Hakkoda opened the ropeway Tuesday the 13th 2011 for the Season. In the States a place like this would be crawling with powder junkies on opening day. But not in Aomori Prefecture Japan. It's not Hokkiado, so anything north of Hakkuba gets lots in the shuffle. Hakkoda has deep, deep snow. Not the steepest mountain, with most runs just under or around 30% pitch, but an abundance of good snow. What I love the most about Hakkoda is the local seen. Pure Powder Junkies.
I pulled into the parking lot at 815am and there where only a handful of cars. Unbelievable!, I thought to myself. If this where Mt. Baker on opening day, I would have been late, especially with a couple feet of powder to shred. But this is Japan and this is why I love it here. I hooked up with a Hakkoda local Ryoma-san and friends for the most of the morning trading turns and powder boarder cross bumps. The snow was pretty low tide so lots of bushes and bamboo where exposed which make for more things to bonk and jump over. Great first day on snow for the season. More powder days head.