A Brofessionals review from our trip to Japan
The Japow snow getaway is the pinnacle for any powder pig looking to get lost in the deep white fluffy stuff. Deep pow, Sushimi, Sake, Ramen, Onsens, Bidets, Asahi, chopsticks are all to be expected but the Brofessionals have now smashed Japan a bunch of times and we have a few little secrets that might help you when you go chasing the powder goodness.
Getting around Japan can seem daunting at first, but the train network is unbelievable. If you are planning on staying for a decent stint, then opt for a train over a domestic flight every time especially if you are traveling with 2 checked-in bags. You can get up whenever you like and walk around. The seats and leg roomaren’t even comparable, and the luggage allowance is basically as much as you can carry. Some trains like the Hayabusa travel around 320kph getting you the equivalent of Auckland to Wellington in 3 hours. They are relatively quiet and the majority we have come across have free wifi.
Cheat code: If you pay for a Koru membership (Air New Zealand) with an Airpoints Credit card you can travel with an extra bag no extra charge and its under $500 PA. An extra bag return is $220 normally.
The Japanese are a quiet bunch who love to fuss over you and are so polite it hurts. They don’t mind a foreigner having a laugh / good time and are often too shy to try and join in conversation even though most speak a little English. But if you are traveling Japan make sure to always respect their traditions especially when it comes to any sacred land and their rules around Onsens. These places are full of old traditional customs that can sometimes be easy to overlook but are massively frowned upon.
Cheat Code: Onsen rules - Click Here
There are over 500 ski fields in Japan. This gives you the opportunity to really get the experience you want. If you really want after hours activities and more of that big resort feeling you cant go past Niseko, Hakkuba and the Nagano area. These resorts have a large range of dinner options and bars that give you loads to do after you have finished shredding or on down days.
A preferred Brofessional option is to choose a smaller resort/resorts smash powder all day with no lift queues and then stay in Tokyo for 3 days at the end to party your ass off.
Japan resorts will offer everything from 2 seater chair lifts on the side of a hill with epic tree runs to full American style resorts with gondolas from the base of the hotel, to cable cars taking you to 1400m with full out of bounds back country skiing with no trails.
Cheat Code: Get to resorts that start above 300m but stay below 1200m too low and the snow gets wet go to high and they will never open. This is roughly the ‘goods zone’ - Geto Kogen, Appi Kogen, Rusutsu, Aomori Springs, Hakkoda, Myoko Kogen.