Snow and weather reports posted on Saturday 30th May 2020

Furano Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 7:55am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 15cm
Snow depth: --
It is a windy day but the extreme winds in the early hours of the morning have reduced to a moderate level as I write this. There is a good new layer of snow across the village of around 15cm - this will definitely vary in different locations due to the wind effect though. It is pleasing to see the resort open up more courses, and with Panorama now open there are more options for the advanced skiers. Groomers have been active on Kitanomine in the last couple of days preparing the slopes for opening - this should be soon but no date has been announce yet.

Open courses:

Panorama   Read more ...

Geto Kogen Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 7:56am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Geto.

My oh my it is funny sometimes how quickly a situation can change... from today all of the main courses at Geto will be open, and they are rightfully boasting about it! Fastest to be fully open in Honshu, with 14km of rideable terrain.

I am impressed. But more than that, I am excited so forgive me for quickly posting this and getting out there myself...

Oh, being true to my reporting means I feel the need to just fill you in a bit more. Just a little snow the report yesterday and a little light snow now. Bit of a wind too but not too much to be too much of an annoyance. The forecast for today is cloud/snow, with some clearer skies forecast for tomorrow. Should be good!


Official snow depth (as reported by resort):

Upper: 170cm
Lower: 90cm

Lifts, courses & tree run info:

Gondola lift operating
All main courses open
Tree runs not open yet   Read more ...

Zao Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:15am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Zao.

We got some breaks in the cloud and even some blue sky and sunshine yesterday for the official opening ceremony of Zao Onsen. Lots of official looking folks lined up as well as the traditional things going on.

This morning back to some snow falling and the upper part of the mountain is shrouded in cloud (fog?) - visibility looks pretty limited up there.

Clouds should be clearing again by tomorrow and we're on for a run of a few days of clearer weather if the forecast is right. I just hope it doesn't warm up too much. We shall see...


Zao Onsen 6-day forecast, updated multiple times daily


Lifts operating:

- Mikaeri pair
- Chuo Number 1 pair AB
- Utopia Number 2 pair lift
- Onsen Number 1 pair
- Zao Chuo Ropeway / Zao Ropeway / Sky Cable

Courses open:

- Chuo (part)
- Utopia
- Uwanodai (part)

Official snow depths (as reported by resort):

- Summit area: 25cm
- Paradise area: 20cm
- Chuo area: 45cm
- Utopia area: 45cm
- Uwanodai area: 30cm
- Oomori area: 25cm


Night time operations:

Nighta in the Uwanodai area is scheduled daily from 28th December 2019 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 (28th December 2019 until 5th January 2020); 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
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 ...

Aizu Bandai Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:22am
Weather conditions: Fine, cloud
New snowfall: 1cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning.

This morning there is a mix of cloud and some breaks in the cloud with some nice blue sky and even a bit of sunshine, and just a dusting of snow in places.

Looks like it should be a fine day.

OK so the forecast remains --- fine clearer skies over the coming few days and warmer conditions too. From Thursday, a return to colder conditions and fingers crossed some more snow.

So I wouldn't expect more to be open this week so we need to play with what we have, enjoy the clearer skies and look forward to full-on winter to arrive.


Grandeco Snow Resort:

- Number 1 lift and Gondola are operating
- 3000m of course available
- Rainbow 3500 (upper area)
- Lavender B
- Connecting to Center course


- B and C lifts operating

Hoshino Resorts Nekoma:

- Forest 3 course open


Photos today:

- Grandeco (2)
- Minowa (yesterday)


Opening information - subject to change of course depending on weather/snow conditions.

Currently part open:
- Grandeco Snow Resort
- Hoshino Resort Urabandai Nekoma
- Minowa

Saturday 21st December 2019
- Hoshino Resort Alts Bandai
- Inawashiro
- Inawashiro Resort
- Urabandai   Read more ...

Naeba Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:22am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Naeba.

