Snow and weather reports posted on Monday 6th May 2019

Furano Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 7:29am
Weather conditions: Bluebird/clear
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 180cm
Looks like another great day ahead. The resort is surrounded by blue sky and there is no wind around at the moment. The sun should be present for most of the day. Snow conditions will be firm in the morning but will soften with exposure to sun.    Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 7:50am
Weather conditions: Cloud - clearing expected this morning
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: 245cm
I made a small update to the report yesterday because very soon after it went up the skies started clearing and the sun was out.

That clear-up continued and it ended up being a rare clear day with a brilliant sun shining down and blue skies. Rare this season anyway, as we have got very few of such days in the first half of the season.

It's going to be interesting to see how the rest of the season turns out.

Anyway, it was a really beautiful day yesterday. Snow conditions were better in higher areas and not perfect on lower areas, but the weather probably made up for that... for many people anyway!

Overnight we got a bit of snowfall and there's 2cm or so of rather wet snow on the top of my car outside. Looks like the resorts that report such things early on are all reporting just a thin layer of new snow.

Lots of cloud around and webcams around town show limited visibility on the mountains, but there's some sun on the forecast for later this morning - perhaps we will see a beautiful clear up like yesterday? We'll just have to wait and see.

It is 0C as we approach 8am but a high temperature of +5C expected this afternoon - which is actually warmer than yesterday. Slightly warmer conditions expected tomorrow too... so we're going through a bit of a mild patch at the moment.

Come Tuesday we're forecast a return to snow, which may be preceeded by some more rainfall in town.


Official snow depths:

GALA Yuzawa:
Ishiuchi Maruyama:
Joetsu Kokusai:
Kandatsu Kogen:
Maiko Snow Resort:
330cm (upper)
230cm (lower)
NASPA Ski Garden:
Yuzawa Kogen:
310cm (Kogen)
260cm (Nunoba)
Yuzawa Nakazato:


Nighta in the area

Nighta 'night skiing' - where some slopes are floodlit for skiing and snowboarding in the evening - is available at the following resorts in the area.

Ishiuchi Maruyama:
Every day until 21st March (until 8:50pm)
Every day until 22nd March (until 8pm on weekdays and Sundays, 9pm on Saturdays)
Joetsu Kokusai:
Every day until 22nd March (until 9pm)
Kandatsu Kogen:
From 23rd January, 'all night' on holidays (6pm or 10pm until 4am the next morning)
Maiko Snow Resort:
Every day until 14th March (until 8pm)
Every day until 29th March (until 9pm)
All night on 17th January; 14th February and 14th March (10pm until 6am)
NASPA Ski Garden (skiers only):
Saturdays until 29th February (until 7pm)
Yuzawa Nakazato:
Saturdays until 14th March (until 8:30pm)

Chateaux Shiozawa also have nighta but only on certain days - no fixed schedule available.
Resorts not mentioned above do not operate 'nighta' (or do not plan to have more this season).
Some resorts offer tickets that include nighta, others need a special lift ticket.


Ski and snowboard resorts in Yuzawa town
Ski and snowboard resorts in Minamiuonuma City
   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 8:01am
Weather conditions: Cloudy, fog > clearing expected
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 250cm
Beautiful day yesterday with those blue skies and sun over the region.

A slight dusting of snow overnight by the looks and still cloud over the mountain at 8am and early morning fog there too, though the forecast today tells us to expect some more sunny conditions later on. Perhaps with more cloud than yesterday.

And similar kind of general weather conditions tomorrow, with slightly warmer temps.

By then we'll be ready for lots of fresh snow and that still looks due Tuesday through Wednesday. We might have to put up with some rain before it turns back to snow, hopefully that will be shortlived!


Fresh snow to report this morning since yesterday afternoon:

Yamabiko - 0cm
Uenotaira - 0cm
Hikage - 0cm
Nagasaka - 0cm
Karasawa - 0cm

Official snow depths:

Yamabiko - 390cm
Uenotaira - 340cm
Hikage - 250cm
Nagasaka - 245cm
Karasawa - 200cm


Courses open:

All courses are open except:

Grand Prix course
Jumping Course
Challenge 39


Lifts open (subject to weather conditions):

All lifts operating except:

Hikage Number 2 Pair B line


Night skiing at Nozawa until 8pm on the following dates:

Every Saturday until 28th March


Nozawa Onsen 6 day weather and snow forecast
Nozawa Onsen main resort data

   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 8:16am
Weather conditions: Mostly cloudy, expected to clear
New snowfall: 3cm
Snow depth: 170cm
Good morning from Hakuba and it's a fairly mild and cloudy start to the day.

