Hello: I have been lurking this website for a while and signed up today because I am looking for some suggestions on skiing in Hakuba Valley (HV), Japan. I read several thread discussions about Hakuba on this website but I have trouble finding specific info. I am looking for. Hence I decided to create this thread. Little bit about me and my travel plan: I am originally from Hong Kong and currently living in Washington D.C. I plan to go home for 2 wks during X'mas holiday, tentative dates: 19th Dec - 1st Jan.2019. I have always wanted to ski in Japan and thought this would be a good opportunity to do so before heading back to Hong Kong. I plan to arrive to Narita before 3 pm on Wednesday (19th Dec.), I shall be able to catch Narita Express, Shinkansen Asama, then Highway Bus and reach HV in late evening, ski Thursday - Saturday (20th - 22nd Dec.), catch 22nd night flight from NRT to HKG. My skiing ability: I considered myself as an intermediate. For the past few years, I have skied in Aspen 4, Taos, and Alta in the U.S.; Whistler/Blackcomb, Lake Louise, and Sunshine Village in Banff, Canada; Val D'Isere in France. I am comfortable on blue trials, have dabbled to Black diamonds, and have done some off piste in Alta. What I a looking for: 1) Lodging: Traditional Japanese lodging (I like sleeping on tatami mat) 2) Skiing: On piste only. I like gullies and it'd be great if HV has some. 3) Resorts with intermediate trails, +/- easy blacks. Not interested in off piste, tree skiing. Questions: 1) Resorts: Since I only plan for 3 days in Japan, I think HV would be the most sensible option. With that said, I see there are 9 resorts in HV, which resorts would you suggest I try? I will be utilizing public transportation, therefore I'd prefer to hit resorts with easy access to buses/trains and minimum transfers. 2) Location: Where'd be a convenient place to use as a base for 3-day stay? Again, I'd like traditional Japanese style lodging with tatami mat. I tried Booking.com and only found one traditional Japanese Style hotel (Maruni Ryokan, 399-9301 Nagano, Hakuba, Hokujo 5013, Japan). I am sure there is more. It'd be great if I can have some names or email contacts. 3) Rental: I will be renting skis. Any shop recommendation? My current ski is Rossi Temp 80 160cm, I'd like to use something similar. Do you suggest I bring my own helmet or rent? I will be bringing my own boots. 5) Lift tickets: What is the most convenient way to get lift ticket(s)? Purchase it in advance (via internet)? If so, website address? Thanks in advance for your help.