This morning is one of those cloudy/foggy/trying to snow/damp ones. Almost difficult to describe. It is snowing higher up on the mountain and I see that nearby Kagura are reporting 3cm from up top.

But Naeba is open and the two lifts are moving.

Sunshine is forecast for tomorrow and probably Tuesday too and the sun will be warming us up a little as well. Hopefully not too much.

The next fresh natural snowfall is due for the area around Thursday.

Have a fun Sunday!


Naeba is part open:

- Number 5 high speed lift (8:00am until 5:00pm)
- Number 4 romance pair lift (8:00am until 5:00pm)
- The lower base slopes between those lifts are open with a fairly narrow course of natural + artificial snow
   Read more ...

Niseko Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:31am
Weather conditions: Snow
New snowfall: 9cm
Snow depth: --
A happy Sunday morning to you all from a cold and snowy Niseko.

I guess some of you reading this will be here and enjoying this relatively quiet early season. I enjoyed few hours at Hanazono with a few friends who were worried about coming early season. They seemed suitably impressed after a few runs, especially when the sun said hello.

I am adding another 8cm of fresh snowfall from base, as observed since my report yesterday. So there is a nice new layer this morning to add to what we got.

Today is the first day of the season when pesky winds are going to affect lifts - booooo! As I post this report, at Annupuri, the Gondola and upper Jumbo Number 3 pair lift are both on hold at the start of the day due to wind warnings on the mountain. Other than that it would appear that operations are unchanged for this morning across the mountain. Of course, that could change during the day. (It didn't seem too windy before when I was outside...)

It is going to get milder around Tuesday and Wednesday and there will probably be sunshine, but there is snow lined up on the forecast beyond that.

As long as the snow is never that far away...


Niseko Grand Hirafu 6-day snow and weather forecast


Ski resort operation information: Sunday 8th December 2019
The below information is manually checked each morning and believed to be correct at time of report.
Subject to change!

Niseko Grand Hirafu
Part open

Official snow depth (reported by resort):
- Peak: 145cm
- Base: 60cm

Ski lifts operating:
- Ace Family quad
- Ace Number 2 Center quad
- Ace Number 3 pair
- Hirafu Gondola
- Holiday Number 1 pair
- King Number 3 quad
- Swinging Monkey

Courses available:
- Family
- Sennoki
- Alpen (part)
- Detour for beginners
- Green (part)
- Shirakaba
- Center
- Boyo
- Kokutai (part)
- Jumbo


Niseko HANAZONO Resort
Part open

Official snow depth (reported by resort):
- Peak: 95cm
- Base: 45cm

Ski lifts operating:
- Hanazono Number 1 quad
- Hanazono Number 2 quad
- Hanazono Number 3 quad


Niseko Annupuri
Part open

Official snow depth (reported by resort):
- Peak: 90cm
- Base: 75cm

Ski lifts operating:
- Annupuri Gondola - ON HOLD AT START OF DAY
- Dream Number 1 quad
- Jumbo Number 1 quad
- Jumbo Number 3 pair - ON HOLD AT START OF DAY

Courses available (*when planned lifts operating) :
- Utopia Course
- Shirakaba Course
- Paradise Course
- Junior Course


Niseko Village
Part open

Official snow depth (reported by resort):
- Peak: 85cm
- Base: 55cm

Ski lifts operating:
- Upper Village Gondola
- Village Express
- Community Chair
- Banzai Chair


Night time operations are available in the Niseko Grand Hirafu, Niseko Village and Niseko Annupuri resort areas from Wednesday 11th December 2019. There is no nighta at the Niseko HANAZONO resort area.   Read more ...

Hakuba Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:37am
Weather conditions: Cloudy
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Hakuba.

A mostly cloudy day yesterday, fairly calm, quite a few people around to enjoy their first turns of the season. It kept pretty cold too so the snow should be in decent condition this morning.

