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Question Niseko 2020

Discussion in 'Japan' started by jakes47, Apr 4, 2019.

  1. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Haha if I actually do like a run or aspect or ski resort I’m more likely to recommend something completely different to what I actually want to ski, on a public forum. Do I really want tens of people skiing out my favourite run or resort?

    So yeah head to Silver Dream - best skiing in Niseko
     
  2. Crispy013

    Crispy013 One of Us

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  3. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    Boomerang run at Niseko Village - gnarly!
     
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  4. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Caught up with @RCN today for a couple of runs.
    Warm slushy conditions with a real icy layer underneath, with the occasional whiteout in thick clouds or roasty hot sun poking through.


    I think I saw @LMB 's lesson group for the first time on the run under the Gondola today also, but I saw it too late to spray them or disrupt the class in some way. I'll get them next time!
     
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  5. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Ha ha ha
    Yep.
    We did a lot of the day under Holiday Chair/Gondola today.

    Nose Rolls, 180s, nose and tail press drills with loads of variants that had all of us falling on the regular. Would’ve been a good day to give us a spray as we were all laughing and carrying on like children anyway.

    And you can’t miss us now the group has blown out to 8 students and 1 coach. Big group.

    New guy did the full training and exam last year but fell short on the riding component so he is back just for the last 6 days training and exam this time. That’s probably what I’ll do next year if I can’t pull off the pass this season. That’ll give me a full year to work specifically on whatever weakness I have before attempting again. TBH if I had more than just a single day off here and there I’d be booking some private one on one coaching for the boxes and jumps, but I’m really needing my days off to rest my broken body LOL

    Glad you caught up with @RCN though!
    I was sure you’d be working today @Any - not exactly your kind of usual day on the hill :emoji_sun_with_face:
     
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  6. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    I'd be afraid of losing the other stuff I had learned in such a long gap. Hope he doesn't fail at other parts of the exam now.

    Valentines day; couldn't resist a romantic slushy icy cloudy day out with @RCN :p
    ... also, Rhythm have done some more to try to get Phantom working on my skis, and I needed to take them for a test drive. 3 base grinds on brand new skis isn't great, but I think it might finally be successful now.
     
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  7. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah... if I went down that path I’d most definitely be getting some March instruction on the fail points, then following up with riding to the exam components in Thredbo, then coming back for private coaching with the instructor mates thru HME, before rejoining Niseko Academy for the final 6 days to polish up. Not sure this guy has done that much. He’s concerned about the same elements as me.

    Ha ha lovers ski day!!!
    Poor PB had to wait until about 4pm before I even wished him happy valentines - we both forgot the date!!
     
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  8. AuroraAustralis

    AuroraAustralis Hard Yards Ski Pass: Silver

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    After a day of Australian conditions yesterday, the temperature has dropped and we are back into negative territory. Light snow falling, hoping for some accumulation. At least the trees will look ‘right ‘ again with snow!
     
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  9. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Up high is in good nick.
    Down low it’s horrid.
     
  10. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    Thanks for the ski meetup and dinner yesterday @Any!

    Conditions today was probably the worst I've skied anywhere. Solid ice masked by a thin layer of fresh snow. Treacherous.
     
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  11. PizzaWhenFrenchFry

    PizzaWhenFrenchFry Early Days

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    Coming down steadily for the past hour or so - a centimetre or two on top of the car. Hopefully the forecasts remain true and those "blizzard-like conditions" sustain into tomorrow morning!
     
  12. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    The snowfall appears rather light though...
     
  13. PizzaWhenFrenchFry

    PizzaWhenFrenchFry Early Days

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    It is light but has been constant for the past 7 hours. Roughly 10cm on the car at the moment.
     
