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Discussion in 'Japan' started by Lucky Pete, Sep 25, 2020.
Give them a beacon , shovel and probe , and they can go anywhere .
If only they were all equiped with that....
Go pro >
I recommend doing your homework before you commit to a place.... make sure you get what you are paying for
On this (beyond the rope) topic.
I note that back in Feb, I was vigorously encouraged to head to skiers right at Goryu - and follow a little band of ‘Merry men and women’, who themselves followed a ‘knowledgeable’ American dude.
Needless to say, I thought the better of this attractive proposition. My insurance didn’t cover OOR off piste, I had no avi gear, no skins on the day, and knew nothing of the mountain surrounds, nor the ability our prospective leader.
I now wonder if this is more common than we all realise? And if this is a common way we lose people? Spur of the moment OP skiing?
Top and sides of Goryu did look pretty sweet!
Wouldn’t want to follow a random and/or ski off into the unknown there...
But yes. Goryu is the starting point of some fun.
* not this year
Yeah, well, the Evil Face is a lazy, dumb choice.
Albeit a visible one.
From the bottom
IMO the back side of Goryu, Western side of the Ridge, is nicer and safer.
I reckon I might even know who that American was. There has been one guy that comes here that breaks all the rules and carries on like he knows what he is doing, encouraging others to join him. Great call not going with him. If it was who I am thinking of many people have tried to make him feel as unwelcome as possible. Its only a matter of time.... Depending where you drop there is a large Avie path through that side of Goryu.
For those riding off resort, there are often deaths here in Hakuba, sometimes quite close to the resort boundaries. In some cases the body is not recovered until April or maybe later. As an example this happened just off the north side of Happo a few years ago when dad went for 'one more lap' before lunch and a young family had to return to the US without dad and it wasnt until April that he was found and they had closure. Something to think about when wondering what's on the other side of the rope....
If you are not experienced in the BC like me (BC is anything outside the ropes) and with a crew of experienced and educated people please stay on resort or gear up and start by doing tours with one of the reputable guiding companies in town. No turns are worth your life, no matter how good they look from inside the rope.
Tsugaike opens tomorrow. This is how this news makes me feel:
In all seriousness though, it's great news. The longer the season, the better. Particularly after the very ordinary snowfall last season and the effects of the current world situation this season.
We had hoped it was going to be a soft opening but the cat is out of the bag and with the pent up angst in the valley its going to be a little crowded as its just one lift/piste. That being said Im aiming to get my annual 1st chair/gondy in the valley again and a couple laps before it becomes a circus and then head home to the myriad of tasks that need to be done. Still stoked to be snowboarding tomorrow!
Good times this morning! Super rusty as always on the 1st day but the sun was out and we were snowboarding so solid gold! So nice to get in the car, turn on the tunes and go to resort. Got there at 650am hoping to be 1st but was beaten by 20mins which was all good. Lots of stoked people. Thinking the crowd will be a tad crazy tomorrow so giving it a miss. Hopefully TJ will be along shortly and post his video from this morning.
Hi Hakuba crew. Casting around for ski options for 2022. We are regular Canada skiers but that is probably less predictable as things stand for next year.
So we are looking at japan! Niseko appears to be super busy with huge lift lines. Is hakuba less busy?
We are a family of five, three kids ages 14,13 and 12.
We are all solid piste intermediates. would the slopes be ok?
the big hang up is diet- three of the five of us are coeliac. it seems niseko being more westernised caters for gluten allergy well.
how does Hakuba sit with this?
Thanks in advance.
I’m interested in this reply. I had skied in both Canada and Japan but only on Hokkaido in Japan. The skiing experience was different in Japan but good different. Very enjoyable for us.
@Roymond There are other areas on Hokkaido that you could consider. Furano may be of interest to you. Also check out Shiga Kogan which is in the same general region as Hakuba. It is a number of resorts that are largely linked I believe. It may offer a skiing experience more similar to your usual preference?
