A fantastic start to the winter of 2010! Hakuba valley has received approximately 60cm-80cm of snow over the past two days! Powder and packed powder conditions are to be found all on resorts and in the trees you can still find nice lines.
Presently high winds in Hakuba have shut down the upper lifts and most resorts gondolas are not running due to the high winds. If the winds lighten up the gondolas should be open and people can access the upper slopes. Expect some wind crust on exposed ridges and filled in hollows and wind lips.
The forecast is calling for more snow today and through next week. Cold temps should prevail as well to keep the powder light and dry.
Tree Line: High
Below Tree Line: High
Heavy snow fall and winds at all elevations have put rapid load on the already weak upper snowpack. Watch for large sluffs in steep and complex terrain. Take caution on wind loaded lee slopes and around cornices. The prevailing winds have been Moderate to Strong from the North West and have left South and East facing aspects loaded. This new storm snow is over riding the faceted sun crust of last week. Take care as wind slabs develop in cross loaded aspects (North and North East). Slab avalanches in the Alpine will come with great size and consequence.
Enjoy in bounds riding or well supported, simple terrain. Always ride with a beacon and a buddy that knows how to use one! Make route plans and inform someone of your plans. If you are unsure stay in-bounds on the great powder on the resorts.