Snow and weather reports posted on Monday 28th May 2018

Yuzawa Now!

Wednesday 9th December 2015, 8:13am
Weather conditions: Clear and sunny. Beautiful.
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
I know you don't want to hear this, but it's another absolute stunner of a morning in the region. Blue skies, no cloud, sunshine. And it's going to warm up to double digits later on today, so says the local forecast.

The Tashiro area of Kagura as well as Naeba plan to open on Saturday. As for Tashiro, no word yet on what might be happening there. Naeba will be able to open due to the artificial snow that is being made each day now.

Maiko also originally had plans to open this weekend but there's no snow and so that of course won't be possible. Iwappara and Joetsu Kokusai remain on standby as well.

Next weekend is a big weekend with lots of other ski resorts around town hoping to be able to open.

Let's take a look at the forecast. Fine and sunny and warm today, and tomorrow might well start off with sun again and get even warmer (up to around 14 degrees!), though later on these conditions are supposed to break. We're probably going to be treated to some rain in town and hopefully snow higher up on Friday. Into next week though there's really no sign of the decent snowfall that we need.


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 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 ...

Niseko Now!

Wednesday 9th December 2015, 8:33am
Weather conditions: Clear and sunny
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 70cm
Good morning from Hirafu and this morning we have blue skies and some sunshine from early on.

Mt Yotei is looking particularly beautiful and the early morning 'cloud hat' has now disappeared with clear blue all around. There are just a few clouds mountain-side remaining for the moment.

Yesterday there were a few times when there was a bit of snow falling but nothing in terms of new cm and there is no new snowfall to report overnight.

The clear skies might not last the day with cloudy skies forecast for later on and generally cloudy tomorrow as well. Temperatures today probably rising to around 5C and perhaps a little higher tomorrow.

It looks like Sennoki and Ni-kabe course areas are now open at Niseko Grand Hirafu. Grand Hirafu have snow depth up top as 160cm this morning and 70cm at base. The other areas not quite as much, with 70-80cm on upper areas.

There's 'enough' to enjoy, but we want and need more. It should get a bit colder during the day around Friday but it might be a rain-or-snow situation. The weekly forecast does not currently tempt us with the promise of a major dump.

Last year I recorded 519cm of snowfall here at base during the month of December 2014. Currently my same observations this month are standing at 73cm so there's lots of snowfall expected! Don't let us down!

Skiable connections between the Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri resort areas are not yet available - Niseko United shuttle bus is required to get between them.

If you are here, hope you can enjoy the day on the mountain... morning should be very nice.


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

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Lifts planned to be running:
- Ace Family pair
- Ace Number 2 Quad Center Four (for transport)
- Ace Number 3 pair
- Hirafu Gondola (for transport)
- King Number 3 triple
- Swinging Monkey
Courses planned to be open:
- Family
- Sennoki
- Kogen
- Boyo
- Ni-kabe
- Alpen
- Beginners access
- Center
- Shirakaba
- Green
- Rinkan (lower part)
- Jumbo
- Kokutai
- Holiday
- Connecting

Niseko HANAZONO Resort
Lifts planned to be running:
- Hanazono Number 1 quad (for transport)
- Hanazono Number 2 quad
- Hanazono Number 3 quad
Courses planned to be open:
- Parallel Course
- Silver Dream (upper part)
- Stairway to Heaven
- Setsuzoku course
- Legend of Shinya
- Crystal Garden
- Yotei Sunset (ungroomed)

Niseko Village
Lifts planned to be operating:
- Niseko Gondola
- Community Chair
- Banzai Chair

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
- Dynamic


'Nighta' should be starting on Saturday 12th December 2015.
Nighta is available at Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri (none in the Niseko Hanazono area)


Official resort snow depths:

Grand Hirafu / Hanazono:
Top - 160cm
Base - 60cm

Niseko Village:
Top - 80cm
Base - 40cm

Niseko Annupuri:
Top - 70cm
Base - 70cm


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

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Wednesday 9th December 2015, 8:33am
Weather conditions: Clear, sunny
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
I don't have much to report this morning other than the continued clear, sunny and mild conditions.

Getting somewhat restless, with a real desire to see large amounts of snow piling up outside forcing me get up earlier in a morning to shovel. Shovelling itself may not be much fun but it means it's snowing a lot!

Today temperatures to rise to around 7-8 degrees, and a bit higher tomorrow though cloudier skies expected. Then rain (lower) / snow (higher, hopefully) on Friday.

