Explore-Share logo and link to home

Snowshoe trekking in Rishiri, Hokkaido


Explore the beauties of snow covered Rishiri on snowshoes with a certified local mountain guide, Toshiya! Enjoy a half or full day of snowshoe trekking!

Not specified

1 Day

Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, Dec


Come and explore the beauties of snow covered virgin forests at the foot of Mt Rishiri, on snowshoes at your own pace! Snowshoeing is a great way to enjoy the winter of Mt Rishiri, which doesn't require any prior technical skills unlike backcountry skiing.

I offer half day trips and 1-day trips, depending on your fitness levels and how you want to enjoy Rishiri!

Half Day Course (3 hours):

It's an easy way to get a taster of snowshoeing and enjoy the winter outdoors. This course combines the beautiful snowscape and purely having fun in the snow. Children from the age of 6 can join this course, and so I recommend it to families with children, first time snowshoers, and those that are not as confident in their fitness levels! There's a lot of focus on making it a FUN course so even though it's a short programme, the satisfaction level tends to be high!

1-Day Course (6-8 hours) with lunch included:

We'll be exploring places that we wouldn't have the time to reach in a Half Day Course. The view and snowscape on the route will be magnificent and you can immerse yourself in the nature more. We'll have a warm lunch that I prepare for you on a table crafted from snow, where you'll be able to warm up and regain your strength for more fun and exploration in the afternoon!


– For Half Day Course, meet at 9am or 1:30pm at my family hotel (please let me know if you need to be picked up from the port or your own hotel). For 1-Day Course, meet at 9am.

– Fill in necessary documents

– Equipment / Clothing check

– Start Snowshoe trekking and enjoy winter Rishiri!

– Relax at Rishiri Fuji Onsen (hot spring) at the end of the trek.

– Back to hotel


Half Day Course – JPY 6,000 per person

1 Day Course – JPY 12,000 per person

Included in Price:-

Guide Fee, Lunch (for 1 Day Course)

Excluded from Price:-



I recommend you to stay in my family hotel that I manage (photos can be found on this page). It is equipped with a nice onsen (hot spring bath) where it is awesome to stay after a day of skiing. You will enjoy delicious home-cooked Japanese food. Please get in touch to get more info!


Coming to Rishiri can be done either by flight (45 min) from Sapporo either by ferry (1.40) leaving from Wakkanai.


– Warm clothing (jacket, trousers – I recommend full ski wears)
– Warm hat
– Warm gloves
– Warm shoesI can lend you a set of snowshoes and a suitable backpack for the trek for free.Please bring any snacks that you might want to eat and nibble during the trek!

If you'd like to experience the winter beauty on the remote island of Rishiri, please get in touch with me! I can show you where only the local guides can take you…!

I also offer backcountry skiing trips in Rishiri. Have a look at this programme if you have prior experience of ski touring and if you're seeking an off-the-beaten track skiing adventure!


Please be aware that depending on the weather and the conditions, I may decide to change the route, objective of the trek, and any other contents of the trip, for safety reasons.

As a guide, I cannot be held liable for any accidents that may occur during the trip, except for those that occurr due to my gross negligence or malicious intent.

Please also be aware that I will be guiding at a pace appropriate for the participant with the lest technical and fitness levels.

Cancellation Policy:

I ask for a Cancellation Fee in case of last minute cancellation:

For cancellation on the day before the trip – 50% of Trip Price

For cancellation on the day of the trip – 100% of Trip Price

Price includes

- Guiding fee



You will stay in my family hostel (winter price) - JPY 11,000 for 1 night, including dinner and breakfast (onsen tax included) - JPY 8,600 for 1 night and breakfast (onsen tax included) - JPY 7,400 for 1 night bed only (onsen tax included)

More info

The price indicated is per day of the course. For half day the price is JPY6000.

Meeting point

You can fly from Sapporo's Okazu Airport to Rishiri Airport or from Haneda Airport to Wakkanai Airport, where you can come to Rishiri Island by ferry from Wakkanai. If you come by ferry we'll be able to pick you up at the ferry terminal for free.

