A good day for ducks: Prefrontal rain strikes Nozawa

by Mark on December 27, 2016

Sunbeams over Nagano and the Japanese Alps. Shot with a mid telephoto from the Skyline double chair.

Sunbeams over Nagano and the Japanese Alps. Shot with a mid telephoto from the Skyline double chair.












Base at top: 75 cm

Temp at Top: +2 Degree

Base at Uenotaira station: 45 cm

New snow since close: 0 cm

Weather: Rain

When you stay in Nozawa Onsen for any length of time the sound of running water becomes almost constant. The trickle of onsen and meltwater streams is all too familiar and many times you may awake in the morning with the assumption that it is raining outside. Sure makes for a good nights sleep, but ironically when rain is actually falling the opposite can be true. I woke this morning to louder than normal running water sounds out the window. Alas rain was falling from the sky! Cursed rain, liquid pow or whatever you want to call it. Yes, it is raining this morning in Nozawa Onsen.

Thats the bad news for this morning. The good news is that the falling rain has had much less affect on the base than the hot blow-drier wind a few days back. Another positive is that the freezing level will quickly drop during the day and by afternoon we will be soaked in pow once more. Expect rapid accumulations up high, strengthening overnight. For skiing and boarding today, maybe wait a few hours before heading up.

Yesterday we skied under dramatic skies. Ominous and eerie, intrinsically patterned high clouds sat a few kilometres above the peaks, a juxtaposition of the relatively stable conditions on mountain. Beams of light piercing through cloud bands illuminated areas of Nagano and surrounds, a stunning backdrop for a good days skiing on the groomers. To match the weather it was eerily quiet on the mountain and about the village. Things have definitely yet to fully kick off around here.

Hard to believe right now but we are at the start of the best nine day outlook for the season. Heavy falls tonight to low levels, extending into tomorrow. Another bout of snow comes in Thursday night followed by a good run after the weekend.

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