While there are talks of travel bubbles and the like I have the feeling that once we are permitted to travel to Japan we will also be permitted to travel to most other western nations soon after.
I further suspect most of the other western nations will resume international travel before we do. So if we are permitted to travel to Japan we would effectively be travelling to Canada as Canadians will be travelling to Japan.
Lol. Make sense of that if you can.
Hakuba is fine with Gluten free. They have been on to it for a number of years so the eating experience will actually be good for you here. (Shiga is really not a place for foodies or food convenience for that matter)
Advanced Intermediate pretty much covers most of Japans resorts
Lift lines can easily be avoided with some local knowledge. Just vet your accommodation to ensure they can assist in this. Book direct.
You should start a seperate thread asking for resort recommendations.
We have had a few Coeliac guests. Japan generally is pretty easy so long as you are careful. Find some gluten free soy sauce and carry that with you. Lots of rice, I assume onigiri would be ok. Even the convenience stores have a few options especially if you are prepared to construct meals yourself e.g. in 7/11 you can get salads, cooked chicken breast and lots of other options.
You might be able to get pure buckwheat soba noodles if you look around, most now have some wheat flour in them. One of my coeliac guests informed me this a post WW2 change. Some noodle dishes are rice vermicelli.
Some supermarkets carry rolled oats these days, was almost impossible to find them a few years ago. And corn flakes should be ok, except for all the sugar.
There are all sorts of Mochi. Only concern is what they get rolled in.
Travel 5000 miles for a 7/11 onigiri.
Woohoo its been snowing all day up top and at times all the way to the valley floor. Super stoked and amped!
Haha who is that kook in your video TJ?
I echo the sentiments posted by TJ re Roymond's question. We have had plenty of guests over the last few years with various dietry requirements (some more stringent than yours Roymond) and we have been able to look after them locally in Hakuba. In fact many places in town can offer alternatives for those having specific requirements. Any decent accomadation should be able to book you into some of our great resturants with suitable menus for your group and you'll find options during the day.
Terrain wise in Hakuba there is something for everyone and is awesome for intermediate skiers that want to improve. Crowd wise, Hakuba is 10 resorts spread down the valley so during the week there are not really big lift lines except 1st thing in the morning on a pow day thus as TJ also mentions picking your accomm is somewhat critical though to knowing where to go each day for the best riding. Unlike one resort locations, staying ski in/out is not that important here and even though there are shuttle buses, unless your accomm does drop off and pick ups, a hire car is some of the best money you'll spend. Not only does it help with skiing but also makes going to the snow monekys etc very affordable.
We found gravity worx the most receptive to dietary requirements.
Ironically a pizza pasta restaurant.
The chef was on it
This may or may not be the case nowadays?
Don't be ashamed to bring some GF staples @Roymond . Especially breakfast.
We usually bring some food from home for our travels. Especially porridge.
And hire a car
That has changed. I would be very surprised if rolled outs were not available in several supermarkets in Hakuba. Worst case you go to Costco. Toyama is closer to there than to us.
I would guess Roymond does not plan on cooking every day on their ski holiday. Although, if the accommodation does have a kitchen, I recommend ordering online in advance and having it sent the accommodation. Supermarket shopping is fun in Japan, but not when you have allergies and can't read anything.
DonKi (Don Quijote Japan) has been carrying Quaker Oats recently. I'm not sure if it's just my local DonKi super store though, but the prices are ok for Japan(around 800yen for 1.2kg, iirc)
My wife was on a pretty strict diet last trip (Jan 2020). We used the google translate app pretty extensively at the supermarkets/conbini stores.
Worked pretty well.
Though we brought from Australia.
Instant oat satchels
Pod coffee and portable machine.
Yet to see wheatbix. We bring them from Aus. Quite surprising how many people, children included, choose them for breakfast.
Surprised vegemite was not in your list. We bring that as well. I know it is available bu t just easier to bring it.
Probably cheaper then here.
