Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 1st April 2018

Geto Kogen Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 7:40am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 43cm
Snow depth: --
The snow has continued from yesterday and into this morning - and the windy conditions too.

Having said that the snow might well ease off during today with cloud on the forecast. So it would seem the peak of this particular storm has passed.

Once the winds die down in particular, conditions should be pretty amazing. Could do with a bit of after all this full-on winter!


Official snow depths:

Top: 280cm
Base: 180cm

Operating lifts:

* All lifts scheduled to be operating apart from Number 1 Gondola today

Courses & Tree Runs:

* All main courses open apart from B2 today
* Tree Run courses not yet available

Nighta skiing operations are planned at Geto Kogen on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until 25th February 2018.


Welcome to our new Geto Kogen Now daily reports section

Geto Kogen is a ski and snowboard resort in Iwate Prefecture in the northern Tohoku region of Honshu, the main island of Japan. It’s known for heavy snowfalls, quality snow and tree run courses. Hopefully we will be able to bring you some good snowy reports through this season.

For more information on Geto Kogen please check out these pages on SnowJapan:

Resort Spotlight on SnowJapan
Basic resort details on SnowJapan

As with all our daily ‘Now’ reports, the bottom line is that they are independent and honest – they are published by us, not by the resort. The new snowfall number is being measured at the base area of the resort.
   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 7:41am
Weather conditions: Continuing Snow
New snowfall: 69cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning! "Storm Claudia" has really settled in and the snow hasn't stopped falling for over 24 hours now. On top of the 59cm we received yesterday, a further 69cm has fallen since yesterday morning. The pistes will be fresh and have plenty of new snow on them, however due to continuing strong winds, the Dragondola, Takenokodaira Romance and Prince Gondola No. 1 are on standby. It is still possible to get up to the top of the ski area using Prince Gondola No. 2.

The forecast is suggesting the high winds are going to continue throughout today, easing off during the daytime tomorrow. The snow will continue to fall, albeit at a slower rate, through until Saturday morning, when we will get a break until Monday evening. The next storm is already on the horizon, blowing in early next week.

In the meantime, enjoy those free snow refills and get after it!

Tidy!   Read more ...

Furano Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 7:53am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: --
There is light wind blowing around in the village which is still moving the trees a fair bit, but the most intense part of the front has passed. Overnight there has been 5cm of light snow which will be a nice topping on the slopes. Hopefully the Kitanomine Gondola will operate today as there will be premium snow conditions up on the top slopes that haven't been skied on since the weekend. Tomorrow looks like it will be similarly cloudy with light snow through the day.   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 7:58am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 36cm
Snow depth: --
Morning everyone.

This winter storm is still over the region and providing us with further snow. The resort is reporting 30cm of fresh snow; I am measuring 36cm. Wind has been a factor, so it has been blown about a lot meaning there are drifts and more/less in places.

We should be over the peak of it now though with things expected to calm down during the day today.

Perhaps we might get to see a bit of sun at times from tomorrow. Even if things are calmer and brighter by the weekend, come Monday more snow is due to be back over Madarao.

That kind of regular pattern sounds good to me.

The coming weekend should be really great. Quite a few other people will probably be thinking the same, so plan to get here early is my best advice.


Official snow depth:

Operating lifts:

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

Powder Wave II
Free Ride Park
Adventure Aisle
Kids Park

Planned nighta operations this season:

Daily between 29th December 2017 and 3rd January 2018
7th January 2018
11th February 2018
Every Saturday between 4th January and 24th March 2018   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 8:30am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds remain!
New snowfall: 28cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning everyone.

The snow continues to build up and rather quickly at that. I have another 28cm of fresh snowfall here at base to report to you this morning.

I see this morning that Niseko Grand Hirafu have their upper official snow depth at 320cm; while Annupuri have their official base snow depth at 130cm. That seems particularly low, but there you go. I am just reporting the information they put out there. 130cm does seem unrealistically low - as anyone here will surely agree with - and actually all of them seem low. But it is worth pointing out again that the official snow depth numbers can't be expected to increase as per the amount of new snowfall that is reported. For a number of reasons including some I can't explain particularly well - snow gets compacted and groomed etc.