Yesterday was a real beauty. Deep blue skies, bright sunshine and just a bit of cloud here and there for most of the day. It eventually got cloudy with them covering the mountains late afternoon and we have had some snowfall overnight.

Resorts around the valley are reporting up to 10cm of snowfall - as noted in the areas below where that information is available - and there's up to 5cm on the ground here at base this morning as it eases off.

Back to this morning and cloud hanging around and the last of some light snow lazily falling early on. A few areas of blue sky are already showing through from behind clouds and we're basically expecting a fine day here again with more sunshine today.

Looking ahead, tomorrow's forecast is for warmer temperatures - rising up to around 6 degrees - with the chance of rain going into Tuesday. With temps dropping it should be turning into snow; straight into snow on upper slopes.

I'll let you know how that goes.

In the meantime, should be a fine day today. Enjoy!


Official snow depth numbers and operations at time of writing on Sunday 25th January 2015. Subject to change during the day:

Hakuba Goryu:
Reporting 5cm of new snowfall at Alps Daira and 2cm at Toomi.
All courses open (except Adventure Course).

- Alps Daira - 290cm
- Toomi - 170cm
- Iimori - 170cm


Hakuba 47:
Reporting 10cm of new snowfall.
Tree Riding Zone is open.

- Upper - 305cm
- Lower - 185cm


Reporting 10cm of fresh snowfall.
Happo Banks The Snow Park opening event planned for 31st January.

- Usagidaira - 290cm
- Nakiyama - 160cm
- Sakka - 180cm


Hakuba Cortina:
Reporting 5cm of new snowfall.
All courses open.

- Upper - 390cm
- Lower - 265cm


Tsugaike Kogen:
Uma-no-se course and Forest course open this morning.
Please note that the top Tsugaike Ropeway only opens for spring season.

- Tsuga-no-mori - 350cm
- Maruyama - 195cm
- Kane-no-naru-oka - 210cm


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field:
Reporting 5cm of fresh snowfall.

- Upper - 275cm
- Lower - 165cm


Hakuba Norikura Onsen:
Checking Rabbit and Sky View Courses at time of writing.

- 275cm


All areas now open.

- 200cm


Night skiing at resorts in the Hakuba area:

Hakuba Goryu:
Toomi area every day until 31st March. 6pm until 9:30pm.
Hakuba Happo-one:
Nakiyama area every day until mid March. 5pm until 9pm.
Hakuba Cortina:
Every day until 31st March. 5pm until 8pm.
Tsugaike Kogen:
Kane-no-naru-oka on Saturdays in January; February 7th, 14th. 6pm until 8:50pm.
Karamatsu-Shirakaba on Saturdays in January; February 7th, 14th, 28th; Saturdays in March. 6pm until 9pm.
Every day until 15th March. 4:30pm until 9:30pm.   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 8:40am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog > clear up later?
New snowfall: 3cm
Snow depth: 270cm
What a great day it was yesterday. Maybe not absolutely perfect powder conditions, but the weather was amazing and I can't imagine people not enjoying it out there. Check out the photo below that the resort posted. Beautiful.

This morning, it doesn't look like that! Not yet anyway.

It's cloudy to start with. A thin layer of snow overnight - resort report 5cm - and cloud hanging over the mountain.

Might it clear up and the sun appear again? It might, says some local forecasts.

Tomorrow milder temps are due but by night it should cold down again and snow to fall on Tuesday and Wednesday. (Rain might come before that, but let's just hope the forecast is wrong on that score!)

Take care and have a good Sunday.


Lifts planned to be open:

Number 1 lift
Number 2 quad lift
Number 3A
Number 5
Super quad lift
Number 11 lift
Number 12 lift
Number 13 lift
Number 15 lift
Moving Walkway
Kids Park
Freeride Park
Tree Run Courses should be open today.

Night skiing at Madarao is every Saturday until 21st March 2015.


Madarao Kogen 6 day weather and snow forecast
Madarao Kogen main resort data
   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 8:40am
Weather conditions: Cloud, blue sky, sun at times
New snowfall: 5cm
Snow depth: 360cm
Hello and good morning from Niseko.