We may have had a tube of vegemite... This trip or last
google translate and a translated dietary restriction card are your friends. Staff are always so helpful in Japan.
There's an American one called Wheat-a-bix that I've seen occasionally in Japan.... similar, smaller, too sweet.
Surely it cannot have more sugar than the Japanese ones? Although I have no actual reference just 2nd hand info re the USA stuff.
Roymond could eat at a different restaurant for 2 weeks all with listed Gluten free menu items. There is an English signed gluten free area in one of the aisles at the A-Coop supermarket.
Meanwhile more snow today and more on the way, Just Tsugaike open again but Happo and Goryu are opening tomorrow. Everything should be open this weekend.
Not sure why that one can't play and my last one did.
Good times at Goryu this morning! Sorry no pics etc but TJ should have a vid a little later. Happo opened too and I'd be betting 47 will be the next cab off the rank.
Deep this morning. Just a little edit to get it on here.
As good as it gets out there today. Insane.
That top to bottom at Goryu was VERY VERY good. Stoked to be in the 1st Gondola and with everyone focussed doing laps of that, the top was excellent and barely ridden when I was there. Good times and tomorrow should be ALL TIME
You guys in Hakuba are lucky, seems like you got less snow that most of the main resorts in Honshu. Too much snow in many other spots.
Goryu was the surprise for me last season (wow, we can now refer to March this year as LAST season). Top to tail was an awesome run and covered many different types of piste skiing. Even the last loooong green down to the base was a fantastic way to end the run.
Yesterday was good, today at 47 was VERY VERY good. Only way it could have been better was if the sun came out and we had the place to ourselves. Whilst neither happened it was still almost as good as it gets the 1st few runs. Cortina opens tomorrow. Pretty sure it will be a bit of a circus being the weekend, not sure whether to go or not as NO social distancing happening at the resorts and lots of non valley people will be in town over the weekend.
Now after a coffee and cheese toasty its time to go spend more time clearing this week's snow, the 6 hours yesterday was just the begining.
Some of the crew went to Cortina and scored today and some of us went to Tsuguike and had an awesome morning too. Its hard to remember another time since Dec 2014 when we have had a run of days like this that are all stellar. Tomorrow is shaping up to be another. This was the lift line at 750am - on a Saturday although by the time we left at 1130am the carparks were pretty busy. Many of the weekend crew didnt come up as road conditions on some of the highways were pretty bad but we were the only western gaijin in the line.
In the 7 seasons I have been here I cant recall a week like this. My legs are absolutely toasted, although yesterday was a big day. Cortina this morning was all time. Whilst the crowd was low to start with, it slowly built but nothing like a normal year. If only it had been tomorrow as a LOT of day trippers. Have to say it was nice to have bottom this morning after yesterday where we didnt and it was problematic once for me and Im assuming I wasnt the only one. As I type this its still snowing so now its time to think about tomorrow. Here's the line up at 815am at Cortina. Looks like a litttle break in the weather in the coming days then it restarts again
7 powder days in a row for me. Only 20cms on Monday though. Do you count that Still snowing so will rack up no 8 tomorrow.
That was all concrete when we visited a couple times in March. It's good to see plenty of white stuff on the ground.
What a huge 10 consectitive days (I think thats right) of riding pow that was. Sitting here super tired after 4 hrs manually clearing snow this morning. Yesterday was the highlight for me riding in dry snow trees with the exit fairies having been through prior. Is there a better way to spend time with friends? I couldnt go today as all the chores I've been neglecting finally caught up with me.
The rest of the crew went and no doubt there was still plenty to be had. Cosmo at Iimori opened today for the 1st time this season and would have been very nice! I really cant recall a better continuous period in my 7 seasons here. EPIC! Apologies for not many pics etc, this vid is about it. I couldnt see the screen when filming so apologies for the quality. Those I ride with have their cameras and cams out so you should see some of that from them.
More snow in the forecast - a LOT more snow
Kowal's videos on north looked epic