A small gap in the snowfall this morning; the stars came out after 10 last night, and the sun was shining this morning, even though the temperature was -9.
It doesn't look like it will last, though, as the forecast is for potentially heavy snow and the sky all around has that light white look of snow in the air. Even as I'm writing this the mountains have disappeared into the snow.
Luckily, though, the high winds of the past two days have faded away - it must have been plenty cold for anyone climbing yesterday.
Which is all good! We can use a healthy addition to the snowpack.
It is another chilly morning with -16c recorded in the resort.
There has been some light snow this morning that has amounted to 3cm. The snow has stopped for the moment and there is low cloud enveloping the mountain which means there will be areas compromised visibility in some places. Lightt snow is forecast throught today and tomorrow.
The main courses have been groomed overnight and should be in excellent condition.
Good morning from Hirafu and I have another 25cm or so of fresh snow to report. Very nice snow too, conditions should be very good indeed this morning out on the mountain (where there will likely be even more of course).
It's another very cold morning and I'm glad to say less wind. Yesterday wind make access limited at the resorts, but at the start of the day while we have a moderate wind blowing it does not seem to be affecting lift operations. Obviously that can change any time, but fingers crossed...
So it's snowing - still! :) - but visibility is limited.
It's that Sapporo Snow Festival time of the year, with many people visiting Niseko making the trip over to Sapporo to take a look at the very impressive snow sculptures and enjoy the festivities. It's well worth a look.
Niseko Avalanche Report
Niseko base 6am: -10C, 25cm new snow in last 12 hrs. Moiwa 800m: -14C, wind W15m/s, major snowdrift development, poor visibility. Annupuri 1150m: -18C, wind W16m/s, snowdrift development. Hirafu 1000m: -13C, 25cm new snow, snowdrift development. Annupuri peak 1308m: -18.1C, wind WNW7.7m/s. Cape Benkei, Cape Kamui: no data.
Strong wind and heavy snow have entered the region and there has been major snowdrift development on leeward faces. Mikaeri Bowl, Osawa cornice slope, Kozen no sawa, HigashiOne cornice slope the avalanche risk is HIGH. Peak gates 2&3 will be closed. Others undecided, please follow the patrols instructions. From observation around 800m elev, new slab development on cornices and knolls is 120cm. There is possibility of 80cm surface slab fracture easily triggered from rider stimulation.
Dont carelessly jump cornices or into steep slopes today. The snow in the trees is good. Beware trees, cracks, frostbite.
Official snow depth numbers and lift news at time of writing:
Uenotaira pulled through later in the morning yesterday - they must have been moving tons of snow as they ended up reporting 50cm of fresh snow with the snow depth up there jumping up to 235cm. Impressive. Unfortunately I wasn't able to get up there to sample, but I heard brave stories of happiness at being able to play in the new snow.
It didn't clear up in the end yesterday and was snowing for most of the time. This morning it is still snowing lightly and the resort is reporting 8cm of fresh snow on the Nagasaka and Hikage areas, 10cm on Uenotaira and 15cm up at Yamabiko.
Keeping cold and as of 9am about -6 degrees here in the village area, with a low temperature of -13 degrees on the mountain. It should be snow showers for the day today with a break from snowfall tomorrow (just cloud?)...... and some potentially heavy snowfall again coming over the weekend.
Yokatta, great to see winter return. I am going to get up there today to sample the new snow.
Morning from Hakuba and after that rather windy day yesterday with top lifts affected, it is calmer this morning and all resorts seem to be open as planned as I write this report.
It was of course great to get that new snow yesterday, but we want - and need - more (but when do we ever not want more snow?!)
I heard reports of people rushing out to places like Cortina only to be disappointed to find those lifts not moving. I recommend a quick look at their website early on to check on the lifts if at all possible, especially on a morning like yesterday.
Anyway, on to today. It's good and cold. -9C as of 9am. Not a whole lot of snow to report, Cortina again with the most at up to 15cm. 47/Goryu are reporting up to 3-5cm on upper slopes so just a thin new layer.
Earlier on there was some blue sky around and the sun shining down on us but it seems to be starting to cloud over more and some local forecasts do say it might snow this afternoon, but don't expect anything significant.
We are expecting a bit of sun tomorrow but what's most interesting is the snow that is due over the weekend. While it's not going to be quite as cold, it's looking promising snow-wise.
Let's see how it is all looking tomorrow. I will of course report.
Official snow depth numbers and operations (as of 6th February 2014):
Hakuba Goryu: Reporting 3cm of new snowfall at Iimori, 1cm at Toomi and 3cm up top. Upper - 280cm Toomi - 155cm Iimori - 125cm
Hakuba 47: Reporting 2-3cm of new snowfall at base and 5cm up top. Upper - 255cm Lower - 85cm
It was cold out there yesterday, proper cold. A biting wind as well. Icicles coming down from rooftops. A real mid winter picture it was. A good thing of course, especially after just a few days previous.
More snow overnight, perhaps 10cm or so at town levels, and resorts around town including Kagura reporting 10-20cm of fresh on the slopes. The wind means that there's places with more. Kagura is fully open this morning and so there should be some excellent untouched to be found up there as the main area was closed yesterday. Indeed there should be good conditions everywhere with the new snow we have.
It is snowing at the moment and it's forecast to be snowing on and off during the day today. There's less wind at the moment though stronger winds are likely later on this afternoon. I'm glad to say it is remaining cold and should do tomorrow too even if the snow eases off as forecast.
If you are coming for the weekend be prepared for snow to be falling as it seems we are due snow on Saturday and Sunday. The more the better in terms of the conditions out on the mountain. Fingers crossed.
Another very cold morning here in Madarao with up to 10cm of new snow recorded.
Some blue skies above the mountain as well this morning though clouds do seem to be moving in - below are a few photos from earlier and just now. Perhaps some snow later, clearer tomorrow and then back to snow on Saturday. That's what the forecasts say anyway.
Number 1 Number 2 Number 3A Number 2 quad Number 5 Super quad Number 11 Number 12 Number 13 Number 15 Moving walkway Kids Park
Morning from a snowy and windy Zao again. Over 10cm of fresh snow on the ground, cold, strong winds blowing it about and poor visibility is the story of the day here. Lifts seem to be moving ok though.
We are due to see calmer conditions tomorrow and maybe even some breaks in the cloud but come weekend and we are back to snow. Possibly heavy snow as well, even though it doesn't look like it will be quite as cold as it is the last few days.
Official snow depths (6th February 14): Utopia: 250cm Chuo: 195cm Paradise: 230cm Uwanodai: 140cm Read more ...