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Airbag in Japan?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Recently got back from a trip to multiple resorts in Hokkaido.
I took my Black-Diamond jetforce airbag.
I came to the conclusion that, due to the general lack of steepness and quantity of trees, it was somewhat over-the-top for the terrain.
Speaking to the guide [who wasn't wearing an airbag] .... avalanches are almost unheard of. My fellow skiers [mostly Australians] all had basic off-piste kit but none had airbags.
I have a fantastic Ortovox free rider backpack without an airbag which is significantly smaller/lighter than my Jetforce.
Do the more-experienced-than-me think I would be stupid to opt for using that in Japan?

I was in St Anton in January and there were loads of avalanches so I would always use an airbbag there.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Depends where and when you're skiing in Japan.

Hakuba Valley above the lifts then yes to Black-Diamond jetforce airbag.

Likewise the alpine terrain on Hokkaido - Mt Yotei, Asahidake, Yoichidake, Rishiri, Shakotan, Kariba Mountainous District.

Within the resort area boundaries and in the treeline, then overkill IMHO.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Thank you!
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There were a good number of airbag packs around where I was skiing in Japan, mainly worn by Europeans. At least I should say there were plenty of packs, but not that many with the trigger handles deployed. The American chap I skied with on my first day, had a Jetforce Tour 34, but still had the plastic shipping protection on the trigger handle, so hand never tested it or read the manual Shocked

A number of American and Australian’s I spoke to had airbags at home, but hadn’t brought them due to the difficulties of flying with them.

I took my Jetforce Tour 34, because 1. We were potentially going to do some backcountry touring, and 2. I don’t mind the size/weight. However, apart from a couple of slopes at Furano and Teine, I didn’t ski anything that really justified it.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Wife and I took ortovox and mammut bags to Hokkaido - no issues with flights (BA to Tokyo then internal flights on Peach). We were with guides off piste all week (mainly outside of resort boundaries and in the higher alpine) and skied some nice lines - some open, some steep so no reason not to wear them. Our guide was highly qualified avalanche forecaster and he was very conscious of where we rode and lines we took etc.

Half way through our trip a chap with another group was avalanched in the backcountry close to where we'd been skiing - partial burial, lost a ski, very, very long and arduous ski out with a single ski in deep snow!!
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You'll need to Register first of course.
maybe overkill but if you got it use it. why not?
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I have never been skiing in Japan, but around here, my ABS is always with me. Even if avi danger is low. There's no 100% safety and there's noone who can guarantee there's not going to be avalanche, well at least as long as there's snow in mountains. So personally even if/when I would go to Japan, my ABS would go with me, regardless what other people around there say. In my mind, my life is a bit more important then "being cool and look like everyone else impression".
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
primoz wrote:
I have never been skiing in Japan, but around here, my ABS is always with me. Even if avi danger is low. There's no 100% safety and there's noone who can guarantee there's not going to be avalanche, well at least as long as there's snow in mountains. So personally even if/when I would go to Japan, my ABS would go with me, regardless what other people around there say. In my mind, my life is a bit more important then "being cool and look like everyone else impression".


That's not the question being posed.

In the alpine it makes sense to use one if you have one, regardless of avalanche risk.

However, in the trees their efficacy hasn't been tested / proven.

With much of Hokkaido skiing at our below treeline, then an accidental / planned deployment may or may not help/hinder.
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