Greetings All, Will there be good snow on the slopes of Shiga Kogen from mid December? We are planning to stay there for a week...

...from 17 - 22 Dec 09. Have comtemplated Niseko but decided to stay somewhere close to Tokyo. Thanks Rich


Country: Japan


Dear Guest,

I recommend Niseko ski area for enough snow on mid Dec.
However at Northern part of Shiga-kogen, you can satisfy your skiing.

Plus I strongly recommend you the candidate’s Gala Yuzawa Ski area where is nearest from Tokyo.
First of all, access to Gala Yuzawa is very easy and fastest from Tokyo.
You would like to get train from Tokyo to Gala Yuzawa. Both stations are terminal, so you don't have to pay for reserve fee. (700 yen per seat/ one way)

Second, this ski resort provides huge rental ski goods, ski boots and ski wears.
So you don't have to bring any kind of ski gears for visiting.
I couldn’t estimate your ski levels, though.

Third, you take a hot spring in Yuzawa. There is so famous hot spa area.

Forth, this ski area has various slopes for beginner until expert.
Your boarding time estimates about 1:30 from Tokyo to Gala Yuzawa by Shinkansen bullet train.
Plus Gala Yuzawa station access to ski area directly, so you don't have to re-ride bus and train anymore.

Several ladies who wear high heel!!! visit there. Can you imagine that?
If you need more assistance, please let me know.


Per (), lifts at Shiga have already started as of 11-Nov. That website is probably your best source of accurate info for Shiga snow / skiing conditions. Shiga Kogen has Olympic-quality runs, vast natural beauty, and the snow monkeys in nearby Jigokudani. I'm sure you'll enjoy it.
Thank you Tyler-san,

That's what we thought and just wanted to get some confirmation from local residents. As per Terry's post the Northern part of Shiga Kogen should have reasonable snow on the back of Serbia winter wind sweeping pass the east coast.

I'm traveling with my partner whom just taking up to snowboarding last year and loved it m - she's till a beginner.

Q# Do you have any suggestions on which area we could stay or base ourselves on the mountain which provide the most convenient to get around the area? Have been considering Yakebitaiyama or Ichinose.

I recommend that you stay with Tyler who can both advise you in English on snow conditions in real time while helping your party to orientate to Japanese culture:

Crowds before the weekend of Dec. 26 are non-existent in Japan but you really need to think about the snow - while real stuff may be hard to find the artificial kind can be found just up the road from Tylers place at Karuizawa.

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