There's no fresh to report - either by my own eyes or reported by the ski resorts - and from what I can tell operations remain the same at the resorts that are open... a large part of Hakuba 47 is open, the upper area of Goryu is open and upper areas of Happo-one are also available.

The forecast today is mostly cloudy (what we have now) but a chance of some clearer conditions later on in the day.

From tomorrow slightly milder temperatures are forecast and we shall probably get to see quite a lot of sunshine. Lets just hope that it doesn't warm up too much. On the other side of the warmer spell, the next snow looks likely around Thursday.

I hope you enjoy your Sunday. I know where I'm going! :)


Photos today (below):

- Hakuba Happo-one [Usagidaira]
- Hakuba Happo-one [Usagidaira]
- Hakuba Goryu [base Toomi area]
- Hakuba Goryu [upper Alps daira area]
- Hakuba 47 [from top of Gondola]
- Tsugaike Kogen [upper Tsuganomori]
- Tsugaike Kogen
- Looking towards Hakuba Iwatake and Hakuba Happo-one


Hakuba Happo-one

Operating lifts:
- Happo Gondola Adam
- Kokusai Number 3 pair lift
- Panorama pair lift
- Alpen lift
- Kurobishi Number 2 lift

Courses open:
- Panorama
- Usagidaira
- Kurobishi
- Base areas closed - take the Gondola back down to base

Official snow depth:
- Kurobishi: 70cm
- Usagidaira: 60cm
- Lower: 5cm

New snowfall (**reported by the ski resort**):
- Kurobishi: 0cm
- Usagidaira: 0cm
- Lower: -cm

Hakuba 47

Operating lifts:
- Gondola
- Line A B pair lifts
- Line C quad lift
- Line E pair lift

Courses open:
- Most courses open
- R7 and Tree Riding Zone are not open

Official snow depth:
- Top: 65cm
- Base: 15cm

New snowfall (**reported by the ski resort**):
- Top: 0cm
- Base: 0cm

Hakuba Goryu

Operating lifts:
- Gondola
- Alps Number 1 pair lift
- Alps Number 3 pair lift

Courses open:
- Panorama
- Grand Prix
- Technical
- Super
- Base areas closed - take the Gondola back down to base

Official snow depth:
- Top: 65cm
- Toomi: 20cm
- Iimori: -cm

New snowfall (**reported by the ski resort**):
- Top: 0cm
- Base: 0cm


Tsugaike Kogen
Plans to open as soon as there is enough snow

Hakuba Cortina
Plans to open on Saturday 14th December 2019

Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field
Plans to open on Friday 13th December 2019

Hakuba Valley Kashimayari
Plans to open on Saturday 14th December 2019

Hakuba Norikura Onsen
Plans to open on Saturday 14th December 2019   Read more ...

Yuzawa Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:40am
Weather conditions: Cloud and...
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from Yuzawa.

This morning Kagura are again reporting some fresh snow - 3cm - and yesterday they got to open their 4000m long Gondola Course.

I'm not seeing that Gondola Course being mentioned again this morning on official sources, but I presume that it will be open again today so keeping it in the info below. I hope that is correct.

Down in town we were hoping for a bit of snow overnight but things are a bit... wet. It's raining, you've got to get higher up for it to be snow. Hopefully that will stop sooner than later.

Forecast? It is still showing milder conditions along with lots of sunshine from tomorrow; that will all last through around mid-week.

Expect slightly later opening times for the lifts at Kagura from tomorrow for weekdays.


Kagura is currently part open:

- Mitsumata Ropeway (7:30am-5:00pm, last one up a 3:30pm)
- Mitsumata Number 1 quad (7:30am-4:00pm)
- Mitsumata Number 2 romance pair (7:45am-4:30pm)
- Kagura Gondola (7:45am-4:00pm, last one up at 3:00pm)
- Kagura Number 1 romance (9:00am-3:30pm)
- Kagura Number 1 quad (8:00am-3:30pm)
- Kagura Number 4 romance pair (9:30am-3:00pm)

- Main course (1500m)
- Panorama course (700m)
- Family course (1,100m)
- Gondola course (4,000m)


Naeba is also part open - details on the Naeba Now report here.

