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Question Where would you stay for a month?

Discussion in 'Japan' started by Marc8491927, Jun 30, 2017.

  1. Marc8491927

    Marc8491927 Hard Yards

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    Hi all was planning to do another "Car danci" trip next year, but after getting a quote "f#%} that! Price seams to have doubled. I've emailed them for confirmation but we'll see.

    Anyway where would you guys stay from late Jan to early March? Prefer to stay in one place if I don't have the van. I will have a car though.

    The Missus will be joining me for the last two weeks so I'm on my own for a bit.

    My thought process.

    Niseko- Love - Kiroro, plenty of fun terrain, plenty of people to tour with, have found self contained accom. Don't love- plenty of people, expensive, not really an adventure.

    Asahikawa - Its a real town, plenty of terrain nearby. Really liked Kamui, cheaper accomodation. Don't love - got a weird vibe there last year. Seemed further to asahidake than the WWW indicates, I thought like an hour?

    Random thought, Tenjindara Love - never been, powderhounds.com seem pretty stoked on it, accomodation is reasonably priced.
    Don't Love- would there be people that will let me folllow their skin track and dig me out if I get buried (aka buds), would I get bored with Minakami? Would I get bored in general?

    About me. Likes back country skiing, seeming adventurous whilst actually being quite afraid/calculating, food, Onsens (need several as I have tattoos wouldn't want to be kicked out of the only one in town), self contained or remarkably cheap accomodation.

    Don't like. Strict On piste policies, Australian market rates for accom/food, having to drive further than 15 minutes for snow (although the option is great I would need a "home" hill)

    Have been to Hakuba, I could be convinced to go back maybe... Probably not

    Happy for all suggestions I will then research all options thoroughly.

    Cheers
     
  2. Crispy013

    Crispy013 One of Us

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    My initial thoughts....I know we'd all love to do it, but 1 month is a bloody long time in one spot. And unless the mountain/terrain choice is nearby and snowfall is on, it will become very very tiresome quickly. So I would be suggesting, as a minimum, a split 2 weeks in one spot then move to another for the final 2.

    Some options:

    HOKKAIDO
    2 weeks in Otaru (Kiroro, Teine, Sapporo Kokusai, Tenguyama, Asarigawa...possibly Niseko/Rusutsu)
    2 weeks in Furano (Furano, Kamui, Asahidake, Sahoro, Tomamu)

    Or even if you have a car and are prepared to move every couple of days, you could venture to more remote resorts (Kurodake, Nukabira, Mashike, etc)

    CENTRAL HONSHU
    2 weeks in Hakuba - avoid basing in Happo! (Goryu/47, Happo, Iwatake, Sanosaka, Tsguaike, Norikura, Cortina, Itoigawa Seaside)
    2 weeks in Myoko (Myoko x 4, Seki Onsen, Madarao/Tangram, Arai, Cupid Valley, Charmant Hiuchi, Togakushi, Nozawa?)
    or
    2 weeks in Yuzawa (Naeba, Kagura, Hakkaisan, Maiko, Kandatsu Kogen)

    Tenjindaira is cool, but I would not base myself there for more than 1 week TBH. It has some crazy crazy BC, but when the ropeway is shut, there are limited options around. Can try Houdaigi but that's about it round there unless you venture further around to Katashina (White World, Kawaba, etc).

    I'm sure others will chime in :rolleyes:
     
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  3. Marc8491927

    Marc8491927 Hard Yards

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    My apprehension for moving all really boils down to accommodation booking.

    I'd hate to book 2, 2 week stints and strike out at 1 place only to move just as the snow starts rolling in (FOMO is my generation's arch nemesis)

    I think I could probably find reasonably priced accomodation on the run at places like Otaru or Asahikawa, but I reckon I'd struggle at the bigger ski towns Furano/Niseko. Anyone had success in last minute stays for 1 week at the big areas?

    I hesitate towards Honshu because of their more strict off piste policies.

    A South-North Tenjindaira, Hokkoda, Otaru, Daisetsuzan, Rishiri trip would be pretty epic. Would need peeps to tour with for the first half.
     
