Powder Chaser Road Trip in Hokkaido
Escape the crowds, stay in traditional ryokans & soak in local onsens on this epic powder-fuelled road trip
Ski some of the best snow in Japan and immerse yourself in true Japanese mountain culture.
A custom 7-10 day trip to Japan's north island hidden gem ski areas. You will stay in traditional Japanese towns and travel to off the beaten path resorts, where you can lift access ski tour, or ski non-touring backcountry under the expert guidance of your local guides. Each trip is custom built to you, but expect to stay in traditional Japanese ryokans, to soak in deserted onsens and to drink cold beer with the locals. Don't forget skiing the best powder on the planet.
Exact locations will be dictated by snow conditions at the time, but this road trip will span across Japan's North island. Typically skiing in central Hokkaido (we love Furano and Otaru). Your local guides will pick the best hidden gem spots to cater to you.
Our scheduled trip is open to advanced intermediate skiers and above, but our custom trips for 2 people or more can be for any level of skier from intermediate and above. We can take any number of people but groups of 1-8 typically work out best. With so much terrain and guiding expertise at our disposal, this trip (although best suited for the powder hounds out there) is suitable for anyone looking for something a little different on their Japan ski trip.
The best conditions in Japan are typically mid January through to mid-March, but we can run trips until early April with enough snowfall. Keep your eyes peeled for our hosted group trip dates!
A DAY IN THE LIFE
Your alarm chirps as the sun starts creeping in through a crack in your curtains. You roll onto your tatami mat and have a quick stretch to limber up before the day. Breakfast is a veritable smorgasbord – you don’t know what half of it is, but your guide and hosts kindly take you through the multitude of options. Maybe time to sneak a couple of onigiri in your pocket as snacks for later in the day. Gear check list complete and ski boots on, you hop into the warm van ready for your guides to take you to your next destination – you’ve already had 3 days of epic powder skiing, is your guide exaggerating or can today really get any better?
Today is a ski touring day, you’re headed away from the already quiet resorts, and into the deserted backcountry. Your guide has heard from his friend that the last storm was particularly kind to this spot, just south of Otaru. 20 minutes later you are at the trailhead, gear on and raring to go – just a short 45 minute bootpack and you are atop the first epic tree run of the day. The lightest, fluffiest and deepest snow you’ve ever seen – your guide drops in and quickly disappears in a white cloud until you see him stop 200m down. Your turn, you float through 3 feet of fresh snow, blowing over the top of your head – you should have really brought your snorkel. High 5s and time for the onigiri you stashed earlier, topped off with a green tea Kit-Kat – snack heaven! Fueled up, it’s back to the skin track and time for more powder tree runs.
Ski day over, you arrive back at your traditional Ryokan tired and happy. Time to crack a beer and hang your gear to dry before heading down to the local onsen to soothe your sore legs. The natural hot spring water works wonder on your aching body and gives you a new lease of life. Dinner time – another traditional affair with fresh local snow crab taking the crown of best dish, although nothing on the table disappointed. It’s going to be hard to going back home to “regular” dinner, you think to yourself. A goodnight cheers to the crew and time to pack up your bag and get ready to move on to the next ryokan where you’ll be spending the next 2 nights – the adventure continues…
Starting from $3,000 USD per person for 7 days (depending on length of trip and other details)
- 3 meals per day and soft drinks
- Vehicle and driver for the duration
- Professional local ski guides
- Daily onsen entry
- Lift passes for resort access
- Alcoholic drinks
- Additional excursions not previously discussed.
We will always collaborate with you prior to booking this trip, however it does require a certain level of flexibility. Snowfall, local events and other factors may determine a change in plans with regards to ski locations, restaurants and accommodation, but any changes will only be made with your go-ahead and to improve your experience.
Looking for a powder road-trip with a twist?
This road trip embodies everything a proper Mabey Ski trip is about – amazing snow, rich culture, great beer and of course a good old fashioned onsen soak. If you’re looking to see a different side of Japanese skiing and take a dive into the rich and incredible culture of Japan’s north island whilst skiing places few foreigners get to see, then this might just be the trip for you.
You can stay at back-to-basics local hotels through to luxurious boutique ryokans, though they will all give you that traditional cultural experience and some of the best meals of your life. As with any of our tours, this trip can be fully customised. Whether you’re a single looking to join a group, or you are a group or family looking for a completely private experience, we have options to fit any scenario. Let us know your style and we will do the rest.