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Asahidake3 out of 5 based on 25 reviews
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Asahidake Hokkaido

The Asahidake Ski Resort in Hokkaido Japan is a haven for powder hounds, but it’s not really a resort. It’s essentially a backcountry ski area that has the luxury of being partially serviced by a cable car (the Asahidake Ropeway). Asahidake potentially has some of the best powder in the world, and there are times when the waist deep powder is completely drool worthy for a powder hound.

Ski Asahidake Japan - Pros and Cons

  • Asahidake Ski Resort scores lots of snow and the powder is generally of amazing quality.
  • Relative to mainstream ski resorts, the crowds are minimal.
  • The Asahidake ski area offers plenty of variety and both alpine and tree skiing.
  • Asahidake Onsen accommodation provides reasonably good value for money.
  • The village isn’t called Asahidake Onsen for nothing and there are great hot spring baths for an après ski soak.
  • All that powder doesn’t fall from blue skies and the weather at Asahidake is often foul during the peak of winter. Visibility may be low, the snow in the alpine may be wind scoured, and high winds can close the ropeway.
  • Asahidake Ski Resort is not for beginners, intermediates or those that can’t ride off-piste.
  • You might not score a lot of vertical in a day.
  • The bottom third of the ropeway accessed terrain is rather mellow and many sidecountry lines don’t run fall-line which necessitates some shuffling across flats or skinning/snowshoeing. Some snowboarders may hate Asahidake, especially if they don’t have a guide.
Pro or Con Depending on Your Perspective
  • Asahidake offers amazing powder riding for those who are prepared to at least work a little bit for their turns.
  • Access to some of the best terrain and fresh tracks requires a guide or excellent route-finding nous.
  • The Asahidake Ropeway travels rather quickly but waiting for it to arrive can be a little tiresome.
  • Although very quiet, the tiny Asahidake Onsen village has no hint of “resortification” and provides a chance to immerse yourself in the quirky Japanese culture.

Asahidake Ski and Snowboard Terrain

The Asahidake ski area is smokin’ – literally considering that Asahi-dake is an active volcano with lots of fumaroles emitting steam and gas (so it’s a little stinky at times!).

The Asahidake Ropeway (cable car) provides access to 500 vertical metres of terrain and four groomed mellow trails, but this is definitely not a ski area for beginners or intermediates. These trails are really just cat tracks to facilitate egress from the off-piste playground, much of which consists of lovely tree skiing. The zone under the Asahidake Ropeway tends to get tracked out reasonably quickly because it’s so easily accessible. If you’re willing to earn your turns a little, you can head wider where there are freshies just begging to be ripped up.

There are even more fresh lines further afield or above the ropeway in the alpine areas of Asahi-dake. If you love to earn your turns, you’ll be in powder heaven.

Asahidake Snow

Asahidake has an abundance of powder with an average of about 14 metres of snow per season, but no one really bothers to put too much emphasis on measuring the amount of snow because there’s so much of the white stuff. Asahidake is pretty much the crème de la crème of the powder that Hokkaido skiing is renowned for. This is the highest mountain in Hokkaido so the snow is kept super cold. And unlike Niseko, Asahidake is not near the ocean, so the powder isn’t just dry; it’s often sublime!

Where is Asahidake Ski Resort?

The Asahidake ski area sits on Mount Asahi (no relationship to the beer!), and some folks refer to Asahi-dake as Mt Asahidake, but that’s a bit like calling an “ATM” an “ATM machine”!

Asahidake is part of the Daisetsuzan National Park, and the ropeway sits at the top of Asahidake Onsen, a village with a small collection of hotels with onsen baths.

Asahidake is situated in Central Hokkaido, about 1 hour east of the city of Asahikawa, and approximately 50 minutes from Furano ski resort. You can head to Asahidake on a guided multi-day tour or a day tour from Furano, so that you have a guide to show you the best way to navigate the ski area.

Asahidake Accommodation

Asahidake Onsen is a small village that consists of a handful of hotels and a couple of hostels. The Asahidake accommodation is dotted along the road below the ropeway building.

Asahidake Hotels Listings

Evening entertainment generally consists of dinner at your hotel. The Asahidake nightlife is so sedate that it’s almost non-existent unless you make your own fun with your duty free alcohol or beers from the vending machine, so you’d probably only want to stay in the village for a maximum of 3-4 nights.

Alternatively Asahidake can be accessed as a day trip from Asahikawa or Furano. See the Asahikawa hotels and Furano accommodation pages for information on lodging options.

Activities & Facilities

Asahi-dake is in a national park so it has very limited facilities, but the powder hunters that frequent Asahidake don’t seem to mind.

The ropeway building has an inexpensive cafeteria, a small food kiosk and a little shop that sells basics such as beanies and gloves, but that’s about the extent of the amenities at the Asahidake ski area.

