Snow and weather reports posted on Sunday 1st April 2018

Niseko Now!

Sunday 6th December 2015, 9:10am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 18cm
Snow depth: 60cm
Good morning to you from the Niseko area where I have another 18cm of snow to report since yesterday morning. Snow was falling for pretty much the whole day yesterday and has continuing overnight. It's cold and the snow looks and feels very nice... and I have no doubt it feels pretty good if you're sliding down a slope on it too this morning.

A friend just gave me a call from the mountain and he's getting very excited about '30cm of fresh powder' up there. That sounds good to me.

So more snow expected today before probably easing off tomorrow. After that, we're due for a run of days of clearer skies according to the forecast so hopefully it just won't warm up so conditions keep us through that.

This morning the Niseko Gondola at the Niseko Village resort is moving and there is more of Niseko Grand Hirafu open as well. I have updated the resort-specific information below so do take a look at that. (Once every area is open I won't be listing them all - rather noting any exceptions to what is open).

Note that there is not yet a skiable connection between Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri - use the shuttle bus to get between them if needed.

Until tomorrow morning!


Resort specific news as of 8:30am - subject to change during the day

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Niseko HANAZONO Resort
Lifts planned to be running:
- Ace Family Pair
- Ace Number 2 Quad Center Four
- Ace Number 3
- Hirafu Gondola (for transport)
- King Number 3 triple
- Swinging Monkey
- Hanazono Number 1 quad (for transport)
- Hanazono Number 2 quad
- Hanazono Number 3 quad
Courses planned to be open:
- Family Course
- Alpen Course
- Beginners access
- Center Course
- Shirakaba Course
- Green Course
- Jumbo Course
- Kokutai Course
- Parallel Course
- Silver Dream (upper part)
- Yotei Sunset (ungroomed)

Niseko Village
Lifts planned to be operating:
- Niseko Gondola
- Community Chair
- Banzai Chair
Courses planned to be open:
- Dabesa Course
- Junkyard
- Banzai Course
- Next Stage
- Final Fling
- Shaky Knees

Niseko Annupuri
Lifts planned to be operating:
- Annupuri Gondola
- Jumbo Number 1 quad
- Jumbo Number 2 pair
- Jumbo Number 3 pair
Courses planned to be open:
- Utopia
- Shirakaba
- Paradise
- Junior
- Family


'Nighta' should be starting on Saturday 12th December 2015


Official resort snow depths:

Grand Hirafu / Hanazono:
Top - 145cm
Base - 60cm

Niseko Village:
Top - 70cm
Base - 40cm

Niseko Annupuri:
Top - 50cm
Base - 30cm


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

Yuzawa Now!

Sunday 6th December 2015, 9:43am
Weather conditions: Cloudy skies
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Yesterday was an interesting one. By mid morning things were looking nice and settled with breaks in the cloud and some blue sky... and even some sun. I left for a day trip to Nagaoka City to the north but soon headed into some very dark grey clouds and some heavy rain as well. The weather was nasty up there. Returning back to Yuzawa last night and it was raining heavily here too so obviously a few changes to conditions yesterday.

This morning there is lots of cloud about over Yuzawa - a few breaks in the cloud over Minamiuonuma just to the north - and it is not raining at the moment. The Snowline on the mountains around town is looking similar to how it was yesterday morning I'd say and higher up the open Kagura resort area is reporting 5-10cm of fresh snow, so obviously it was snowing at higher elevations.

The main run at Kagura remains open as it was yesterday and apparently there were quite a few people up there enjoying it yesterday.

Currently it is about 5 degrees here in town and probably won't rise much above that.

Tomorrow through until around Wednesday the forecast tells us to expected slightly warmer and calm conditions with a good dose of sunshine. We probably can't expect any snowfall even at Kagura until at least towards the end of the week.


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

Currently part open:
The main Kagura course - 1500m in length, real snow (and artificial) - is open.
The Mitsumata (snow-mat) area is currently being used as a connection to get to the open Kagura area.
Operating lifts are Mitsumata Ropeway, Mitsumata Number 1 lift, Mitsumata Number 3 lift, Kagura Gondola, Kagura Number 1 romance pair lift and the Kagura Number 1 high speed quad.
The Kagura Gondola needs to be taken to return back to the Mitsumata area.

