Niseko Now daily snow and weather - Tuesday 7th February 2012

Niseko Now (Archive Report)

Independent and trustworthy daily snow and weather reports from Niseko region, Japan
ARCHIVE REPORT: Posted at 8:03am on Tuesday 7th February 2012
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Tuesday 7th February 2012, 8:03am
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Archive report: Posted at 8:03am on Tuesday 7th February 2012
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

It got pretty warm yesterday. This means with last night's freeze, we will no longer see the light dry powder that Japan is known for except at really high elevations where it stayed below freezing. Most of the resort was subject to over zero temps, so I would make it a half day and wait for the snow that is expected to fall soon. You could also work on some moves in the terrain parks at Hirafu or Hanazono.

It's looking like today is going to be cloudy with some warmer temps again. Tomorrow is supposed to drop in temp and possibly bring us some more snow. The rest of the week is looking like snow as well. Hopefully it can bring us enough snow to really put a soft layer over the warm crust that is developing because of the warm temps. It's currently snowing now, but just very lightly. However, it is a start.

Backcountry travel will be okay today, but ideally the good spots will be up high. A pit from the other day showed a weak layer at about 800m elevation and 80cm down. A sugary fine snow is usually not a good layer to be loaded on. The best thing would be for us to get some more snow and as it stabilizes, thins out the bad layer and erases the issue. Nothing in the area had slid down that far that I could see, but it is something to keep in the back of your head.

Current Official Snow Depths:

Grand Hirafu / Hanazono:
Top - 390cm
Bottom - 210cm

Niseko Village:
Top - 400cm
Bottom - 240cm

Top - 410cm
Bottom - 230cm

Niseko Avalanche Report:

Mountain base 6am: -1C, No new snowfall in the last 12 hours. Benkei Cape SE 3m/s, Kamui Cape calm seas, pressure 1003hpa. Annapuri Peak elevation 1308m W 0.9m/s, temp -6.9C.
Snowfall: Slight snowfall and light winds preceding low pressure system. With the inflow of warm air the snow has been compacted.
SnowPit Data: At 50cm a hoar frost type layer from 4th Feb, above the 22nd Jan layer 100-160cm of compacted snow. Above 800m elevation the leeward side has accumulations of over 5 metres.
Hazard Evaluation: Around coordinates E6(Backbowl sidewall), F5(O-Sawa cornice face), H8(Higashi One) the possibility of a 50cm fracture from the 4th Feb layer continues. If it occurs it will be coming from deep within the snowpack and be very dangerous.
Caution: Do not duck ropes seeking fresh lines in restricted areas. The snow is not good. Beware of speed and collisions with trees. The mountains conditions change everyday, beware of sudden changes in the weather.
Gates: Peak gates are expected to open at 9.30am. Please respect the ski patrols decision. Once you pass through the gates you are not in the ski area anymore, please ask for and listen to ski patrols advice. The gates will be closed if visibility becomes bad above 1000m.
Have a safe day.

Archive report: Posted at 8:03am on Tuesday 7th February 2012
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Niseko Now ski lift operation notes:

All lifts should be operating on time.

Monday 6th February 2012
This report
Tuesday 7th February 2012
Wednesday 8th February 2012
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