Evergreen Backcountry Tours - Explore the Japan Alps

japan backcountry skiing Come and explore the vast Hakuba backcountry and some of the very best powder skiing in Japan. The Japan Alps average 12+ meters of somewhat dry powder each year (see our Hakuba Snow Report), and no other mountain range in Japan has comparable terrain - Powder Japan doesn't get much better than this. Evergreen offers certified avalanche professionals and seasoned backcountry guides for our Japan backcountry tours.

All backcountry tour participants are asked to attend a pre-tour briefing the day prior at 5:00PM at our Wadano Base. This briefing will be a chance to meet your guide, go over routes, organize gear and rentals and cover the following days schedule. Backcountry Tours in Hakuba are offered from mid-December through to April.

Participants in our backcountry tours should have proper clothing for cold winter weather. Recommended winter clothing is a layering system with a base layer of non-cotton long underwear, a fleece or wool sweater, then an outer breathable waterproof shell. Warm gloves or mitts (maybe a spare pair as well), a warm toque or helmet and non-cotton socks are best in boots.

We also ask all participants to have a lunch and drinks prepared for the day. Light, high calorie snacks, trail mix, and chocolate are all good things to munch on during the day. A thermos with hot drinks is also a nice treat while out in the backcountry. A minimum 1 litre of water is also needed as we need to rehydrate throughout the day.

Gunma & Niigata area backcountry tours are provided by Canyons. Hakuba Backcountry Course Options
japan snowboarding Usagi Course - Intermediate Level:
For those who are just starting to explore the backcountry. An intermediate ski, snowboard, or telemark skill level and a solid fitness level are all that is necessary. Participants in our "Bunny (Usagi) Course" should be able to competently ride powder and negotiate through gladed trees and open bowls.

This tour requires hiking up slopes and ridges using alpine touring bindings & skins for skiers and snowshoes or split-board with skins for snowboarders. There will be approximately 3 hours of hiking broken up in the day and approximately 500~700 vertical meters of skiing.

This introductory level tour is a great way to get off-piste, access epic terrain and ride the fantastic backcountry Hakuba has to offer - come bathe in Powder Japan!.

Cost: ¥10,500 (includes shuttle, guide and tax)

Usagi Tours require at least intermediate level skiing/boarding. If you can't ski or ride powder, please consider a powder clinic before our BC Tours. Additionally, all BC Tours are skin/snowshoe accessed; this means you will be hiking for at least 2 1/2 hours. By joining one of our tours we understand you agree you are fit enough to do so.
japan skiing Kitsune Course - Advanced Level:

These tours are for those who have had experience in the winter backcountry and are confident in their ability to ride in variable conditions. Participants in our "Kitsune (Fox) Course" should be capable to ride powder in gladed trees and steeper terrain and have a fairly strong fitness level.

This tour requires hiking up slopes and ridges using alpine touring bindings & skins for skiers and snowshoes or split-board with skins for snowboarders. There will be approximately 3-4 hours of hiking broken up in the day and approximately 800~1000 vertical meters of skiing.

Enjoy the beautiful views from the alpine zones above Hakuba and ride some epic terrain in the Northern Alps backcountry.

Cost: ¥12,000(includes shuttle, guide and tax)

Kitsune Tours require at least advanced level skiing/boarding. If you can't ski or ride powder, please consider a powder clinic and an Usagi Tour before our BC Tours. Additionally, all BC Tours are skin/snowshoe accessed; this means you will be hiking for at least 2 1/2 hours. By joining one of our tours we understand you agree you are fit enough to do so.
japan powder tours Kamoshika Course - Expert Level:
These tours are for the advanced skier or snowboarder who has joined our Bunny or Fox tour. You will have to be fit and have experience in the backcountry to join in on these challenging and exciting trips into Hakuba's steeper terrain. The pace of this tour is a little faster as we aim to access a little farther off the beaten track in search of the best lines.

This tour requires hiking up slopes and ridges using alpine touring bindings & skins for skiers and snowshoes or split-board with skins for snowboarders. There will be approximately 3-4 hours of hiking broken up in the day and approximately 1000~1500 vertical meters of skiing.

Head off into the deeper backcountry and slide into some first-rate powder Japan riding terrain in the Northern Alps. Japan powder skiing doesn't get much better than this!

