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Japan 2019 - 20

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Gämsbock wrote:
@Snowpenguin On landing we learned that due to snow (or lack thereof) we’re going to Sapporo instead. We’re still inclined to follow a version of our original plan and head to Sapporo on Monday afternoon. Any thoughts? What’s it like in Sapporo? Any snowHead about? Are we better to extend our stay in Tokyo?


It was hammering down with snow when I arrived in Niseko last night. Skied Niseko Grand Hirafu today - plenty of lovely snow, but got quickly tracked out. Rusustu tomorrow Smile
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Gämsbock, who are you out there with, just that I was talking to the people who are guiding us in a few weeks and they said that they were coming back to Hokaido / Sapporo as snow elsewhere think it was main island, was not at all good.

I'm seeing great shots on a guide's Instagram for the past ten days in Hokaido, and just hoping this carries on for a few more weeks and then some more when we get there.

Love this shot.



Our itinerary is sort of go where the snow is and as we're touring no need to worry about the Niseko SnowBoard grommets tracking everything out Laughing
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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?
I've been in Hokkaido for 9 days. I've only bought 3 lift passes, but been ski touring on 4 additional days. I've also been using skins in the ski resorts.

In general it seems like the resort skiing is pretty limited if you're not willing to hike. Many of the previously skiable areas are just covered with massive bushes. The areas that are skiable get tracked out quickly.

I've only had 1 proper Japow experience, which was on the 21st at Kokusai.

Backcountry touring has been great though! You obviously have more freedom to ski areas that are not so bushy.

https://hokkaidowilds.org/

This website is extremely useful and a great project! Lots of good ski touring routes. I'd recommend not doing any that start below about 400-500m altitude (in the SW Hokkaido area)

I'm using a GPS / mapping app called Geographica. It's fantastic and includes the official Japanese Topo maps.
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Day of the Season yesterday at Rusutsu (Sunday 26 January)

Dry, light, deep, sunny.

Face shots for fun.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
musehead wrote:
I've been in Hokkaido for 9 days. I've only bought 3 lift passes, but been ski touring on 4 additional days. I've also been using skins in the ski resorts.

In general it seems like the resort skiing is pretty limited if you're not willing to hike. Many of the previously skiable areas are just covered with massive bushes. The areas that are skiable get tracked out quickly.

I've only had 1 proper Japow experience, which was on the 21st at Kokusai.

Backcountry touring has been great though! You obviously have more freedom to ski areas that are not so bushy.

https://hokkaidowilds.org/

This website is extremely useful and a great project! Lots of good ski touring routes. I'd recommend not doing any that start below about 400-500m altitude (in the SW Hokkaido area)

I'm using a GPS / mapping app called Geographica. It's fantastic and includes the official Japanese Topo maps.


I’ve only been in Hirafu and Rusustu the past three days. Pretty nice covering between the trees IMO, just a few bamboo sprouts that are easy to ski through. More snow due Wednesday evening...
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Mike Pow wrote:
Day of the Season yesterday at Rusutsu (Sunday 26 January)

Dry, light, deep, sunny.

Face shots for fun.


Camera broken Puzzled
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
BobinCH wrote:
Mike Pow wrote:
Day of the Season yesterday at Rusutsu (Sunday 26 January)

Dry, light, deep, sunny.

Face shots for fun.


Camera broken Puzzled


Very Happy

Way behind.

Here's one from the 17th at Niseko Moiwa

https://www.instagram.com/p/B75eykSnk8r/
ski holidays
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Snow didn’t materialise overnight in Niseko as hoped. Windy and low visibility (higher up) at Hirafu, and I believe same at Rusutsu. Skied at Hirafu and had a piste day, on moguls (which the Japanese seem to love) and short turns; there are only two of us on this particular Whiteroom tour, and our guide is a qualified instructor so like a day’s private lesson. Not what I came here for, but still good fun and value for money. Fingers crossed for some snow overnight for my last day tomorrow (I think the plan is Kiroro).
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Kiroro was great fun today, we got a little lost amongst the trees and spent a bit of time rolling around in the snow. Visibility not particularly good but it kept snowing up to when we called it a day (very early for me) at half two.

Wish I knew the resort better to have a better idea of where to head (in bounds) and what lines to take without ending up too low and having to walk out. Thinking we might play the same game tomorrow as seems like it's had the pick of the conditions this side of Sapporo.
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@Themasterpiece, @SnoodlesMcFlude, Think Kiroro will be our plan for tomorrow.

Today was a short tour up Mt Yotei and a cuppa in the "Focca" Cafe Laughing
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Agreed.

Kiroro skiing the best at the moment.

Back there tomorrow.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
https://www.scmp.com/news/asia/east-asia/article/3048255/eight-foreign-nationals-caught-avalanche-japans-hokkaido-one

Avalanche in Tomamu, 8 caught, no fatalities reported, mid-afternoon and off-piste.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
extremerob wrote:
https://www.scmp.com/news/asia/east-asia/article/3048255/eight-foreign-nationals-caught-avalanche-japans-hokkaido-one

Avalanche in Tomamu, 8 caught, no fatalities reported, mid-afternoon and off-piste.


