Recently I have been working on days I normally wouldn’t work, just so that I can be sure to be in a position to make the most of clear and sunny days and go skiing then. Monday 20th was looking like it would be an almost guaranteed fine clear day over in Hakuba – with clear skies forecast for the night before and after - so I asked my boss (me) and luckily he said it was ok. So Hakuba it was. Dreams were about to come true!
It takes just under three hours to get there from where I live (curiously, more like two and a half coming back – probably because when I got it is very early morning, icy and busier) and the journey takes me over to Tokamachi, goes past Tsunan, Sakae, Nozawa Onsen and a bit of expressway past Nagano city. Then up on over to Hakuba. Starting out at about 5:30am, I was in Hakuba just before 8:30am.
I was very happy to see those lovely blue skies over Hakuba. There was some cloud on the tops of the mountains, but they were to disappear for a good few hours in the middle of the day, enough for me to get in my photos.
I parked in the Goryu car park and started off there, straight up to ‘the top bit’ as I call it. The snow was pretty decent up there, but I would say comparable with the snow quality in Minamiuonuma. What is different from Minamiuonuma of course is the scale of the mountains over there. The backdrop mountain scenery is truly stunning and there’s a real ‘big mountain’ feel. Feels very different to my home valley.
I spent the morning in Hakuba Goryu and Hakuba 47. It wasn’t that busy – I didn’t wait for any lifts at all, though it was busier than a weekday resort in my town. And there were certainly many more foreigners, that was very noticable.
In the afternoon I made my way over to Happo to make the most of the good weather and get my shots in over there. More on Happo in a different post.
Here’s some photos from Hakuba Goryu & Hakuba 47.
I clicked on a wrong key somewhere but it looks cool!
Source: Hakuba Goryu & Hakuba 47 (Hakuba, Nagano) - 20th February 2012