Adventure Days · Japan

Adventure Day: Hakuba, Japan

Our sleep was pretty good. Everyone woke up about 8am. Ty informed us we should probably try and catch the 9am shuttle to the ski slopes otherwise we have to wait till 10:30. So we moved with a bit more haste than we would normally. Breakfast was ok, not over the top but nothing bad either.

We struggled getting all our layers of clothes, and ski gear, and helmets, and boots, and everyone’s skis and poles together and out the door by 9am. But we did it and we were all in a total sweat. The bus took us to a different slope than we planned but we rolled with it. There are about 5 or more slopes around here that you can ski on with our Epic pass so we figured which slope it was didn’t matter, we will try them all eventually.

Waiting on dad getting tickets.

It snowed like 4+ inches last night so there was fresh powder. But it was also blowing like crazy outside. Like white out conditions at times. The gondolas shut down for a while, half of the mountain that we wanted to ski, you couldn’t access. So conditions were definitely not ideal.

Trying not to have any ski exposed.
Definitely not what this guy was envisioning.

Ryder was struggling with her confidence as well so that make things tricky. We finally got her over to a chalet, and tucked her in into a table for a rest. Ty, Lincoln, and I did a run right in front of the chalet. It’s definitely different snow here, not groomed, so there’s just piles of snow all over, kind of like moguls. The wind was blowing snow all over, so visibility is low. It wasn’t great. We got back to Ryder and I sat with her while the boys did that run again.

We saw the gondola was running so we made our way over to it. The plan being we would ride it up and then go over to the other mountain and ride the green runs down. Nice and easy on everyone for our first day.

However, when we got to the top, that’s when we noticed the cut over to the other mountain was closed due to the wind. It also said don’t ride these runs down until you’re an expert. So I took Ryder, and Lincoln back down the hill in the gondola. Ty decides to do one more gondola ride and run down to meet us for some food. To get over to the food, the kids and I had to do this little chairlift. It had to pause at times due to the wind!

Really pretty despite the weather.

We got some food in our tummies, burgers, and chicken. Then we rallied for one more try at the gondola. The wind seemed better so we were hoping the pass over to the other mountain would be open. But if not Ty said the snow was much better higher up, and we’d all be fine on the expert runs. (Spoiler alert, this was not true!)

The runs due to the conditions were more like black (hard) runs. Ty did a great job staying with Ryder the whole time and getting her down. But it was just really long and really steep. Lincoln and I were tired when we got down, and then we waited probably 20-30 minutes longer for Ryder to make it down. This was just the top two slopes!

So steep!
It took her a long time but she never gave up and conquered this slope like a champ.

By the time we got down to the chairlifts we had 13 minutes to make it to the bottom of the hill and catch our bus or we’d be stuck for another hour. Again, Ryder rallied and we made it on as the very last people.

The skiing conditions weren’t great today, but we all survived our first day in Japan! Back to the room for some quiet time, and just letting our sore bodies rest.

We checked out the onsen for some ‘hot tub’ relaxing. Boys to the boys room, and girls to girls, as no suits are allowed. But they have sweet kimono robes to borrow.

After the onsen we enjoyed a bit of time in the lounge. Just having some drinks and hanging out.

Then it was off to bed. No real dinner, just snacks and drinks. Everyone was pretty tuckered from the day of skiing.

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