The early clouds disappeared pretty quickly yesterday and it ended up being a beautiful clear an sunny day.
And very spring like.
That is both in terms of the weather and temperature and the general snow conditions. The spring season does bring with it a lot of fun, but we don't want it just yet. We want winter! And it does look like the winter conditions are coming back fairly soon but we are going to be living with milder conditions for a day or so more. Maybe some snow tomorrow night and then again Saturday.
This morning it is generally cloudy and overcast and while the forecast shows the chance of some sun later on I doubt it will end up like yesterday.
A high of around +8C is expected in town later on.
I'd expect some rather icy conditions this morning softening up during the day.
From the weekend, the top Number 5 lift at Kagura will be open for longer - until 2pm.
Apparently the Number 2 pair lift at Muikamachi Hakkaisan had been closed due to avalanche risk, but they will be re-opening that from this morning.
Photos today from GALA Yuzawa, NASPA Ski Garden and Yuzawa Kogen (looking north towards Minamiuonuma).
Updated: 8:00am, Wednesday 6th February 2019
** Official snow depths (where available) and resort specific information. Information is checked manually each morning but sometimes official information is updated later than the time of these reports.
Night time 'nighta' operations (listed in alphabetical order)
Below is information on night time floodlit skiing operations at ski resorts in the area. Subject to change due to weather and snow conditions.
Ishiuchi Maruyama Open daily until Saturday 16th March 2019 The Chuo Area is open daily for nighta The Hatsukaishi and Kanko Areas only open for nighta over New Year and nights before holidays 4:00pm until 8:30pm
Iwappara Open daily until Sunday 24th March 2019 Part of the mid and lower area of the resort 5:00pm until 8:00pm on weekdays; until 9:00pm on Saturdays
Joetsu Kokusai Open daily until Sunday 24th March 2019 Area in front of the base hotel, Osawa and lower Atema 5:00pm until 9:00pm
Kandatsu Kogen 'Hobo (Almost) All Night' every Friday, Saturday and night before holidays until 30th March 2019 6:00pm until 4:0am the next morning
Maiko Snow Resort Open daily 'one-coin nighta' (500 yen) until Saturday 16th March 2019 Maiko Center Quad lift in the Maiko Area 4:00pm until 8:00pm
Naeba Open daily until Sunday 24th March 2019 Number 3 and 4 high speed and Number 4 romance pair lifts 4:00pm until 8:30pm
NASPA Ski Garden NASPA extends opening for the Number 1 lift on the following dates: 19th, 26th January 2019 2nd, 9th, 10th, 16th, 23rd February 2019 Extended until 6:00pm
Yuzawa Nakazato Every Saturday until 9th March 2019 Sunday 10th February 2019 Number 2 romance pair lift 5:00pm until 8:30pm Read more ...
Nozawa Onsen Now!
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 8:05am
Morning from Nozawa.
It kind of feels more like spring than winter just at the moment.
A day of fine and clear weather yesterday, cloudy just this morning. Mild. And the relative mild-ness will probably remain today and into tomorrow too with the chance of some snow tomorrow night. And then beyond. So we can look forward to that.
Wednesday 6th February 2019
Fresh snowfall reported by the ski resort (since yesterday morning):
All lifts apart from the following planned to be operating:
- Yunomine pair - Mizunashi triple - Challenge pair - Utopia pair - Kandahar pair (open for general public on 12th Feb and 1st Mar 2019)
All courses open apart from the following planned to be open:
- Grand Prix - Kandahar (open for general public on 12th Feb and 1st Mar 2019)
Lift operation times until end of March:
Nagasaka Gondola - until 4:00pm (time of last one down) Hikage Gondola - until 4:20pm (time of last one down) Yamabiko Number 2 Four - until 4:10pm Skyline connecting pair - until 4:30pm Base lifts - until 5:00pm Yu Road - until 5:10pm Read more ...
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 8:20am
Good morning from Madarao.
It was a beautiful day yesterday. We'll even forgive the relative warmth. (But won't be as forgiving for much longer!)
This morning it is much more cloudy. It is still going to be mild with the next fresh snow due to be falling tomorrow night.
Time for some practice in the groomers perhaps as we wait for fluffy.
Planned operations for Wednesday 6th February 2019
Official snow depth at Madarao:
All lifts apart from 3A plan to be open All 31 courses should be open including tree run courses
Nighta operations at Madarao: - Every Saturday until 23rd March 2019 - 10th February 2019
Tangram Ski Circus info:
All lifts operating All course areas open
Nighta operations at Tangram: - Every Saturday until 23rd March 2019 - 10th February 2019 Read more ...
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 8:22am
Spring? Nope, not up here! It's still mid-winter here and it looks set to continue. Temperatures remain down cold and after some good snowfall from the afternoon yesterday there's almost 20cm of fine quality fresh light snowfall to add to my reports.
All lifts appear to be preparing for a busy day. Gambatte! And, Otsukaresama, etc.
The forecast is looking good for regular snowfall along with wintery cold conditions over the coming week. All is good.
