Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 30th May 2020

Hakuba Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 7:37am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: --
I have to get myself off to Nagano early this morning so it's an early quick report from me today. Sorry it can't be more in-depth.

Not the most friendly of early morning conditions here with wind and kind of wet conditions with a mix of rain, sleet or snow depending on where you are. The wind will surely be affecting lifts are resorts even though it doesn't actually feel windy outside my place just now; info updated as much as possible at this early hour below.

Please check with resorts if you plan to get out this morning.

Looking forward to some good decent proper snow later on and tomorrow. Bring it on, as they say - hope for a nice report tomorrow morning.


Ski resort information on Tuesday 9th January 2018 (at time of writing):

Hakuba Happo-one

Operating lifts:
- Gondola and top lifts not operating at the start of the day due to weather conditions

Courses open:
- All course are now open (as long as the lifts give access)

Official snow depth:
- Kurobishi: 270cm
- Usagidaira: 135cm
- Lower: 80cm


Hakuba Goryu

Operating lifts:
- Wind affecting operations

Courses open:
- All courses are open (when lifts are moving)

Official snow depth:
- Top: 280cm
- Toomi: 110cm
- Iimori: 65cm


Hakuba 47

Operating lifts:
- Wind affecting lifts

Courses open:
- All courses available (when lifts are moving)

Official snow depth:
- Top: 240cm
- Base: 80cm


Tsugaike Kogen

Operating lifts:
- Gondola and a number of lifts not operating due to weather conditions

Courses open:
- All course areas are open apart from some parts of Sawa-one and Kane-no-naru-oka Number 2 (as long as lifts are operating, of course!)

Official snow depth:
- Tsuga-no-mori: 240cm
- Han-no-ki: 240cm
- Maruyama: 80cm
- Shirakaba: 220cm
- Champion: 120cm
- Oya-no-hara: 110cm
- Kane-no-naru-oka: 100cm


Hakuba Cortina

Operating lifts:
- All lifts operating

Courses open:
- All courses open

Official snow depth:
- Top: 260cm
- Base: 160cm


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field

Operating lifts:
- Most lifts are operating with most courses open

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


Hakuba Norikura Onsen

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Alps Number 1 and 7 are operating

Official snow depth:
- 150cm


Hakuba Valley Kashimayari

Operating lifts:
- All lifts apart from Number 8 are operating

Official snow depth:
- 140cm


Hakuba Sanosaka

Operating lifts:
- All three lifts are operating

Official snow depth:
- 110cm   Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 7:37am
Weather conditions: Rain
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Yuzawa.

I wasn't out skiing yesterday but driving around the slopes did not look as busy as they could have been - perhaps due to the weather forecast not being so good. We did get some light rain at times in the afternoon and it held of fairly well.

But unfortunately... yes, it is raining properly early morning and it is currently about 6C here in town.

Kagura are reporting sleet early on. GALA Yuzawa and Yuzawa Kogen are reporting rain.

Let's hope that by afternoon it might be snowing. It should be getting colder as the day goes on; kind of like the reverse of what happened yesterday.

By the way, up at Kagura the KG1 gate plans to open from 9am today. GALA Yuzawa and all other reports should be opening as normal.


Images today from GALA Yuzawa, NASPA Ski Garden and Yuzawa IC exit.


Updated: Tuesday 9th January 2018

** 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
- 280cm

- 155cm

- Kagura area: 320cm
- Mitsumata area: 220cm
- Tashiro area: 270cm

Kandatsu Kogen
- 185cm

- 220cm (base)

NASPA Ski Garden
- 235cm

Yuzawa Kogen
- Top: 220cm
- Base: 160cm

Yuzawa Park
- 180cm

Yuzawa Nakazato
- 160cm


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

Ishiuchi Maruyama
- 230cm

Joetsu Kokusai
- 200cm

Maiko Snow Resort
- Top: 260cm
- Base: 170cm

Muikamachi Hakkaisan
- Closed on Wednesdays between 10th January and 14th March (!)
- 240cm   Read more ...

Furano Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 7:57am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Walking around last night, the roads were white and very slippery which is indicative of the daytime temperatures having risen to positives. This morning the roads and footpaths sure look like they have the melt then freeze look. Unfortunately there will be more warm weather today and right now it is 0c and will increase to +3c during the day. While rain is on the forecast it hasn't eventuated yet and it is snowing lightly at base level now. The summary for today is possible rain at base, but likely to be snow higher up, winds increasing in intensity to very strong by this evening. The best part in all this is heavy snow is on the forecast overnight.
   Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 8:02am
Weather conditions: Overcast
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Well rain hasn't materialized in any meaningful amount here but humidity is high and its hurting our snow pack which is now all mushy.

