Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 30th May 2020
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 7:16am
Yesterday the Kitanomine Gondola operation was suspended, and it will not operate today. The resort has started the Kitanomine quad chair, but the only runs open in Kitanomine are now the Rinkan and Link course.
Unfortunately the forecast rain arrived early this morning and is still falling as I write this. Rain with mild temperatures, currently +2c, have turned the village snow pack into a wet slush. Looking up at the ski area the lower slopes have a lot more brown on them due to this event than they did yesterday. The good news is that this rain is expected to turn into snow later this morning and continue right throughout the week.
There's no way to get round it... it has been raining this morning.
The good new is that it seems to have eased off now and hopefully it will be snowing soon and the forecast shows some good consistent snowfall well into the weekend.
So it should be a good start to 2020.
Not a classic start to a season by any stretch, but it's still (sort of) early yet and let's hope for a great January and beyond.
See you next year!
Official snow depths:
* Top: 150cm * Base: 80cm
Planned operating lifts - subject to change:
* Number 1 Gondola * Number 1 pair lift * Number 2 pair lift * Number 2 Gondola * Quad lift
Courses & Tree Runs - subject to change:
* All of the main official courses are available * All tree runs not yet open for the season
Nighta skiing operations
* Weekends and holidays from until 24th February 2020 Read more ...
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 7:52am
Updated at 9:30am
Good morning from Yuzawa.
It is a mix of cloud and clearer skies this morning.
Forecast winds caused GALA Yuzawa and Yuzawa Kogen to be closed yesterday - both of those resorts are open again this morning, but sadly Maiko Snow Resort have said that they will not be opening today due to wind.
And unfortunately NASPA Ski Garden has also announced that it will not be able to open today; the southerly winds yesterday were not kind to the snow there. More snow needed.
I believe all the information below is correct but with quickly changing weather conditions, things might change during the day. Stronger winds might affect some lifts.
The forecast is still looking promising a run of days of snowfall - if correct, starting from this afternoon (with maybe a bit of rain before it starts).
Fingers crossed everyone.
I do not want to dwell on how this season has been very slow to get going; I can't remember us having so little snow at New Year.
The numbers are pretty stark. This season in these reports we have observed just 39cm of snowfall in town since the beginning of the season. At the same point of the season in previous seasons, that number was 255cm, 291cm, 146cm, 92cm, 559cm, 136cm and 225cm. All of these numbers and archive reports can be found at the bottom of this report if you want to look back at any time.
We can only hope that January will see things change and we'll get the large amounts of snowfall that we expect here. For example, last January we observed an impressive 523cm of snowfall. We are used to lots of heavy snowfall in this area. It just doesn't feel right that it isn't happening yet. But as I have said before, things can and often do change quickly. We need some of that.
Coming this week? Let's hope so!
So I really do hope to be able to bring much better news tomorrow. Have a fine last day of the year and see you in 2020.
- Part open - The Gondola is operating - Phaeton pair, Coach pair Sociable quad, Barouche quad, Victoria quad lifts are operating - Most of the Central Area (Melody, Entertainment, Gigi, Grenoble courses) and three courses in the Northern Area (Swan, Broadway, Roman Holiday courses) are open - Take the Gondola back down at the end of the day (Falcon downhill course not yet available)
- All areas are open with most courses now available - Both the Mitsumata Ropeway and Tashiro Ropeway bases ropeways are operating - The lift/course connection between Tashiro Area and Kagura Area is available - The Dragondola from Naeba is operating
Gosh, I so wish I didn't have to end the decade (!) with this, but we got rained on last night. Quite heavily at times.
With that annoying news out of the way, looking forward...
And indeed, just a little earlier light snow started falling and there is a dusting of snow already on the ground. It is going to get colder as the day progresses. I am confident that I will be bringing you some numbers tomorrow morning to start the new year off in a good way.
In the meantime there may well be disruptions today to lift operations due to the weather conditions we are expecting.
It also sounds like some New Year events may be called off due to the stormy conditions that we have expected. So if you were planning on taking part or going to any events, I would be sure to check up on them before heading out.
OK, so it's 2020 from tomorrow. A new year. A refreshed outlook. And hopefully the start of an onslaught of consistent heavy snowfall. That is what I want; I'm pretty sure it's what you will be wanting to. Make it so!