Nozawa Onsen remains on standby to open as soon as there's enough snow.


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 ...

Hakuba Now!

Wednesday 9th December 2015, 9:08am
Weather conditions: Clear, sun, beautiful
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
As we expected, more of the same this morning. Third day now for clear and sunny skies. Another chilly start but again will warm up to around 8-9C degrees in the village this afternoon. Tomorrow is forecast to be slightly warmer still with temps rising into low double digits though more cloud is expected... and rain later on in the day.

Snowfall at higher elevations on Friday?

Let's see...! For now though it is another beautiful day here in Hakuba.


Resort news as of 8:30am on Tuesday 8th December - subject to change

Hakuba 47:
Hakuba 47 is reporting 0cm of new snowfall.
The upper area of Route 1, Route 2, Route 3, Route 4 (should be open today), Route 5, Route 6 and Route 8 are now open.
Planned lifts:
Line AB
Line C
Line E
Official snow depth
Upper: 85cm
Base: 10cm

Hakuba Goryu:
Hakuba Goryu is reporting 0cm of new snowfall.
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: 70cm
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: 85cm
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: 64cm
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!

Wednesday 9th December 2015, 9:17am
Weather conditions: Clear and sunny
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
Another cold and frosty start to the day, with more blue skies above with the sun out and shining down on us.

A beautiful morning, even if we would prefer a snowstorm blizzard right now!

One of the main fine things about Shiga Kogen is that due to the area being so high up we can often avoid the warmth when things warm up down below in the valleys. This is of course good for keeping the snow conditions decent even if there isn't as much.

Having said that, it is going to warm up again during the day today, hopefully not too much.

Hoping for snow later tomorrow into Friday, but it might be rain. We'll just have to see how that turns out.


Resort areas that are currently open (Wednesday 9th 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 Number 1 Gelende
Yokoteyama Number 2 Gelende A course (part)
Yokoteyama Number 2 Gelende
Yokoteyama Number 2 Gelende Rinkan (part)


6 day snow and weather forecasts:

Ichinose Family 6-day snow and weather forecast
Okushiga Kogen 6-day snow and weather forecast
Yokoteyama 6-day snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Wednesday 9th December 2015, 9:20am
Weather conditions: Sunny and clear
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 0cm
It was a very cold early morning here but one of those beauties when the sun is out from the start of the day. No wind and everything is calm and peaceful.

Different forecasts tell us varying things for tomorrow and Friday - choose between rain and snow. After that, we are expecting clearer skies again for the weekend.

The areas of Zao Onsen that are open at the moment are part of the Uwanodai, Chuo and Utopia areas of the resort.

Other areas waiting for enough snow to get started.

Lifts that are currently operating:

- Sky Cable (gondola)
- Zao Chuo Ropeway
- Zao Ropeway
- Onsen Number 1 pair lift
- Chuo Number 1 pair AB
- Utopia Number 2 pair


Official snow depths (Wednesday 9th December 15):

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


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

Furano Now!

Wednesday 9th December 2015, 11:11am
Weather conditions: It's a very blue day with picturesque clouds.
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 105cm
My friend just sent me photos from the gondola.

And it looks really, really nice. Much nicer than my office which has a bright blue sky out the window, fluffy white clouds, gleaming snowpack everywhere, and a ski resort where he is right now. Not where I am right now. Seeing the resort out my window was almost tolerable from this distance but now is excruciatingly out of reach.

No wind today, was -6C at 8am when I took my daughter to school. Warmed up to a balmy -5 now but the sunshine is glorious so I dare say my so-called friend will be taking off a few layers. On the mountain. Where he is.

The forecast has no snow on it, but what is interesting is at this stage at 6am tomorrow, they are forecasting 1C and rain. I am not panicking myself, though, because the weather stations that they use to determine our forecast are in Asahikawa (60km north) and Tokachidake (about 70km east), both with different micro climates to ours. But I will keep an eagle eye and let you know. 6am is worryingly early for 1C though... Mother nature is definitely a minx.

The resort's official snow depth is still listed as 105cm.

Photo 1 is what my friend just saw from the gondola near the New Prince Hotel at Furano Resort. That's the hotel to the left. That far chair near the hotel is now spinning, too.

Photo 2 is what my friend just saw from the gondola as it took him up, up, up the hill to ski down. While we all look at our screens longingly.
   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Yuzawa Now
10th Sep, 17:36am
Niseko Now
27th Aug, 14:26am
Grandeco Now
24th Aug, 11:16am
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
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