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Hokkaido Backcountry

Hokkaido Backcountry5/511
Hokkaido Backcountry5 out of 5 based on 11 reviews
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  • Would Revisit
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Hokkaido Backcountry Enquire
Price p/p Price per person, based on 2025 group tour
USD 4,499

GUIDED BACKCOUNTRY TOUR
7 Nights | 8 Days

Location: Japan | Tour Focus: Guided | Terrain Focus: Off-Piste, Backcountry, Sidecountry
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Price p/p Price per person, based on 2025 group tour
USD 4,499
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.
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Fixed Date(s)
Days
Price
Availability
Fixed Date(s): Jan 05 - Jan 12, 2025
Days: 8
Price: USD 4,499
Availability: Available
Fixed Date(s): Jan 16 - Jan 23, 2025
Days: 8
Price: USD 4,499
Availability: Sold Out
Fixed Date(s): Jan 24 - Jan 31, 2025
Days: 8
Price: USD 4,499
Availability: Available
Fixed Date(s): Feb 02 - Feb 09, 2025
Days: 8
Price: USD 4,499
Availability: Available
Fixed Date(s): Feb 10 - Feb 17, 2025
Days: 8
Price: USD 4,499
Availability: Available
Fixed Date(s): Feb 19 - Feb 26, 2025
Days: 8
Price: USD 4,499
Availability: Available
Future rates & dates are currently not yet available for this operator. Click here to enquire.
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The Hokkaido Backcountry Tour

The Hokkaido Backcountry Tour is based out of two strategic destinations, the historical port town Otaru, and the agriculture-based region and town of Furano, located in the center of the island. These locations give access to up to 8 ski areas, combining classic powder laps at Hokkaido’s ski resorts, sidecountry, as well as remote backcountry touring lead by PowderQuest’s ACMG/AAMG guides. Each day’s itinerary is flexible so the guides may opt for the best destination in the area based on snow conditions. After all, you are there for the island’s legendary powder!

The Hokkaido Backcountry Powder Quest starts with 3 full days of guided adventure near Otaru for a taste of the west coast mountain terrain and deep powder near Sapporo. You’ll ski and ride the trees before touring out of the resorts of Teine and Sapporo Kokusai to reach pristine powder bowls. After long days of adventure you’ll refuel every evening with exquisite Japanese cuisine, locally crafted beers and sake at your guide’s favorite local restaurants, all included in the price of the trip!

Your journey will carry on from Otaru to Furano with a stop at another select destination for more “Japow.” Once in Furano, you’ll check in for the next 4 nights, and spend the following days powder chasing with an open itinerary around the resorts and backcountry areas of Furano, Tomamu, Kamui, Sahoro, Asahidake, and other gems.

Who is the Tour Suited To?

This Hokkaido off-piste and backcountry tour is designed for advanced skiers and snowboarders who are willing and able to earn their turns, even if you’ve never backcountry toured before.

You will want to be in good physical shape and keen on adventure.

Expect deep dry snow, tight trees and uphill skinning to access the best terrain after departing from the ski resort lifts and boundaries. With the exception of Furano resort, minutes from the hotel, this trip does involve daily drives of 40-60 minutes to the ski areas, destination depending.

Equipment Required

As this is a lift-accessed backcountry tour, skiers & snowboarders will require touring gear. For skiers your skis should be around 110 - 120 mm in the waist and you will require touring binding and skins. For snowboarders you will require a split board with skins and collapsible poles.

In addition, it is mandatory that all guests carry a backpack with an avalanche beacon, shovel and probe.

PowderQuest staff can assist with more information about this and other recommended gear at the time of booking, and they can also assist with rental of some equipment.

Itinerary

Day 1 - Arrival Day

Fly into Chitose International Airport & travel to Otaru under your own steam. The best way to Otaru is by train via Sapporo where you travel along the coast and most times the snow comes all the way down to the water. Pretty spectacular if you have never experienced that before! See train schedule here>>

Once you arrive in Otaru, check in to your room in the hotel.

Tour commences with a meet-and-greet at 6pm in Otaru and then a welcome dinner.

