|With Dave Hanscomb, Hakuba Valley, Japan, February 1998|
I was first introduced to the incredible snow climate of Japan in 1998 when I visited the Hakuba Valley during the Nagano Winter Olympics. I was there for only four days, however, and much of my time was spent conversing with meteorologists involved in weather support for the Games. I had time for only a brief taste of Japanese powder skiing when the Men's Super-G was cancelled, allowing for a couple of hours of storm skiing at Happo Ono resort.
|Storm skiing, Happo Ono, February 1998. Just me and a few security guards near the top of the Men's Super-G.|
This winter I will finally be traveling back to Japan and hopefully getting another taste of Japow. I plan to travel to Nagaoka to begin a collaboration with scientists at the Snow and Ice Research Center of Japan's National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention to better understand orographic enhancement of lake-effect precipitation through study of storms across a wide range of geographic and topographic environments.
I am hoping to tack on a few days of skiing in the Hakuba, Myoko, and/or Tenjin areas. If you can share any beta on tours or guides, add a comment or send me an e-mail directly (jim.steenburgh at gmail.com).