hakuba Happo-one
Daily from 5pm until 9pm in the Nakiyama 2 area
Adults - 2,000 yen; children - 1,200 yen

Hakuba Goryu
Daily from 6pm until 9:30pm in the Toomi area until 31st March
The Sky Four quad operates daily; the Number 2 pair mostly on Saturdays and holidays
Adults - 1,900 yen; children - 850 yen

Hakuba Cortina
Daily from 5pm until 8pm (until 9pm on Saturdays)
Adults - 1,500 yen; children - 1,000 yen

Tsugaike Kogen
Karamatsu Shirakaba area from 6pm until 9pm on 17th February; 3rd, 10th March
Adults - 2,200 yen; children - 1,700 yen

There are no other nighta operations at other ski resorts in the region   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 8:52am
Weather conditions: High Cloud
New snowfall: 13cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Naeba! It's a mild start here, but with the 13cm of fresh snow accumilation from yesterday the pistes are in excellent condition. There is some high, watery cloud sheltering the valley from the sunshine currently, but this will likely burn off in the next couple of hours. There is a chance of some light snow showers later in the day, with very modest accumilations predicted for overnight. The air temperature will push up to just above 0°C today, however it is predicted to drop back below overnight tonight. There is little wind forecast.

Looking forwards, the weather seems to be stablising somewhat as the forecast is remaining more consistent day to day. Tomorrow is predicted to be a warm, clear and windless day, much more like the spring conditions we would expect at this time of year. Snow showers mixed with sun are expected on Tuesday. The next major weather shift will occur on Wednesday, with the air temperature pushing up to 5°C in the afternoon, and remaining there overnight and into Thursday. This warm band of air will bring with it a potentially significant rainfall at 900m, however this is predicted to fall as snow on the peaks. The wind will also pick up significantly at this time, and continue to blow until at least the weekend.   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 8:58am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 4cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Nozawa.

Some fresh snow to report this morning - the resort is saying 5cm across the mountain - though it isn't snowing now and is generally cloudy.

It looks like the forecast for tomorrow is sun from the start of the day, so it should be a good one. Beyond that, hmmm, not so much snow and around Wednesday the freezing line goes up and rain looks likely. Beady eye on that + hopefully it'll adjust.


Sunday 25th February 2018

Fresh snowfall since yesterday (as reported by the resort):

- Yamabiko (1407m): 5cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 5cm
- Hikage (660m): 5cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 5cm
- Karasawa (563m): 5cm

Official snow depth numbers:

- Yamabiko (1407m): 345cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 280cm
- Hikage (660m): 195cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 190cm
- Karasawa (563m): 160cm

Lifts operations:

- All scheduled lifts appear to be operating as normal.
- The Yunomine pair, Mizunashi triple, Challenge pair and Utopia pair lifts usually rested on weekdays.

The following courses either closed (or not fully available):

- Grand Prix
- Kandahar   Read more ...

Myoko Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 8:58am
Weather conditions: A bit of sun shining through thin clouds
New snowfall: 15cm
Snow depth: --
Yesterday’s strange weather resulted in a little more snow than the forecasted 10cm, so we have some nice soft stuff on top of a good solid base.

The winds of yesterday morning picked up a little last night, with some drifting and blowing snow - perhaps why Lotte Arai has closed much of its avalanche-controlled areas. Got to keep in mind if you area heading offsite, too; there may be some accumulation of wind-blown snow on lee slopes that can cause troubles.

Otherwise a nice day.

Some runs at Akakan are closed for the national competition now underway (but you get to check out the ski jumping, which is always a fun diversion in the day’s skiing).


Akakura Kanko:
350 cm, -4°

Akakura Onsen:
415cm, -4°

Ikenotaira Onsen:
270cm, -7°

Myoko Suginohara:
230cm, -13°

Seki Onsen:
450 cm, -5°

Myoko Ski Park:
320 cm, -1°

Kyukamura RunRun:
350 cm, -3°

Tangram Ski Circus:
240 cm, -6°

Madarao Kogen:
270 cm, -6.5°

Read more ...

Furano Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 9:00am
Weather conditions: Misty
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: --
This morning we have more fresh snow here in the village measuring in at 5cm. I would expect about double that at the top of the resort, so that will be another great topping of powder on top of yesterdays big dump. There is some light low cloud hovering on the resort so visibility will be a little affected at least. With no wind at base and a reasonably mild high temperature of -6c it should be a pleasant day.   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 9:14am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Shiga Kogen.

