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Aomori or Fukushima

Discussion in 'Japan' started by dbc33, Jun 16, 2019.

  1. dbc33

    dbc33 Hard Yards

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    Hey guys, was looking a doing a trip to Japan in January for 10-12 days and so far the two areas I'm looking at are Aomori or Fukushima. There seems to be some fairly good deals for alts Bandai and the areas around it, still looking more into the Aomori side of things but was just wondering what people think of the boarding in and around Fukushima. Cheers guys
     
  2. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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  3. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Depends on what you are looking for in your trip, and what you're willing to do. I could spend 10-12 days in Fukushima no worries, but from where I normally go the southern Aizu region is closer, so I have spent more time in those places. Having said that, if I was going to rent a house for a couple of weeks and drive around every day i'd find a place in Aizuwakamatsu and go from there.

    In terms of the snow, well, it can obviously be pretty good, but you need to pick and choose your days/places/aspects, like anywhere in Japan. The fact they dont run Nekoma every day, have stopped using a couple of the best lifts, and have a really tight off-piste policy, really steers me away from that place these days. Nekoma was without a doubt the best resort in that area, inbounds. You're not going to get big lines in Fukushima, because there isnt the mountains to do it (unless you go out behind Takahata), and I think Aomori has better options in that regard. Some of the lifts/ski jos arent the most modern, but hey, that's Japan. But you wont see many gaijin.

    Give me some more specifics on what you are able to do/want to do, and go from there. There's a few good threads on Fukushima skiing on here already I would suggest you read through too.
     
  4. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Just curious as to how you narrowed your choice down to those two prefectures. There are a few others in between those two.
     
  5. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    powder recon tour maybe?
     
  6. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    I heard the night skiing in fukushima is great.
     
  7. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    They go to the other places also.
     
  8. dbc33

    dbc33 Hard Yards

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    Hey guys, @Vermillion not 100% sure on details just yet but I would have a car and would like to do at least one BC guided tour then like you said pick a resort each day and head there, somewhere that's not more than an hour each way. Was thinking to either base myself at Aizuwakamatsu or koriyama if possible. @Heinz want to try something a little different, over the years have been to Niseko, Furano, tomamu,kamui, myoko,nozawa and Hakuba. Saw some cheap deals for Fukushima and thought that looks interesting and same with Aomori area and just want to get away from the crowds possibly if that can happen. @Donzah kind of looking to do it on the cheaper side of things so a day or two of guiding would be good but probably not a week long tour.
     
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  9. geeoff

    geeoff Hard Yards

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    If by Aomori you mean Hakkoda and Aomori Spring, you will need a guide at Hakkoda unless experienced in BC and prepared to do your homework. The Rockwood Hotel at Aomori Spring is not cheap accomodation and it is a fair drive up from Hirosaki (the closest city).
    IMO would probably be less expensive to stay in Iwate/Akita and ski around Morioka region. More options where you won’t need guides.
     
  10. dbc33

    dbc33 Hard Yards

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    Cheers @geeoff had a look at Rockwood and yeah nice but not in my budget. Will have a look at the morioka area
     
  11. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    That was basically what I was getting at before. Fukushima & Aomori are the southern and northern parts of Tohoku. There are 4 prefectures in between them so many more options.
     
    geeoff likes this.
  12. geeoff

    geeoff Hard Yards

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    In the Iwate/ Akita area I suggest these places which are all well priced pensions near different ski areas - Pension Mutti at Appi Kogen, Hutte Birke at Tazawako, Pension Sanrinsha near Amihari Onsen(and Shizukushi) and in Morioka city, Kumagai Ryokan.
    Further south the accommodation at Geto Kogen base complex is fairly cheap.
    IMO best if you hire a car. We try to plan to spend Friday and Saturday nights in the cities ie Sendai and Morioka (even though the resorts are far from crowded on weekends) as the night life at the resorts is pretty much non existent!
    If you read Heinz’s trip reports you will see you can get about easy enough on public transport if you don’t want to drive.
    Easy to occupy a fortnight in the area.
     
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  13. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    If you want proper guided BC then Fukushima really doesnt have a lot of that, and what it does probably isnt what you're looking for. If you are up for riding around with a group of mates and scoping lines out from hill tops and roadsides, then getting drop off/pick up after hitting those lines, Fukushima has a lot of that (but then again so do most prefectures in Japan). It sounds like Hakkoda and Aomori is what you're looking for, but I dont want to completely steer you away from Fukushima, cos Aizuwakamatsu is a cool town.
     
  14. Ecstatic

    Ecstatic Hard Yards

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    Did a week in Morioka last Feb, great urban town with lots of options for food, drinks and excellent accom for great value. Really enjoyed it. There's a few options for public transport out to the major ski fields but where you're going to really get value out of the region is by getting a car and tripping out to different resorts each day. I'd recommend a guiding company not just for the guiding around the resort but the feedback on which resort to pick based on each days conditions.

    Interested in how you go, I'm looking at the next trip and wondering if I hit Morioka again or try Fukishima area (which I know nothing about).
     
  15. geeoff

    geeoff Hard Yards

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    Agree Aizuwakamatsu is good town to visit. Have been to Alts Bandai and it is a solid option for a day or 2. Was planning a trip there to check out Nekoma and Minowa to the north and then drive down and stay around Takatsue, Takahata and Nango to the south for a few days, but Europe got in the way! Was a great trip report on these resorts by Vermillion with ratings a while back that highly recommend you review.
    I like to travel around and could easily do a week in Aizu region and a week in Morioka area moving about, with a weekend in Sendai thrown in, whilst others will think this too hectic.
     
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  16. nezumi

    nezumi One of Us

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    I'm assuming the deal you are talking about is the Ski Aizu $299 offer? I keep looking at that myself, it's damned tempting.
     
  17. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    If you think some of the resorts around Alts are deserted on a weekend, wait until you try Nango/Daikura/Takahata and to a lesser extent Takatsue. They're nothing super spectacular in terms of steeps and long runs, but when you have the place literally to yourself it's hard to beat. These small skijos also all have at least 1 'closed' run where since the bubble they've removed lifts due to lack of cashflow and patronage, but in true Japanese form they still summer groom and maintain the runs. You get these runs to yourself once you find them.
     
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  18. nezumi

    nezumi One of Us

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    Appropriately, this came up when I was trying to get a sense of the resorts that are included in the Aizu Ski offer, and which ones I would go to if I was to take up the offer.

    Apparently one of the resorts ,Adatara Kogen, used to be much better for powder, off-piste runs etc, but now the lift to the summit has gone, removing the best/steepest runs and about half the elevation difference.
     
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  19. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Doesnt mean you cant hike it. Takatsue would often close their top single-seater lift if the weather wasnt the greatest, but damn there are some good runs down from that, get your skins on (there's a cat track to the peak, how easy is that?) and earn turns on your own all day long.
     
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  20. geeoff

    geeoff Hard Yards

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    The prices in the Aizu area for both lifts and accomodation are very cheap compared to the more well known areas, even without the special deal. Particularly the Minamiaizu area.
     
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  21. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Shhhhh. That's a great town to stay in, and so bloody cheap. If I was doing an Aizu trip i'd stay in Minamiaizu over Aizuwakatmasu, but that's because I like the southern resorts + areas better.
     
    geeoff likes this.