Still fine if you are desperate for some turns or can get way up to high elevation but I am definitely calling a down day.

The forecast is for things to warm up significantly today and stay cloudy before clearing tomorrow. Snow is set to resume falling on Thursday.


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 ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 8:02am
Weather conditions: Cloudy...
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Hello and good morning from Nozawa.

Not the best of news to report this morning. We were expecting it though...

It's raining down here. Perhaps sleet or wet snow higher up. I think for the morning at least some people might decide that a soak in an onsen might be better.

Once we get past this - hopefully during the day today - we might get a bit of snow. Different forecasts say different things but I'm happy to see some showing some very decent snowfall come tomorrow night. I like the sound of that one.


Tuesday 9th January 2018

Fresh snowfall since yesterday (as reported by the resort):

- Yamabiko (1407m): 0cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 0cm
- Hikage (660m): 0cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 0cm
- Karasawa (563m): 0cm

Official snow depth numbers:

- Yamabiko (1407m): 260cm
- Uenotaira (1230m): 190cm
- Hikage (660m): 160cm
- Nagasaka (615m): 150cm
- Karasawa (563m): 130cm

All lifts operating except the following:

- All lifts should be operating

All courses open except the following:

- Challenge 39
- Grand Prix
- Kandahar
- Kamoshika
   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 8:03am
Weather conditions: Cloudy skies with...
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from a rainy Appi,

Well it’s raining here this morning with dreary grey skies. Heavy rain, I'm afraid. That’s the bad news. The good news is that it’s going to change to snow later in the day…and a lot of it. We’re expecting around 50+ cm the next two days to put a smile on all those gloomy faces. Temperatures will fall rapidly this afternoon and into tomorrow.

It’ll be windy out there today for those braving the rain but should abate somewhat the next few days to a light westerly. Obviously they’ll be a nice ice layer forming tonight but if we get the snow that is forecast it shouldn’t make that much of a difference. The rest of the week looks promising too with snowfall predicted through till Friday and temperatures where they should be around -10.

Don your rain coat and canoe this morning if you’re heading up the hill.


Planned lift operations on Monday 8th January 2018 (subject to change):

- APPI Gondola
- Central quad
- Central number 1 lift
- 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 normal weekdays


Official snow depth:

190cm   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Rain, fog, sleet
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning Niseko fans.

I'm sorry but I do not have good news for you this morning.

It is raining down here at base.

And it feels quite windy too.

As I am about to post this report, the top lifts at Niseko Grand Hirafu and Niseko Village are on hold due to the weather conditions. All peak gates will be closed.

I should add that the resorts are reporting snow in higher elevations as well as foggy conditions with limited visibility.

I recommend some extra toast - perhaps some extra, extra toast if you are feeling particularly extravagant - and doing something else this morning. Unless of course you like riding in the rain and rained-on snow. I can see the appeal of uncrowded slopes, but it's not for me. Or perhaps this is just a cunning plan cunningly hatched to get myself some quiet ski time. :)

There is better news.

It should be snowing by later today and into tomorrow. Conflicting views on how much to expect, so let's just see what happens and I'll report it to you tomorrow morning.

I hope you have a good day.


Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6.00am: +3°, rain. Moiwa 800m : 0°, E7.8, no new snow, thick fog. Annupuri 1150m: -1°, light SE winds, thick fog, trace new snow. Hirafu 1250m: -3°, SE15m/s, thick fog. Coastal data: Benkei Cape:S8m/s. Kamui Cape: calm, 989hPa, wave 0.5m.

The low pressure system is bringing warm air into the area. There is dense fog above 800m due to this air mass change. There is no new snow and rain is falling at the mountain base. Above 1200m a strong SSE wind is blowing. All peak gates will be closed.

The rain and sleet will continue through the day, however the groomed runs are in good condition. Take care picking up speed and crashing. Snow off the runs is heavy and wet, its easy to catch an edge. Take a towel to wipe your goggles.

Conditions out of bounds are not good. Be aware of avalanches propagating from deep layers on steep slopes. Snow bridges and cornices are heavy, dangerous and will collapse easily. Snow in the forest is fun though, but be careful of hitting a tree.