  4. Crispy013

    Crispy013 One of Us

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    Always going to be a risk where ever you decide on. Say you go Hokkaido...it could be pumping down in Honshu and vice-versa. Even the micro-climates of certain valleys have considerable differences in the amount of snow falling...depending on wind direction. Being mobile is the key. IMHO, if you pick a base where there are 5+ good mountains within 1hr drive, then you'll have good odds of finding some goodness. Hence, my suggestion for picking a base in Hakuba, Myoko or Yuzawa.

    The comment about more strict off piste policies on Honshu is nonsense from my experience. As long as you are not deliberately dropping into massive avi country or terrain traps, then you'll be fine at most places.

    It sounds though you're interested more in the easy resort access BC (read Tenjin, Hokkoda, Daisetsuzan). That being said, you should deliberately book accommodation at lodges/ryokans near there and just suck it and see. But, that is risky if the weather is foul - they are usually quite isolated and sitting in a lodge waiting for the snow or wind to die down might become frustrating. Kagura might be right up your alley ;).
     
  5. Seemore

    Seemore Hard Yards

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    I am Biased but Rusutsu cheap pension free onsen cheap food and easy access to most of Hokkaido and good BC
     
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  6. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    I reckon the Hakuba Valley with a car would be great for a month. I love that area
     
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  7. skichanger

    skichanger A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    As a generalisation, on Honshu, the only time you will have an issue finding accommodation at short notice is on weekends, especially public holiday long weekends. Book those and the rest of the time you will be able to find somewhere.

    I doubt Honshu is more strict about off Piste just different. There are lots of local guides who regularly take people off piste. Same applies wherever you go about being prepared, having common sense, being respectful and not going places that are dangerous or closed.
     
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  8. pedub

    pedub One of Us

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    Awesome you are going back!!!
    Just 1 place in Hokkaido. I'd go Sapporo. Did it in 2016. Got an apartment there.
    Plenty of close skiing and you can head into southwest or central Hokkaido depending on where it dumped
    For example we could day trip Kamui or Rusutsu from there and they're 200kms apart. About a 90 min drive.
    Or Teine if you don't wanna go far.
     
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  9. person s

    person s Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    not so bad even without a car
     
  10. oreo

    oreo One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Backcountry touring focused, but with lifted options pretty close... find a friend so that you don't have to solo and base yourself in Hokkaido - Aibetsu or Kamikawa. Really, the best ski touring in Hokkaido is nearby and there is no-one around... Which is also your problem, because you won't find anyone to ski with.

    Pros - Great terrain, snowfall, options everywhere, no people, right on highway (no tolls too!) and avoids the nightmare of Asahikawa's traffic. Cons - No-one around, sleepy towns, more pure touring options than slack country.
     
    #10 oreo, Jul 1, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2017
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  11. TJ

    TJ One of Us

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    interested why you say no to Hakuba although if Kiroro is you favoured spot atm then probably I can understand as it is more mellow if you are by yourself. There are a few places to stay at in Hakuba though where you would be able to tag along with some seriously good crew that could take you to the next level. If it is BC you want then I cannot imagine a better place to be set up and that is from the opinion of many experts one of which I am not.
     
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  12. Marc8491927

    Marc8491927 Hard Yards

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    Hakuba would be good, but I got skunked for 2 weeks there 2 years ago in Mid Jan. So I struggle to think about booking it for a month. But you are correct it does have the terrain and no shortage of people to tour with.
     
  13. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    How about basing in ojiya? Stacks of local hills around
     
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  14. Sandy

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

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    The first thing you need to look at is the last two weeks and what your wife needs....
    Will she want a nice ski town with restaurants and bars, or boring town in a central location and go driving far every day?
    So I'd break it into two. Also, you said that you don't want to drive more than 15 min, which cuts out many of the suggestions so far.
    And Australian market rates for food would only mean Niseko.

