Niseko Now daily snow and weather - Friday 27th January 2012

Niseko Now (Archive Report)

Independent and trustworthy daily snow and weather reports from Niseko region, Japan
ARCHIVE REPORT: Posted at 2:01pm on Friday 27th January 2012
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Friday 27th January 2012, 2:01pm
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Archive report: Posted at 2:01pm on Friday 27th January 2012
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Snow, snow and more snow! We have been getting more lovely snowfall again in Niseko with some good accumulation through yesterday and there must have been up to 20cm in the last day or so with about 10cm in the village areas.

It's expected to be falling a bit more but the weather is staying cold, this morning it was closing in on double digit minus temperatures, and it's cloudy so it will preserve the light snow quality that already exists. The next few days should be awesome as well with more snow forecast over the weekend with some possible breaks in it coming from the skies. We might need to wait until the middle of next week to next see clearer skies. In the meantime there will be a lot of good snow out there begging to be skied.

For those of you interested in the ongoing tale of snowfall data for Kutchan town, here's an update for you. So far in the month of January 2012, JMA (Japan Meteorological Agency) report that Kutchan has received 256cm of snowfall. The total for January 2011 was actually 420cm so there's a bit to catch up in the next 4 days or so if we are to reach levels hit last year in January. February 2011 say a relatively low number of 142cm - which was the lowest data for the month of February since 1990 - and so fingers crossed that we will easy beat that. Remember that these numbers are for Kutchan town and so the Niseko resort mountains will likely be getting a fair bit more, perhaps around 1.5 times that amount.

Current Official Snow Depths:

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

Niseko Village:
Top - 370cm
Bottom - 220cm

Top - 375cm
Bottom - 220cm

Niseko Avalanche Report:

Niseko base 6am: -10C at 6am, 10cm of broken crystals in the last 12 hours.
[Coastal data]: Benkei cape wind NW13m/s , Kamui cape waves 1.4m and pressure 1013hPa.
Annupuri peak: NW17.5m/s and -18.1C

[Risk Assessment]: Intermittent snowfall, Snow clouds are flowing into the Shakotan area and the snowfall has temporarily eased in the Niseko area. From 800m elevations snowdrifts are slowly developing, above 1100m cornices and snowdrifts are rapidly developing
Snow Pit Data: A 40cm soft slab at the surface weakly bonded to the 26 Jan layer. There is a weak layer from 22 Jan at 108cm.
[Risk Assessment]: Coordinates H9 to B9, H2, C4, especially around backbowl sidewalls at elevations between 900-1200m, O-Sawa at elevations around 800-900m the possibility of a 60cm avalanche continues. Also in the strictly of limits area Haru no Taki (coordinates J4) there is increasing risk of a 100cm surface fracture.
[Caution]: The trees and ridgelines are better today. Be careful entering the valley bottoms, they are difficult to get out of without snowshoes and poles at the moment . Entering the Anbestu area (coordinates A4) is dangerous because of the same reasons. Once you pass through the gates you are not in the resort anymore. Is your beacon switched on??
[Gates]: Gates 2 and 3 will be closed today due to high winds above 1100m. Please respect the ski patrols decisions.


Evening update:

There was a progressive move made by Niseko Village today. The resort decided to open it's once strictly controlled Mizu-no-sawa area. Now riders can have the option of going through a video and lecture (with a mandatory 2,000 yen fee) to ski some new and exciting terrain.

All is looking good here weather wise. We are expecting some snow tomorrow and over the weekend. Temperatures are going to stay cold to preserve the snow. Tomorrow should be an awesome day with anything lift accessed in the area. I heard the quote "too deep" many times today. Find a steep pitch and have fun!

Archive report: Posted at 2:01pm on Friday 27th January 2012
The latest Niseko Now report can be found here

Niseko Now ski lift operation notes:

Lifts should be open and operating normally. Check with resort for latest.

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