Woke up with a raging hangover after a night out with friends to find about 15cm had fallen outside overnight. Muddled my way through breakfast and the van ride to Suginohara whilst it puked snow like there was no tomorrow the entire time.
Unsurprisingly there was a solid queue for the gondola first up and armed with our lift tickets and my raging headache we hit the back of the queue. To add to my woes I lost my phone between the lodge and the lift which did nothing to help my mood - luckily we found it in the van later and we had a mate lend us a phone for the day. Anyhow, at the top of the gondola it became apparent that there was about 40cm of light fluffy goodness waiting for us. So we charged straight into it.
With the exception of a stop for pork curry and hot chocolate we pretty much looped the top lift for the rest of the day, trying to improve our powder riding skills. I looked on in envy at the snowboarders - I snowboarder for 20 years but started skiing a couple of years back. I love skiing now but just occasionally on these optimal days I yearn for the board again! Daughter loves skiing and boarding but she's considerably better at skiing and I can't imagine the parental pain of taking her out on a board in such deep snow! She's self-sufficient in powder on skis which makes a big difference.
We were having a blast. After my next bad for the day (leaving my backpack in the lunch venue and having to return later to get it) the good news filtered through about my phone being found which lifted spirits even more. Despite the main trails being tracked the snow was still skiing brilliantly and forming ramps we could launch off everywhere. There were still plenty of stashes to be found to the sides of the runs too.
Exhausted, we returned home. Legs burning so much we didn't leave the lodge and we got an early dinner a celebratory chu-hi (sprite-based for the 6 year old! ) abd collapsed in bed.
Comfortably our best day's skiing in Japan ever. Praise be!
He’s expensive because he is the best crepes in the village. We have not tried the gelatine cheese that is good for women. Please try and revert back to us.We went to Iketenaira today. We'd been keen to try this out despite suggestions that it wasn't that steep and was a bit limited. However we got it on a good day with bluebird skies and snow still in great condition. We had a great time with a bit of everything.
There were still heaps of powder stashes everywhere although interestingly we were riding on top of the powder rather than through it today.
There are some decent tree runs at Iketenaira and very little competition for them the day we were there. Definitely still needs more snow in the trees though. It's very skiable but those damn bamboo shoots swatting you all the time!
The groomers were fun and as a bonus had heaps of rollers and ramps you could hit off. They stayed in pretty good condition all day.
And whilst the park was disappointingly small it still provided some fun for my daughter. The park was dominated by rails with only one box (which you had to hike up to!) and a small jump. We'd read good things about the park and halfpipe but I guess, at least for the latter, there presumably hadn't been enough snow.
Overall we liked the resort. The top runs were steep enough and the tree skiing was fun. The views were great too. It was cash only everywhere and signs were almost all in Japanese only but this just added to the charm. It was free for my daughter to ski as well (as was Suginohara), with only Akakura charging for her to ski so far - more than 4,000 yen so quite a big difference. Hats off to Suginohara and Iketenaira in this regard!
We finished the day with a delicious udon dinner and a visit to the crepe place with the most ridiculously extensive menu in the history of crepe shops. I was particularly taken by the 'crepe of the extreme popularity' . It was delicious and I could see why it was so popular.
Rain tomorrow so the party may be over. But we've certainly enjoyed the party so far.
Yes, we estimated there was 500 yen changing hands over his counter every 60 seconds. Works out to a decent hourly rate! They were delicious mind. Except the tuna salad crepe maybe...He’s expensive because he is the best crepes in the village. We have not tried the gelatine cheese that is good for women. Please try and revert back to us.
Good luck with all that , I snapped the acl and tore the miniscus at Myoko , that reminds me I should do my exercisesWell, first trip to Myoko and loved the place. In a 'low snow' year it still skied amazingly well. Well, up until the last day, anyway. ACL/MCL tear combo on Hotel A Kanko course, and a shed load of problems now cascade on my immediate future. Colorado trip cancelled, O/S work relocation delayed, and moving house just got a whole lot harder. We will leave the D.I.V.O.R.C.E out of it I guess. Lots of phone calls to insurers and airlines negotiating seats that fit this brace. I got extremely lucky with some expert help on hand in my lodge, but yep that's the way it goes. Well, pop, anyway. Moguls, I'm done with you.
But Myoko I will be back.
Much like referring to the wet stuff as clear snow, I hear by suggest we start calling these things as “I extended my knee articulation” or something equally euphemistic.Good luck with all that , I snapped the acl and tore the miniscus at Myoko , that reminds me I should do my exercises
Sorry, but this evaluation is not quite right.
Deep lows DO NOT fuel the lake/sea effect.
Rob's vid on sea effect snow.
I normally wouldn't post something like this in a general forum as I worry it comes off as a bit condescending, but here goes.
A warning to anyone in the Madarao area (Nagano resorts) about the backcountry snowpack at the moment. We dug a few snow pits on the backside of Madarao / Tangram today after seeing some movement yesterday and had some pretty concerning results on the NW aspect which I suspect is a result of the wind loading in the last storm. More detail on my blog below for those who are interested.
Note: I am far from an expert on this subject, I am just sharing my observations as they were significant enough to prevent me and my group from riding this face.
Well Akakura Onsen not most of Myoko.
Lots of new Aussie owners, lots of bars, lots of events, no RSA because the dollar in your pocket is more important.
We had somewhere sell a guest alcohol till they were unconscious and then turf them out into the street. Lucky he came to and found his way into somewhere else. I am aware of at least 3 places that do this. 2 western owned and 1 Japanese.