On standby to open as soon as there is enough snow:
Joetsu Kokusai

Saturday 12th December:
Kagura (Tashiro)
Maiko Snow Resort

Friday 18th December:
Ishiuchi Maruyama
Muikamachi Ski Resort
Yuzawa Nakazato
Yuzawa Park

Saturday 19th December:
GALA Yuzawa
Kandatsu Kogen
Ludens Yuzawa
Nakazato Snow Wood
Muimamachi Hakkaisan
NASPA Ski Garden
Yuzawa Kogen

Thursday 24th December:
Chateaux Shiozawa

Friday 25th December:

Saturday 26th December:
Ishiuchi Hanaoka
Mt Granview


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

Hakuba Now!

Sunday 6th December 2015, 10:10am
Weather conditions: Cloud cover higher up, bit of sun below
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Hello and good morning from Hakuba.

There's lots of cloud this morning covering upper areas of the mountains but a bit of sun shining through down in the village at times as well. There's just a light northerly wind. Things have calmed down since yesterday.

Looking back to yesterday, it continued snowing during the daytime on mountain with around 5cm more fresh; there were some nice conditions to enjoy higher up especially, with a bit heavier going on lower areas that are open. Decent snow cover generally on the areas open though of course we still don't have a huge amount of snow yet and care is still needed. I'm waiting to take my new skis out - though I'm perhaps always a bit over-protective of brand new gear!

There's new snowfall to report from base this morning and a temperature of about +1C just before 10am.

Over the new few days we are told by the forecasts to expect clearer weather conditions and perhaps lots of sun. We're going to have to make do with the snow we have at the moment until maybe the end of the week which looks like it currently holds promise. So expect warmer conditions and sunshine if you plan to be here in the first half of the coming week.


Resorts that are currently at least part open - subject to change

Hakuba 47:
Hakuba 47 is reporting 0cm of new snowfall this morning; 5cm falling on upper slopes during the day yesterday.
The upper area of Route 1, Route 2, Route 3, Route 4, Route 5, Route 6 and Route 8 are now open.
Planned lifts:
Gondola, Line AB, Line C, Line E
Official snow depth
Upper: 95cm
Base: 20cm

Hakuba Goryu:
Hakuba Goryu is reporting 0cm of new snowfall at base; 5cm of new snowfall on upper slopes.
The upper Panorama Course and Grand Prix courses at Hakuba Goryu are now open.
Planned lifts:
Telecabin Gondola (to get to the upper area that is currently open)
Alps Number 1 pair lift
Alps Number 3 pair lift
Official snow depth
Alps: 75cm
Iimori: -cm
Toomi: -cm

Hakuba Happo-one:
Hakuba Happo-one is reporting 0cm of new snowfall.
The Usagidaira, Panorama and part of Kurobishi areas are now skiable.
Planned lifts:
Adam Gondola
Alpen quad lift
Kurobishi Number 2 quad lift
Kokusai Number 3 lift
Panorama pair lift
Official snow depth
Usagidaira: 90cm
Nakiyama: -cm
Sakka: -cm

Tsugaike Kogen:
The upper part of the Han-no-ki course area is open.
Planned lifts:
Eve Gondola
Han-no-ki high speed pair lift
Official snow depth
Tsuga-no-mori: 90cm
Maruyama: -cm

Other planned resort opening dates

12th December:
Hakuba Cortina:

18th December
Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field:

Mid December until late March
Hakuba Norikura Onsen:
Hakuba Sanosaka:   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Sunday 6th December 2015, 10:11am
Weather conditions: Cloudy clearing up, some sun
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: 30cm
A good morning to you from Shiga Kogen.

So yesterday we saw a number of resort areas open up courses and get lifts moving, and below I have added all of the information available for you for each of the areas open, which are: Ichinose Family, Kumanoyu, Takamagahara Mammoth, Yakebitaiyama and Yokoteyama.

This morning lots of cloud about and even a bit of sun as well - the dusting of snow overnight is probably the last that will fall for a number of days now. The general trend this week is for clearer conditions and as we head into the early week expecting sunshine and slightly warmer temperatures. Hopefully it will remain cold enough for the snow that is here to keep.

The end of the coming week is looking good for more snow. I'll keep you updated on that as we get closer...