After the low pressure system passes through expect the wind and snow to increase with associated snowdrift development. The Jan 9th layer is expected to become an avalanche generation layer in the future snowpack. Pay attention to the snowfall transition.

The roads are slippery, drive carefully and break early. This information is issued to prevent ski resort user accidents. Accidents are more likely to happen in bad weather. Have a good day.


Tuesday 9th January 2018

Resort specific information (operations subject to change):

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Niseko HANAZONO Resort

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts are generally operating
- The top Ace Number 4 and King Number 4 lifts are on hold at the start of the day due to weather
- 'Early Morning' services from 8:00am until 8:20am (Ace Number 2 Center Four quad lift). Until 28th January. 500 yen special ticket required.

Official snow depth:
- Top: 340cm
- Base: 160cm

Niseko Annupuri Kokusai

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts are operating

Official snow depth:
- Top: 270cm
- Base: 150cm

Niseko Village

Lifts scheduled to be operating:
- All lifts except Country Road Chair are generally operating
- The top Wonderland lift is on hold at the start of the day due to weather
- 'Early Gondola' service from 7:30am until 8:30am (Niseko Gondola). January 13th-14th, 20th-21st, 27th-28th; February 3rd-4th. 1,400 yen special ticket required.

Official snow depth:
- Top: 260cm
- Base: 160cm


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 ...

Madarao Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 8:41am
Weather conditions: Mostly cloudy skies
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
It's not exciting but I am glad that the earlier rain has eased off for the moment.

This morning, as expected, it is still rather mild and there's some wind too. The forecast is for snow to be with us today and more of it tomorrow which sounds good to me.

The official snow depth has taken a hit as you can see below; let's hope we get that fresh powder refill quickly.


Official snow depth:

Operating lifts:

Number 1 lift
Number 2 quad lift
Number 3A lift
Super quad lift
Number 11 lift
Number 12 lift
Number 13 lift
Number 15 lift

Powder Wave I
Powder Wave II
River Line
Free Ride Park
Powder Theater
Adventure Aisle
Crystal Bowl

Kids Park
Snow Mobile Land

Planned nighta operations this season:

7th January 2018
11th February 2018
Every Saturday between 4th January and 24th March 2018   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 9:03am
Weather conditions: Rain!
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning!

It's a very dark and dank morning here in Naeba, as it's raining, windy and hovering just above 0°C...I thought I had left all of this weather behind in good old Blighty! Needless to say, the resort is battling on and the lifts are already up and running. The condition of the pistes are much akin to what you may find in April - an isothermal snowpack has given way to slushy spring conditions right the way up to almost the top of the mountain. The good news is, however, that the addition of rain to the snowpack will bond together all of the deep layers that we have received this winter so far, so we should be able to profit from this rain storm in the coming weeks with a stable base under any fresh snow which falls.

Now that the holiday season is over, the lifts open for night skiing have been severely cut back, with just High-Speed Lift No. 5 on offer. There is access to the ever-growing Roxy park and a few nice bumps lines from this lift.

Looking forwards, "Storm Ezaruza" should cool down significantly overnight tonight and into tomorrow, turning this rain into snow as early as this afternoon. Winds are expected not to pick up beyond moderate throughout this storm cycle. The heaviest snow is still forecast for Wednesday night, which will be coupled with well below 0°C air temperatures at the base. Please, bring back winter!

Attakai!   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 9:03am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 1cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Shiga Kogen.

I was hoping we would avoid rain up here in Shiga Kogen, but unfortunately that isn't wasn't case. It was raining overnight.

And it was raining when I got up but the good news is that it has turned into snow. Yes, it is snowing now. Phew. Definitely very mild though (* for mid-winter Shiga Kogen, of course).

There is a dusting of snow on the top of my car, just about enough for me to record 1cm in this report; let's hope that is starts building up again.

The forecast is positive for snow today and maybe heavier snow tomorrow. Look out for possibly strong winds though.


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

Please note that these numbers are the official numbers that ski resorts publish and we check and update them each morning.



Ichinose Family

Ichinose Diamond




Okushiga Kogen

Sun Valley

Takamagahara Mammoth



170cm   Read more ...

