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The Japanese season 2010-2011 weather

Discussion in 'Weather' started by Sandy, Dec 4, 2010.

  1. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Continuing on from the bollocks February, March has so far been pox, all this snow is wearing my legs out!!

    Yesterday was deep, bloody deep. Rode at Kokusai, was always going to be a resort day, with so much new snow, only angles more than 35 degrees could give any decent speed, chest deep skintracks & a dirty big suncrust over a metre down, I wasn't comfortable to ride the backcountry. We've had a few warnings, yesterday wasn't a bad day to heed them....

    Kokusai was blanketed, even inbounds, people floundering everywhere, a surfboard size Gentem Superfish or giant waisted planks were needed, you could drown just off the few thin groomed strips that provided people some degree of compacted area to generate speed & try and sneek a few turns into the bottomless fluff to the sides. As the current system began to clear about mid afternoon, I snuck off a short way into the sidecountry to enjoy some quiet, the least distance I've travelled into the sc / bc for some weeks. Leaving the planks as one, I bootpacked for fun. I'm normal height (185cm) & standing bolt upright pushing through.

    [​IMG]

    Dug a quick pit, sat on the small terrace I'd created, busted out the thermos & enjoying a hot drink as the snow clouds finally broke over the hills on a system that started over a week ago for us. At that altitude (approx 800m) & aspect (NW), somewhere over a metre had fallen, mostly on Thursday 03/03, between suncrust marked at base & snow surface was 125cm.

    [​IMG]

    Thankfully the snow seems to have briefly stopped & vis improved, hoping the new snows settled a bit & to get further out today.
     
    #2101 Rabid K9, Mar 5, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  2. Bluebear

    Bluebear Hard Yards

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    Man i wish i was still there!!!!
    Thanks for the update.
    I was pondering what you were up to.
    Hows the NS treating you.
     
  3. xski

    xski First Runs

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    Excellent stuff K9.
     
  4. Sandy

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

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    Rabid, this post is indicative that people cannot find your other trip comments in this weather thread!!

    You need to post this stuff in a travel report, as it will get lost very quickly amongst all of the weather reports.
     
    #2104 Sandy, Mar 5, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  5. Go Native

    Go Native One of Us

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    I'd stay over that way K9. Kiroro and Kokusai got a lot more out of this system than we got here (about twice as much).

    And it's not bollocks that Feb was poor. That's not to say you can't find good snow. I found some great snow throughout the month. This is Hokkaido afterall and poor here is still better than many places in the world.
     
  6. Bluebear

    Bluebear Hard Yards

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    Sandy, I don't think that he cares if it gets lost. Just updating the weather with a photo and a little ramble to go with it.
    That's all I'm after.
    If your keen enough to watch the weather forum each day and catch his updates it's a good thing.
    Well it makes me happy any way.
    So i will look forward to an update every now and again about the snow in the North from K9.
    Maybe if we are lucky he may be bothered to write a trip report this year as well.
    Sorry i asked out of Topic Q's.
     
    #2106 Bluebear, Mar 5, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  7. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Bluebear - the Rabid's been up to very many things & the NS has been charging, although I've been undergunned a few times with the amount of snow we've found our way into. Same joy can't be said for Voile gear but more about that later.

    Sandy - more than likely I cobble together a more extensive TR later but right now I'm to busy getting amongst the Hokkaido goods & all my posts have been around the weather, just trying to make things a little more interesting for people.

    Go Native - sorry we didn't get to catch up for a tour, I wouldn't posthole your skin track anymore with the new splitboard, we depart this snow covered little isle tomorrow for Honshu's fair shores.

    I agree, that maybe as a whole February, things were under par for the greater Niseko area with plenty more sun & the resort areas being badly affected courtesy of the low altitude, aspect & marauding hordes which mean that if it not snowing constantly, the easy to get terrain is going to be pretty thrashed. I think though, that as things stalled for the resort & low altitude areas in Central Honshu in February, it turned on up here. Out of eighteen days straight riding we've had three days without snow, two of those at Niseko. Of my three trips to Japan, I'd say comfortably, this one, already we've had consistently the best snow. With knowledge gained on previous trips & a bit of luck, the key has been the ability to be flexible & on the spot, not stuck in one place. While the southern peninsula baked in sun late Feb, a couple of hours drive away, the snow clearing teams couldn't keep up with the snow, near sea level!! But you live here & have seen more of the place then me, so I don't need to convince you how good Hokkaido can be....

    With the winter monsoon looking like being set until at least mid month, I think this March will probably smash last years March & go a long way to making up for Feb down this end of the isle, even sweeter for you as the overseas crowds taper off....

    And today, more powder, even as it threatened to clear, snow showers keep coming down all day, even got quite heavy this evening in Otaru. With the next weeks forecast, I do feel sorry for the locals waging war on snow, the little port city's still trying to catch up from the last few days. While it wasn't quite as deep today, I still felt like I was drowning in deep snow anytime I steep of my planks touring today. A decent size avy, also naturally released on a steep, open face across from the valley at Kiroro base, I could see the crown wall from kilometres away.

