Niseko Now daily snow and weather - Saturday 24th December 2016

Niseko Now (Archive Report)

Independent and trustworthy daily snow and weather reports from Niseko region, Japan
ARCHIVE REPORT: Posted at 8:31am on Saturday 24th December 2016
Current weather conditions
Observed fresh snowfall
weather condition
Mostly cloudy, bits of blue sky
Base temp:
-6°C

Top temp:
-11°C
Precipitation Wind Visibility
precipitation condition
Earlier snowfall eased off
wind condition
NE 7m/s - N 18m/s (Hirafu)
visibility condition
Decent
This report
Saturday 24th December 2016, 8:31am
11cm
Friday 23rd December 2016, 8:45am 2cm
Thursday 22nd December 2016, 8:30am 1cm
Wednesday 21st December 2016, 8:27am 0cm
Tuesday 20th December 2016, 8:35am 0cm
Monday 19th December 2016, 8:23am 0cm
Sunday 18th December 2016, 8:34am 2cm
Last 7 reports (total): 16cm
Last 14 reports (total): 99cm
Current month (December 2016) total: 151cm
2016/2017 season so far total: 263cm

Archive report: Posted at 8:31am on Saturday 24th December 2016
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Good morning to you all and Merry Christmas! Having lived in Japan for so long, I sometimes get confused into thinking that 24th December is 'Christmas' - so why not let's just celebrate both today and tomorrow. Hurray!

OK, so what do we have going on this weekend and what is Santa bringing us...

First of all, fresh snow on the ground at base. I have measured 11cm but it is one of those days where it is rather difficult to put a representative number on it because of the winds. (I realise that some people are probably going to have issues with my number, but I've got to go through the season with consistency so it is the number on my report today). As you can see on the Avalanche Report below, it is reporting very large amounts of snow in places on the mountain. Keep it all in mind.

So yes it was full-on wild blizzard weather yesterday here on Hokkaido. Similarly to how it was a couple of weeks ago, Sapporo region got a shed load of snowfall as well. That snow will be good ground work for the Sapporo Snow Festival for sure, but it caused problems over there. The weather conditions were bad enough to close the airport and make road conditions pretty hairy.

Here in Niseko the pesky rain in the morning changed into snow around lunchtime and from the afternoon the winds got themselves whipped up into a frenzy with the snow that was falling getting blown about. On a day like today take extra care out there with much deeper wind-blown snow drifts out there in places. Wrap up well too, it's going to be cold.

The earlier snow this morning has eased off for now and there's even a bit of blue sky in places as the time approaches 8:30am. Stronger winds on the mountain are still affecting some higher lifts at the start of the day today with my updates on that situation below.

---

It is of course Christmas weekend with New Year now just around the corner. Niseko is lively and in party mode and there are more people here who are going to be less tolerant of accepting any kind of 'early-season' excuses for snow conditions less than perfect... we're kind of out of that zone now. People are expecting. Let's hope Niseko delivers - I am confident it will! I'm off out now to go check things out for myself.

Have a fun day everyone.

---

Visit the SnowJapan Facebook page for details on how to enter the current special tour Giveaway on SnowJapan.com. Good luck to you all and thank you for all of the comments sent in so far.

---

Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6am: -8℃, large development of snowdrifts, up to 80cm snowfall in past 12hours. Coastal data: Kamui cape E4m/s, 1016hPa, 3.0m waves. Moiwa 850m: -10℃, N6m/s, 100cm snowdrifts. Annupuri 1150m: -13℃, N20m/s, snowdrifts so deep that snowcats have difficulties grooming the course.

A strong northerly wind is persisting above 1000m elevation, making snowdrifts continue to develop. The wind at the base has dropped early morning and light crystal snow is falling. Huge snowdrifts have developed overnight and is sitting on top of Dec 23rd layer. 80cm thick slides have been observed in 800m leeward cornice slopes. According to the observations and weather transition, the avalanche risk is very high this morning.

The stabilization of snowdrifts in leeward slopes above 800m is delayed.

Avalanches are natural phenomenon that occur when conditions align. Snowfall or snowpack amount is not the essential factor. Many of the avalanche accidents occur during and just after storms. The snowpack will stabilize after a day, better stay inbounds and enjoy the snow in and around the courses. Please respect the Rules.

---

Resort specific opening news at time of writing (subject to change during the day):

The mountain is not yet fully open with top lifts at three of the main resorts not yet operating.

