- Full guided & hosted
- Return airport transfers with Resort Liner
- 5 nights twin share accommodation at Munin, Furano
- 4 nights twin share accommodation at Full Note Pension, Niseko
- Welcome & farewell dinner party
- Daily cooked breakfast
- Optional cultural day tour
- Onsen (hot spring) tour
- Whiteroom merch
- Single share accom in Furano – ¥7,500/night, Niseko upon request
- Accommodation upgrade (Niseko only) – price on request
- Avalanche gear rental
- Avalanche Awareness Courses – click here for more info
- Lift passes are NOT included due to the flexible nature of this trip and often we will only need 1 ride passes
- Backcountry ski or splitboard rental
- Add on a pre or post tour travel package – click here for more info
NOTE: Avalanche safety gear is compulsory for all our tours. Please advise us upon booking if you have your own gear or will need to rent.
Advanced – Expert in powder (experienced tourer)
You must be able to ski/board the whole mountain in all conditions confidently at speed and have advanced ability in powder, through trees in steep terrain and in variable conditions.
Snowboarders in this level are able to keep speed in flat sections by planning ahead as well as hold a solid traverse line and be able to hop up and manoeuvre in a way as to not slow down the group.
You must have a very good level of fitness and be able to hike for around 2-4 hours total per day.
AT/skins set-up or split-boards are required, no snowshoes. You must be experienced using this equipment.
The idea of these tours is to have complete flexibility to seek out the best conditions and objectives on any given day. Some days we will use the lifts for their vertical bump, on other days we will head to secluded locations to hike and explore Hokkaido’s amazing powder filled terrain.
Furano is a country town of about 20,000 people with an awesome ski hill and surrounding backcountry terrain. With over 100 bars and restaurants, you’ll be able to experience true Japanese hospitality. On the mountain, you’ll enjoy some of the best lift assisted backcountry in the area. From the top lifts we have the option to hike up to the peaks either between the resort, to either side or drop out the back. Expect 10min to 1hr hikes depending on the terrain we choose. The cold temperatures in Furano keep the 9 metres of annual snow light and dry and when it’s on, it is quite simply the best. The backcountry here is epic – 900m of fall line vert filled with pillows and fresh lines for days!
Asahidake is one of the most popular touring locations in Hokkaido, due to the easy access to above tree-line terrain given by the Ropeway at the bottom of the volcano (top height 1600m) and the fame of the mountain itself, which at 2290m is the highest in Hokkaido. You’ll hike out along the ridges at the summit and into an expansive area offering chutes, alpine bowls, massive pillows and epically deep powder. If the conditions are right we’ll also hike up past the steaming fumaroles to the peak proper and ski down through the aptly named gates of hell chute to the valley below. Once at the bottom, all roads lead to the Ropeway and we put it on repeat.
Tomamu strikes a chord with all who ride its mountains. With Mt. Tomamu rising to 1239m at its centre we will drop off the back into some wide open bowls and gladded trees the stretch right down to the valley floor. A short hike back to the saddle and back down to the lifts allows us to do this run on repeat. The backcountry to the side of the resort also offers up plenty of opportunity for fun easily accessed terrain. Tomamu also has one of the largest indoor wave pools in the northern hemisphere as well as an onsen to soak your weary bones in.
Tokachidake is a major volcanic peak within the Daisetsuzan National Park, standing at 2,077 metres. It has some of the best backcountry touring terrain in Hokkaido with easy access from a central road that takes you to the highest drivable point in Hokkaido. Their is something here for everyone with wide-open bowls, magical Japanese birch and spruce forests or steep chutes – one aptly named TGR. Nearby Furanodake is the most popular touring area with 3 main ridges easily accessible from the road giving you an expansive area in which to tour and ski. There are always fresh to be found in this zone and our guides know it better than most.
A never ending list of options await anyone willing to earn their turns in Niseko. From the iconic Mt Yotei that commands the skyline to numerous other peaks all within a short drive of the resort it is not hard to beat the crowds and explore some of the Niseko wilds. With so many options Niseko is a great choice for anyone wishing to have their first touring experience to people that are wanting to ski or ride multiple laps in a day.
The Rusutsu region is home to one of the local’s favourite backcountry zones, Shiribetsu-Dake. Accessible in all but the worst possible weather conditions, this peak which is the sister mountain to nearby Mt Yotei has multiple different aspects that can be reached by a sub 90 minute hike. From great tree runs to some of the longest open bowl features across the region Shiribetsu ticks multiple boxes. If required we can also use the lifts and the resort for some elevation and skin short distances across the ridgelines in search of some famed Japanese powder.
Offering some of the most varied backcountry terrain in the region Kiroro has everything from pillow lines to high alpine bowls. The area catches a huge amount of snow coming off the sea of Japan allowing for epic powder days. Access out Kiroro resort allows for steep skiing on terrain that is used in the World Freeride qualifier or push further and summit the nearby Mt Yoichi for long runs into the valley. Getting away from everyone else is easy with multiple mountains to choose from or we can try something different and complete car drops on terrain facing the ocean after a quick skin.
Mowia can be a great choice for anyone wanting to get the most out of a day on snow. If you want to get a great quality to quantity ratio then using the lifts in the morning to do some quick powder runs will be the way to go before sticking on the skins later in the day to push out a little further.
This itinerary is an example of tour#1. The tour will be run largely by the weather and each day will fit around where the best conditions are. This is the beauty of such a tour.
