Small but pleasant, convenient and family friendly!
Yuzawa Nakazato was a more interesting skijo than I was expecting. From the information on SnowJapan it just seems kind of small. Though it isn't a big skijo by any means, there were some things about it that I liked.
First and foremost it is a great place to bring a family! Nakazato uses a couple of old trains as resting rooms one of which overlooks a nice sledding hill. There were places to relax and eat along with an Anpanman play room with a soft floor and some nice toys. It was the most interesting relaxing area I have ever seen at a skijo.
Now on to the runs. For the beginners to lower intermediate riders there was a lot of interesting things. Groomed runs that wind through the forest and have bells and other things to ride through or hit as you go by. There are some park features, most of which are on the easy side. There where also easy and intermediate slalom courses as well as some carving courses.
For the advanced rider there is only really one area worth mentioning; a double and a quad lift that go to the highest spot on the mountain. Though the vertical drop at Nakazato is only 244 meters, all of this can be ridden using the quad lift. The advanced runs are fairly steep and were where I spent most of the day. Under the right conditions there also seemed to be oppertunites for some forest runs.
Another good point about Yuzawa Nakazato is convienience. It is easily accessible from Tokyo by both Train and car. It is next to Eichigo Nakazato station which is a short drive from Yuzawa I.C. Though Gala may win for speed and convienience, Nakazato wins for price and convienince being on the regular (and cheaper) train line as opposed to Gala which is on the Shinkansen (Bullet Train) line.
All and all a nice little skijo!
From February, 2014 To February, 2014
Snow condition on visit:
Pretty Bad. But in fairness to Nakazato, I don't think anywhere in Yuzawa was very good that day.
Things I liked:
The free parking. The cool train resting area with kids play room next to a great sleding hill. The lack of crowds even on a Sunday. Some nice steep runs.