I hope that you all have a fun and safe last day of the year - wherever you are in the world - and see you tomorrow morning.
Heavy rain fell overnight and at 5am positive temperatures were recorded up to 700m. Expect the temperature to drop and blizzard conditions as a typical winter type barometric system sets up. Very high NW winds and blizzard conditions will continue above 800m through tomorrow. Do not ride in strictly off limits areas like Haru no Taki looking for fresh snow. There is a high probability of large scale avalanches due to slab formation by the rapid temperature changes.
There is still not enough snow to ride off the ski runs yet. If an accident occurs during this bad weather the helicopter cant fly. If you are not confident with a self rescue think long and hard about going out. It would be a shame to get injured on such a small mountain. The Niseko community respects your freedom but places great importance on safety too. Be cautious. The snow will be good soon.
Ski resort operation information: Tuesday 31st December 2019 The below information is manually checked each morning and believed to be correct at time of report. Subject to change.
Official snow depth (reported by resort): - Peak: 180cm - Base: 50cm
Ski lifts operating: - Ace Family quad (until 8:30pm) - Ace Number 1 pair - Ace Number 2 Center quad (until 8:20pm) - Ace Number 3 pair - Hirafu Gondola (until 8:10pm) - Holiday Number 1 pair (until 8:30pm) - King Number 1 pair - King Number 2 quad - King Number 3 quad - Swinging Monkey
All courses now open EXCEPT the following: - Onsenzawa - Large - Konayuki - Miharashi - Dynamic
Official snow depth (reported by resort): - Peak: 105cm - Base: 70cm
Ski lifts operating: - Niseko Gondola - Upper Village Gondola (until 8:00pm) - Village Express (until 8:00pm) - Community Chair - Banzai Chair (until 8:00pm) - Morino Chair - Country Road
Night time operations are normally available in the Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri resort areas. Subject to weather conditions. (There is no nighta at the Niseko HANAZONO resort area). Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 8:20am
Good morning from Nozawa Onsen.
Yesterday didn't do much for snow conditions being a bit mild and a bit of a southerly wind. The official numbers from up top are down a bit this morning though lifts and courses that are open remains unchanged.
So while we have lots of cloud around now, the forecast is for snow to start from this afternoon (perhaps with some rain before turning to snow in lower areas). There is snow forecast across the coming week too, so we can be confident of some decent numbers upcoming.
'Countdown Fireworks' tonight at Nozawa at midnight and there will be some hot wine and soft drinks being served from 11pm. I'm not sure if Nasuki will be tucked up and asleep by then, but who knows... perhaps our favourite vegetable may make an appearance!
(Note that there will not be any night skiing tonight).
Lifts are opening 30 minutes earlier every day until 3rd January for the New Year period. That means that the Gondolas both get going from 8:10am, and the Shinyu pair and Yu Road both start from 8:00am.
Tuesday 31st December 2019
Fresh snowfall recorded by resort since yesterday morning:
- Nagasaka Gondola - Hikage Gondola - Yamabiko Four - Yamabiko Number 2 Four - Uenotaira Four - Paradise Four - Skyline Connecting pair - Yunomine pair - Hikage triple - Hikage Four - Nagasaka triple - Shinyu pair - Yu Road
These courses plan to be open:
- Yamabiko A - Yamabiko B - Yamabiko C - Yamabiko D - Yamabiko E - Kogenashi A - Kogenashi B - Uenotaira - Bunabayashi - Yunomine A - Yunomine B - Mizunashi A - Mizunashi B - Hikage (some restrictions) - Kumataka (as a connecting course) Read more ...
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 8:22am
Good morning from Naeba.
We are starting the last day of 2019 with fine clearer skies, but a storm is due. And it should be starting to make waves from this afternoon with strong winds and snow (hurray!) forecast. The resort is saying that some disruption to lift operations might be possible later in the day so keep that in mind.
An early start recommended.
Have fun and see you in the next decade!
Official snow depth:
Planned operating lifts:
- Prince Number 1 Gondola - Prince Number 2 Gondola - Takenokodaira pair lift - Number 4 romance pair lift - Number 5 high speed lift - Number 3 high speed lift - Number 4 high speed lift - Hiuchi Number 1 romance pair lift - Dragondola
Courses planned to be open:
- Many base areas are now open - The upper Takenokodaira course is open - You can now ski or snowboard back down to base from the top of the Number 1 Gondola - Sledding area open in base area - Other courses will open up as soon as there is enough snow - The Dragondola is now operating to get over to the Tashiro Area of Kagura Read more ...