It's a busy Sunday morning out there already, but weather-wise a calm start to the day.

Up above it's a mix of cloud and blue sky, and I can see the sun too just now but it's playing a bit of hide and seek behind the clouds. Just a bit of new snowfall to add this morning, around 5cm with up to 15cm on mountain being reported.

Don't know about you, but I'm all for a bumper 40-50cm of beautiful dry light new snowfall kind of day. Next one of those please... this week would be great! Onegai shimasu.

All resorts and lifts are open as planned and it looks like all the gates should be open this morning as well. Let's Sunday!

On a more serious note, please be sure to check out the Avalanche report this morning (below)... found a few things mentioned in there interesting.


One change to the report that I want to make a note of.

Until now, for the 'official snow depth' number on the report, we have been making a note of the 'lower' number from Hirafu (I mean the 'Current snow' number that you can see towards the top right of this page).

It's not actually really that important as within every single report that I put up here I do make a clear note of all of the upper/lower snow depth numbers for each resort area, but we do think that it is probably better to change it to the upper number.

The upper number is also the number that is shown on the resort pages of our site, so it will now tie in with that.

So from today that is what we'll be using - the official 'upper' snow depth number at Niseko Grand Hirafu.

A few people mentioned this to us in comments sent in during the Prize Draw (thank you), so I hope this will meet with general approval. Sorry for the mid-season change.

* Sadly the jump from 145cm to 360cm does not mean that we have suddenly got 215cm of fresh snowfall overnight. I might even dust off the word 'epic' (with a capital 'E') if that happened!


Resort specific news at time of writing - subject to change during the day

Niseko Grand Hirafu:
Looks set to open as planned this morning.
'Early Morning' lift available daily until 1st February (for 500 yen, Ace Quad Number 2 lift from 8am until 8:20am).

Niseko Hanazono:
Looks set to open as planned this morning.

Niseko Village:
Looks set to open as planned this morning.
'Early Morning Gondola' available Saturdays and Sundays until February 8th (for 1300 yen, Gondola open from 7:30am until 8:30am).

Niseko Annupuri:
Looks set to open as planned this morning.


Niseko Avalanche Report

Niseko base 6am: -5C, light dusts in the last 12 hours. Moiwa 800m: mild wind and 10cm of new snow. Annupuri 1150m: mild wind, 15cm of snowfall. 1000m snowpack 250cm. Hirafu ridge: mild wind, light snowfall, -11C. Coastal data: Benkei cape NW6m/s, Kamui cape WNW3m/s, 1026hPa, 0.6m waves.

A calm morning as a high-pressure system is dominating the area. The snowdrifts are stable and the avalanche risk is low. Beware of collapsing cornices. All gates will open from the morning. The snow is in pretty good shape.

Intruders to Haru-no-Taki off-limits area never seem to decrease. Everyone should realize that the freedom to ride out of bounds in Niseko is protected in exchange of having those strictly off-limits areas closed at all time. The gate system would fail if people cannot respect the Rules and end up in closure of all gates and restriction of all out of bounds riding.

Whoever violating the off-limits areas will be banned from using all resort facilities. Haru-no-Taki may eventually open in the future, but we strongly demand everybody to respect the Rules until then. This area is a ski resort and the Rules exist to protect the freedom of out of bounds riding and the minimum safety of all resort users.


Official resort snow depths:

Grand Hirafu / Hanazono:
Top - 360cm
Base - 140cm

Niseko Village:
Top - 270cm
Base - 180cm

Niseko Annupuri:
Top - 255cm
Base - 180cm


Lifts open for night skiing (planned):

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Ace Family Pair lift, Ace Number 2 Center Four lift, Hirafu Gondola, Holiday Number 1 Pair lift

Niseko Hanazono Resort
No night skiing at the Hanazono area

Niseko Village
Community Chair and Banzai Chair

Niseko Annupuri
Jumbo Number 1 Quad


Niseko Grand Hirafu 6 day weather and snow forecast   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 9:22am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 200cm
Hello from Zao Onsen and after the clearer skies of yesterday we are back to cloudier skies this morning. It's calm though with not much of a wind and fairly mild temperatures both here in the village and up on the mountain.

Local forecasts give us a chance of clearer weather this afternoon.

Back to snow from Tuesday.

It was on the news last night about how the Ice Monsters are doing really well this year... and earlier than usual as well. That's what a fine start to the season gives you. If only we had more clearer weather days to enjoy the views.