Resort areas that are currently open (Sunday 6th December) - subject to change

Ichinose Family
Number 2 Pair A line lift is operating.
Courses open:
Ichinose Family Front course (lower part)

Number 2 Pair A and B line lifts are operating.
Courses open:
Kumanoyu Number 2 Beginner Course
Kumanoyu Number 3 Beginner Course (part)
Kumanoyu Number 4 Beginner Course (part)

Takamagahara Number 2 triple lift is operating.
Courses open:
The lower course area is open.

Number 2 and Number 3 Rapid lifts are operating.
Courses open:
Karamatsu Course (part - 850m)
South Course (part - 960m)

Yokoteyama First Sky B Line and Yokoteyama Second Sky lifts are operating.
Courses open:
Yokoteyama First Gelende
Yokoteyama Second Gelende A course (part)
Yokoteyama Second Gelende
Yokoteyama Second Gelende Rinkan (part)   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Sunday 6th December 2015, 10:39am
Weather conditions: Mostly cloudy, some blue sky
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Morning from Nozawa.

The weather turned yesterday and we had rain (and perhaps some sleet overnight), but the result is that the snow from the base area has disappeared again though it does look like there might have been some more snow higher up on the mountain. Are those some cheeky ski trails I can see on the snow on the upper Yamabiko courses (webcam image as shown on the PC version of this report)? I think they are!

Generally cloudy conditions this morning with some breaks here and there and some blue sky to be seen. Forecast is for cloud and a high of about 5C degrees here in the village. It should be colder tonight than it was last night with sun and clearer skies expected tomorrow and more of that to continue until around Thursday.

We very likely can't expect the resort to be able to open next weekend, unless we see a considerable change in the forecast. Hopefully the snow gods will see that as a challenge and rise up to it!


Official snow depths (as of 4th December 2015):

Yamabiko - 20cm
Uenotaira - 10cm
Hikage - 0cm
Nagasaka - 0cm
Karasawa - 0cm



Resort not open yet



Resort not open yet


Nozawa Onsen 6 day weather and snow forecast

Nozawa Onsen main resort data   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Sunday 6th December 2015, 11:40am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 3cm
Snow depth: 60cm
Yesterday the official opening ceremony of the resort took place over at Uwanodai in the snow. The resort is reporting a fresh 5cm of snow but not that much down here in the village since my last report.

It's a cold morning and light snow falling still but we are now expecting conditions to clear and generally weather conditions to be calmer at least for the first part of the week. Decent snowfall perhaps making a new appearance at the end of the week.

Lifts that are currently operating:

- Ropeways
- Onsen Number 1 pair lift
- Chuo Number 1 pair AB
- Utopia Number 2 pair


Official snow depths (Sunday 6th December 15):

Utopia: 70cm
Chuo: 60cm
Paradise: -cm
Uwanodai: 30cm


6 day Zao Onsen snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Furano Now!

Sunday 6th December 2015, 11:46am
Weather conditions: Cloudy and snowing with bursts of sunshine just to keep us smiling.
New snowfall: 30cm
Snow depth: 105cm
I thought snowfall and sunshine would make a sparkly rainbow...

But it didn't.

Still very pretty today, though, with an extra 20 centimetres of snow falling overnight. Clearing snow at least once a day, twice is better, is a never-ending challenge now. But it's also a bit zen and enjoyable. So far... ask me in February.

Some industrious person had cleared the stairs up to one of the Kitanomine gondola carparks today, so I went up for a look.

Very deep snow (duh) and signs that a groomer has come right down the the Kitanomine gondola station, not quite under the quad chair but along the side it. Nice to see.

As I stood there, I heard a magnificent hum and thrum of snow grooming machines (which I am sure have a more technical name). I hope, sincerely, they do not wake the bears.

All this was about 8am (it's my day off today so I'm running a bit later) but then at about 9.30am there was glorious sunshine. That's when I ran outside, a grown adult, thinking I might see a sparkling rainbow.

At 8am it was below zero celsius at Kitanomine Village. I just crossed the Sorachi River into town and it was zero. There is no breeze to speak of.

The resort has opened the 'Furano Zone' right down to the bottom, which means the 100 person gondola and the top chair (2 person) are open but now you can ski the full 900 plus metres down. Yay!

Photo 1 is my view from the Kitanomine gondola carpark to its south.
Photo 2 is the view back towards Furano-shi (town)

Have a great day. Hope it's lovely where you are.    Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Madarao Now
16th Jul, 11:46pm
Grandeco Now
16th Jul, 11:27am
Niseko Now
16th Jul, 11:26am
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