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 8:43am
Morning from Zao.
It's the last day of 2019 and I'm honestly looking forward to getting into a New Year which hopefully will bring snowfall.
This morning it is raining and the lower base areas are looking a rather bare which is not what we expect at New Year. :(
Snow is due today so by early morning New Years Day lets at least hope that we get a white covering again.
It sounds like today there are going to be disruptions to lifts due to the worsening weather conditions along with strong winds (which in themselves are hopefully good because they should bring snow).
Check before venturing out.
Not sure what else to say for the moment, other than I hope that all readers have a fun and safe New Years Eve, and lets all collectively hope that January brings with it decent snowfall.
** OPERATIONS MAY BE AFFECTED THIS MORNING DUE TO WEATHER **
Lifts normally operating:
- Shobunuma Number 2 pair - Katakai triple - Chuo Number 1 pair AB - Chuo Number 2 pair AB - Mikaeri pair - Diamond Number 2 pair lift - Utopia Number 2 pair lift - Onsen Number 1 pair - Zao Chuo Ropeway / Zao Ropeway / Sky Cable
PLEASE CHECK AS PLANS MAY CHANGE DUE TO WEATHER/SNOWFALL
Nighta in the Uwanodai area is scheduled daily until 1st March 2020 and then 7th, 14th, 20th and 21st March 2020. 5:00pm until 9:00pm.
Nighta in the Yokokura area is scheduled for New Year; and also on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays between 10th January and 7th March 2020. 5:00pm until 9:00pm.
The Zao Ropeway opens in the evenings on the below dates for 'Light Up' sightseeing purposes - to go and see the Juhyo monsters (not for skiing or boarding) on the following dates:
December 2019: 28th, 29th, 30th, 31st <<<< CHECK TO SEE IF OPERATING! January 2020: 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 10th-12th, 17th-19th, 24th-27th, 29h-31st February 2020: all days apart from Tuesdays
There is an extra charge for this night time Ropeway operation. Read more ...
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 8:57am
Good morning from Hakuba.
Well, we did get some snow falling yesterday morning and I feel we all deserve a little added to the report to represent that - though it didn't amount to much and the resorts aren't reporting any new cm (as you can see below).
Cortina appear to be open again, with their Number 2 and 4 lifts operating; though they are saying that the courses are not groomed (due to lack of snow).
Snowfall data from the resorts:
The information in this table is data reported by the ski resorts
New snowfall (base)
New snowfall (upper)
TOTAL ACCUMULATION (UPPER)
IMPORTANT: See below for an explanation of the above data
This morning lots of cloud and... (small voice...) a bit of rain. One of those days when it looks like higher temperatures higher up than down at base.
But snow is due later on. I believe.
There will be various New Year Eve things going on tonight including fireworks. I'm guessing one or two people might enjoy a drink or two as well. ;)
Take care, have fun and see you tomorrow.
I am going to start the new year tomorrow with a refreshed and positive frame of mind, which will be helped considerably by some fresh snow to report.
Operating lifts: - Gondola (need to take the gondola back to base from the open upper area) - Alps Number 1 pair - Alps Number 3 pair - Alps Number 2/4 pair - Toomi Sky Four quad - Toomi Number 1 pair - Milky Four quad
Courses open: - Panorama - Grand Prix - Technical - Super - Toomi (part) - Soft Cream
About the data in the above ‘snowfall as reported by ski resorts’ table * The table within the above report contains data that is published by individual ski resorts * The data shown is the amount of snowfall that the ski resorts are themselves reporting each 24 hour period on the upper areas of their mountain * The source ‘new snowfall’ data and ‘total accumulation’ data is not updated at the same time * The ‘new snowfall’ data is updated in the morning * The ‘accumulation’ data is apparently updated/refreshed at midnight * That means that there is a time lag between the two numbers being updated * We manually check and update the data just before we publish each Hakuba Now report - so the data in each Hakuba Now report table is what is available at that time * Any odd-looking numbers are due to the source data. We are not responsible for and have no control over the data. We are simply sharing the data with you * Just to be extra clear, unlike our own ‘observed snowfall’ data from base that we show at the top of each report, the data in the table is not an independent observation by SnowJapan * A more in-depth introduction and explanation can be found in this reportRead more ...