We had some clearer skies very early on this morning, but there is lots of cloud around now and that seems to be what we are expecting for the day.

The region looks set to enjoy some clearer and sunny skies during the day tomorrow.

Mid week some milder conditions are likely and rain lower down in the valleys but while it might not be as cold we should be getting snowed on.


Official snow depths numbers reported by different areas of Shiga Kogen:

Please note that these numbers are the official numbers that ski resorts publish and we check and update them each morning.



Ichinose Family

Ichinose Diamond




Okushiga Kogen

Sun Valley

Takamagahara Mammoth



270cm   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 9:38am
Weather conditions: Cloudy but quite bright
New snowfall: 13cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Madarao.

Nice delivery of fresh snow to report this morning after what I felt was a bit of an odd day weather wise. Still... result! The resort itself is reporting 10cm and I actually measure a bit more.

Earlier on there was a bit of blue up there and even some sunshine, but it's more generally cloudy now as I write this report.

Apparently, the 4th Sunday of February is "Snow Day". Now you know!

Sunshine likely tomorrow.


Official snow depth:

Operating lifts:

Number 1 lift
Number 2 quad lift
Number 3A lift
Super quad lift
Number 11 lift
Number 12 lift
Number 13 lift
Number 15 lift

Powder Wave I
Powder Wave II
River Line
Powder Theater
Free Ride Park
Adventure Aisle
Crystal Bowl

Kids Park

Planned nighta operations this season:

Every Saturday until 24th March 2018   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 10:06am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --

A fine generally cloudy morning with new fresh snow to report.

And we are expecting a day of sunshine tomorrow - should be a good day to be out with the camera.

Next decent snowfall looks due around Wednesday into Thursday but we are looking at milder conditions with the chance of rain especially at lower elevations. Let's hope not!


Today is the last day of the Zao Juhyo Matsuri festival and will be held at 6pm, 7pm and 8pm in the Yokokura area.


Lifts and course info:

- All lifts appear to be opening as scheduled
- Note: the Karamatsu pair lift usually only operates on weekends
- All areas open

Official snow depths:

- Summit area: 215cm
- Paradise area: 240cm
- Chuo area: 240cm
- Utopia area: 260cm
- Uwanodai area: 165cm
- Oomori area: 180cm


Zao Onsen forecast:

Zao Onsen 6-day snow and weather forecast

Floodlit night skiing is planned as follows:

In the Uwanodai area:
Daily until Sunday 4th March 2018
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 9th March until Sunday 18th March 2018

In the Yokokura area:
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only until Sunday 18th February 2018
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 2nd March until Sunday 11th March 2018

Night time 'light up' sightseeing ropeway is planned for the following dates:

February 2018: every day
March 2018: 1st-4th   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Sunday 25th February 2018, 12:23pm
Weather conditions: Cloudy Skies...
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: --
Appi Sunday,

Currently cloudy skies here at Appi with very light winds and a few flakes falling. The next few days should offer the same weather with Tuesday the start of a warming spell arriving in full force on Thursday with dare I say +3 degrees on the temperature.

With the sudden rise in temperature we’ll also see a massive increase in the wind velocity. It’s forecast to be blowing at 24m/s which to the average person is upwards of 85kmh…I certainly wouldn’t be advising anyone venture up top that day but lets hope in typical Appi forecast fashion it’s wrong.

The mountain is in great shape and relatively quiet on the piste even though it’s the weekend.


Planned lift operations (subject to change):

- APPI Gondola
- Central quad
- Central number 2 lift
- Central number 3 lift A
- Central number 4 lift
- Central number 5 lift
- Central number 6 lift
- Sailer Gondola
- Sailer quad
- Vista quad
- Nishimori lift

Note: The Sailer Gondola, Central Number 4 lift and Vista quad are usually rested on normal weekdays


Official snow depth:

295cm   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Grandeco Now
19th Oct, 14:51am
Niseko Now
19th Oct, 14:00pm
Myoko Now
06th Oct, 15:27am
Yuzawa Now
10th Sep, 17:36am
Madarao Now
12th Aug, 0:17pm
Furano Now
06th May, 9:04am
Hakuba Now
06th May, 9:02
Nozawa Onsen Now
06th May, 8:41
Shiga Kogen Now
06th May, 8:35
Zao Now
06th May, 8:30am
Naeba Now
06th May, 8:28am
Minakami Now
06th May, 8:27am
Appi Kogen Now
06th May, 8:04
Geto Kogen Now
06th May, 8:01