Given its close proximity to Tokyo, the top ski resorts and backcountry skiing destinations in Nagano are easily accessible by train from the capital. While Hakuba is arguably the most popular location for backcountry skiing in Japan, there are several other areas that are well worth the visit here in the Japanese Alps. Steady snowfall in the mountains throughout the entire Nagano region creates ideal conditions for backcountry skiing. The deep powder is not the only thing that will love about skiing in Japan, however. Volcanic hot springs, delicious local cuisine, cozy accommodations and the friendly faces of the Japanese may just make you want to stay in this winter wonderland forever.
If you plan to visit Nagano during the peak winter season (January-February), you can expect temperatures around 0° C and ample snowfall up in the mountains.
There is enough powder to keep you busy for weeks in Nagano. You can book a private backcountry skiing tour for one or more days, or join a group tour lasting up to 2 weeks for a more in-depth experience. Be sure to schedule some rest days to enjoy the local food, culture and hot springs!
January and February are the best months for backcountry skiing in Nagano as this is when powder is the deepest.
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