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  14. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    insane winds = lifts closed = big queues.
    all reports call for 20-30cm snow, but Any's report says 6-8cm, because thats all there actually is on the ground. the rest is blown away.

    i bailed after only 2 runs. just saw this on facebook:
     
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  15. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    I’m still sick in bed but classmate sent a message that the Ace Quad queue was back up the hill and around to the Skye hotel! Madness for a layer of dust on crust.

    edited to add supporting photo shamelessly stolen off fb.
     
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  16. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    thats quite an orderly queue for ace2. usually its quite a bit more messy.
     
  17. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Maybe they got the queue nazis in after all!
     
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  18. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    That’s awful. Firmly in the “why bother” territory
     
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  19. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    File this then.. As well.
     
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  20. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    I can totally see why people who are on a one or two week vacation who’ve not had much snow this week would get into these queues. I probably would too.

    Same thing happen elsewhere.
    The queues at Vail last week were mental also. When the snow finally falls and loads of lifts are closed due to wind these crazy queues are the result.
     
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  21. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    Had a powder group class today, so managed to skip the long lines. Gondola was shut just after 0900, but we managed to get up Ace centre 4 before it was shut too. Highlights were 1 run down Konayuki and the trees to the left of Holiday. Good fun nonetheless, tomorrow will be better I'm sure.
     
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  22. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    The GoSnow lift priority would be worth its weight on days like today.
     
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  23. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    Fantastic day at powder workshop. All the crowds have gone, minimal wait times today. Weather was variable, snowed, became sunny, snowed again. Exposed areas were icy after yesterday's 70km/h winds, but lots of snow in the trees. Highlights were Strawberry fields, the forest betweeen Miharashi and Holiday, and Konayuki. An absolute blast today which salvaged the crappy conditions the past week!
     
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  24. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    nice one!
    gosnow? big/small group?
    sounds like you hit some nice spots, all of those are facing the right direction for the snow the other day.

    i saw that the peak opened today, and some people were trying to ski the east face. from below it looked like a single solid piece of ice. could see them falling over all over the place and trying to bail out back to the ridge line. quite entertaining.
     
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  25. Boston_ILLEGAL

    Boston_ILLEGAL First Runs

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    I'm heading over end of next week into first week of March...a novice skiier who will be keeping to the pistes. Just wondering, since there's not much snow forecast for that time, where should I be going to get the best quality snow conditions on the slopes? Are all the 4 ski areas (annupuri, NV, hirafu and hana) going to be more or less similar or will certain ones fare better because they are facing a certain direction or the terrain just maintains the snow better etc?
     
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  26. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    Yup it was with GoSnow. Small group class, i.e. up to 4, though it was just one other person and myself the other day. The workshop group classes are an excellent value (14400 yen) for 5.5 hours of instruction. I'm pretty happy with them this time round. Being so used to piste skiing, I really had to relearn the narrow stance and larger vertical movement for deep snow/trees.
     
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  27. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    I would imagine it will be the piste type (steepness, width, groomed vs ungroomed) as well as traffic (highly trafficked runs like Alpen get in bad shape without new snow) that would be bigger factors on where to go. Hirafu has the most variety and is the most popular. If you can do any groomed blacks (small moguls on Champion course at Annupuri) and if the top lifts are open, then you'd be able to explore all 4 resorts on skis.
     
  28. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    The aspect at Hanazono does mean it holds snow in better nick for longer in warmer weather. And Niseko Village has had shocking cover for most of this season, so unless it gets a decent snow I wouldn’t waste my time there this year.
     
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  29. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    not much snow reported overnight, but today was surprisingly good because of the snow deposited by the wind.
    still hitting that ice layer underneath for any big hard turns, but found a heap of pow today by being smart and planning where to ski based on that wind.
    because of its odd direction, today some of the best options were down low and in bounds. far better than off the peak way out stuff that I hit first up this morning. all the sheep expect the snow to be better out there, so all the good stuff in bounds was left untouched! knee deep in places, on a groomer!

    i also got to flex my "I'm prepared to be 1% more of an ***hole than you" lift line rule, with some German dude bringing European style lift queuing to Japan. getting to go full ***hole mode by standing on his skis, pushing him back, blocking the way, "welcome to Japan, is it your first time?", etc. he eventually got the hint.