Day 2 - 3 Off-Piste & Backcountry Out of Kokusai & Teine

  • Group breakfast at the hotel
  • Drive to resort based on best conditions
  • Find the best snow on the mountain: off piste, sidecountry and backcountry
  • Return to Otaru hotel
  • Wander the town's culturally rich streets and famous canal
  • Group dinners in town hosted by your guides

Day 4 More Off-Piste & Backcountry Then Travel to Furano

  • Group breakfast at the hotel
  • More backcountry and off-piste exploring with destination based around best conditions
  • Drive through bustling Sapporo and beautiful central Hokkaido
  • Arrive in Furano
  • Check-in to hotel
  • Group dinner in select Furano restaurant

Day 5 - 7 More Off-Piste & Backcountry Out of Furano & Surrounding Areas

  • Group breakfast at the hotel
  • 3 full days of backcountry and off-piste exploring based around best conditions in Furano, Tomamu, Kamui, Ashahidake and more off-grid powder destinations
  • Soak in muscle soothing onsens
  • Group dinners, hosted by your guides in select Furano restaurants

Day 8 Sayōnara

  • After breakfast at the hotel it's Sayonara (farewell) to the guides and new friends
  • Please schedule return flights out of Chitose after 12:00 pm (for domestic) or 1:00 pm (international)
  • For departure flights before noon the guides can help pre-reserve a private service shuttle back to Chitose
  • Please note whilst PQT can arrange a scheduled bus transfer to the airport, these return transfers are not included in the price.

Lodging

The Hokkaido Backcountry Powder Quest is based in 2 different destinations: Otaru near Sapporo; and Furano in Central Hokkaido.

Lodging is based on twin-share so if you are not a couple/pair you will be paired up with another person of the same gender in a room. There is a limited number of rooms available for a private room upgrade for an additional fee; first in best dressed basis.

Otaru

Within walking distance of sites of interest such as the city’s famous Otaru Canal and the Otaru City Art Museum. The Authent Hotel is a 3.5 star hotel and all rooms come with a private bathroom with a deep soaking tub, and there is a sauna and onsen, with varying styles of massages available.

Furano

PQT hand-picked comfortable 3.5-4-star Furano Hotels. All hotels feature similar décor and amenities; comfortable bedding, private bathrooms, Japanese onsen bath, and social areas to relax and get to know your group. Rooms are shared, twin-bed set-ups. Larger double beds for couples or single room upgrades are available.

Rates, Inclusions & Add-Ons

Rates 2025

USD $4,499

  • Rates are per person
  • Base/invoice currency is USD
Inclusions
  • 2 full-time, certified, PowderQuest guides
  • Transport for duration of the tour in a private 4x4 van
  • All lift tickets where required
  • Daily breakfast
  • All dinners hosted by your guides at selected restaurants in Otaru & Furano
  • Beer & sake at dinner
  • Comfortable twin-share lodging with private bathroom
Add-ons
  • Private room upgrade (subject to availability)
Not Included

PowderQuest Tours, Inc. Travel Policy Terms and Conditions for guided trips

These Terms will govern your trip with PowderQuest Tours, Inc. (“PowderQuest”). The individuals participating in a trip will be referred to as “Client” throughout the Terms. Any individual booking a trip offered through PowderQuest will be required to agree to the terms.

The following Terms apply to Clients joining our guided tours. We reserve the right to change these policies without prior notice.

Before the start of your trip with PowderQuest, you will be required to sign the Participant Agreement Release and Assumption of Risk policy online. You will be provided a hyperlink to access the policy along with instructions on how to sign after booking your trip. You may preview the policy here.

The Participant Agreement Release and Assumption of Risk policy and the Terms set forth below constitute the entire, complete and exclusive agreement between the Client and PowderQuest and no waiver, modification, alteration or termination thereof shall be permitted unless set forth in writing signed by both parties.

Reservation Deposit

In addition to agreeing to the Terms below, the Client will be required to submit a deposit to PowderQuest. Most trips require a 25% non-refundable deposit at time of booking, plus any costs for optional extras. Examples of optional extras are room upgrades, equipment rentals, trip extensions etc.