Happily there seems to be less wind today. It is still quite windy but not the wild conditions we have had over the last few days. Perhaps some lifts that were closed yesterday should be available this morning and it should be a very nice morning to be outside and enjoying all of this fresh snow. Resort specific information updated in below, so please check that out. (Looks like just the Gondola and top lifts are affected by wind and on stand-by at the start of the day).

Gates will be closed though.

If you are wanting to see the sun, you might have to wait until the weekend as snow is still forecast for today and tomorrow.

I wonder how much snow we'll get by the end of the year. With the snow I am adding today, my total for the season so far is up to 547cm. I am looking forward to putting my "season recap" report together early in January!


As some rather naughty people might not read the reports every day, I'd like to bring my comments from yesterday to your attention. If you did not see my report yesterday, please do take a read here.

Many thanks to everyone who has sent in kind messages of support, comments and suggestions. It is always very nice to hear from you and they are always really appreciated. :)


Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6m: -7℃, 15cm, calm. Moiwa800m: -9.1℃, W9.8m/s, 30cm snowfall with small snowdrifts development. Annupuri1150m: -13℃, W10m/s, 40cm snowfall. Hirafu1100m: -12℃, light breeze, 20cm snowfall. Coastal data: Benkei cape NW14m/s, Kamui cape W12m/s, 1008hPa, 2.8m waves.

The snow keeps falling but the winter pressure pattern is settling down making the wind calm down. 5am observations showed that although some depth hoar layer due to wind and temperature change are present in the snowpack, the avalanche hazard is starting to stabilize in general. Risk of a large avalanche from Dec 24th layer is still to be highly expected in some slope aspects and inclination. Better stay vigilant in shady slopes too.

There are no such thing as a “safe” winter mountain. The snow is in great shape, however a small slide on a steep slope can trigger a deeper/larger avalanche as it runs down. Better not underestimate the risks you’re taking. Sketchy conditions continues today and the same conditions applies for all surrounding mountains. Tourers beware. Do not stop at the bottom of the gully/valley, avalanches strikes from above you.

Peak lifts operation is undetermined. All gates will remain closed. Please respect the ski patrol’s instructions. Niseko respects the freedom of all users, but is also deeply concerned about their safety.


Thursday 28th December 2017

Resort specific information (operations subject to change):

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Niseko HANAZONO Resort

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts except Ace Number 4 and King Number 2 are operating
** Strong winds are affecting the top King Number 4 lift at the start of the day

Official snow depth:
- Top: 320cm
- Base: 150cm

Niseko Annupuri Kokusai

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts are operating
** Strong winds are affecting the Gondola and top Jumbo Number 4 lift at the start of the day

Official snow depth:
- Top: 210cm
- Base: 130cm

Niseko Village

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts except Country Road Chair are operating
** Strong winds are affecting the top Wonderland Chair lift at the start of the day

Official snow depth:
- Top: 230cm
- Base: 170cm


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, Banzai Chair   Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 8:34am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 42cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Yuzawa.

We are still enjoying a full-on traditional Yuzawa snow storm, I am happy to report. Having said that, there's probably less new snowfall to report than I thought there would be this morning with snow falling through the day yesterday and overnight. Still, there is a good new 40cm at our measuring point. I suspect strong winds blowing the fresh snow around wildly at times yesterday is affecting the number today... indeed, Kagura are reporting a large 50-80cm of fresh snow this morning.

Here's the fresh snowfall numbers resorts are reporting this morning:

Kagura - 80cm
Kagura Mitsumata - 50cm
Kagura Tashiro - 60cm
Maiko Snow Resort - 30+cm

There's lots of snow around town and even more on the slopes. It's what we love to see.

I suspect that I will soon not need to be mentioning what is open and what is not open because we'll be getting to that 'all open' stage.

The forecast seems to be saying that the peak of this particular batch of heavy snow has passed and things will be calming down as the day goes on. We still might be getting further snow though today and tomorrow with the chance of some sun over the weekend. Snow shouldn't be far away though as we enter January, so things are looking good!


