Snow and weather reports posted on Friday 17th April 2020

Geto Kogen Now!

Wednesday 8th April 2020, 7:48am
Weather conditions: Sunny clear skies
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Geto Kogen.

This morning there's blue skies and just a gentle breeze.

We did get a bit of rain later on in the day yesterday but it didn't amount to much. There might be some more for later on tonight but there is a chance it might have turned into snow by tomorrow. Sounds like a plan...


Official snow depths:

* Top: 315cm
* Base: 150cm

Planned operating lift information - subject to change:

* Number 1 Gondola
* Number 1 pair lift

Courses & Tree Runs:

* All of the main official courses are available
* Check with the resort for tree run course status which varies

About the coronavirus situation and our daily reports:

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Nozawa Onsen Now!

Wednesday 8th April 2020, 7:49am
Weather conditions: Clear
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Nozawa.

There is actually less cloud around this morning as we enjoy clear skies and sunshine. More sunshine due tomorrow too.

Let's spring!

There's not much more to report really... the top area of the resort remains open.

I will leave you on that note. See you tomorrow.


Wednesday 8th April 2020

Fresh snowfall recorded by resort since yesterday:

- Yamabiko (1615m): 0cm
- Uenotaira (1406m): 0cm
- Lower areas are not reporting any more

Official snow depth numbers (reported by resort):

- Yamabiko (1615m): 175cm
- Uenotaira (1406m): 95cm
- Lower areas are not reporting any more

The following lifts are operating:

- Nagasaka gondola [8:10am until 3:00pm; last one down 3:40pm]
- Yamabiko quad [8:30am until 3:20pm]
- Yamabiko Number 2 quad [8:25am until 3:30pm]

The following courses remain open:

- Yamabiko A
- Yamabiko B
- Yamabiko C
- Yamabiko D
- Yamabiko E
- Kogenashi A
- Kogenashi B
- Bunabayashi (to mid point)

- Ride the Gondola back down to base


About the coronavirus situation and our daily reports:

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Yuzawa Now!

Wednesday 8th April 2020, 8:01am
Weather conditions: Clear and sunny
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Yuzawa.

Yesterday was a fine day. Today will also be a fine day with sunny skies from early morning. It is going to be warming up to somewhere above 15C in town later on. There might be a bit of rain overnight but more sunshine is currently forecast for tomorrow.

Big news from GALA Yuzawa that I didn't notice in time for my report yesterday - their original planned closing date was 6th May, but they have announced that they are going to be closing for the season this coming Sunday, 12th April. In their message they have mentioned the lower-than-usual snowfall through the season as well as rising temperatures and wind in March. They have been doing their best to keep things going in a satisfactory state for as long as possible but it's starting to get difficult. Hence the new closing date. So there are just 5 more days left to ski or board GALA Yuzawa this season.

It will be interesting to see how the planned closing dates of Kagura might also be affected. Will keep an eye out for any information. Right now their original dates remain.

On that note, I just noticed this from Kagura - they are asking people to refrain from talking while riding the Ropeway. You know why... :(


Individual ski resort information: Wednesday 8th April 2020
The below ski areas remain open. All information is checked and updated manually for each report. Subject to change.

GALA Yuzawa

- The Gondola, Barouche, Phaeton, Coach and Victoria lifts are operating
- All courses in the Central Area are open
- The Broadway, Super Broadway and Swan courses and Snow Park are open in the Northern Area
- The Southern Area and downhill course are closed
- Official snow depth: 100cm
- Planned closing date: 12th April


- 18 of 23 courses open
- 11 of 21 courses available
- Official snow depth: 170cm
- Planned closing dates: 6th May (Tashiro); 24th May (Mitsumata)


- All other ski resorts in the area are now closed for the season


Photos (below) from around 8:00am on Wednesday 8th April 2020:

- Kagura
- Yuzawa Kogen [closed]
- Route 17/Yuzawa IC exit


About the coronavirus situation and our daily reports:

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Niseko Now!

Wednesday 8th April 2020, 8:17am
Weather conditions: Cloud, blue sky
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Niseko.

This morning we start the day with cloud and some blue skies and sunshine. More of one or the other depending on which direction you look. We can probably expect a fine and mild day though today but we might get some snowfall overnight tonight and it should be a bit colder. And I will of course let you know about it tomorrow morning.

I think that's it from me today!


Planned ski resort operation information: Wednesday 8th April 2020
Subject to change and weather conditions

Niseko Grand Hirafu

Official snow depth (reported by resort):
- Peak: 295cm
- Base: 45cm

The following lifts are scheduled to be operating:
- Ace Number 2 quad center four
- King Number 3 quad
- King Number 4

- The King-Ace connecting course, Onsenzawa and Miharashi courses are now closed
- Other courses remain open


Niseko Annupuri

Official snow depth (reported by resort):
- Peak: 155cm
- Base: 40cm

The following lifts are scheduled to be operating:
- Annupuri Gondola
- Jumbo Number 1 quad
- Jumbo Number 4 pair

- 9 courses open


Niseko Village

Official snow depth (reported by resort):
- Peak: 170cm
- Base: 40cm

The following lifts are scheduled to be operating:
- Niseko Gondola
- Wonderland Chair

- The top area is open, take the gondola back down to base


- The Niseko HANAZONO area is now closed for the season.
- Night time floodlit operations have closed for the season.


