Japan - Ski-Touring

Akiko's Favourites

Dates 17-28 January 2023

Duration 12 Days

  • 8 days guided skiing
  • 1 Transit/rest day
  • 1 Tokyo sightseeing days
  • 2 International travel days


After two winters of Covid we are excited to be returning to the magical mountains of Japan and it’s legendary powder skiing. For the fourth 7me we are teaming up with our wonderful Japanese ‘fixer’ Akiko, between us we have honed our ‘Aikiko’s Favourites ’ programme to offer an action packed 8 days skiing on both Hokkaido and Honshu. As always our aim is to combine the main ingredients that are the essence of Japanese skiing; unrivalled powder, fascinating cultural history, awesome food and not forgeNng the end of the day relaxing thermal pools or ‘onsens’. Akiko’s “favourites” ticks all these boxes and more.

Akiko Nakae, the owner of ‘Epic Japan’ has been the logistical maestro behind my last three powder skiing trips to the land of the rising sun. She is a “fixer extraordinaire” who spent twenty years working as a construction engineer in Tokyo before turning her back

on the corporate world and seNng up Epic Japan to assist visiting backcountry skiers get

the best out of their off-piste and ski touring holidays in Japan. A qualified mountain guide Akiko and Nick will guide together.

The mountains of Japan receive huge quantities of light powder each winter and the snow-chocked forests are beyond idyllic for ski touring. The skiing emphasis on this holiday will be on ski touring with some li; access rather than li; access with some ski touring. In other words we often use lifts to gain height access at the beginning of the day enabling us to venture further into the wild, uncrowded Japanese backcountry but from then on it’s skins on to earn your turns!


Our goal is to discover the best of Japanese skiing whilst immersing ourselves in the fascinating culture of the country. There will be 8 days guided skiing. We start with 4 days on Honshu, the main Island. We then fly north to Hokkaido for 4 further days skiing. You’ll return to Tokyo for the last night back in the capital.

Japan’s huge snowfalls are a result of deep depressions of cold temperatures tracking from Siberia and picking up moisture from the Sea of Japan before dumping on Japan. The mature birch and pines provide excellent snow anchoring and the deep snow-pack promotes good stability. Average slope angles are 30 degrees with the steepest being about 35 - 40 degrees with average runs of 500-700m of (hopefully) superb powder snow. Days are then finished soaking in the many thermal springs.

A Taste of the Trip (subject to minor changes)

Day 1 (January 17) – Our group meets up in Japan, either at Narita Airport or Nagano Railway Station tbc. From Nagano station we will drive to Hakuba where we will stay for three nights at the Hotel Taigakukan hfp://www.taigakukan.jp/eng

Days 2-3 (January 18&19) – Two days of sampling the best backcountry ski tours in the Hakuba region. I often hear folk saying there’s ‘no steep stuff in Japan’ no ‘real’ mountains, no ‘challenging terrain’. The Hakuba backcountry will dispel that rumour straight away.

Skiing all day on the 19 January before an evening transfer to Nozawa Onsen and two nights staying at the Haus St Anton hfp://st-anton.jp/eng

Days 4-5 (January 20&21) – Two days skiing in the Nozawa Onsen area. Nozawa Onsen is famous for not only being one of the best skiing areas in Japan but is also famous for it’s rustic village, cuisine and public hot springs (onsen).

Day 6 (January 22) Rest and transfer day to Hokkaido, we take the short domestic flight from Matsumoto to Ashikawa.

Days 7-10 (January 23-26) Four days sampling the best conditions of Hokkaido focussing on the Ashikawa/Tokachidake backcountry. After skiing on day 10 (January 26) we fly back to Tokyo for two nights.

Day 11 (January 27) Sightseeing in one of the world’s great capital cities.

Day 12 (January 28) Depart.

Price CHF4600.-* based on a minimum of 8 guests

*(please note we are waiting for confirmation of some Japan costs and will publish the exact cost in due course)

The price includes:

  • 8 days backcountry guiding with Nick Parks and Akiko Nakae
  • 11 nights accommodation (4 hotels, 1 temple lodging)
  • 1 day sightseeing in Tokyo
  • All breakfasts and dinners except last night dinner in Tokyo
  • 2 domestic flights Honshu-Hokkaido return
  • All local transport
  • Ski Li; passes

Not included:

  • International flights
  • lunches, drinks etc
  • dinner in Tokyo
  • insurance
  • equipment hire

Equipment – A full kit list will be sent out with joining instructions. Ski hire is possible in Hakuba and there is an efficient postal service for returning kit

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