Updated: Thursday 28th December 2017

** Official snow depths (where available) and resort specific information. Note that while we manually check this information each morning, sometimes official information is updated later than the time of these reports and so at times there may be an apparent delay.

Ski resorts in Yuzawa:

GALA Yuzawa
GALA Yuzawa is open with 6 lifts operating and 9 courses (Central and Northern Areas) open.
The sledding area is also open.
- 170cm

- Iwappara is open. Nighta until 8pm.
- 140cm

Almost all of Kagura is open.
Only the Mitsumata area open this morning due to weather conditions. Kagura may open depending on weather.
The Dragondola connecting Kagura with Naeba is now operating (when weather allows!)
The top Kagura Number 5 lift should be open from 1st January.
- Kagura area: 280cm
- Mitsumata area: 180cm
- Tashiro area: 230cm

Kandatsu Kogen
Kandatsu Kogen is mostly open.
- 150cm

Naeba is open.
The Dragondola connecting Naeba with Kagura is now operating (when weather allows!)
- Base: 150cm

NASPA Ski Garden
- NASPA Ski Garden is open with all lifts operating and all the main courses available. The Mogul and Slopestyle areas are not yet available.
- 155cm

Yuzawa Kogen
Yuzawa Kogen is open with all lifts operating and courses open.
- Top: 150cm
- Base: 100cm

Yuzawa Park
Yuzawa Park is now open with all lifts operating
- 110cm

Yuzawa Nakazato
Yuzawa Nakazato is part open with six lifts operating.
- 110cm


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

Ishiuchi Maruyama
Ishiuchi Maruyama is open. They don't seem to be publishing a snow depth number!

Joetsu Kokusai
Joetsu Kokusai is open with 19 courses available.
- 140cm

Maiko Snow Resort
All three of the main areas of Maiko Snow Resort are (at least part) open.
Gondola on hold this morning due to strong winds.
Nighta operations are scheduled to begin from 28th December.
- Top: 170cm
- Base: 110cm

Muikamachi Hakkaisan
Most of Hakkaisan is now open.
- 180cm   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 8:44am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 24cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Hakuba.

More snow to report this morning after a snowy and windy day yesterday. It's building up very nicely now.

The 'fresh snow' headlines from the resorts:

Hakuba Cortina: 40-50cm base; 50-70cm top - taking their official snow depth up to over 3m
Hakuba Iwatake: 20cm
Hakuba Happo-one: 20cm
Hakuba Goryu: 20-40cm
Hakuba 47: 20-30cm

I have 24cm of observed snowfall at base to add to the report too.

There is still a bit of wind around this morning which seems to be affecting mostly lifts at Happo-one and Tsugaike Kogen, but we're hoping that may ease off as often happens. Some forecasts even give us a chance of seeing a bit of sun later today. For now though it is still snowing.

Once things calm down, I expect pretty much everywhere to be fully (or at least almost fully) open and available.

A good way to end the year - with more potentially heavy snowfall due to be with us in the first few days of January.


Ski resort opening status on Thursday 28th December 2017:

Hakuba Happo-one

Operating lifts:
- Most lifts (apart from a few lower lifts) are generally operating
- But many upper lifts on hold again this morning due to weather conditions

Courses open:
- All course are now generally open (weather and lift permitting!)
- Only the Kurobishi Off-Piste Area remains closed

Official snow depth:
- Kurobishi: 220cm
- Usagidaira: 160cm
- Lower: 80cm


Hakuba Goryu

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Alps Number 2 & 4 are operating
- Scheduled to be open for nighta until 9:30pm, daily in the Toomi area

Courses open:
- All courses apart from Adventure are open

Official snow depth:
- Top: 255cm
- Toomi: 90cm
- Iimori: 60cm


Hakuba 47

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Line D are operating

Courses open:
- All main courses are open
- The Tree Riding Zone is now open

Official snow depth:
- Top: 240cm
- Base: 90cm


Tsugaike Kogen

Operating lifts:
- Most lifts are now operating for the season
- However, weather conditions affecting a number of lifts again including the Gondola this morning