Other than the backcountry skiing, winter activities at Asahidake are somewhat limited. There are a few cross country ski trails, and of course the village wouldn’t be called Asahidake Onsen unless it had the obligatory onsen baths! The hot springs are housed within the Asahidake hotels and visitors can pay a fee to visit the hot springs if they’re not staying at the hotel.
Tours That May Include Asahidake

Safari (Road Trip) Tours

Hokkaido Storm Chaser
7 Days | 6 Nights | 6 Ski Areas
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Expert
Chase the storms and access the deepest and best quality snow conditions on the day in the Otaru area and Central Hokkaido's world famous deep dry powder.
Price p/p Price displayed is per person
Base/invoice currency is JPY
Displayed rate may vary slightly due to currency fluctuations.
USD 2,821
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Hokkaido Backcountry Powder Quest
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Jump on the Hokkaido Backcountry Powder Quest tour & experience the magical powder wonderland Hokkaido is famous for along with its rich culture & incredible cuisine. Join as a solo, couple or small group; max 6 guests per tour & guaranteed departures.
Price p/p .
USD 3,699
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Hokkaido Safari
12 Days | 8 Days Guided Skiing/Riding
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Explore up to 7 Hokkaido ski areas on this amazing powder progression adventure for advanced to expert skiers & boarders. Locations include the Otaru/Sapporo & Furano ski areas. Groups of up to 4 guests are guided by 1 guide. From price is based on twin share in deluxe western-style room.
Price p/p From price based on twin/double-share room; 4 on tour for 2022 season.
Base/invoice currency is in USD inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 4,655
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See all Safari (Road Trip) tours that visit Asahidake here

Single-Base, Multi-Ski-Area Tours

Central Hokkaido Tour
10 Nights | 8 Days Skiing/Riding
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Avoid the crowds and revel in the renowned high quality Central Hokkaido powder at Furano, Asahidake, Kamui Links, and hidden gems such as Pippu, Sahoro and Tomamu. Mostly lift accessed powder hunting, plus the option to do a little hiking to get more goods.
Price p/p From price based on twin/double-share group option for 25th Feb tour per person.
Base/invoice currency is in Japanese yen inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 2,958
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Furano/Central Hokkaido Experience
7 Nights | 5 Days guided | 1 unguided free day | Furano + 4
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Advanced
Experience the best powder that Furano and the Central Hokkaido region has to offer. Venture off-piste in Furano, Kamui, Tomamu, Sahoro and Asahidake with some local guides for the total Central Hokkaido ski/board adventure. It’s their passion to show you what skiing in Japan is all about ,great snow , relaxing onsens
Price p/p From price based on twin/triple-share room.
Base/invoice currency is in JPY inc. taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 2,057
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Central Hokkaido Guided Tours
PRIVATE GROUPS of up to 6 guests
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Expert
If you are in Furano with a group and want fresh tracks, head out with a Furano ski guide (or snowboard guide) at Furano or at one of the nearby ski areas or go backcountry touring with a guide. PRIVATE GROUPS ONLY of up to 6 guests i.e. you cannot join a group.
Price p/p From price based on PER PERSON rate for PRIVATE GROUP of 6 in peak season. Full rate is 78,000 yen for group of up to 6.
Base/invoice currency is in JPY in taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 118
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See all Single-Base, Multi-Ski-Area tours that visit Asahidake here

Backcountry Skiing Tours

High Earnings
8 Nights | 7 Guided Days
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Enter the powder room! Visit some of Hokkaido's most remote locations and best backcountry zones. This trip has a backcountry touring focus and the skins will probably go on every day but your group will be within reach of ski resorts if the weather isn't suitable for touring or the lift accessed pow looks too good!
Price p/p From price based on twin/triple-share 2021-22 season.
Price per person for a group of 5 with 1 guide for 9 day package. Base/invoice currency is in JPY inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 2,685
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Hokkaido Backcountry Tour
9 Nights | 7-8 Days Touring
Ability: Expert
Earn your turns with backcountry touring. Flexibility is the key & the trip will go where the best untouched lines are, from the Daisetsu National Park in the North to the crater of Mt Yotei near Niseko.
Price p/p From price based on twin share option for group tour for 2022 season for the 22nd Feb tour. Min 3 guests required to run tour.
Base/invoice currency is in Japanese yen inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 3,049
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Powder Belt Backcountry Tour
8 Nights | 7 Days Skiing/Riding
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Explore Central Hokkaido's endless backcountry under your own steam as well as using the lifts. Perfect for those that don't want to hike all day and/or those relatively new to backcountry touring. Based in Furano, explore different ski areas each day.
Price p/p From price based on twin/triple-share option for 26th Feb tour for 2022 season. Base/invoice currency is in Japanese yen inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 2,958
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See all Backcountry Skiing tours that visit Asahidake here