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 9:04am
Fine, some cloud
Good morning from Madarao.
I will very quickly try to skip over the bit of rain and wind we got yesterday, but it obviously was not great for the snow that we have on the slopes.
This morning we have had some nice blue skies and more cloud appearing - snow is due from this afternoon, so let's hope we can begin 2020 with good news and that January brings us the snowfall that we expect.
Special nighta operations at Madarao tonight from 5:00pm until 11:45pm and then fireworks. Here's to a good 2020.
Current operations: Tuesday 31st December 2019
Operating lifts & open courses at Madarao:
- Number 1 lift - Number 2 quad lift - Super quad lift - Number 5 lift - Number 11 lift - Number 12 lift - Number 15 lift - All courses apart from the summit area and tree run courses are now open, though the snow cover is not deep - care needed
Operating lifts & open courses at Tangram Ski Circus:
- Number 1 pair lift - Number 3 quad lift - Number 5 quad lift - Number 6 lift (for connection from the pension area) - Primary Line course - Hard Line course - Zigzag Line - Green Line - Queens Downhill (lower) - Forest Line (lower) - Pantan Line - Green Line Read more ...
Appi Kogen Now!
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 9:10am
Good morning from APPI.
Not the best way to end the year... it's raining, but hopefully it will soon be turning into snow as it gets colder and this winter front arrives.
New Year events going on tonight but some will be depending on weather conditions. We are expecting something of a storm - the good thing there is that fresh snowfall is due....
All the best as we head into 2020. See you then.
APPI is mostly open now with the following lifts operating:
MAY BE DISTUPTIONS TODAY DUE TO WEATHER CONDITIONS
- Central quad lift - Appi Gondola - Central Number 2 lift - Central Number 3 lift - Central Number 5 lift - Central Number 6 lift - Sailer quad lift - Vista quad lift
- 8 lifts normally operating - 17 of 21 courses are now open - The Nishimori areas not yet open
So, the last day of the year. It's not starting particularly inspiring - lots of grey cloud and with drizzly rain and sleet in higher places, but strong westerly winds and more importantly snow are forecast as the day goes on.
Here's to a fresh layer of snow on the ground to celebrate the New Year for my next report.
I have been told that a late start like this has in the past successfully turned around pretty good. Here's to that!
See you on the other side... have a good New Years Eve.
Grandeco Snow Resort: - Part open - Number 1 quad lift operating - Number 2 quad lift operating - Gondola operating - 3000m of course available - Lavender B course - Center course - Rainbow 3500 (upper area) - Connecting course - Hotel connecting course - Kids Park also open
The section of road connecting the southern area of Shiga Kogen (from Yokoteyama onwards) with Gunma Prefecture is now closed for the season. It will be closed until 24th April 2020.
Approach using Route 292 from the west (Nagano/Nakano/Yamanouchi). Read more ...
Tuesday 31st December 2019, 9:59am
Things are changing very quickly as I write our report for the last day of 2019.
Just 30 minutes ago it was mostly sunny, very warm and with only a light wind from the south. It has quickly gotten overcast, the barometer is crashing down (and it is low!) and a little light rain is falling occasionally. The forecast is for the freezing level to come down very quickly, so we could have much colder temperatures, some good snowfall, and perhaps some fairly strong winds in just a few hours. The winds offshore are already very strong, and coming from the northwest - just what we want to see for some good snowfall!
I also have to relay what the head of one of the ski schools who has been here for nearly 50 years reported at a meeting last night: this low snow has happened before (about 40 years ago, he said), with basically no snow before New Year's Day. And then it turned around.
Don't lose hope, snow sliders of all styles! The season has only just begun.
Take all reported snow depths as very optimistic; we can see brown spots here and there, but, hopefully, they'll be covered very soon!
The night was clear, the morning saw blue skies but dark clouds have rolled in from the North and it's been snowing up top at Tenjin for a few hours, with a rainier variety of sleet at the base.
Just did a temp check and it's turned to snow and looks like this could be an aggressive storm.
The winds are moderate to strong from the North with the odd howl to be heard as it rips down the valley. Temps are set to drop this afternoon and snow and colder temps are forecast for the next 5 days at the base of the mountain with a lot more up top...
Could be worth watching this space...
Akasawa Part open Ropetow course and sledding open