For years i used to go back to Canada & try to explain to my ski friends the amazing experience to be had shredding in the Japan Alps….“It`s like heli-skiing in BC……..but off of lifts….& for 40 bucks a day!!” It sounded too good to be true & at best i got an “umhmm……..right” for a response. But “the word” (which the Scandinavians & Aussies have known for a while now) is definitely getting out in North America.
Proof! Hakuba is the cover story of this Octobers` enRoute Magazine(which is Air Canada`s in-flight publication).
Last February we had the pleasure of showing these talented BC boys some of Hakuba`s best restaurants, onsens, surrounding sites, & of course powder snow. The fruit of which is this lovely article that captures nicely, both the quirkiness & magic a trip to Hakuba has to offer….& great pic of Morino member Manami on the front cover! That was taken at Hakuba Highland Onsen (which has one of the best views in the valley) if you`re wondering.
Click below & scroll to page 79 or….Click here to go straight to the story.
Enter the Zen….or the big mountains.
Monkey paparazzi & Tsugaike crepes.
Dinner at Shirouma So
Shirouma Sois a lovely hotel near us with a private Onsen & traditional dinners. Ask us to book you in for either.
The leaves are starting to change color, the night-time air is getting cool…….it must be September. Which means, it`s time to let our daydreams drift from beaches & sun to backcountry lines & deep powder turns…..the season is less than 3 months away after all.
And if you like your powder extra deep, there are few places as consistently so as Myoko Kogen - the relatively undiscovered powder mecca just 1 & 1/2 hours North-West of Hakuba (& only 3 hours from Tokyo).
Myoko`s got a great thing going on & we`ve just got ourselves a lodge there. Myoko Morino Lodge is currently under some big renovations, so more to come on that soon.
In the meantime, get your powder fantasy fix by watching these videos that capture the Myoko thing nicely.
January 2014 will go down as a good one……really good in fact. Overall snowfall was slightly below average but we had a healthy base from December & it stayed cold with plenty of fresh top ups. All this combined, meant for great powder on supply nearly every single day of the month.
This was captured nicely by Morino long-timer “Olav the Viking powder destroyer”. His 2 weeks in Hakuba this year saw plenty of perfect snow as evident by this video edit of his stay………and just to hammer home why he comes back to Hakuba year after year i`ve included his 2013 edit too.
Here`s to a good February….It`s been a slow start but it`s looking to improve real fast.
Last year`s February was one of the more epic in recent memory. Cold temperatures & non-stop 20 to 30 cm top ups made for a month of relentless blower pow. This was captured quite nicely by the lens of Nate Cahoon in his short film for Dubsatch Collective titled “Hakuba”.
Have a watch……..& here`s to plenty more blower Pow!
Packed with travel bags stretched at the seams, Sam Cohen and Zach Halverson board a jet plane headed across the world in search of the powder paradise they’ve only dreamt about; Japan. There, the two meet up with fellow skier Bryce Phillips to explore the notoriously mystical Japanese forests and pristine upper alpine. Get ready for a trip of a lifetime with “Hakuba” from Dubsatch Collective.
Filmed by: Nate Cahoon
Edited by: Nate Cahoon, Sam Cohen
Photography: Scott Rinckenberger
Skiers: Sam Cohen, Zach Halverson, Bryce Phillips
Location: Hakuba, Nagano, Japan
Fitness may be low at this time of year, but enthusiasm is high….a couple friends of Morino snowshoed up Cortina the other day for a few turns in the 60cm of fresh pow. And with more snow in the forecast next week, the folks of Hakuba are getting in the mood indeed.
To get everyone else feeling the early winter excitement, here`s Part 2 of the photography of Scott Rinckenbergerfrom his time atMorino Lodge last February. In this group of photos Scott cpatures one of the things that makes Hakuba so darn special….the trees, the light & the abundance of fresh snow. Enjoy!