You must purchase travel insurance after booking to cover you for trip cancellation.

Once the Client has paid the deposit, PowderQuest will provide confirmation of Client’s reservation. The remaining balance for the trip will be due ninety (90) days before the trip departure date.

By agreeing to these terms, PowderQuest will charge your final balance to the credit card you provide. If the outstanding balance is not paid by this time, PowderQuest reserves the right to charge a $100 late fee or cancel the Client’s reservation. If a reservation is made less than ninety (90) days prior to trip departure date, the full balance of the trip is due at that time.

Cancellations by Client

Any cancellation by the Client must be made in writing via email. The date on which PowderQuest receives the Client’s written cancellation will determine the charges applicable. The policies outlined below take into consideration the costs PowderQuest incurs long before travelers ever depart. The schedule of Cancellation charges is as follows:

91+ days prior to trip: Non-refundable deposit 61-90 days prior to departure: 50% refund 60 or fewer days prior to departure: 100% Cancellation Fee

Travel Insurance

Our cancellation policy is strict. You are required to purchase trip cancellation/ interruption insurance that cover loss of effects, trip delay, cancellation insurance and all other expenses that might arise as a result of loss, damage, delay or inconvenience occurring to the Client.

In addition, it is mandatory for all Clients to provide evidence of insurance for ski travel that covers personal accident, medical expenses.

If you are joining our Off-Piste or Backcountry trips, you need to make sure your insurance covers off-piste and backcountry skiing and snowboarding in the countries you will be visiting. It needs to cover air ambulance (emergency evacuation).

For trips involving mechanized access in the backcountry (snowcats, snowmobiles, helicopters, boats etc.) be sure your policy covers these activities. Evidence of this insurance needs to be provided to PowderQuest. In the event evidence of insurance is not provided, PowderQuest reserves the right to cancel the Client’s reservation. 

We are not responsible for travel arrangements made prior to confirming your PowderQuest booking.

PowderQuest cannot be held responsible for departures that are canceled or changed due to circumstances beyond our control, including but not limited to natural disasters, political instability, disease, pandemics, border closures, travel bans, quarantines, terrorist activities, or strikes. Purchasing a Cancel For Any Reason insurance will provide additional benefits and reimbursement during pandemics and more. If we do need to cancel due to circumstances beyond our control, we give you a spot on another departure of the same trip, or a full credit to use towards any of our other trips in the same country the following season.

COVID-19 Health and Safety

While the COVID-19 pandemic is no longer considered a global emergency, coronavirus disease still exists and people continue to get infected and sick. If you display flu or COVID-19 symptoms in the lead-up to your trip, please do not travel. To aid in arriving healthy, we recommend wearing a mask while en route to our trips, including on flights and public transit.

If a Client starts experiencing symptoms on the trip, we will ask them to take a test for COVID-19. If negative, we will take no further action. If the test is positive, that Client is unable to participate in the tour until they’ve isolated themselves from the group for a minimum of 5 days, are symptom-free, and have cleared all local protocols. Our team will help any affected travellers make alternative arrangements including securing a private room, mask purchases, testing, etc. Your required travel insurance can help cover these costs if you do test positive while traveling. In addition, if a test does come back positive, the guides will suggest mask wearing as a group especially when proper distancing is not possible (traveling in our vehicles for example).

Clients shall not receive a refund for any portion of the Trip price, used or unused. PowderQuest shall not be responsible for any additional expenses incurred by Client as a result of his/her illness. Additionally, PowderQuest shall not be responsible for any expenses incurred by Client as a result of any required or recommended treatment for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases including, but not limited to, transportation, accommodation, or medical expenses.

PowderQuest is following recommended guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, as well as local authorities where applicable.

Lastly, please note that harassment or violence of any kind towards staff or other guests will not be tolerated, especially in regard to any of our safety or operations policies and protocols.

Services Not Covered

Additional activities may be offered by PowderQuest during a trip. Client, however, will be responsible for all extra expenses incurred as a result of Client’s participation in the activity. Only those activities described in the trip description are included in the total cost of the trip. Client will be responsible for charges issued by any airline used while on tour for any or all of the following: Excess baggage, over weight, oversize, or ski and snowboard charges.

