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Snowboarding In Hokkaido / other parts of Japan


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#1 Ryan

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Posted 25 July 2005 - 05:52 PM



so I'm thinking ahead to next winter already. thinking about going back to try the snowboarding there. Anyone else ever been? Is it worth it? Any other places in Japan worth checking out instead?
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#2 herpsky

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Posted 27 July 2005 - 01:34 AM



ive gone skiing/snowboarding in hokkaido a lot
KIRORO resort (kinda far away from chitose airport) but it was
the best resort ive been to

great food, great people, great snow (since it's really high up on a mountain the snow quality is A++++), a super-gigantic game room, and etc

www.kiroro.co.jp

it's a YAMAHA resort (yes, run by the same ppl who make musical instruments and motorcycles)
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#3 sr20det

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 12:54 PM



sounds awesome. do they have a park there?? how are the locals skillwise?
"thrust, kill, destroy, stress"
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#4 Ryan

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Posted 30 December 2005 - 05:17 PM



*bump*

tix to tokyo are under $600 right now. im seriously considering heading out there for a couple days and attempt some snowboarding..need more sugestions! ill probbaly just try to find somewhere near(ish) to tokyo, nagano perhaps?
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#5 DaBestSpoona

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Posted 11 January 2006 - 03:16 PM



def must do in hokkaido

http://www.kuramure.com/english/
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#6 MilSpex

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Posted 11 January 2006 - 03:19 PM



its got the powder..
Be Advised: Morgan Nixon AKA Moman631 AKA Moman6040 is a fraud.
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#7 camc

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Posted 14 July 2008 - 12:13 PM

bumping this thread up...


considering heading to Japan for some snowboarding slash site seeing at the end of the year. Early to mid December through to early January.

Where is best to head for good snow and good times? Ive read a bit on Hokkaido and it looks pretty awesome. A friend is looking into Nagano too.

We want to ski for around 10 or so days and need somewhere that will be group friendly for accommodation (will be upwards of 6 of us). We are all students so need the best bang for our buck eg: no uber luxury resorts with five butlers and an old man to shake your dick after a piss.

We all suck at boarding so we dont need any double-diamond-mohamed-i'm hard-bruce lee mountains or anything either. I like the sound of Haikkodo from reading about it re many small bars and restaurants etc (if its true?).

Any suggestions on where we should head? I would ask a travel agent but i'd rather get some first hand knowledge as opposed to some scripted bullshit and save the commission for sake and chicken katsu.
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#8 Swych

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Posted 15 July 2008 - 10:00 PM

I've been snowboarding in japan every winter break for the last 4-5 years and have checked out quite a few resorts. I tend to go for about 7-10 days so maybe my tastes would be similar to yours.

One thing to bear in mind when choosing a resort tho. I don't know if this is acknowledged, but I find that Hokkaido is better than Nagano when it comes to early snowboarding. I've been to Nagano to be greeted by plenty of greenery and although it was rideable, the experience was disappointing. On the other hand, during Dec/ Jan there have been days where higher lifts were closed in Hokkaido due to snow storms (the serious shit).

Herpsky has pretty much nailed Kiroro. great food, great entertainment, amazing powder. Unfortunately the mountain is a pretty small, and was lacking in variation in landscape. Then again, I have to say it's pretty noob friendly, and the rentals there are ok.

I've been going consistently to Niseko recently, just because the place is so big and there's always something fresh to ride (the off track stuff, tree stuff etc is awesome. It's also pretty noob friendly (amazing ramen joint at the base of the bunny slope), and plenty of shops and restaurants around the town. If you go to Niseko, HIrafu village has all the shops. Higashiyama is central so you can access both Hirafu and Annapuri. If you guys are still learning to carve etc, Annapuri is porbably the best mountain to learn on.

I've also tried out Rusutsu, and I foudn it less crowded/ touristy than Niseko. Though it's smaller than niseko, there is still plenty to ride. There is also a burton Learn to Ride rental centre.

if you need instructors, niseko is the way to go because its swamped with australians and more westernized. it may be hard to find english speaking instructors in the smaller resorts.
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#9 camc

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 11:46 AM

cheers for this info. really helpful.

i figure most of us will pick it up pretty quick. my brother has boarded a few times and he reckons it took him max a day and a half to get it down. we have all surfed/skated for a decade and whilst i accept its different the fundamentals of balance, speed, commitment etc will be transferable. ive skii'd previously but this will be my first time boarding. there'll be a couple of girls with us too so probably should consider going somewhere friendly for them (not sure if theyve been on the snow).

looking at some accomodation in Niseko atm (so many places seem to be owned/operated by Australians! quite surprising). How far from the ski areas is the Niseko township? is it an effort to get to the slopes or pretty easy?
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#10 Swych

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 01:46 AM

as i said there are 3 parts, it depeneds on what you want to do. niseko town is in hirafu.

i was never really good at skating, could only ollie, shuvit and hardly 180s but i picked up snowboarding in 3 days to link backside and frontside turns. it took me 5 to carve smoothly (and blacks were nothing at that point, until moguls [sp?] come along). I think a 10 day trip would help u guys get to grips with the sport and even enjoy the mountain a little (even the girls)

if you're starting off stay around ann puri, or if u want food and nightlife, stick to hirafu. hirafu is an all round more advanced slope and is pretty noob unfriendly (my gf flipped on me when i took her there). Ann puri is kinda quiet tho and you might need to drive/ taxi to get to food. tho if you look hard there are some services for food delivery (i.e. shabu shabu- they even lend u a pot). another good newb spot in hirafu is hanazano, its quite scenic too.

try and find the niseko magazine (i dont know the name exactly). there's a bunch of ads for food etc.
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#11 dismalfuture

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 08:08 AM

Do Japanese boarders still worship at the altar of all things Burton, or have they diversified?
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#12 Appleseed

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 02:07 PM

My friends certainly seem to still covet them like nothing else. I haven't had a Burton board in years tbh-
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#13 KidDynamite

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Posted 22 July 2008 - 01:16 AM

Go to Hakuba instead of Niseko.

The mountains are taller and steeper, and it is a lot less expensive. Niseko has the most expensive lodging of any ski resort in Japan, and the flight to Hokkaido ain't cheap either.
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#14 camc

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Posted 22 August 2008 - 08:56 PM

whats the going rate for getting to hokkaido if you book whilst in japan? i know the train costs 225k each way. are flights any cheaper? someone mentioned flights for 130k but that sounds a long way off to me.
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