Geto Kogen Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 9:22am
Weather conditions: Cloudy...
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
The Bad News:

That rain we promised yesterday was a no show, alas, it is making an appearance now. We’re seeing a pretty bleak day out there today with moderate rain falling, heavy at times. Visibility is mixed, with some low hanging cloud milling around the peaks, occasionally dipping lower. Expect the rain to ease up but I’m told there’s some great ramen to enjoy in the cafeteria.

The Good News:

With tops of zero degrees at midday and dropping lower into the afternoon, this rain’s set to change its tune and give us another dump of snow for the week. We’re expecting the bulk of it Wednesday into Thursday, with over 30cm predicted — hopefully the rain changes sooner rather than later.

Road cover: slushy, icy in areas

Wednesday: moderate to heavy snow, light winds, top of -4C
Thursday: light snow, winds calming, tops of -5C
Friday: light snow, little to no winds, tops of -5C


Zones open include Summit, Rabbit, Beech & Stream. At this stage Shooter will remain closed until the main gondola is open.

News on Main Gondola:

At this time unfortunately the Main Gondola (Gondola 1) is closed for repair. The resort is working on the repairs, but it will require the next few weeks until it is back in operation. They estimate late January, early February for it to be back in action.


Official snow depths:

Top: 310cm
Base: 230cm

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

Zao Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 9:25am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog and...
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --

Oh dear. It is (relatively, of course) warm, it's windy and it is raining/sleet. Hopefully it will soon be snowing and snow is on the forecast for tomorrow through Thursday.

Probably the warmest day of the season proper so far.

Hoping to bring you news of fresh snow tomorrow.


Lifts and courses:

- All lifts operating at time of report apart from Karamatsu pair (closed on weekdays), Yokokura Number 2 pair and the Omori quad.

Official snow depths:

- Summit area: 120cm
- Paradise area: 140cm
- Chuo area: 140cm
- Utopia area: 150cm
- Uwanodai area: 85cm
- Oomori area: 75cm


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 today
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:

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

Grandeco Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 9:33am
Weather conditions: Rain clouds
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Grandeco.

Hmmm. Unfortunately, it is raining this morning today. In addition, strong winds are blowing. Not very nice.

Number 1 and 2 lift are open but it is difficult to open the gondola and number 3 and 4 lift.

According to the forecast, it will change in to snow from tomorrow and getting cold again.

For today though it is perhaps better to have a morning doing 'other stuff'.


Lifts operating:

- Just the Number 1 and 2 lifts operating this morning

Courses open:

- Courses accessed off those two lifts

Official snow depth:
- 170cm

- Grandeco snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Myoko Now!

Tuesday 9th January 2018, 10:48am
Weather conditions: Sun earlier; almost overcast
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
The rain has come through, clearing the snow off the trees and settling everything down.

The good: I don’t have to shovel off the roof of my container house/storage space (it’s melted down nicely).

The bad: the snowpack has fallen - no big worries there, becasue it will snow again.

If it gets really cold really fast though, we could see an icy layer form in the snowpack and that could mean trouble in the backcountry. Oh, yeah and weird sun cup-like structures on the top of the snow that won’t be fun to ski on until we get more fresh.

So maybe some unpleasant skiing for a short time in the wild world, but the groomed should be safe and fun and maybe even fast.

More good than bad... since the snow is coming.


Akakura Kanko:
230 cm, 3°

Akakura Onsen:
280cm, 2°

Ikenotaira Onsen:
225cm, 3°

Myoko Suginohara:
190cm, 0° (top)

Seki Onsen:
290 cm, 0°

Myoko Ski Park:
200 cm, 5°

Kyukamura RunRun:
300 cm, -2° (same as yesterday; not that cold!)

Tangram Ski Circus:
200 cm, 2°

Madarao Kogen:
180 cm, 5°

Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Shiga Kogen Now
30th May, 10:10
Geto Kogen Now
06th May, 15:13pm
Appi Kogen Now
23rd Apr, 17:30
Furano Now
22nd Apr, 10:12am
Madarao Now
20th Apr, 9:52am
Zao Now
20th Apr, 9:52am
Nozawa Onsen Now
20th Apr, 9:51am
Niseko Now
20th Apr, 9:50am
Naeba Now
20th Apr, 9:49am
Myoko Now
20th Apr, 9:48am
Minakami Now
20th Apr, 9:47am
Hakuba Now
20th Apr, 9:40am
Aizu Bandai Now
20th Apr, 9:38am
Yuzawa Now
20th Apr, 9:37am
Grandeco Now
06th Dec, 14:16am