    And for a final bit of gloating / vanity, from today.....

    ARRGGHH.... THE POW LEG, HOW IT BURNS!!
    [​IMG]
     
    #2107 Rabid K9, Mar 6, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  8. Toto Warmlet

    Toto Warmlet One of Us

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    [​IMG]
     
    #2108 Toto Warmlet, Mar 6, 2011
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  9. Sandy

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

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    Winter back again for Toyko.... maximum of 4 predicted, although it's 6.5 degrees already, but dropping..... An outside chance of snow later on!!! [​IMG]
     
    #2109 Sandy, Mar 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  10. smitty484

    smitty484 Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    9 day forecast looking really good
     
  11. Sandy

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

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    I've been watching the 16,17,18th for the last week, and it's looking good at this stage.
     
    #2111 Sandy, Mar 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  12. smitty484

    smitty484 Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Haven't posted this one for a while, but I agree, the 16,17,18 looking to be awesome (at this stage). However there should still be some good falls before that for both Hokkaido and Honshu. March shaping up to be much better (snowfall wise) than Feb.

    [​IMG]
     
    #2112 smitty484, Mar 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  13. Sandy

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

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    Looks like I'm heading up on the 18th for 3 days.
     
  14. TJ

    TJ One of Us

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    10cm of big fluffy flakes so far this morning
     
  15. Sandy

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

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    Snowing heavily in Yokohama right now, elevation 30 metres!!!! [​IMG]

    (heavier falling snow than I've ever seen from this office building!!!!)
     
    #2115 Sandy, Mar 7, 2011
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  16. Sandy

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

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    If it was 3 degrees colder, the snow would be accumulating at around 4-5cm/hour!!!!
     
    #2116 Sandy, Mar 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  17. benchives

    benchives Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yokohama shinkansen stop at 35 meters might accumulate more?

    [​IMG]
     
    #2117 benchives, Mar 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  18. Sandy

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

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    Just starting to settle on the ground now. I wouldn't expect this to affect Shinkansen services, except for perhaps visibility.
     
    #2118 Sandy, Mar 7, 2011
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  19. benchives

    benchives Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    [​IMG] nah I was just commenting on the elevated line for the Shinkansen perhaps being above the freezing level, which lay somewhere between the escalator from the ground to the tracks.

    [​IMG]

    please ignore me
     
    #2119 benchives, Mar 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  20. Sandy

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

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    [​IMG]

    Advice taken!!! [​IMG]
     
    #2120 Sandy, Mar 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  21. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Positively temperate at Hakkoda today, got up to a mild -3.3C at Sukayu. Vis was near decent until mid-afternoon, then a rapid cloud out moved over the range within 30mins, light snow started falling above 1100m & went from being able to see whole routes to navigating by map, compass & feel.

    Snow was still pleasant with some good heavy powder pockets in mid-altitudes but with the warmer temps, not quite the fine Hakkoda quality, I`ve had before, that should change tonight. Trees as usual, a class above anything I`ve experienced in Geepan apart from Daisetzusan, the 9km walk back to lodge less so....

    Jolly good the forecast does still look, considering changing flights to depart after the glory that appears to be coming for the 14th.

    Please be upstanding for some Hakkoda visibility... 30mins later it was down to ten metres!!
    [​IMG]
     
    #2121 Rabid K9, Mar 7, 2011
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  22. Kimski

    Kimski One of Us

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    I'm in Tokyo at the moment and can confirm that it definately did snow yesterday. I headed out from my hotel in the morning in pouring rain and thought to myself that it was so cold I wouldn't be suprised if it snows. Sure enough, about 20 minutes later I was sitting having breakfast and the rain turned to snow. Went to the big temple Senso Ji and managed to get some photos of the Temple with snow on the roof. Will try and post some when I get back.
     
  23. Sandy

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

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    That would have been very nice to see!!!!! [​IMG]

    We ended up with around 5cm of snow in Yokohama before it stopped around lunch time.
     
    #2123 Sandy, Mar 8, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  24. damian

    damian A Local

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    You guys that like to forecast your own estimates of precip - have you found it a little more difficult in the last 5 days or so? Seems the forecast picture has been changing rom AM to PM every day.
     
  25. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    A lazy 20cms on the overnight at Hakkoda, light & fluffy in the trees but wind packed in the alpine. Another pair of Aussies here for 10 days so far haven't had one full day without snow.

    Apart from a few brief semi-clear patches this morning, snow continued all day, getting near blizzard like up high. Wind loading was ferocious in the lee to the west norwester, small convex slopes & windlips, even in the high trees, were sliding freely (30 - 50cm slabs) on yesterdays sun/wind crust with light ski/board cutting, but not running far on small pitches. Keeping out of danger terrain when climbing was tricky in low vis, could have cut one larger lee face (500m wide x 200m vert) commonly ridden when it can be seen, but wasn't sure if any parties were down in treeline below.

    Hakkoda weather needs another category, especially for a range that tops out just over 1500m & a latitude of 40 odd degrees north!!
     