    So for the first two weeks, I'd base myself at either Iiyama to access Madarao/Tangram, Nozawa, Myoko, Shiga Kogen, Ryoo, Kijimadaira, Arai, Cupid Valley, or Yuzawa to access Naeba/Kagura, Hakkaisan, Joetsu Kokksai, Ishiuchi, Okutadami, Tenjindaira.

    For the last part of February, it can sometimes get slightly warmer in central Japan, so meet your wife in Hokkaido, and cater for her needs.
     
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  15. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    Agreed, Iiyama would be a good choice. There's lots of great restaurants, both western and Japanese, throughout the town. If you were able to get something self contained (AirBnB?) there's a couple of big supermarkets. You've got a horde of resorts all within 15-60 minutes drive. I'd tack Togari onto Sandy's list.
     
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  16. Marc8491927

    Marc8491927 Hard Yards

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    My Mrs isn't really into the pretty town thing, she wants to ski deep Pow with few people and is gutted she doesn't have time to head back to Rogers Pass this year.
    My best case scenario would be to suss a new area out and be ready to take her back to the areas I think she'd like.
    Although she is a sucker for a decent bakery, we'd probably head back to Cham if her holidays were later.
     
  17. Marc8491927

    Marc8491927 Hard Yards

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    I'll check out Iiyama tonight. Thanks
     
  18. Hermannator

    Hermannator One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Would one get away with staying in Tokyo, say at Ueno (or similarly convenient spot to train/airport) and using shinkansens to Myoko, Yuzawa, Aomori etc?

    As a variant to above, stay at Karuizawa or the next station down, where the shink lines diverge...
     
  19. PMG

    PMG One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Answers to above questions-
    Yes .

    You're better off just starting the trip in Ueno wherever you decide to go imo.
     
  20. Sandy

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

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    Do you mean traveling from Ueno on day trips? No way!

    If you stay at Takasaki (where the shinkansen diverges), I suppose it's practical to commute to Yuzawa(Echigo-Yuzawa, 30min) & Minakami, but it's not the best arrangement IMO. Takasaki to Nagano is 40 min, or to Iiyama is 50min.
     
  21. Nozawaman

    Nozawaman A Local

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    I was thinking the same thing !!!!!!
     
  22. PMG

    PMG One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    It didn't occur to me he may have meant that.
    I once caught the shinkansen from Echigo-Yuzawa down to Takasaki after skiing one afternoon to rent a car. The round trip didn't take long at all.
     
    #22 PMG, Jul 4, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2017
  23. Zimboo

    Zimboo A Local

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    I have never stayed in Iiyama (just visited / passed through a few times) but I said last season to the fam, "I could plonk myself in Iiyama for a number of weeks with a car" there really are so many options from there. We went to the TSURUYA supermarket (close to the station) last year and it was excellent, as where the prices. The number of places to eat out in Iiyama are also stacked.
     
    #23 Zimboo, Jul 4, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2017
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  24. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    A little bit left-field, and I dont ski the big BC lines, more the smaller, lesser populated hills and lines from roads and looking up the valleys through the trees as opposed to the true alpine, but if I had to spend a month based anywhere in Japan in the winter I would pick either Takayama in Gifu or Minamiaizu in Fukushima. Both of them have a large number of ski hills, and road-access within an hour in every direction. Takayama is a proper town, Minamiaizu is a little bit bigger than a village/small town. Takayama will have minimal English/Gaijin. Minamiaizu will have none. It's about an hours drive to proper alpine BC, and there's nobody around so you're all on your own, that's the only downer.

    If I was going later Feb and in March I would be thinking further north rather than down south, unless I was going to Hakuba.
     
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  25. Zimboo

    Zimboo A Local

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  26. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    They're pretty much on top of their foreign tourism game in Iiyama, especially compared to some of their neighbours!
     
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  27. Nozawaman

    Nozawaman A Local

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  28. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    Key is the https. Probably haven't taken down the old non-secure site yet, or still transferring content.
     
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  29. Zimboo

    Zimboo A Local

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    My bad sorry, must have also clicked on "attractions" before copying address.
    The "home" address is as posted by Nozawaman.
     
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  30. Mike Pow

    Mike Pow One of Us

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