Skiing & Snowboarding
Well-maintained ski slopes, powder snow and a variety of nightlife options, Hokkaido is world-class ski destination and there are some 90 ski areas. Major ski areas offer equipment rentals, ski lessons and public transport, as well as resort hotels and condominiums. The top season is usually from late December to late March.
Skiing in Hokkaido
Top Skiing Destinations
Safety & Backcountry Rules
Backcountry skiing is popular activity in recent years, but DIY backcountry comes with serious risks such as avalanche and distress. We recommend to join a tour with English-speaking guides. Top ski resorts and some tour agencies offer backcountry tours, with insurance and registration to the local police.
DIY backcountry skiers should submit a climbing plan (登山計画書: tozan keikakusho) to the local police station, then bring a map, beacon and GPS. Some ski areas have backcountry policies.
Hokkaido Ropeway & Ski Lift Association (北海道索道協会) has full list of local ski areas (in Japanese). www.h-sakudo.jp