Most tours include meals, drinks not included. Details are indicated on our website. When meals and drinks are not included, client will be responsible for the expenses.

Price Adjustments

PowderQuest reserves the right to adjust the price of a trip due to changes in exchange rates, inflation, increases in air fares or other transportation costs, taxes, or if government action should require us to do so. In the event the price adjustment is an increase, PowderQuest will be responsible for the first 2% of the increase and Client will be responsible for the balance.

Changes to Itinerary

Client acknowledges that the nature of this type of travel requires considerable flexibility and changes to the itinerary may occur. Therefore, the agreed upon itinerary does not serve as a contractual obligation on the part of PowderQuest. Client understands that the route, schedules, itinerary, amenities and mode of transportation may be changed without prior notice due to local circumstances or events, which may include sickness or mechanical break down, flight cancellation, strikes, events occurring due to political disputes, entry or border difficulties, weather, climate, snow conditions and other unforeseeable circumstances. In the unlikely event the group is unable to travel as described on the itinerary due to weather or road closures, additional accommodations may be required. Expenses for additional accommodations will be charged to the Client.

While PowderQuest will make its best effort to provide its services as advertised, changes in the itinerary may be made where deemed appropriate, advisable or necessary due to unforeseen circumstances. If PowderQuest makes a change in the trip, the client will be informed prior to departure when possible. If the change is made due to unforeseen circumstances no compensation is payable.

Trip Guides; Laws

The trip guide’s decisions will be final on all matters. The client will at all times comply with the laws of all countries visited. If the client fails to comply with any law, or refuses to comply with the decisions of the trip guide, then the trip guide may dismiss the Client from the trip, and Client will have no right to any refund.

Health, Fitness and Ability

Given the nature of the trips, PowderQuest requires that Client acknowledge that he or she is in good health and physical shape at a required level appropriate for this form of adventure activity. Client represents that he or she is capable of participating in all activities without endangering himself or herself or any other of the Clients or guides of PowderQuest. Client agrees to provide pertinent medical and health details in our pre-trip questionnaire. If the client fails to provide pertinent details or does not meet the required physical, health or ability levels, then the trip guide may not allow the Client to participate in select guided activities. The trip guide may dismiss the Client from the trip, and Client will have no right to any refund.

Claims and Complaints

If Client has a complaint against PowderQuest, Client must first inform the trip guide of the complaint while on the trip so that the trip guide has a chance to rectify the situation. Any further claim or complaint against the PowderQuest must be received within thirty (30) days of the end of the trip.

Travel Documents

Client agrees to have a valid passport and necessary visas, permits, certificates of vaccination and any other necessary document for traveling to the destinations of the trip. PowderQuest does not assume any responsibility for securing those travel documents necessary for the trip and said responsibility will be that of the Client. Any advice or information provided by PowderQuest with respect to visas, vaccinations, passports, clothing, climate, baggage, special equipment, etc. is given in good faith but without responsibility of PowderQuest.

Airlines

The responsibility of the airline is limited to the carriage of passengers and baggage in accordance to the conditions of carriage. When the client has arranged for airfare through PowderQuest, it is not responsible for the carriage of the clients. Client acknowledges that it is his responsibility to arrive on time for departure, and Client acknowledges that these arrangements are made in good faith but are in no way legally binding.

Photographic and Video Release

Client agrees to permit PowderQuest employees and other guests to take photographs and make film and digital records of the trip without further recourse. I understand and agree that such photographs and/or film records may be used for commercial and/or promotional purposes.

Equipment

Client agrees to arrive with required equipment as listed on trip packing list and that required equipment is in good working order and ready to use upon arrival. If Client does not have this equipment, Client agrees to contact PowderQuest to arrange appropriate rentals if available.

I understand that PowderQuest may rent or outfit me with equipment required for backcountry travel or other tour use. I agree to treat the equipment as if it were my own, and if damaged or destroyed, I am responsible for the cost of the equipment, to be paid immediately and that may include international shipping costs and additional taxes.