Rusutsu

Rusutsu

Overall Rating

Rusutsu

Rusutsu4/523
Rusutsu4 out of 5 based on 23 reviews
  • Recommend
    100%
  • Would Revisit
    100%

Rusutsu - Reviews

Rusutsu - Reviews

My Favorite Japanese Resort

10/11/2020

Brandon

Powder Connoisseur
Powder Connoisseur

Brandon

Powder Connoisseur
Powder Connoisseur
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    5

My Favorite Japanese Resort

10/11/2020
Indoor Merry Go-Round
Trail Map in the Gondola House
Flatter Section of Mellow Trees
Steeper Section of Trees
Steepest Section of Trees
Just totally loved everything about Rusutsu. The moment you walk in you're greeted by this quirky animatronic singing tree. Then you discover theres a full arcade and merry-go round indoors, and a theme park outside. But enough about that. The mountain itself might be my favorite mountain I've ever ridden now. The groomed runs across the entire mountain were fast and wide and we lapped them over n over loving every minute of it. However the main appeal to boarding at Rusutsu was the tree skiing and it did not disappoint. It was a dry snowfall year but recent storms had dumped 49 inches over the last week so conditions were supreme minus some tall sassa grass. The trees really had something for everyone. All over Mt.Isola had a wide variety of all kids of different tree sections: tight trees, spaced trees, flat mellow trees, steep trees and cliff drops; plus little japanese pillows sprinkled all throughout. We found untouched deep pockets of Japow all throughout Rusutsu. We ate lunch at the Steamboat Cafeteria at the bottom of Mount Isola, had some good american food as well as japanese options. The lift system was effective although the gondolas themselves were obviously very old. Once you get to the area where you'll be riding however the lifts are newer and if your riding at Isola then they're all covered lifts or "Bubbles". We didn't wait in any lines while we were at Rusutsu. We even lapped West Mt at the end of the day three times because the first time we found sooooo much untouched snow in the trees and with that mountain being right out front of the resort we never expected it and didn't wanna leave! See our video here

Now On the Epic Pass

07/08/2020

POWDERHOUNDS.COM

Powderhounds Ambassador
Powderhounds Ambassador

POWDERHOUNDS.COM

Powderhounds Ambassador
Powderhounds Ambassador
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    5

Now On the Epic Pass

07/08/2020
Powder still on offer - just had to work a little harder
The off-piste terrain is impressive
Powder on offer in the side country
It seems compulsory to say hello to the singing tree
Fantastic tree skiing
There’s no point lamenting that Rusutsu has well and truly been discovered. Even the Americans know about it considering that it’s now on the Epic Pass. It’s refreshing to hear the Americans rave about Rusutsu and how uncrowded it is, because relative to some of their crazy busy ski resorts, Rusutsu is rather quiet. Gone are the days of riding line after line of lift-served untracked pow at Rusutsu, yet it’s still great and has plenty to offer.

We visited on a powder day during a bad season, but there was more snow and less bamboo bashing at Rusutsu compared with Niseko, and lots of other people had the same idea to head to Rusutsu. The queues to get a lift ticket were horrific, and when we saw the inefficient process of getting a lift ticket with your Epic Pass we could see why. Thankfully there weren’t any queue issues out on the hill, but there were ridiculous queues to buy lunch at the Cafeteria Isola 2000 where Japanese process inefficiencies were once again evident in full force.

Naturally considering the increase in visitation, we had to work a little harder to get those lunchtime freshies, but with a pair of skins and pushing a little further afield we found some lovely deep powder stashes. We’ll definitely be back!

Our thoughts on the pros and cons are outlined on the Rusutsu overview page, and you can also see how we rate it versus other ski areas on the Japanese ski resort ratings page. See our video here

Powder every day

04/03/2020

Simona

Powder Puppy
Powder Puppy

Simona

Powder Puppy
Powder Puppy
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    February
  • Admin Rating
    1

Powder every day

04/03/2020
We had powder everyday. Were there at February 2019, good ski resort with good off piste possibilities. You will find some steep part there also. Good tree skiing. See our video here

Great skiing

Cam
21/12/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    N/A
  • Month Visited:
    December

Great skiing

Cam
21/12/2018
Great ski resort with good runs for different skiing abilities. Gorgeous scenery. See our video here

Awesome Rusutsu

Scott
29/01/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    5

Awesome Rusutsu

Scott
29/01/2018
We visited Rusutsu mid-January.
The piste on the three mountains are truly an intermediates paradise. I think most of the runs are over rated; that is some of the reds are greens and the groomed blacks are reds based on what I have skied in Canada. The piste was clear when we visited because most that visit Rusutsu do so for the tree skiing which is 5 star.
There are two main resort accommodations. The Westin which is a western style magnificent hotel that has everything you would need except a sports bar and culture. The Rusutsu Hotel is nice also but only has rooms catering up to 3 people. The Westin’s 2 story rooms are the biggest I have seen in any resort anywhere! There are some local ryokans which look good and cheap. Another option is the new private ski villas that are being built by foreigners 300M to the north. They look very classy and are listed on AirBNB and other websites. Most will house 2 families.
The rental gear is a bit pricy at the hotels as there is no competition. The rental shop near the 7-Eleven has closed down which is a shame.
We flew from Brisbane (1am departure) via Hong Kong into Sapporo with Cathay Pacific as the plane lands around 3pm giving time to get up the mountain the same day you leave.
The only thing lacking is nightlife and night time restaurants. There is a string of local Izakayas near the resort hotel but book two days in advance. Overall this mountain is awesome. See our video here

