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Backcountry Skiing in Niseko, Japan

Tracy Lenard, Niseko Mountain Guides
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1 Person
1 day
Tracy Lenard, Niseko Mountain Guides
  • If you are confident in your skiing skills, let Niseko test you out! Where your guide will take you depends on what you would like to achieve, snow conditions and how much skinning up to ski down you want to do. For example, a Yotei day, when the weather conditions permit an ascent to the crater, requires about five hours of ascent to reach the crater rim. After a lap or two into the crater and an additional hour to get back, it can be an eight-hour day of vigorous climbing and skiing. Unwinding in onsen, the country’s hot springs, can be the perfect ending to your day.

    • 57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity. 

      We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, guides and the communities they’re travelling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Niseko, Japan, please refer to Niseko’s COVID-19 Information for Travelers. 

      Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

    • What you get in this adventure:

        • An experienced, certified ski guide with extensive knowledge of the area
        • A full day of backcountry ski touring
        • Transportation from your accommodations to the skiing location and back

      What’s not included:

        • Technical backcountry ski touring equipment
        • Transportation to Japan
        • Accommodations
        • Meals
        • Onsen (hot springs)
        • Lift tickets
    • In order to join this backcountry skiing tour in Niseko, you need to have a moderate level of fitness. Although there are beginner-friendly options, you’ll still be on your feet for a full day. All participants, regardless of the chosen tour, should feel comfortable on blue level resort runs and be able to carry a loaded daypack while skinning up variable degrees of terrain.

    • Backcountry skiing in Niseko isn’t just for pros looking for the ultimate thrill ride, it’s also beginner friendly, meaning anyone with solid blue level resort experience can have fun in the backcountry. If you’ve never backcountry skied before, heading out with a guide is your best bet. They’ll take care of the planning, introduce you to the basics, like skinning uphill, and teach you how to manage the terrain. They also have the experience and avalanche training to keep you safe. 

    • For technical backcountry ski touring gear, you will need to bring:

        • Alpine touring skis, telemark skis or splitboard with skins (can be rented)
        • Touring boots and poles (can be rented)
        • Avalanche safety equipment (can be rented):
          • Digital, 3-antenna avalanche transceiver or beacon
          • Lightweight snow shovel
          • Avalanche probe

      For clothing and shoes, we recommend brining:

        • Wind and waterproof shell jacket with hood (Gore-Tex recommended)
        • Soft shell or fleece jacket
        • Top long sleeve synthetic
        • Puffy jacket
        • Bottom synthetic or wool long underwear bottoms
        • Ski pants (Gore-Tex recommended)
        • Gloves, hat, and neck gaiter

      For personal items, we recommend bringing:

        • Daypack large enough to carry all items listed (around a 30-40L backpack)
        • Helmet
        • Sunglasses or ski goggles
        • One triple-action locking carabiner or two conventional locking carabiners
        • Repair kit and Leatherman for your equipment (can be shared between several people)
        • Water bottle and 1L of water
        • Thermos with a warm beverage — optional
        • Food you can eat on-the-go
        • First aid kit
        • Sunscreen and lip balm
        • Laptop computer
        • Camera — optional
    • All mandatory gear can be rented if you don’t have your own. You can rent: 

        • Avalanche safety pack, including backpack, beacon, shovel and probe can be rented from the resorts and ski areas or from Rhythm Japan
        • Alpine touring or telemark skis, touring boots and poles can be rented from the resorts and ski areas or from Rhythm Japan
        • Splitboards can be rented from the resorts and ski areas or from Rhythm Japan

      Ski rental locations are in Niseko and should be picked up the night prior to your outing. If you need to rent gear, let us know and we can help make arrangements.

    • Group sizes and pricing:

        • For this adventure, the max client-to-guide ratio is 4:1.
        • Costs per person decrease as the group grows, so it’s the perfect opportunity to ski with friends and family. 

      Ski touring in Niseko can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

      Min. age requirements:

        • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
        • Minors may be permitted to join private tours on a case-by-case basis.

      If your group has skiers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

    • To get to Niseko, first you’ll have to fly into New Chitose Airport, the main one serving the island Hokkaido. If you don’t have any direct flights to Hokkaido, then fly into Tokyo’s Narita International Airport. After arriving at New Chitose Airport, you have a 2-hour drive to Niseko.

      Your guide will pick you up at your accommodation and take you to the skiing location. From there, you’ll start your tour. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and your ski ability.

Have more questions? Read our FAQ
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