Furano Ropeway 8:30am-4:00pm Furano Downhill Swift Lift #1 9:00am-8:00pm Downhill Romance #2 chair 8:45am-4:00pm Downhill Romance #3 chair Prince Romance 8:30am - 4:00pm Read more ...
Sunday 16th March 2014, 8:30am
Another few cm of snow this morning on the ground here in Hirafu - so hopefully/probably more than that on the mountain - and it is a fairly mild morning with temps just under zero.
Resorts are reporting poor visibility early on with top lifts at Hirafu, Annupuri and Village all on hold as of 8:30am.
As per forecast, cloud with light snow at times is what we seem to have today.
A few people have asked us where the weather forecasts are.... if you look on the right side of this page (or indeed any of our Now reports), you will see a list of 'Nearby snow resorts'. Click on the resort you are interested in to be taken to the resort info on SnowJapan. At the top of that page you will see a large blue tab labelled 'Weather info'. That's where you will find the weather/snow forecasts - and they are updated throughout the year. You may also find some stuff you didn't know about on the site, so please do go over and take a look.
A small Low is quickly passing over southern Hokkaido. Typical small crystal snow has started to fall since 2am. This type of snow is loose and slides easily whether in steeps or trees. It is also likely to form a weak layer under future snowdrift slabs that could trigger avalanches with unclear crown. Beware of the coming snowfall transition. The snow condition is actually not too bad as the temperature gradient remained small.
Peak gates will open from the morning. Listen to the ski patrol’s instructions, be geared up and step out of the gates. The visibility will be bad in the morning. The season is slowly shifting to spring, but temperature is still low. Beware of sudden weather changes and falling into cracks. Have a nice day.
Official snow depth numbers and lift news at time of writing:
Yesterday was a fine day weather wise, beautiful blue skies.
I like the way Hakuba 47 describe it - with packed snow on upper slopes and spring snow on lower slopes, they said it was 'hybrid' conditions! That about describes it I suppose!
This morning it is bright and there has been some blue sky on show through some thin clouds earlier but it's mostly overcast cloudy skies now. Visibility on the resorts seems decent though.
We're expecting a high of around +7 degrees in the village this afternoon and maybe some rain/sleet/snow at varying elevations to go with it. Warmer conditions still tomorrow, with a return to cold looking likely towards the end of the week - and that might bring with it fresh snow.
Official snow depth numbers and operations (as of 16th March 2014):
Hakuba Goryu: Reporting 0cm of new snowfall. Upper - 260cm Toomi - 140cm Iimori - 105cm
Hakuba 47: Reporting 0cm of new snowfall. Upper - 230cm Lower - 60cm
Happo-one: Reporting 0cm of new snowfall. Usagidaira - 210cm Nakiyama - 70cm Sakka - 70cm
It is a very mild morning here and we are expecting temperatures to rise to perhaps around 10C later on in the day. We're also expecting some rain but hopefully that won't last too long. Back to sun for tomorrow. Most of the coming week should remain mild/warm with rain due mid week but there are some signs of a dip in temps before next weekend and perhaps some snow.
There's a real feel of spring now. Birds are looking very busy going about their spring business. I can even see some flowers and plants springing up in the ground behind my place, hadn't noticed them at all until now.
Many of the ski resorts around town will close for the season either at the end of this month or the first week of April. GALA Yuzawa plans to be open until early May and of course Kagura is famous for being open right through until the end of May.
In the next week I'll be posting details on planned resort closing dates on this page.
It's warming up today, much as it did yesterday. The roads are clear and dry, only to get wet again soon with some melting snow I reckon. The next few days should see quite a lot of sun.
What's interesting is towards the end of the week when colder conditions are forecast along with snowfall Thursday and Friday. By that time we will surely be in need of a good refresh, so it would be great if that happens.
Official snow depth data, as of Sunday 16th March 2014):
The sun is out this morning. Yesterday started off really cold but warmed up during the day. This morning it is much milder and it's set to warm up today. Perhaps a high temperature of +6 degrees. Not perfectly clear views up there by the looks with a distinctly overcast feel in some directions, but the sun is shining down on the slopes.
A chance of some sleet/snow overnight and then more sun forecast for tomorrow.
Warmer conditions until around mid week - rain very possible - but could that be snow towards the end of the week? It could well be!
It might just be me but I feel this weekend is noticeably less busy than last weekend. There seems to be a point in the season when lots of people just somehow decide that the ski season is over, or their season anyway, and perhaps we have hit that point for many. The other interesting time is a bit further down the line when many other ski resorts are closed for the season and Nozawa is one of the few that remains open... that's when it can often get really busy again for that last stretch of the season. Which, if you didn't know, is early May in Nozawa. I make that another 7 weeks or so to go!
Courses All courses open except: Grand Prix Kandahar East Read more ...
Sunday 16th March 2014, 9:12am
After that cold start to the day yesterday, it warmed up quite a lot during the day. Layers were being shed!
This morning it is starting off much milder and already above zero, and it should be warming up again. Similar expected tomorrow as well. Tuesday onwards the mild conditions may well be accompanied by some rain (perhaps borderline snow if we are lucky?), before getting a bit colder by the end of the week. Some forecasts tell us to expect snowfall before the weekend.
In the meantime, it's a fine spring ski morning here.
Operating lifts (planned):
Number 1 Number 2 Number 3A Number 2 quad Number 5 Super quad Number 11 Number 12 Number 13 Number 15 Moving walkway Kids Park
The snow got pretty warm yesterday; it should be better today as the snow is settled, but probably not so great outside the ski runs.
Spring is definitely here, and will really be felt over the next few days as things get pretty warm. That even more says that the end of this month may well be the end of the season this year, so get out and enjoy! (Planned closing dates info coming soon).