  26. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    enough to blow a dog off a chain?
     
  27. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hah hah!! Certainly was today, took the kennel clean away as well, had to build a quick snow shelter at one stage!
     
    #2127 Rabid K9, Mar 9, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  28. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Another 20cms overnight, with the temps sitting around -9C at the base, you know it's going to be good....
     
  29. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Marchuary continues in Hakkoda, snowed all day yesterday, around -12C all day, 15 - 20 m/s winds up top, brutal wind chill, hideously bad visibility but great snow lower in trees. Think my helmet saved me from TKO by tree descending in dusk last night!!

    And just another 20cm again in carpark overnight, beens weeks since the trundling of snow making machinery hasn't woken us before dawn.
     
  30. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    Powder day In hakuba i'd say
    giddy up
     
  31. damian

    damian A Local

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    36cm at 800m in the last 24hrs. Yesterday's new snow was drier, today's is certainly good enough. A whole load of new layers in the snowpack with the newest concern being a suncrust formed on Saturday that is now buried under up to 50cm of snow. Yesterday it was under 15cm and very unstable. A new avalanche cycle is with us, different to last weekend's carnage. Hopefully this weekend won't be the same. Unfortunately, the forecast is for clear skis Saturday and Sunday, with more snow on Friday. Sunday will be warm as well (bad for avalanches).
     
  32. Go Native

    Go Native One of Us

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    At least another 30cm up this way on top of the 45cm from the previous couple of days and it's still snowing heavily. It's very deep out there and still cold with excellent quality snow. As with down south temps expected to rise dramatically on Sunday/Monday before more snow coming back on Tuesday.
     
  33. woggybot

    woggybot One of Us

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    THAT is just one of the best photos I have ever seen.... [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    #2133 woggybot, Mar 11, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  34. damian

    damian A Local

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    Crystal clear here this morning with a pink sunrise across the entire range. Stunning.

    The winds are extreme on the Happo ridge just above resort with huge plumes of snow blowing off from the north.

    Two trembling earthquakes made the house rattle and creak at 4am and I came close to putting water on the wood fire.
     
  35. timmyhugecans

    timmyhugecans One of Us

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  36. Rabid K9

    Rabid K9 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Obviously peoples attentions are elsewhere with the unfolding of this massive natural disaster, but Spring was quietly rolling into the house today, at least in Niigata & Gunma.

    Stunningly rapid melt occuring today at lower elevations, especially on the south facing aspects, water running everywhere, whole hillsides revealed themselves today & we started seeing things we never new existed under all that snow. Even saw lawn outside peoples houses & flower bulbs popping up where two days ago was snow. At higher elevations today, life was flourishing in the warmth, skinned out along a backcountry ridge, enjoyed the sun & marvelled at the landscape changing before my eyes, still found some nice creamy turns, along with a lot of glide cracks & wet slides.

    Felt somewhat guilty being out enjoying the mountains, yet had to get out alone to try to place some perspective to the events of the past few days....

    A quick cold snap coming for central Honshu mid-week, but I think Springs embedded here, resort skiing winding down, higher altitude backcountry winding up. Still think there a bit more left in the season for Hokkaido though, few warm days might actually settle the snow enough to allow easier access to some of the backcountry areas.
     
  37. smitty484

    smitty484 Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Looks like some solid snowing on the Hakuba cam and there will be some good snow over the next couple of days. Will be a lot of fun inbounds for those that remain.
     
  38. damian

    damian A Local

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    Yes smitty, it is snowing quite hard here.
     
  39. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    Yeah it looked epic on the charts

    so bittersweet
     
  40. smitty484

    smitty484 Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Need to keep the stoke up so people don't get scared about going next year.
     
  41. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    agreed.

    a big jetstar sale would help
     
    #2141 Donza, Mar 16, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  42. damian

    damian A Local

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    You bastards, snow is settling on the rescue efforts near Sendai.

    /good-cop-bad-cop
     
  43. smitty484

    smitty484 Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    damain as much as i'd like to be able to, I can't control the weather, may as well make the best of it we can.
     
  44. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    Yeah I knew that would happen... [​IMG]
    been watching this come for a while
     
    #2144 Donza, Mar 16, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  45. damian

    damian A Local

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    I was just trying to be lighthearted in an odd kind of way.

    It is snowing now, warm weather is coming later.
     
  46. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    hows the BC?..how will this snow settle?
     
  47. seekingpow

    seekingpow One of Us

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    I'll be heading over in Feb next year to hit Myoko & Nozawa and stimulate the economy as long as there is no long term contamination. Stoke needs to stay as they'll need our $$$ to get back to normality...
     
  48. smitty484

    smitty484 Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    I know, I was just continuing with the banter!!!
     
    #2148 smitty484, Mar 16, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  49. damian

    damian A Local

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    Well, it is falling dry and vertical here outside my window. Lots of snow.
     
  50. smitty484

    smitty484 Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    hey damian...you reckon you could get some pics [​IMG]
     
    #2150 smitty484, Mar 16, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013