Tour #1 – Start Niseko / End Furano
Tour #2 – Start Furano / End Niseko
Tour #3 – Start Furano / End Niseko
(arrival and check-in day)
Upon landing at Sapporo’s Chitose Airport you’ll be transferred by Resort Liner to the Hirafu Welcome Centre where you’ll be met by our team and then checked into Full Note. That night we’ll host you in the Half Note Bar where you’ll meet our team who will run you through the tour, weather and answer any questions you have.
(NOTE: If you wish to organise rental equipment it is advised that you try to arrive with enough time on the arrival day to be fitted – seek advice from your consultant)
DAY 2 – 4
(touring days Niseko)
Each year Southern Hokkaido is blanketed in up to 18 meters of some the driest snow on the planet. From our base in world famous Niseko, we will venture away from the crowds and into the less visited backcountry areas in the region. Expect to explore, Goshiki Onsen area, Yoichi-dake behind Kiroro, the backcountry of Kokusai as well as climbing iconic peaks like Mt Yotei and it’s sister mountain Shirebetsu-daki, this tour is laid out for those that wish to have a true Japanese backcountry adventure.
After chasing the the snow gods all day we will rest our legs in soothing onsens and head out to eat some of the best local cuisine on offer.
Time to check out and take the scenic transfer from Niseko to Furano. As it is a 4+ hour drive this is usually your rest day. We’ll stop in Sapporo on the way to enjoy Hokkaido’s capital, including the Sapporo Beer Hall or the Snow Festival. If the snow is dumping and you don’t want to rest we have the option of a multitude of backcountry zones along the way. That night you check into the boutique Hotel Munin in Furano.
DAY 6 – 9
(touring days Central Hokkaido)
There is so much on offer in the Central Hokkaido region it’ll be hard to pick. Your guides will do their best to choose the areas with the best conditions that day as well as ensuring you stay safe and have fun. Expect to explore Furano’s epic backcountry, tour up the volcano that is Asahidake, hike out the back of Kurodake into its endless terrain or summit Tokachidake followed by a long soak in one of its mountain onsens. Furano is also home to some delicious restaurants and Izakayas. It’ll be hard to leave.
(check-out and departure day)
Time to check out and say goodbye to your new friends and transfer to Sapporo’s Chitose Airport for your flight home. If you have a later flight you can even sneak in another ski day!
Reviews below are from our Daisetsu Backcountry Tour which was similar except that it was only based in Furano.
It would be hard to improve on this tour. Brook and Zach were amazing in so many ways. Both consummate professionals and lovely people. The accommodation choices were great. The terrain was perfectly selected to enable group members to get the best from their days, even when dealing with sickness. The group dynamic was perfectly managed by the tour leadership team. I felt at home in this group. Highlights: Brook and Zach’s terrain choices, enthusiasm and group management. Spending time touring away from resorts with uplift. Daisetsuzan national park touring and skinning. Lows: None whatsoever.
– Andrew Mills 2018
I loved everything about this tour! It was super good organised, the people were nice and easy going, the snow conditions were stunning, the locations were perfect! Skiing in the volcanic valley was …wow!
Huge thumbs up to Zach, who did a great guiding job!
Loved this home-like pension, where we lived near the Furano-dake! Everyday onsen after the skiing was fantastic.
– Chris Wetherall 2018
Loved the energy both guides brought to the tour. Their pure love for what they’re doing really flows through to everyone in the group. The highlights were riding/ hiking Tokachidake and staying up there in that area. Amazing Onsens and food. Being surrounded by the beauty and tranquility of nature after riding all day was very therapeutic. I would also love to do a similar type of tour in the Touhoku area. I am looking forward to next year already.
– Tom Perry 2018 and 2019
We are now on our way back to London. I just wanted to convey how much we enjoyed skiing with Jeff. A great guide, a great guy, and a great skier too. He looked after us super-well, had a great attitude, and took us on a few runs which will stay in the memory for a while.
When we come next, we will be in touch to discuss options.
All the best, Robert
In Niseko, you’ll be staying at the lovely Pension Full Note. It is a Japanese-style Bed & Breakfast located in the centre of town, with lovely staff and a warm and cosy ski lodge vibe. It has a sunken lounge, fireplace, long communal table where we have our Shabu-Shabu welcome dinner party and daily breakfast. Rooms are twin or triple share with shared bathroom facilities on the lower floor and sinks and toilets on every floor.
If shared facilities aren’t for you there are plenty of accommodation options close by which we can upgrade you to whilst still feeling a part of the tour.
UPGRADE OPTIONS AVAILABLE – Price & availability on request
In Furano, we are staying in a brand new boutique hotel located in the middle of Kitanomine close to restaurants and bars. With well-appointed rooms, a sumptuous lounge and a lovely onsen, this Hotel will make the Hokkaido Backcountry Tour a special Japanese experience.
Getting to Furano is easy with the included Resort Liner coach transfers. You’ll be dropped meet by the team at Munin and transferred to the hotel. At the end of the tour in Niseko you will be taken up to the Welcome Centre for your departure transfer to Sapporo’s Chitose Airport.
If you are travelling the other direction our team will pick you up from the Hirafu Welcome Centre in Niseko. From Furano you will be transferred to the bus stop for your trip back to Chitose Airport.
Please ensure you check with your consultant before you book your flights so that they line up with the available transfer times.
Once you’ve booked onto the tour you will receive our Trip Info Brochure packed with loads of useful information to help you plan your trip to Japan.
View our full Terms & Conditions here.