About the guide

I was born on the island of Rishiri in 1969. I still live here today! Since my childhood, I have spent most of my time in the sea, going fishing, and in the mountain going skiing. I’m a ski guide (level 2) from the Japanese Mountain Guide Association. I’m the only one on the island. I have reached the summit of Rishiri more than 500 times… It’s my great pleasure to guide here and let people from all around the world discover this beautiful island all year round. Please feel free to get in touch with me if you are looking for a local expert to guide you in Rishiri. Besides mountain guiding, I'm managing a family hostel here so I can help you with the accommodation as well.


Japanese | English



What people are saying about -Toshiya Watanabe

denis joly


March, 2023

We had a great trip, no powder but fabulous Spring ski, thanks to Toshiya who is super friendly and excellent at picking the right route according to the weather especially in windy conditions. Thanks a lot

Mikko Vanska


March, 2023

Outstanding service in pension and guiding.

Ben Rowlinson


January, 2023

Had a great time on Rishiri with Toshi. He really knows how to make the best out of all weather conditions. Had some of the best skiing of my life, plus the food was great!

Angela Gillespie


April, 2021

If it were possibke to award 100 Stars I would !

Davide Jacks


March, 2020

The traveller did not leave a comment.

M. R. Grimshaw


March, 2020

The traveller did not leave a comment.

Joel Schy


January, 2020

Toshi is world class from pick-up to drop-off. Very friendly, very professional and he knows Rishiri inside out. His guest house is outstanding and the food they serve like nowhere else. Will be back very soon!



April, 2019

Toshi and his crew gave us a truly remarkable experience! From the food to the accommodations to the epic skiing: this trip was out of this world!

Chris Pierce


March, 2019

Toshi and his staff are great! Very knowledgeable of the local terrain. Definitely recommend bringing a group of people with similar abilities and objectives. If you end up in a mixed group they do their best, but they have to slow the pace to the least experienced people in the group. The accommodations at the pension were very comfortable and the staff was excellent as well. Food was fantastic, including several unique and authentic Japanese dishes.

Paul Johnston


March, 2019

We had a great trip to Rishiri! The snow gods were not on our side but Rishiri is a mountain of many slopes and aspects and thanks to a great guiding team we always managed to find good snow! Toshi ran a great operation with 3 other guides which meant we were split into two groups with a max of 9 per group and two guides. This allowed the group to be split even further on the day... Special thanks to Shohei and Kosukei - very professional guides!! Arigatou-gozaimashita!!

Bruce Barnett


February, 2019

I recommend this trip for any backcountry skier who likes to ski Japan powder. Toshi has a great set up with snow mobiles for initial access and a large variety of steeper terrain for skinning up and skiing down. Can suit a range of wind directions and conditions. The accommodation is new and comfortable and the Japanese dinners and breakfasts are great if you like seafood. There is also an onsen there. Unfortunately we were there at a time when there was no new snow however this was compensated for with the magnificent views we had if Rishiri mountain and surrounding islands.



February, 2019

I can not rate Toshiya because he was not our guide. Our experience was marred by a void of communication prior to the trip. We never recieved email or other communication prior to our trip, despite frequent requests. Simple questions like, "Do we need crampons?" were unanswered. The day before our arrival, we called Toshiya (whos phone number was being withheld). He was unaware of what day we were visiting, he did not know how many days or how many people in our group.

Elisabeth Smajda


January, 2019

English very limited. But otherwise the experience, the accommodation, the snow, the place and the guide were truly amazing!

Nick Oats


March, 2018

Toshi and his team are fantastic - great guiding and accom, and Rishiri has some amazing terrain for backcountry ski/snowboarding.

James Ramsay


February, 2018

One of the best trips I have ever done. One of the most beautiful places I have visited in Japan and the rest of the world. Toshi is an exceptional guide, is an expert on the islands skiing and has a fantastic set up including accomodation. His pension is perfect for daily excursions into the backcountry. I cannot recommend this trip enough except that I don't want eveyone else to know about this very special place.


Join our newsletter!

Stay up-to-date on the best adventures.