Niseko Avalanche Report:
Mountain base 6am: -7℃, 15cm snowfall in 12 hours, calm weather overnight. Moiwa800m: -8.6℃, N0.7m/s, 20cm snowfall in 12hours, no snowdrift development. Mikaeri Junction: calm, -9℃, small snowdrift development. Annupuri 1120m: 220cm snow depth. Hirafu peak: -13℃, 20cm snowfall, snowdrifts developments and calm. Misuno no sawa: -9.99℃, calm, 165cm snow depth at mountain base, 6cm snowfall in 12 hours. Suttsu weather station: -3.4℃, calm wind, 47cm snow depth, Kutchan -7.1℃, calm wind, 163cm snow depth. Coastal data Benkei cape ENE4m/s, Kamui cape NNE2m/s, 1012hPa, 1.2m waves.
The atmospheric pressure gradient is flat and the weather is calm in the mountain and on the ocean. The snowfall settled down around noon yesterday, but another set came in and dropped 15cm of fresh snow in 3h. There were no wind influence during that snowfall and the new snow is not forming notable slabs. The overall avalanche risk is low. All peak gates are scheduled to open from the morning. Please follow the patrol’s instructions. Do not cut across slopes under cornices and knolls. Traversing over and over on the same slope could stimulate deeper weak layers and trigger a slide. Special caution is required in O-sawa (Annupuri bowl) and Kozan no sawa (Back bowl).
We would like to repeatedly remind that it is strongly advised not to ride the bottom of the valleys. Hazards of slides striking from higher slopes are ever-present. Do not party ride in suspicious terrains. One slide could take in the whole group. The snow condition is excellent today. Ducking ropes is strictly prohibited in Niseko. Please show respect to the local customs. They may be different from your country, but as the proverb says, "when in Rome, do as the Romans do."
We appreciate your understanding.
Ski resort operation information: Wednesday 6th February 2019 Subject to change due to weather conditions
Ski lifts operating: - All lifts opening as normal at the start of the day (Ace Number 1 pair and King Number 2 quad lifts rested) - The Ace Family quad (until 8:30pm), Ace Center 4 quad (8:20pm), Hirafu Gondola (until 8:10pm) and Holiday Number 1 pair (until 8:30pm) lifts are normally open during the evening
Official snow depth (reported by resort): - Peak: 300cm - Base: 160cm
Ski lifts operating: - All lifts opening as normal at the start of the day (Country Road lift rested) - The Upper Village Gondola, Village Express and Banzai Chair lifts are normally open until 8:00pm during the evening
Night time operations are available in the Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri resort areas. There is no nighta at the Niseko HANAZONO resort area. Read more ...
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 8:31am
Good morning from Hakuba.
Yesterday by late morning the clouds had mostly gone leaving us with some beautiful blue skies in the afternoon. There was hardly any wind and, dare I say it, an early spring feel. Kimochi-ii!
There's some more 'mild' to get through today and tomorrow. (Today we expect temps to be around +6 in the village in the afternoon).
I'm chilled about it though because we can see a return to more mid-winter like conditions in the coming days. There's some snow due tomorrow night and then on Saturday. I am expecting...
Webcam image this morning from Happo-one, Hakuba 47 and Hakuba Iwatake.
Ski resort information on Wednesday 6th February 2019: The below info is checked manually each morning and believed to be correct at time of report. All ski resorts in the area are currently open. Any further resort specific notes made below.
Night time skiing (nighta) at resorts in the region - weather & conditions permitting The below 'nighta' information will not be updated every day - please check with resorts if you plan to go!
Hakuba Happo-one Daily from 5:00pm until 9:00pm in the Nakiyama base area (Nakiyama Number 2 pair lift) Adults - 2,000 yen; children - 1,200 yen
Hakuba Goryu Daily from 6:00pm until 9:30pm in the Toomi area until 31st March The Sky Four quad operates daily; the Number 2 pair mostly on Saturdays and holidays Adults - 2,000 yen; children - 1,000 yen
Hakuba Cortina Daily from 5:00pm until 8:00pm (until 9:00pm on Saturdays and certain holidays) Adults - 1,500 yen; children - 1,000 yen
Tsugaike Kogen Karamatsu Shirakaba area from 6:00pm until 9:00pm on 9th, 10th, 16th February; 2nd March Adults - 2,200 yen; children - 1,700 yen Read more ...
Shiga Kogen Now!
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 8:39am
Good morning from Shiga Kogen.
After the sun of yesterday, it is cloudy this morning. Perhaps we'll get some breaks in the cloud later on, but I don't think we can expect it to be clearer like yesterday. The milder conditions continue and snow conditions are as you might expect. Bit icy especially early on, softening up to some extent in the daytime.
When's the next fresh coming? Tomorrow night and Saturday appears to be what forecast folk are predicting.
I can't think of much else to report really for the moment, and so I'll be back with you tomorrow.
Shiga Kogen resort info: Wednesday 6th February 2019
The below information is manually checked for each report. Official snow depth numbers are as reported by the ski resorts themselves.
Planned night time operations at the Shiga Kogen ski areas are as follows. Please note that separate lift tickets are required.