    Annupuri and NV are heavily effected by wind and the afternoon sun. The sun there can make for nice slushy skiing in the afternoon, but horrible crusty skiing in the morning. Hirafu and especially Hanazono are more protected from the normal wind direction, and get a good % more snow as it gets deposited from the other side. But because of that protection they can suffer from low lying warm weather pockets that sit there and mean the snow 800m and below can suddenly turn to snot, but not to slush, so it becomes very poor skiing.

    I wouldn't worry about the weather yet tho. You should plan to be adaptable and adjust when you get here.
    on a normal season the forecast more than 3-4 days out doesn't mean too much. two weeks from now is far too far for anyone to make even remotely accurate weather predictions, especially if you name yourself after a flying jumping chewing herbivorous insect.
    but this year is special, the weather man seems to be just throwing darts at a board, and the weather gods are throwing darts randomly at a different board. even 1 day forecast means nothing.
    today was a rotation of all weather patterns 5 minutes apart, like a toddler playing with a weather control device.
    at about 11 we started getting these weird calm clear patches with real localized wind gusts down low that was ripping all the snow out of the trees in spooky wisps of clouds that follow the valley bottoms. really cool to see from above actually.
     
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  30. RCN

    RCN Early Days

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    Today wraps up my 11 day trip. Best conditions saved for the very last day. Good amount of really light dry powder, quite a contrast to the lower quality stuff that fell on 16 Feb.

    Still hitting ice both on piste and off (Strawberry fields) but mostly deep enough. Got to put into practise skills learnt it powder class. While I had hoped for more days like today, this trip was nonetheless a good introduction to powder.

    Many thanks again @Any for the catch ups, I've learnt a lot from you!
     
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  31. KenX

    KenX First Runs

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    Went to Kokusai for our last ski on Monday hoping to score, but high winds meant all lifts were closed........
    But, on the way out of the resort, we spotted a little car park on the left, about 1km down the road with a skin track leading into the trees on the other side of the road.
    Thought "why not", and skinned up for an hour or so and found some really nice boot deep in the trees!
    So nice in fact that we did it again and signed off on our first visit to Japan :)
     
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  32. Boston_ILLEGAL

    Boston_ILLEGAL First Runs

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    Thanks for the tip! :) Actually, last time we were there in 2018, we also found the NV terrain to be our least favorite out of the 4. Even on days when the others had decent quality piste conditions from light snowfalls, for some reason a lot of the NV runs were still super icy. When you say it's had shocking cover...do you mean more off-piste? Seems the official snow depth and snowfall numbers being reported are pretty similar between the 4 areas...
     
  33. Boston_ILLEGAL

    Boston_ILLEGAL First Runs

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    Thanks for the great advice! Got a car and just using Niseko as the base to go between the Niseko 4 areas and Rusutsu and Kiroro depending on where the snow falls (or where the rain doesn't LOL). Niseko is kinda conveniently in the middle between the other two so makes for a good base.

    So you suggest if it hasn't snowed for a couple of days and it hasn't kept super cold....to do Hirafu/Hana in the mornings and save Annupuri for afternoon sessions?
     
  34. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    when I was last at NV they had huge brown patches in the pistes, and even piles of little rocks in/on the fresh corduroy cause the groomers had ripped it up.
    its not normally so black and white, but yeah sounds good.
    if its warm the day before it means you have a thaw freeze going on to, so its a lot about timing. catching it when its softening up or slushy, but not in between.
     
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  35. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    not a bad day.
    just enough fresh snow to make a nice meal of it.