Joetsu Kokusai will open as soon as there is enough snow.


Photos (below) from early morning on Sunday 8th December 2019:

- Kagura
- NASPA Ski Garden
- Ishiuchi Maruyama (2)
- Yuzawa Kogen (2)
- Route 17/Yuzawa IC exit


Planned opening dates - subject to change of course depending on weather/snow conditions.

Now part open:
- Kagura (via Mitsumata)

Saturday 7th December 2019
- Joetsu Kokusai
- Naeba

Friday 13th December 2019
- Maiko Snow Resort

Saturday 14th December 2019
- GALA Yuzawa
- Kagura (via Tashiro)
- Kandatsu Snow Resort
- Ishiuchi Maruyama
- Yuzawa Kogen
- Yuzawa Nakazato

Friday 20th December 2019
- Muica Snow Resort
- Muikamachi Hakkaisan
- NASPA Ski Garden
- Yuzawa Park

Saturday 21st December 2019
- Hakkai Sanroku
- Ipponsugi
- Iwappara
- Nakazato Snow Wood

Wednesday 25th December 2019
- Itsukamachi

Thursday 26th December 2019
- Chateau Shiozawa

Saturday 28th December 2019
- Ishiuchi Hanaoka
- Mt Granview   Read more ...

Shiga Kogen Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:56am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 1cm
Snow depth: --
Hello from Shiga Kogen.

A light dusting of snow overnight, well maybe a bit more than a dusting.. just 1-2 cm on the ground in places, I am seeing slightly over 1cm around my place.

It is looking moodily cloudy this morning with gas/fog hanging around adding to the atmosphere.

Tomorrow things should be much clearer as sunshine is forecast and as I think I mentioned before we are expecting some milder conditions too. Not too mild please.

It's going to be at least towards the later part of the coming week before we get more snow.

I'll do some re-organising of the report for my next one....


Photos below:

- Kumanoyu
- Takamagahara Mammoth


Yokoteyama 6-day snow and weather forecast


These areas are currently part open:

- Ichinose Family: Number 2 pair lift A line operating
- Ichinose Diamond: Diamond quad lift
- Kumanoyu: Number 2 pair lift A & B line operating
- Takamagahara Mammoth: Number 2 triple lift operating
- Yakebitaiyama: Number 4 romance lift
- Yokoteyama: Number 1 Sky A line and Number 5 lift operating

Other areas of Shiga Kogen are waiting for more snow


Other info:

- 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.   Read more ...

Nozawa Onsen Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 8:58am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog
New snowfall: 0cm
Snow depth: --
Morning from Nozawa.

It's a foggy and damp kind of morning. It is sort of trying to snow, but it's not the kind that is going to give us any cm on the ground. It does look like there might have been a cm or two up top, but it's nothing significant.

Tomorrow will at least be clearer and we can probably enjoy some sunshine - and as I said milder temps.

The forecast for next week is still showing snow for Thursday.

One thing I'd like to stress - things can and often do change very dramatically. I am looking forward to reporting relentless dumps of 30+cm. Soon!

We just need to wait patiently. (Yes, I know. It's not easy!)


Nozawa Onsen 6 day forecast


Webcam still images below from 9:00am, 8th December 2019:

- Yamabiko (1615m)
- Uenotaira (1407m)
- Paradise (1230m)
- Hikage (660m)
- Nagasaka (616m)
- Karasawa (563m)

Nozawa Onsen will open as soon as there is enough snow.   Read more ...

Appi Kogen Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 9:04am
Weather conditions: Fine
New snowfall: 7cm
Snow depth: --
Good morning from APPI.

And it is a lovely morning too. The sun is out and blue skies with just a bit of cloud. Around 7cm of fresh snowfall on the ground is welcome too.