Courses open:
- All courses areas apart from Kane-no-naru-oka 2 are open

Official snow depth:
- Tsuga-no-mori: 290cm
- Han-no-ki: 285cm
- Maruyama: 130cm
- Shirakaba: 180cm
- Oya-no-hara: 125cm
- Kane-no-naru-oka: 125cm


Hakuba Cortina

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Number 5 are operating

Courses open:
- Most courses open, confirming safety at the start of the day

Official snow depth:
- Top: 300-320cm
- Base: 200-220cm


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field

Operating lifts:
- Most lifts are now operating for the season

Courses open:
- View C
- View D
- North
- East
- South
- Gezan
- Sunny Valley
- White Ribbon
- Paradise
- by1
- by2
- by3

Official snow depth:
- Top: 160cm
- Base: 80cm


Hakuba Norikura Onsen

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Alps Number 7 and Alps Number 10 are operating

Official snow depth:
- 140cm


Hakuba Valley Kashimayari

Operating lifts:
- Number 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 7 lifts are operating

Official snow depth:
- 100cm


Hakuba Sanosaka

Operating lifts:
- All three lifts are operating

Official snow depth:
- 90cm   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 8:57am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 18cm
Snow depth: --
Morning everyone.

More snow to report to you this morning and it continues to fall.

The resort are reporting up to 50cm on the upper slopes overnight with 10cm on the ground in lower areas. There was a lot of wind around yesterday and that I think is affecting my measured number, 18cm. I am pretty sure there has been more than that, but that's what is being measured this morning.

Whatever, lots of fresh new snow over the last few days and conditions should be really great this morning.

Limited visibility especially on upper areas of the mountain.

We can perhaps expect less snow today and tomorrow, but the snow clouds are due to remain over the region so I will probably be bringing you fresh numbers.

Over the weekend there might be some calmer and even clearer skies with more good snow potential on the forecast for early in the week. That would be a very good start to January.



Thursday 28th December 2017

Fresh snowfall (as reported by the resort):

- Yamabiko (1407m): 50cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 25cm
- Hikage (660m): 10cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 10cm
- Karasawa (563m): 10cm

Official snow depth numbers:

- Yamabiko (1407m): 265cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 205cm
- Hikage (660m): 145cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 140cm
- Karasawa (563m): 130cm

All lifts operating except the following:

- Yunomine pair
- Mizunashi triple
- Kandahar pair

All courses now at least part open except the following:

- Challenge 39 wall
- Mukobayashi
- Grand Prix
- Hachiman
- Kamoshika
- Kandahar   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 9:11am
Weather conditions: Fair, cloud, some sun expected
New snowfall: 25cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Appi,

Thankfully the winds have abated somewhat and it may actually turn out to be a decent day here. On and off sunshine most of the day with chilly temperatures staying with us until Saturday and into Sunday morning. Not much in the way of snow coming our way until Monday next week. We may see a few cm today but I’m sure the wind will wash it away.

Looking ahead to the weekend we’ll see the temperatures rising and the sun making a much welcome appearance.

Dress warm and have a great day out there.


Planned lift operations on Thursday 28th December 2017 (subject to change):

At time of writing Gondolas and some lifts affected by wind - hopefully will change.

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

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


Official snow depth:

175cm   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 9:12am
Weather conditions: Snow and wind
New snowfall: 37cm
Snow depth: --
Lots more snow during the day yesterday along with wind and some pretty hairy conditions at times.

This morning the snow is still falling and it is still windy, but perhaps less so than yesterday and the forecasts do tell us to expect conditions to calm down somewhat during the day today.

For those coming for the weekend - there might even be some sunshine. Which should make for a great few days with all of this fresh snow to enjoy.

Don't worry though; it's set to remain cold and there's more snow lined up on the forecast from Monday.



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

Please note that these numbers are the official numbers that ski resorts publish.



Ichinose Family

Ichinose Diamond




Okushiga Kogen

Sun Valley

Takamagahara Mammoth



80cm   Read more ...

Grandeco Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 9:18am
Weather conditions: Snow clouds
New snowfall: 12cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Grandeco.

There has been another 12cm of fresh snow to record this morning.