About the coronavirus situation and our daily reports:

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Hakuba Now!

Wednesday 8th April 2020, 8:33am
Weather conditions: Fine and sunny
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --

Good morning from Hakuba.

Out the sun is! It is a lovely morning. Less cloud than yesterday morning but we are on for another fine spring day.

But the huge news to report this morning is that yesterday was the last day of the season for Hakuba Happo-one. It is now closed. I will let them explain in their own words:


"With regard to the infectious disease caused by the New Coronavirus (COVID-19), we request the cooperation of our customers to assist in the prevention and spread of COVID-19. We will take the following measures to ensure the health and safety of our guests, employees and community.

Happo-one Ski Resort will close this season’s ski operation on Wednesday 8th April 2020.

An announcement from the Japanese Government declared a state of emergency concerning the rapid spread of the new coronavirus infection.

There are many guests visiting our ski resort from wider areas such as Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba, Saitama, Osaka, Hyogo, etc.

Based on a revision of existing legislation in relation to influenza and infectious disease, a law has been enacted and The Prime Minister has declared a state of emergency.

The closure of the ski resort will be effective immediately from tomorrow Wednesday 8th April 2020."


Also, Tsugaike Kogen have announced that they will be closed at the end of today. So today (Wednesday) is the last day of the Tsugaike Kogen season.

Here is their message, complete with official use of the word 'bummed' (!):

"Unfortunately, due to Prime Minister Abe's State of Emergency Declaration last night, Tsugaike has decided, out of an abundance of caution, to close the resort for the season as of tomorrow. As such, today, Wednesday April 8th, is the last day of operation for both the ski resort, and the ropeway for accessing backcountry terrain.

We are just as bummed as anyone else, but these are unprecedented times that are being met with unprecedented measures. Thanks to everyone who came out this season, and we look forward to when things return to normal and the snows begin to fall again next season."


Even with the declaration from Tokyo yesterday, I was not expecting that. No doubt people have varying opinions on the subject but... those are big decisions. I have not heard of any ski area in Japan closing for this reason yet - perhaps Happo-one is the first to do this (updated: Tsugaike too); certainly there is a good chance that it is the first major one to do so.

As far as I can tell, Hakuba Goryu and Hakuba 47 currently remain open. But I will of course keep an eye on that situation.

Data table:

The information in this table is data reported by the ski resortsNew snowfall (lower)New snowfall (upper)TOTAL ACCUMULATION (UPPER)
Hakuba 470cm0cm556cm
Hakuba Cortina [CLOSED]--573cm [at closing]
Hakuba Goryu0cm0cm620cm
Hakuba Happo-one [CLOSED]0cm0cm827cm [at closing]

IMPORTANT: See below for an explanation of the above data


Individual ski resort information
The below information is checked from official sources and manually adjusted each morning.

Hakuba Happo-one

- Hakuba Happo-one has closed for the season (see above for details)

Hakuba 47

All lifts apart from the lifts noted below are operating (planned):
- Pair Line D (usually only operates when Gondola not operating)

Courses open (planned):
- All main courses now open
- Restrictions on the winding lower course: beginners should take the gondola down

Official snow depth:
- Top: 170cm
- Base: 40cm

Hakuba Goryu

Operating lifts (planned):
- Gondola, top Alps Number 1 and 3 pair lifts are operating
- Other lifts are now closed

Courses open (planned):
- All of the upper area (apart from Champion Expert) is open
- The lower Toomi run is still open
- The lower Iimori area is now closed

Official snow depth:
- Alps: 175cm
- Toomi: 40cm
- Iimori: -cm

Tsugaike Kogen

Operating lifts (planned):
- Gondola
- Han-no-ki pair
- Other lifts now closed
- The top Tsuga-no-mori and Han-kou areas remain open

Official snow depth:
- Tsuga-no-mori (upper): 180cm
- Han-no-ki: 160cm


About the coronavirus situation and our daily reports:

Please read this message


Photos today (below):

- Hakuba Happo-one [Usagidaira]
- Hakuba Happo-one [Usagidaira]
- Hakuba 47
- Tsugaike Kogen [upper Tsuganomori area]
- Tsugaike Kogen [lower Kane-no-naru-oka area]
- Hakuba Iwatake
- Looking towards Hakuba Iwatake and Hakuba Happo-one


About the data in the above ‘snowfall as reported by ski resorts’ table
* The table within the above report contains data that is published by individual ski resorts
* The data shown is the amount of snowfall that the ski resorts are themselves reporting each 24 hour period on the upper areas of their mountain
* The source ‘new snowfall’ data and ‘total accumulation’ data is not updated at the same time
* The ‘new snowfall’ data is updated in the morning
* The ‘accumulation’ data is apparently updated/refreshed at midnight
* That means that there is a time lag between the two numbers being updated
* We manually check and update the data just before we publish each Hakuba Now report - so the data in each Hakuba Now report table is what is available at that time
* Any odd-looking numbers are due to the source data. We are not responsible for and have no control over the data. We are simply sharing the data with you
* Just to be extra clear, unlike our own ‘observed snowfall’ data from base that we show at the top of each report, the data in the table is not an independent observation by SnowJapan
* A more in-depth introduction and explanation can be found in this report
   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

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20th Apr, 9:52am
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20th Apr, 9:51am
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20th Apr, 9:49am
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20th Apr, 9:48am
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20th Apr, 9:47am
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