Sadly I fear that one person will have passed away. Japanese police take a long time to declare a person deceased. (I think it needs to be declared by a doctor or some other official practice) The reports are saying one person is in 'cardio-pulmonary arrest' which unfortunately is the term normally used when a person is not responding, but hasn't been formally declared dead.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
AndAnotherThing.. wrote:
@Themasterpiece, @SnoodlesMcFlude, Think Kiroro will be our plan for tomorrow.

Today was a short tour up Mt Yotei and a cuppa in the "Focca" Cafe Laughing

Is that typical understatement, as in we sumited the 1300m Mt Yotei, or was it just a short tour Very Happy

I ask because Mt Yotei is one of my targets in a couple of weeks, and I was wondering what conditions are like.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@PowderAdict, Nah, we skinned upto about 800m, just below the "Terrace". A bit of a warm up really. Snow was humidified even at that level and there was no chance of a view, but in 2 weeks it will have reset.

Plenty of Europeans about lapping the section we were in and a well established skin track.

According to the route we looked at it's full ice axe and crampon stuff for the full ascent.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Resorts seemed slow to confirm lift openings so we opted for another tour, this time up the Waisuhorun. Amazing how localised the conditions are. On our side of Niseko there wasn't much doing plus high winds, but as we drove over the wind dropped and there was a nice layer of fresh.

We got moved on from the top of the trail head by a man in a yellow van for parking, but found another spot not too far away. Conditions were nice in the trees but wind affected and thin above the tree line.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
We ended up going to Mt Teine today as it had been snowing, and still was when we arrived. However, the top lifts were closed due to high winds. They were on “standby” to open, but there is little to ski in the bottom section only so we skipped lunch and drove to Kokusai. Had a nice afternoon with some good snow in the trees.
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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?
Japow on the way next week? My recollection was that SF underestimated JP precip? This was Niseko
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Arriving on Monday Smile
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Next week looking 'normal'
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Question - what is the situation with rescue (from injury) outside the resort boundary? Probably something I should have looked up before my trip... Our guide said ski patrol won’t come and get you. Is there mountain rescue and phone numbers for different resorts? (Let’s set aside the cost/insurance aspect for now)
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
BobinCH wrote:
Japow on the way next week? My recollection was that SF underestimated JP precip? This was Niseko


In my (brief) experience they seemed quite accurate on when it snowed but as you say seemed to underestimate the amount. If I was going and there was that forecast I’d be like a dog with two dicks.
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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!
Another avalanche incident. Up in the north of the island. An Englishman in his 30s has died.

Be careful all.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@MagSeven, I said today that I wouldn't be surprised if there was another incident, sad that I was right Sad

Any more info?
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SnoodlesMcFlude wrote:
@MagSeven, I said today that I wouldn't be surprised if there was another incident, sad that I was right Sad

Any more info?


Just that it was at Nakatonbetsu, today and the victim was in his 30s. I’ve only seen a Japanese article with not much more info than that.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Japanese news site reporting the guy's name, but not much other info. No idea if his next of kin have been informed, so won't be posting name here.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2020/02/01/national/two-men-including-briton-killed-japan-avalanches/

This article mentions the Hokkaido avalanche as well as a further one in Nagano
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Avalanche deaths on Hokkaido have been a long time coming.

Lots of people taking unnecessary risks, often in large groups skiing the slope at the same time.

There's a problematic rain layer which hasn't bonded.

Next storm cycle could be carnage.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
If you are pist-skier one tip:

https://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=3526130#3526130

However I did try power here. snowHead
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
So who is in Niseko Hirafu Monday next week for beer o'clock ?
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I'm in Very Happy
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Laughing
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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?
Me too
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@Mike Pow, need to take @KenX, to the Fridge Door bar, can't remember the actual name Laughing



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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Weathercam wrote:
@Mike Pow, need to take @KenX, to the Fridge Door bar, can't remember the actual name Laughing
Bar Gyu. Love that place, great music for a chilled evening.
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@Mac46, Are you based in Sendai? snowHead
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Mike Pow wrote:
Me too
any tips for weekend destination from Tokyo this weekend? Hope to get to Hokkaido next week work permitting...
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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!
Yuzawa, easy on the Shinkansen (Tokyo to Echigo-Yuzawa train). Gala Yuzawa easily accessible from the main station in the valley, or you could head up to Kagura or Naeba nearby. The snow is looking a bit better in that area now.
ski holidays
 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@MagSeven, thanks! I saw it takes 3 hours to get to Hakuba by train and lots of snow forecast there. Worth the effort?

And was also recommended Hakkoda but looks like a flight required.

Happy to put in the effort / $ to get the best snow / terrain.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@BobinCH, Be warned there is no going back snowHead Once you sample the full Japanese powder experience it will become an addiction.......

Btw: I stuck a quick review of the 138 in the Colour Coordination thread https://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=3526752#3526752
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