Light up operations planned for every night now through until the end of February.


It's the Zao Juhyo Festival coming up on Saturday 31st January. 7:15pm until 8:30pm at the stage area by the Base Center at Uwanodai - be there for some traditional snow and fire themed festival fun. Below I have posted a rather scary looking photo from the festival last year!


Official snow depths (Sunday 25th January 15):

Utopia: 200cm
Chuo: 200cm
Paradise: 200cm
Uwanodai: 135cm

Zao Onsen is fully open (though note that the Karamatsu pair lift is closed on weekdays).


Night skiing operations at Zao this season

Uwanodai area:
Daily until 22nd March

Yokokura area:
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from until 15th March

Open times from 5pm until 9pm.


Juhyo 'Ice Monsters' Light Up night time ropeway operations

Every evening now until 28th February

Operating from 5pm until 9pm; last ropeway up at 7:50pm.
In the event of poor weather conditions, operations are sometimes cancelled.   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 9:40am
Weather conditions: Blue sky, some cloud, sunny
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: 185cm
Earlier on when I first got up there was lots of cloud around but now there's more blue sky and we're set for another fine day I'd say. The sun is out! Cold start but should warm up during the day, but still remain cold.

A return to winter conditions - colder and snowfall - is still there on the forecast going into Tuesday.

Until then, another fine day to wrap up the weekend and maybe similar again tomorrow.


Resort areas status with official snow depths:

Okushiga Kogen:
Open (note: skiers only resort area)


Ichinose Family

Ichinose Yamanokami:

Ichinose Diamond:

Takamagahara Mammoth:




Most open

Happo Bundaraia:

Sun Valley:



Open (note: skiers only resort area)

Yokoteyama & Shibutoge:
Open except for Jumbo Course.


Planned night floodlit skiing at Shiga Kogen resort areas:

Sun Valley:
Every Saturday until March 21st

Ichinose Family:
Every day until March 29th

Ichinose Diamond:
Every Saturday until March 28th

Every Saturday until February 21st

Every Saturday until March 28th   Read more ...

Myoko Now!

Sunday 25th January 2015, 10:51am
Weather conditions: Partly cloudy, often sunny
New snowfall: 10cm
Snow depth: 356cm
It's another, ah, interesting day in Myoko.

We started out with some fine snow (tiny round ice pellets, really), some fog high on the mountain and generally gray conditions.

Now the sun is out and it's getting warmer - tomorrow the freezing line will go way up the mountain, with a possibility of rain (maybe even heavy) toward the evening.

What the....?!

Well, the strange weather we're talked about continues. The Coast guard into from the coast shows a southern, offshore wind in the area closest to us (possibly flowing down the mountains and across the Takada Plan to the coast?) with the winds calming and a rising barometer.

I'm thinking about taking the safe course tomorrow, and going wakasagi (smelt) fishing in Lake Nojiri tomorrow.


Akakura Kanko:
360cm, -3°

Akakura Onsen:
280cm, 2°

Ikenotaira Onsen:
290cm, 0°

Myoko Suginohara:
270cm, -5° (top)

Seki Onsen:
450cm, -2°

Myoko Ski Park:
400cm, 0°

Kyukamura RunRun:
240cm, -1° (this depth figure has to be a mistake...)

Tangram Ski Circus:
2410cm, -3°

Madarao Kogen:
270m, -3°


Night skiing in the Myoko area:

Akakura Onsen (Kumado): until 10pm every day until 22 March
Tangram Ski Circus: until 8pm on Saturdays until 28 March
Madarao Kogen: until 9pm on Saturdays until 21 March
   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Aizu Bandai Now
05th Sep, 13:14
Yuzawa Now
14th Jun, 10:19am
Naeba Now
07th Jun, 10:08am
Shiga Kogen Now
27th May, 9:56am
Furano Now
08th May, 8:47am
Niseko Now
07th May, 19:19pm
Myoko Now
06th May, 9:33am
Hakuba Now
06th May, 9:09
Nozawa Onsen Now
06th May, 8:46
Minakami Now
06th May, 8:16
Madarao Now
06th May, 8:13am
Zao Now
06th May, 7:59
Appi Kogen Now
06th May, 7:59am
Geto Kogen Now
06th May, 7:12
Grandeco Now
02nd Feb, 12:34am