Cost: ¥13,500 (includes shuttle, guide and tax)

Kamoshika Tours are only available for those who have done a Fox Tour with us OR those who can demonstrate proper experience in the Back Country and good powder skiing/riding ability. Additionally, all BC Tours are skin/snowshoe accessed; this means you will be hiking for at least 2 1/2 hours. By joining one of our tours we understand you agree you are fit enough to do so.
ski japan Private Tour - Tailored Level:
If you and your group are looking to venture off on a backcountry tour of any level we can arrange a guide for your private group. This type of tour would be recommended if you have a group of friends with similar skiing/boarding ability and you would like to keep the crew limited to your group of friends.

This tour will be tailored to the lowest ability level and could include terrain from any of the other Hakuba backcountry tours; if you are a seriously advanced group and the conditions are right we might be able to take you even higher where Japan powder skiing really steps it up to another level!

Cost: ¥65,000 for up to 4 people, add ¥15,000 for each additional person (includes shuttle, guide and tax)

All BC Tours are skin/snowshoe accessed; this means you will be hiking for at least 2 1/2 hours. By joining one of our tours we understand you agree you are fit enough to do so.

Time
The day before: Sign-in & pay, gear check & pre-tour briefing at 17:00
On the day: 7:30 sign-in, 8:00 - 15:30 tour

Tour Schedule
-Usagi :Monday, Thursday, Saturday
-Kitsune :Tuesday, Friday, Sunday
-Kamoshika :Wednesday
-Private : Everyday

Location
Start and finish is at Wadano Base, in the Wadanonomori Visitor's Center, opposite the Mominoki Hotel. Click here to see Wadano Base access details. Tour location depends on tour level, weather and snowpack. Areas include Tsugaike, Norikura, Cortina, Happo, Hakuba 47 etc.

Includes
Guide, shuttle, tax and ideally all the powder you can handle!

Bring

  • Avalanche equipment - beacon, shovel, probe (mandatory)
  • At least a 25L pack with straps which can carry ski/board (unless you are a skier or split-boarder using skins) (mandatory)
  • Skins or snowshoes (mandatory)
  • Lunch, drinks and at least 1L water (mandatory)
  • Energy bars/chocolate/nuts etc (mandatory)
  • Plenty of layers for all conditions (mandatory)
  • Helmet (recommended)
  • A change of goggles and gloves for hiking (recommended)
Restrictions
16 years and over, powder skiing/boarding ability, a reasonable level of fitness (see tour details)

Rentals
We offer backcountry gear rentals. These are offered to everyone on a day-by-day basis, but please be aware that clients on our tours take priority as well as receiving a generous discount. Prices per day are as follows:

Item General Price Price for BC Tour & AST participants
Beacon ¥3,300 ¥2,200
Probe ¥2,200 ¥1,500
Shovel ¥2,200 ¥1,500
Pack ¥2,200 ¥1,500
Poles ¥2,000 ¥1,250
Snow Shoes ¥3,300 ¥2,500
Skins ¥3,300 ¥2,500
Alpine Trekkers ¥2,750 ¥2,200
3 Piece companion set (beacon, shovel, probe) ¥5,500 ¥4,400
5 Piece set (companion set + any 2 from above) ¥9,900 ¥7,150
Prior Splitboard ¥6,600 ¥5,500 (skins included!)
Liberty Powder Skis ¥6,600 ¥5,500 (skins included!)

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book ski lessons
Tours available Dec 17th - April 30th
Hakuba Ski Video Links
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Evergreen's Backcountry Guides
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Why choose Evergreen?
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Complimentary Shuttle Service
We are unable to offer a shuttle service for Backcountry Tours and ask you to make your own way to Wadano Base for sign-in. Thank you for your understanding.

Backcountry Insurance
We highly recommend that all clients have Backcountry Insurance. Please check with your travel insurance company - most insurance packages do not cover those skiing in Backcountry areas. We offer backcountry insurance for an additional ¥1,500/person/day.
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japan powder tours
Some photos courtesy of Chris Hocking, Kevin Krein, Bill Glude & Dave Enright

Hakuba Backcountry Videos

David Enright Profile by the Ballistyx Snowboard Show


Japan Powder Tours - Evergreen guide the SnowShow TV Crew from Australia


Lucas Debari and team visit Hakuba


Evergreen Director guides Jeremy Jones and crew

You may also be interested in our
››Powder Clinics
››Off Piste Tours
››Avalanche Skills Training