Ichinose Diamond Every Saturday until 23rd March 2019 10th February 2019 Quad lift 6:30pm until 9:00pm
Ichinose Family Daily until 23rd March 2019 (except Mondays and Tuesdays) Number 2 pair B lift 6:30pm until 9:00pm
Kumanoyu Every Saturday until 30th March 2019 10th February 2019 20th March 2019 Number 1 pair lift 6:30pm until 9:00pm
Sun Valley Every Saturday until 2nd March 2019 10th February 2019 Number 1 quad lift 7:00pm until 9:00pm
Yakebitaiyama Every Saturday until 2nd March 2019 10th February 2019 Number 3 high speed lift 6:00pm until 8:00pm Read more ...
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 9:01am
Good morning from Zao.
Yesterday did indeed turn into a very fine day with clear brilliant blue skies.
This morning, back to cloudier conditions. As of 9am the resort is reporting a temperature of -5C up top and +2C at base areas. So we're still experiencing warmer than usual temps right now. If the forecast is right the next decent cm of snow to arrive should be around Saturday.
In the meantime kind of icy conditions in the morning.
Operation info from official sources:
- All lifts operating apart from the Karamatsu pair and Yokokura Number 2 pair lifts - All main courses open
In the Uwanodai area: Daily until 3rd March 2019 Friday 8th March until Sunday 10th March 2019 Saturday 16th March 2019
In the Yokokura area: Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday between until 10th March 2019
Night time 'light up' sightseeing ropeway is planned for the upcoming dates:
February 2019: every day apart from every Tuesday March 2019: 1st-3rd Read more ...
Aizu Bandai Now!
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 9:14am
Good morning from Urabandai.
It was a sunny day in the region yesterday.
Temps are keeping quite cold this morning, I expect some icy early morning conditions on the slopes. Higher courses will be offering the better snow conditions just at the moment.
Some more sun is due later on today with and some fresh snowfall forecast for tomorrow afternoon. Not a major snowfall but we will hopefully be seeing some fresh snow on all the slopes. Refresh please!
The photos for today are from Grandeco (first two) and Alts Bandai.
Nekoma - lift 0/5, course 0/11 open *Closed on Wednesday and Thursday 1/16-2/28 Grandeco - lift 5/5 include one gondola, course 13/13 open Urabandai - lift 0/3, course 0/3 open *Closed on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday Minowa - lift 3/3, course 10/11 open Numajiri - lift 4/4, course 10/11 open Alts Bandai - lift 8/8 include one gondola, course 23/25 open Inawashiro - lift 7/8, course 18/18 open Inawashiro resort - lift 3/4 include one gondola, course 8/9 open Listel - lift 2/2, course 5/7 open Family Bandai Bandai - lift 0/2, course 0/7 open *Only open on Saturday, Sunday and national holidays. Read more ...
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 10:03am
Good morning from Naeba.
Well, yesterday was sunshine and warmth... this morning is cloudy and not-quite-as-warm. Yes, mostly cloudy conditions this morning.
After this mild spell though, we could really be doing with some nice fresh snowfall to freshen things up and for all the Chinese New Year guests to enjoy.
When might that be? We're hoping it will be tomorrow, probably later in the day or overnight into Friday. And then there's some more lined up for over the weekend. Onegai shimasu!
Official snow depth:
All lifts plan to be operating apart from the following (some lifts rested on weekdays):
- Prince Number 1 Gondola - Daishamen romance pair lift
All courses now open apart from the following:
- Splash Bowl - Men's Riesen Slalom (event being held)
Planned night-time operations:
- Daily until Sunday 24th March 2019 - 4:00pm until 8:30pm - Courses open: Number 5 - Lifts operating: Number 5 high speed lift Read more ...
Appi Kogen Now!
Wednesday 6th February 2019, 10:35am
Hello from Appi,
Fairly sunny skies this morning to greet us and relative calm winds,
We saw a few centimetres of wet snow last night but it will certainly help cover the icy slopes we has yesterday. Temperatures hovering around zero at the base today with thankfully no rain in sight.
Tomorrow looks promising for snowfall with over 20cm forecast to be heading our way. That coupled with light winds will make it a perfect day off piste.
Looking to Friday and into the weekend the temperatures will turn south firmly into minus double digits with sporadic snowfall.
Planned lift operations & course areas (subject to change due to weather conditions):
- Appi Gondola - Central Quad lift - Central Number 2 - Central Number 3A - Central Number 5 - Sailer quad - Sailer Number 2 - Vista quad - Nishimori
* Bravo, Cruise 1, Cruise 2 and Dragon Tail tree runs should be open as normal when the lift operations allow - register to use them at Plaza 1st Floor
Official groomed snow depth (as reported by resort):
Conditions still pretty bad with a nasty rain crust just about everywhere. One good line down from the peak yesterday, went to Kagura today and same there and it appears to have got all of Honshu up to Hakkoda.
Small snow tomorrow night and looks like back to business as usual from Saturday.
It had to happen sometime but it ain't easy being a backcountry guide in these conditions!
May the healing snow fall for us all and in the meantime, best avoid steeps and tight trees.