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Itinerary

The Tohoku Backcountry Tour

Morioka - Kuroishi
8 nights

After 5 years of exploring the Tohoku region we have found some amazing backcountry terrain for you to enjoy. Like our popular Powder Belt Backcountry Tour you’ll be required to have touring gear but that doesn’t mean you have to hike all day. The beauty of this tour is that you will use the lifts most days to gain vertical, smash the pow of the lifts and then once that’s done start touring into the backcountry to get more fresh tracks. By having touring gear you have the flexibility to go where the snow is best, hike into and out of backcountry areas and get endless fresh JAPOW!

The starting point for this tour is the bustling city of Morioka, a quick two and a half Shinkansen train trip north from Tokyo. Sitting in view of Mt Iwate, Morioka gives us the flexibility of being able to do short day trips to the nearby ski areas of Geto Kogen, Appi Kogen, Hachimantai, Shizukuishi and Tazawako. Each resort offers awesome terrain straight off the lifts as well as plenty of great backcountry touring. After a great days riding we’ll often stop at an onsen on the way home to sooth those muscles before heading out for dinner at one of the many amazing restaurants near your hotel as well as checking out some cool bars if you’re up for it. With hardly any foreigners apart from yourselves in this area you’ll get to enjoy a unique Japanese cultural ski experience.

For the special experience, ask us about an optional Cat Ski day at either Shizukuishi or Hachimantai!

For the next four nights, you’ll travel up to northern Tohoku where you’ll enjoy Aomori Springs’ deserted powder or head to the famous Hakkoda, ascending to the peak to explore the limitless backcountry possibilities amongst the snow-monsters! This area has become one of our favourites and from our base in Kuroishi you’ll have the flexibility to either head up to Hakkoda or across the plains to Aomori Springs. Both ski areas have some amazing terrain straight off the lifts as well as vast easily accessed backcountry terrain.

At night you’ll relax in the warm and welcoming Hotel Azumashiya, soak in it’s lovely natural onsen and enjoy transitional Japanese cuisine cooked up by Fukushi-san and his family. It’s hotels like these that make staying in this barely explored part of Japan that little bit special. Fukushi-san will ensure your stay is one to remember and when you see him in the lift line at Hakkoda you will understand why he calls this area home.

 

 

Itinerary

Dates & Cost

9 – 17 Feb 2021 – 5 SPOTS

Additional Information

TOUR INCLUSIONS
Fully guided & hosted
Transfer from Morioka station
Transfer to Aomori train station or Aomori Airport
4 nights twin/triple share accommodation at Hotel Grand Annex, Morioka
4 nights twin/triple share accommodation in Azumashiya, Kuroishi
7 guided days at both resorts & backcountry areas
Lift passes for any resort as required
5 dinners showcasing the areas delicious food including a welcome dinner party in Morioka
Onsen (hot spring) tour
Daily breakfast
Whiteroom T-shirt

OPTIONAL EXTRAS

– Single share accommodation – ¥7500 per night
– Avalanche gear rental – ¥14,500 for 9 days
– Discounted flights with Qantas ex Australian capital cities
– Tokyo stopover
– Kyoto cultural side trip

5 to 1 Client to Guide ratio

10 people max per tour. 3 person minimum.

Skill Level: Advanced – Expert in powder (some touring experience)

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 1-2 hours total per day. Groups are split up into ski/board/ability levels and AT/skins set-up or split-boards are required. You must have had some experience using this equipment. The idea of these tours is to use the lifts for their vertical bump, smash the easy pow then use our touring gear to go further and further away from the lifts in search of more fresh lines. On some days we will not use the lifts at all – it’s all up to the group and the conditions.

Check your ability level here

 

HOTEL GRAND ANNEX MORIOKA

Located right in the centre of town 10 minutes walk from the train station. This hotel is the perfect base in which to explore the city of Morioka as well as having easy access to the surrounding ski areas. You’ll love being in the centre of town with all the great restaurants and bars within walking distance. Each room is comfortably appointed with twin beds and all that you’d expect from a 4 star hotel.

 

 

AZUMASHIYA RYOKAN

A lovely accommodation run by a friendly and welcoming family. You’ll feel right at home at this hotel overlooking the river and onsen town of Kuroishi. We have chosen this spot for not only the great food and lovely hosts but also it’s perfect location between Hakkoda and Aomori Springs ski resorts. It boasts a large outdoor onsen relaxing lounge space and large Japanese ensuited rooms with optional western bedding.

 

What our customers say

4.5 star rating

Our customers rate us 'Excellent'

Highly recommend

We had no idea what to expect in Japan (or how we would get around), we couldn't have done it without the expertise and guide documents from Different Snow. Everything on the holiday ran very smoothly and we felt like we could call at any time if we had any questions.

Grace  ·  TrustPilot (verified review)

Terrific

Very knowledgeable, patient and organised. Enjoyed all of my chats with Nick who offered a fantastic personalised service. Itinerary, accommodations and transfers all exactly as planned, loads of useful info to accompany the trip. Would definitely use again and recommend.

Patricia O'Donnell  ·  TrustPilot (verified review)

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