CultureExperience Life in the “Snow Country” Ⅱ

att.JAPAN Issue 62, Winter/2012-2013

First Experience with the Snow!

If you are from a warm country, then your first experience with the snow would be wonderful in Japan. Snowy mountains in Japan are within easy access of the Tokyo metropolitan area, and because Japan has settled winter weather, you can enjoy skiing or snowboarding with no stress. Even if you have never skied or snowboarded, there are many activities that will let you enjoy a winter wonderland to the full! Experience the world of winter fun under the bright blue sky!

Snowstorm Tour

Walking through the raging snowstorm of Tsugaru, Aomori Prefecture, is a very unique experience. With kakumaki (traditional blanket against cold) and kanjiki (traditional snowshoes) on, you can experience the famous whirlwind-like storm of snow that is blown up from the ground by the wind.
K Tsugaru Jifubukikai For inquiries: Tel 0173-52-2012, Fax 0173-52-2012 (Japanese only)

Dog Sled Ride

Dash down the plains of snow on a traditional sled pulled by a group of Alaskan Huskies! A sled is pulled by more than five dogs that are handled by an experienced instructor. There is a tour of 2 km (50 min) and for those who wish to hold the reins on their own, there is also a plan (weekdays only, 120 min). In both tours, you will first start by taking time to commune with the dogs. Reservations are needed beforehand (minimum of two participants for one program, price for two individuals is charged even when there is only one participant). January 12-March 31, 2013 50 min tour: 6,000 yen (over 7 years of age) 120 min tour: 12,000 yen (over 12 years of age)
LMinakami Kogen Ski Resort in Minakami town, Gunma Prefecture
http://www.minakami-ski.jp/activity/sled_dog/index.html

Reindeer Sleigh

Go for reindeer sleigh rides through the frozen wilderness of glittering snow. It will surely be a magical experience. Make sure to make a call beforehand to check if it’s open for business. December 21, 2012-January 14, 2013, February 2-February17, 2013: 5 min ride Price Adult: 2,100 yen Child: 1,580 yen MNiseko Village, Hokkaido
http://www.niseko-vill
age.com/en/winter/other_activity.html

Other Information

Ski lessons are offered in many ski resorts in Japan. Even though the lessons are conducted in Japanese, kids will be able to learn to ski in just half a day.
http://www.japan-ryokan.net/hachimantai/en/index1.html
With a dry suit for ice diving on, you can walk on the drifting ice between February and March when the ice condition is stable! NShiretoko National Park, Hokkaido, etc. http://www.shinra.or.jp/tour/winter.html

Make sure you are fully equipped!
Boots (rental available), gloves (rental available), cap that covers your ears (rental available), sunglasses (rental available), skiwear (rental available), fleece jacket (rental available), thermal underwear (e.g., tights), underclothing (avoid cotton), socks, sunscreen, disposable hot pack

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