Still a little windy at the start of the day and visibility is poor due to the heavy snow and blowing winds. It is also a rather dark day! Pay attention when you are out there.

It is probably worth getting out though with some is excellent powder snow conditions this morning.

Keep warm!


Lifts operating:

- All lifts now operating

Courses open:

- All courses now open

Official snow depth:
- 140cm

- Grandeco snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Myoko Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 10:08am
Weather conditions: The sun tried to peek out there....
New snowfall: 58cm
Snow depth: --
More leisurely reporting today; no job on the hill to run out to, although this was another 5am wake up for snow clearing. It just kept coming down all through the day and last night, and snow still is falling. I was going to say, “not as heavy as before,” but then it snuck up on me again and is coming down steadily.

I’m giving a bit of an estimate on the snow depth for today; because I rushed out, I couldn’t clear off my 24-hour snow study board; the second, which is supposed to stay in through the length of a storm, was there, though. Both were completely buried this morning, so I can make a pretty scientific estimate. I can also tell you that if you try and step into the fresh snow, you are going to sink way down. Like a meter, before things firm up. Might want to think about that before heading off the groomed; you may not move much, and you may not be able to get up if you fall.


Akakura Kanko:
210 cm, -7°

Akakura Onsen:
235cm, -5°

Ikenotaira Onsen:
135cm, -4.5°

Myoko Suginohara:
20cm, -10° (on the hill)

Seki Onsen:
210 cm, -9°

Myoko Ski Park:
300 cm, -3°

Kyukamura RunRun:
270 cm, -3°

Tangram Ski Circus:
150 cm, -4°

Madarao Kogen:
180 cm, -7°

Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 12:41pm
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 70cm
Snow depth: --
Lots of snow and wind, cleared my car park 3 times yesterday including in the evening and there was about 40cm or more each time, ridiculous.

Tenjin is shut again, Hodaigi had 60cm at the base, yesterday morning, opened the top lift in the afternoon and they had to close it after an hour and rescue everyone. Heard a lifty got stuck on the way down at day end and was rescued with a groomer at 6:30m.

At Okutone now and there is loads of great snow.

In summary, an excellent storm to build the snow base, reported at 2.5m at Tenjin this morning, maybe a little too much for your average punter to ride on.

(Not that anyone reading this is in any way average!) ;)


Ski resorts in Minakami:

Minakami Hodaigi
Minakami Kogen Fujiwara
Minakami Kogen Ski Resort
Norn Minakami
Okutone Snow Park
Tanigawadake Tenjindaira
Tanigawa Onsen White Valley


Resort Spotlights with more detail:

Norn Minakami
Okutone Snow Park


Please note that the snowfall numbers posted in this report will be observed from close to the base Tenjindaira Ropeway station - which is often much more than in the central town area of Minakami.    Read more ...

Zao Now!

Thursday 28th December 2017, 13:48pm
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 32cm
Snow depth: --
Apologies for this report appearing late - technical issues. It was written around 9am


Lots of fresh snow on the ground this morning. Great scenes of locals struggling to cope with it and happy skiers out to hit the slopes.

Continued snow is expected into tomorrow as well, so we should be getting more built up.

Pretty much all of the resort now open and with this snow we should be soon at the 'all open' status.


Lifts and courses:

- Most lifts are now operating and most courses are now open

Official snow depths:

- Summit area: 100cm
- Paradise area: 120cm
- Chuo area: 120cm
- Utopia area: 120cm
- Uwanodai area: 70cm
- Oomori area: 70cm


Zao Onsen forecast:

Zao Onsen 6-day snow and weather forecast

Floodlit night skiing for the 2017-2018 season 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:
Daily until Monday 8th January 2018
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only from Friday 12th January 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:

December 2017: 29th-31st
January 2018: 1st-7th, 13th-14th, 20th-21st, 27th-31st
February 2018: every day
March 2018: 1st-4th
   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Madarao Now
12th Aug, 0:17pm
Grandeco Now
26th Jul, 8:14am
Niseko Now
25th Jul, 15:02am
Yuzawa Now
29th Jun, 17:50am
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
Myoko Now
06th May, 8:35am
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