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Top Ace Number 4 and King Number 4 lifts not yet operating.
The King Number 3 lift is on hold at the start of the day due to wind conditions.

Niseko HANAZONO Resort
All lifts generally open.
However, the top Number 3 lift is on hold at the start of the day.

Niseko Village
Top Wonderland lift not yet operating.
The Niseko Gondola is on hold at the start of the day due to wind conditions.

Niseko Annupuri
Top Jumbo Number 4 lift not yet operating.
Otherwise, open as planned.

---

Official resort snow depths as of Saturday 24th December 2016:

Niseko Grand Hirafu & Hanazono
Top - 230cm
Base - 80cm

Niseko Village
Top - 130cm
Base - 100cm

Niseko Annupuri
Top - 100cm
Base - 80cm

---

Night skiing is planned until Monday 20th March 2017 at the Niseko Annupuri, Niseko Grand Hirafu and Niseko Village resort areas. There is no nighta in the Hanazono area.

The lifts marked with a * above are the lifts that are planned to be operating for nighta.

Archive report: Posted at 8:31am on Saturday 24th December 2016
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Niseko Now ski lift operation notes:

Please see above report for details

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Friday 23rd December 2016
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Saturday 24th December 2016
Sunday 25th December 2016
>
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Japan snowfall data
(updated daily during winter)
Niseko Now observed snowfall data: Recent Niseko Now reports
The data displayed is correct up to and including Saturday 24th December 2016
This graph shows the amount of observed snowfall recorded in the 21 Niseko Now reports up until Saturday 24th December 2016
(View the latest Niseko Now report here :: View more analysis here)
Niseko Now observed snowfall data: Recent season comparisons
The data displayed is correct up to and including Saturday 24th December 2016
This table shows the amount of observed snowfall recorded in the Niseko Now reports during same period over the last three seasons
(View the latest Niseko Now report here :: View more analysis here)
  2016/2017
*as of Saturday 24th December 2016
2015/2016
Season
2014/2015
Season
24th December 11cm 0cm 25cm
23rd December 2cm 0cm 30cm
22nd December 1cm 0cm 20cm
21st December 0cm 1cm 2cm
20th December 0cm 0cm 1cm
19th December 0cm 10cm 30cm
18th December 2cm 18cm 25cm
Previous 7 days total 16cm 29cm 133cm
Previous 14 days total 99cm 47cm 250cm
November observed snowfall total 110cm 61cm 30cm
December observed snowfall total 151cm 244cm 519cm
January observed snowfall total - 303cm 257cm
February observed snowfall total - 266cm 196cm
March observed snowfall total - 109cm 139cm
April observed snowfall total - 6cm 3cm
May observed snowfall total - 0cm 0cm
Season observed snowfall total 263cm 992cm 1144cm
Niseko Now observed snowfall data: Monthly and annual accumulation
The data displayed is correct up to and including Saturday 24th December 2016
This table shows the amount of observed snowfall recorded the Niseko Now reports for each month and total season accumulation
(View the latest Niseko Now report here :: View more analysis here)
  October November December January February March April May
2019/2020 season - - - - - - - -
2018/2019 season - - - - - - - -
2017/2018 season - - - - - - - -
2016/2017 season 2cm
[2cm]
110cm
[112cm]
151cm
[263cm]
-
[263cm]
-
[263cm]
-
[263cm]
-
[263cm]
-
[263cm]
2015/2016 season 3cm
[3cm]
61cm
[64cm]
244cm
[308cm]
303cm
[611cm]
266cm
[877cm]
109cm
[986cm]
6cm
[992cm]
0cm
[992cm]
2014/2015 season 0cm
[0cm]
30cm
[30cm]
519cm
[549cm]
257cm
[806cm]
196cm
[1002cm]
139cm
[1141cm]
3cm
[1144cm]
0cm
[1144cm]
2013/2014 season 0cm
[0cm]
123cm
[123cm]
275cm
[398cm]
461cm
[859cm]
178cm
[1037cm]
113cm
[1150cm]
13cm
[1163cm]
0cm
[1163cm]
2012/2013 season 0cm
[0cm]
118cm
[118cm]
418cm
[536cm]
443cm
[979cm]
316cm
[1295cm]
164cm
[1459cm]
32cm
[1491cm]
2cm
[1493cm]
  October November December January February March April May
Niseko Now reports before Saturday 24th December 2016
Niseko Now reports from the same period last season
Niseko Now archived reporting
View previous reports posted to Niseko Now by clicking on the month

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