Great Day Trip

Blair
16/04/2016
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    February
  • Admin Rating
    1

Great Day Trip

Blair
16/04/2016
Rusutsu was a great day trip from Niseko. One of the best powder days of the trip. Off piste was easily accessible with many bowls to explore.

Getting a weather forecast or accurate snowfall report is impossible though See our video here

Best tree skiing in japan

Patrick nolan
18/02/2016
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    February
  • Admin Rating
    1

Best tree skiing in japan

Patrick nolan
18/02/2016
Go here over niseko if it has snowed. You won't regret it. Less lines less wind. More fun. See our video here

endless pow

john williams
25/06/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Admin Rating
    3

endless pow

john williams
25/06/2015
Rusutsu is fantastic for tree skiing lots of options accessed from the lift. Can find powder lots of pow 3 or 4 days after a storm. I spent 6 years at Beaver Creek CO and in 10 days skiing at rusutsu i skied some of the best powder ever.
Pros
No lift lines
Lots of pow
Tree skiing

Cons
Cost
Limited accommodation
Limited dining
Limited vertical
Limited expert terrain
Lack of nightlife and shopping

If you go on a ski holiday and only interested in skiing powder and don't care about shopping or nightlife the you will love Rusutsu. If you care more about nightlife and shopping go to Niseko. There is very limited lodging and restaurants, basically 1 hotel only. See our video here

POW-er to the People

Ka Pow
31/01/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Admin Rating
    4

POW-er to the People

Ka Pow
31/01/2015
Like all Hokkaido and most Japanese ski resorts, they need constant POW to make them interesting. If the white stuff doesn't fall they become quite banal. We've be coming to Japan since the early noughties and late Jan 2015 was by far the worst for snowfalls and base. The crowds at Rusutsu have certainly increased since we were last here 9 years ago. Relatively busy by Hokkaido standards (there are lift lines on Sat & Sun). Tracks out and/or most lines are ruined very quickly nowadays.

Off piste, Rusutsu suffers from a common boarder and novice powder skier affliction ...an innate inability to ski the fall line. Great lines are spoiled by annoying and unnecessary traverse tracks.

Hokkaido tends to suffer more frequent warmer spells these days (global warming?)so don't be surprised by freeze thaw conditions. It rained on our last day and Australia Day was befittingly like skiing in Australia....gnarly hard packed rubbish.

Lift system is not bad but quite disconnected and inconvenient in places. The gondolas bottom stations (West Mtn) are badly positioned. One of the quads had a tendency to break down which closed off the "Heavenly" ski area a few times. The ski school meet point is an irritating walk to the nearest quad for kids (no group lessons available for competent kids by the way so this place is not suited for dumping kids on pow-days unless you like to lash on private). They have a tendency to close the West Mountain gondola if there aren't many folks so this limits the ability to get up high on this side (or observe Mt Yotei). The groomed run classifications are so wrong its not funny: Green = flat track; Red = Green and Black is Red. Double D is simply an ungroomed pitch (and these all track out immediately)

Pretty negative so far...right?! Don't be put off. This is a good place if it snows and stays cold enough. The groomers are great/ideal for riders (developing youngsters and old cruisers). Tree skiing is awesome when you get the POW. There is a fair amount of terrain between the ridges to explore. Other side and back-country isn't bad. There are different accommodation options. The hotel is fun (even if you're not staying there - wave pool, disney like kitsch). You get to ski powder through an outdoor amusement park (this was our run home this visit).

In summary it needs persistent frequent snowfalls it is renowned for to remain interesting especially if you are staying for more than 4-5 days. If you do catch the right snow, it can be epic (mind you so can most places!) See our video here

Awesome rusutsu

Guy M
22/01/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    3

Awesome rusutsu

Guy M
22/01/2015
Awesome 2 weeks jan 2015
Fresh tracks everyday all day even 3 days after snow
Snowed 9 days
Very friendly staff
Very cruisy patrol
Straight on lifts except for one Sunday
In the trees it's an independent rescue with charges
There are lots of tight trees runs read 1-2m spacing and several 20 foot drop offs
Days of only crossing our tracks in the trees
Yes the easy trees get charged a bit
Odd semi steep pitch but Great fall line skiing
Half was boot to knee deep
Snow quality good as colorado
Coming back See our video here
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