    (why wont you play at 4k mr tube :( )
     
  36. Boston_ILLEGAL

    Boston_ILLEGAL First Runs

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    Sounds appealing..:rolleyes: Weather forecast looks not too horrible so far...no big falls but will settle for anything that's not positive temps and rain. Will do a snow dance with the wifey :D
     
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  37. Ozgirl

    Ozgirl Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    He's a good egg.
     
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  38. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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  39. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    uh, so the sun came out and someone had to ski it!
    getting to that border between spam and stoke?

     
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  40. Hyst

    Hyst Enjoyer Ski Pass: Gold

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    Junior feel a bit behind - you are just to fast.
    Great video.
     
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  41. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Blizzard in Niseko today.
    Brutal conditions.
    Just perfect for my first day back on the hill after getting off my pneumonia deathbed LOL

    Only lifts running were Holiday, King 1, Ace pair and Ace Family.

    Conditions were powtastic over on the Gondie side for our morning activities, but we moved to the family run for switch skiddies demos in the afternoon - well that was some slick death marble at the base of the lift and at the top, not too bad in between however, but it certainly was giving all the beginners a bit of trouble. I tried to encourage as many as possible to head to the holiday lift for their own sake.

    I’m still producing enough snot to solve the water crisis of a small African nation, and my balance is well dodgy. I’ve also missed the vital last week of training so will be trying to whip out 3 freestyle tricks without ever having attempted them before so likelihood of passing this exam is poor. But I’m having a crack anyway. 1 day done; 5 to go.
     
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  42. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    i've been watching the chaos outside all day. thankful that im not out there!
    tomorrows gonna be insane. huge avi danger, shitty icy spots, shitty firm windblown spots, and crazy idiots in between that think that every blizzard means a 30cm pow day.
     
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  43. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    PB had a 3hr hike on his training programme today - would normally do 1.5hrs up Yotei and back - not today!!! He just power walked into Kutchan and back. But he said that there were people driving today that had no right to be behind the wheel of a car. 10km p/hr on the wrong side of the road being abused by local taxi drivers. MENTAL.

    We also talked about the avi risk tomorrow when they open. Hope it’s not catastrophic like last time - 2 dead that day. Caution will be required.
     
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  44. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Make the most of the current snow, because, apart from a small burst of snow around 2/3rd March, I can't see any other snow up to and past 10th March for Niseko.
     
  45. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hopefully we remain cold enough to maintain the snow conditions then.
     
  46. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    this season, the forecast has had nothing to do with actual conditions.
    i dont even look at it anymore.
    all i check is today's weather, and adapt accordingly.
     
  47. Ozgirl

    Ozgirl Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Stay safe kids!!
     
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  48. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Well, for those who were thinking of waiting until the shitty icy spots, shitty firm windblown spots get better later tomorrow or the next day, they should go get the powder early tomorrow, because there will be a lean patch for a while, IMO.
     
  49. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    It should stay below freezing in that period.....
     
  50. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    So every human who was within driving distance of Hirafu took Sandys advice this morning and was queued up for first lifts or to buy a lift ticket to then queue up again for the lift LOL

    I’ve seen the lift queue back up to Skye once before, but I’ve never seen the queue for lift tickets simultaneously back to the drop in to the family course!




    Caught a family of groomers coming back home after grooming Holiday Course this morning. Not quite as exciting as seeing ALL the groomers on convoy to build the spring park last year, but a bit of fun spotting 4.


    Snow quality was great today, and the bluebird morning turned into a cold and snowy day, so tomorrow should be money as well.

    We were caught out by Konayuki closing early today having planned for off piste ride demos down there after doing Intro to Off Piste demos up off the side of Yotei Sunset. I did see a few ski patrol buckets headed up that way earlier in the day so maybe there were too many injuries with ice underneath so they closed it...?

    ohh and those heinous lift queues?
    Lasted about an hour until people distributed across the hill. At 1pm we got straight onto the Ace Quad, zero wait, 2 to a chair with a couple of empties in front and behind our group.