Hakuba Snow Report – 12th Mar 2012

Weather conditions: Light snow
New snowfall: 10-15 cm
Snow depth: 100cm (Village); 265cm (Top of Goryu)
We have had nice snowfall from yesterday evening in Hakuba and it feels more like mid-winter has returned this morning. Dry and light snowfalls overnight have given us about 15cm of fresh snow in Hakuba this morning. We haven’ot had this kind of snow for few weeks. The roads before yesterday were pretty wet and slushy, but this morning the snow is covering them which is always great to see.Ski resorts around the village are reporting up to 20cm of fresh snowfall. Visibility isn’t too good today especially on the mountains, though in the last hour or so this has improved on lower slope areas. There should be some good snow conditions to find out there today.

It is still snowing lightly at the moment in the village and we should snow continue through until tomorrow morning. The low pressure is coming down from the north and is bringing the colder temperatures with it. Looks like we should be seeing light snowfall here and there beyond tomorrow with perhaps clearer conditions around Wednesday, but temperatures look set to rise as the week progresses, giving us warmer conditions again by the end of the week and into the weekend.

There are some strong winds up there today that are affecting resort operations, especially Happo which seems to be the most affected. See below for individual resort info.



Avoid all avalanche terrain. Natural and human triggered avalanches certain. Large to very large avalanches expected in many areas and Slab avalanches in the Alpine will come with great size and consequence.
Heavy snow fall and extreme winds at all elevations have put rapid load on the already weak upper snowpack.
Enjoy in bounds riding or well supported‚ simple terrain below treeline. Always ride with a beacon and a buddy that knows how to use one! Make route planes and inform someone of your plans. If you are unsure stay in bounds on the great powder on the Resort.

Extreme winds and continued snow fall have put rapid load on an already very unstable past surface snow and under laying melt crust. Expect Natural and Human triggered avalanches on all aspects at Tree Line and above. If you are riding at resorts remember also that off piste areas will also be avalanche prone and that avalanches will be fast to run over the underlying crust and it will be difficult to get your edge in to stop or ride off to the side of the slide due also to that same solid Ice Crust. Terrain traps in off piste areas like trees, cliffs, gullies and creeks will increase hazard and potential burial depths.

Enjoy the powder on the runs at low elevation at the resorts and wait for snow fall to stop and for the storm snow to settle before heading in to the Backcountry or side country.