Yachiho is situated about an hours south of karuizawa/Komoro, just on the east side of the mountains from Echo valley and Lake Shirakabako.
For its southernly position, it does get a decent amount of natural snow, and that snow is usually of good, fairly dry quality.
Of course in nagano, there are much bigger and better hills to visit, but the majority of people tend to be locals, or people visiting from Yamanashi and Shizuoka.
The major reason I am drawn to Yachiho is the friendly, family-like atmosphere. It reminds me of the hill i grew up on in Canada, Kimberly. The staff is usually smiling, and the lifties wear cute animal suits more often than not.
There are only about 5 runs on the hill, the most challenging being a short course where they set up a mogul run. The general layout of the hill is beginner to intermediate.
In order to compensate for its lack of natural terrain, the hill has put together the most well-groomed park south of hakuba.
The park, while small, is groomed TWICE daily (it is shut down at lunch to let the cat in there). The jumps, landhings, and take-offs for the rails and boxes are meticulously groomed and shaped. I seriously have never seen that much attention paid to a park EVER, not even in the big resorts in Canada. Not only do they have park staff overlooking the jumps to make sure the landing is clear, they also shovel snow onto the landing to prevent it from getting icy!
All and all, a great place to spend a day if there is no new snow elsewhere.
Snow condition on visit:
Varied, but always well-groomed
Things I liked:
Beautiful setting, freindly atmosphere, VERY well-maintained snowboard park
Things I didn't like:
Small, a little out-of-the way, relatively low snowfall