Opinion First Time Skiing in Japan - best location?

Jesse Tillman

Early Days
Jun 1, 2019
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Kanazawa is definitely worth a stopover but it depends on how keen you are to get to Hakuba and ski. If keen, do what Sandy suggests above OR you can catch an overnight ski bus from Osaka.
Oh didn’t see the bit about the ski bus. I’ll look into that option in case. We don’t have to ski the arvo. But wanted 3 days skiing. So 13,14,15 then were hoping Tokyo 16/17 and Osaka 18/19 flying out 9pm on 19th. Do you think that’s too much? Sorry for all the questions
 

Donza

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Thank you - one more annoying question. Any chance you know what station we would get into and go from in Kyoto and what area is should look for a hotel? Please and thank you
Kyoto station. Look for accommodation there.
 

Neoh JH

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Sep 24, 2018
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Oh didn’t see the bit about the ski bus. I’ll look into that option in case. We don’t have to ski the arvo. But wanted 3 days skiing. So 13,14,15 then were hoping Tokyo 16/17 and Osaka 18/19 flying out 9pm on 19th. Do you think that’s too much? Sorry for all the questions

Unless you're dead set on seeing Tokyo, I'd just skip it and spend more time in Kyoto / Osaka. You'll have to factor in the cost of the transport between Hakuba and Tokyo and back to Osaka.

Alternatively, if you haven't booked your flights you could do an open jaw and fly out of Tokyo. The Hokuriku Arch Pass would be decent in this case.

http://hokuriku-arch-pass.com/en/
 

Sandy

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Unless you're dead set on seeing Tokyo, I'd just skip it and spend more time in Kyoto / Osaka. You'll have to factor in the cost of the transport between Hakuba and Tokyo and back to Osaka.

Alternatively, if you haven't booked your flights you could do an open jaw and fly out of Tokyo. The Hokuriku Arch Pass would be decent in this case.

http://hokuriku-arch-pass.com/en/
Yes, the hokuriku is a good pass provided you stop twice or more, or backtrack.
 

PiggabeenBoarder

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Dec 28, 2017
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I second Nozawa Onsen, my family and I love it there. Easy to get to on the shink and short bus, awesome town, good snow and resort and not too busy relatively speaking. Check Nozawa Holidays, they have a few accomm options in various locations and prices.
 
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bluestick

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What Is Nippon like for XC skiing?
Assuming you are referring to track xc. In summary it’s ok with small ‘club’ like tracks all over the place but mainly short distances. Biggies include snow harp in hakuba and takino near Sapporo. Quite a few resorts have xc track options of around 3 to 5 km eg nosawa, furano, asahidake, tazawako, zao Lisa etc. can require a bit of asking research to find Strava heat map can help! Photo north Hokkaido Nayoro good tracks.
 

Mister Tee on XC Skis

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Assuming you are referring to track xc. In summary it’s ok with small ‘club’ like tracks all over the place but mainly short distances. Biggies include snow harp in hakuba and takino near Sapporo. Quite a few resorts have xc track options of around 3 to 5 km eg nosawa, furano, asahidake, tazawako, zao Lisa etc. can require a bit of asking research to find Strava heat map can help! Photo north Hokkaido Nayoro good tracks.
Thanks but what about 15km + day touring on BC XC skis?
 
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Mister Tee on XC Skis

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Lots of options but more orientated to true bc touring for turns. spring would probably be a better time. As far as I know there is nothing like the longer xc trails you find in europe esp Scandinavia or even here eg falls/Stirling/ Hotham.
Hi.Thanks for replying. I love the Long day tours you can do on XC skis from Falls Ck. .However I am not an Alpine Touring kind of skier.
 

Sandy

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Hi.Thanks for replying. I love the Long day tours you can do on XC skis from Falls Ck. .However I am not an Alpine Touring kind of skier.
One thing to note. In northern Japan, the snow falls to sea level, so you don't need to go ALPINE touring. Just about any valley will be flat enough for XC skiing, if you want to break your own path. Make sure you don't ski over a pond though.
Probably the best strategy would be to ski on summer roads between rice paddies, which are not cleared of snow in the winter. Or any uncleared road.
pict-farming-winter-04.jpg
 
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Mister Tee on XC Skis

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One thing to note. In northern Japan, the snow falls to sea level, so you don't need to go ALPINE touring. Just about any valley will be flat enough for XC skiing, if you want to break your own path. Make sure you don't ski over a pond though.
Probably the best strategy would be to ski on summer roads between rice paddies, which are not cleared of snow in the winter. Or any uncleared road.
pict-farming-winter-04.jpg
I don't mind going down some not too steep hills to break up the diagonal stride and use some different muscles while out and about on planks.
 

bluestick

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northern rivers
One thing to note. In northern Japan, the snow falls to sea level, so you don't need to go ALPINE touring. Just about any valley will be flat enough for XC skiing, if you want to break your own path. Make sure you don't ski over a pond though.
Probably the best strategy would be to ski on summer roads between rice paddies, which are not cleared of snow in the winter. Or any uncleared road.
pict-farming-winter-04.jpg
Or on the benches next to rivers you often see a single informal ‘xc’ track in the towns.
 

Jesse Tillman

Early Days
Jun 1, 2019
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Just booked for February at hailodge.com in Hakuba. Run by Gavin and Julia nice people, inexpensive ( 5000 yen per person / night ) and a 4 minute walk to the gondola / chairlift.
The lodge is in Tsugaike which has an English speaking ski school and lots of beginner runs. Went there in Feb two years ago and almost had the place to ourselves the runs are soooo wide.
It's a Japanese style location, not much western stuff around, the bar at Hai Lodge draws in a few people in the evenings.
Looked at booing with Hai Lodge but disheartened that every enquiry sent via their website and Facebook page are seen but haven’t been replied to - is this unusual?
 

Lucky Pete

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Hai Lodge is owned by Gavin who works on the oil rigs during the green season hence why he may not be replying just yet. If you want to stay in a nice Japanese Hotel (Belle Cour Inomata) in the same area let me know, the owners are my wife's cousins and the chef there is epic.
 

M_G

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I think I've sorted something pretty good for her in Akakura. @Paradox told her to shoot me a PM and we went from there.

I found out when researching for her that the travel time & cost to Hakuba and Myoko is virtually the same from Osaka. I was surprised - I just presumed Hakuba would quicker. Must be the slow train leg either from Itoigawa or Matsumoto.
 

Jesse Tillman

Early Days
Jun 1, 2019
28
3
8
I think I've sorted something pretty good for her in Akakura. @Paradox told her to shoot me a PM and we went from there.

I found out when researching for her that the travel time & cost to Hakuba and Myoko is virtually the same from Osaka. I was surprised - I just presumed Hakuba would quicker. Must be the slow train leg either from Itoigawa or Matsumoto.
You’ve been an AWESOME help! Thank you
 
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slotele

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Jun 3, 2016
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Looked at booing with Hai Lodge but disheartened that every enquiry sent via their website and Facebook page are seen but haven’t been replied to - is this unusual?
Hi, been Backcountry so not on line.
Booking a bit odd at their website. I think I managed to do it from computer not phone, from the pull down menu. Managed to get the place where you make the booking and pay deposit. Got an acknowledgement email and within 24 hrs a booking confirmation.
 
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