More sunshine is forecast for the next few days along with somewhat warmer conditions. The forecasts tell us to expect more snow from around Thursday.

For the moment, we have two lifts and three course areas open, as noted below.


APPI is part open as below:

- Central quad lift
- Central Number 2 lift

- Shirakaba course - about 1000m
- Hayabusa Course (Number 2 lift section) - about 1000m
- Ootaka Course (Number 2 lift section) - about 800m

APPI 6 day snow and weather forecast   Read more ...

Madarao Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 10:21am
Weather conditions: Cloud, fog
New snowfall: 2cm
Snow depth: --
Just a quick update this Sunday morning.

As you can see if you compare the Tangram image yesterday with the one from yesterday, some light snowfall overnight. You can also see the thick fog/cloudy conditions that we have this morning.

We are still expecting clearer and sunny conditions from tomorrow for a few days.


Photo images below:

- Madarao Kogen Information Center
- Tangram Ski Circus



6 day snow and weather forecast for Madarao


Planned opening dates:

Madarao - Saturday 14th December 2019
Tangram Ski Circus - Saturday 21st December 2019   Read more ...

Minakami Now!

Sunday 8th December 2019, 11:16am
Weather conditions: Cloud
New snowfall: 12cm
Snow depth: --
Well, the season has commenced here in Minakami as of yesterday with first turns at Tenjindaira Ski Resort.

The snow base was sitting at 60cm yesterday and the quality was excellent. Nice and soft and cold enough to be crisp and fast too.

In terms of the weather, it's been snowing sporadically for the past 3 days and the snow base on resort at 1300m has increased by 50cm in that time.

Down here by the base of the ski resort, it's been less dramatic and my total fresh snowfall is a little more than 10cm. Part of what's been working though is the weather; down in the town it seems like it's generally been sunny whereas up here at my place, it's been clouded over virtually 100% of the time and it's mostly been snowing lightly. Temps and conditions are certainly on our side.

So the Tenjin open yesterday only involved the middle lift (smallest one) and today they'll be running the Takakura lift as well (lookers left). Tenjin Toge lift still needs a good dump and even then, they'll want it well settled before anyone starts ripping it. I was out doing a ski lesson and had to look on enviously but a few people hiked the lifts and scored a proper, early season powder run. In the fresh they were sinking in about 20cm max but the stoke was completely evident when they got to the bottom.

I drove past Okutone ski resort a few days ago, looked rather grim, they need some serious snow to even consider opening. Same goes for Norn and Hodaigi are telling me they open on Dec 21st and they sounded quite confident so fingers crossed.
It's snowing right now but next snow after this is forecast for Thursday night.

Looks like warmish weather on Tuesday and Wednesday but hopefully the trusty clouds can keep the sun off my snow!


Photo below from yesterday at Tenjin


Planned opening dates of ski resorts in Minakami

Currently part open:
Tanigawa Tenjindaira

Saturday 14th December:
Minakami Hodaigi
Okutone Snow Park

Saturday 20th December:
Minakami Kogen Ski Resort

Saturday 21st December:
Norn Minakami
White Valley   Read more ...

SnowJapan Daily 'Now' reports

Shiga Kogen Now
30th May, 10:10
Geto Kogen Now
06th May, 15:13pm
Appi Kogen Now
23rd Apr, 17:30
Furano Now
22nd Apr, 10:12am
Madarao Now
20th Apr, 9:52am
Zao Now
20th Apr, 9:52am
Nozawa Onsen Now
20th Apr, 9:51am
Niseko Now
20th Apr, 9:50am
Naeba Now
20th Apr, 9:49am
Myoko Now
20th Apr, 9:48am
Minakami Now
20th Apr, 9:47am
Hakuba Now
20th Apr, 9:40am
Aizu Bandai Now
20th Apr, 9:38am
Yuzawa Now
20th Apr, 9:37am
Grandeco Now
06th Dec, 14:16am