For hungry riders on a raw powder diet
TOKACHIDAKE is nature in the Hokkaido Powder Belt ‘as is’. There are no lifts, no groomed runs, and no crowds; just pure powder to be enjoyed. The area consists of Tokachidake, a 2,077-metre volcano, and Tokachidake Onsen, a hot spring village dotted with welcoming inns.
If you haven’t done avalanche rescue training before setting out for Tokachidake, you will have with a guide by the time you hit the mountain. The danger of inadvertently having to be rescued is very real, and commands the expertise of a local to show you the ropes.
The reward of gliding weightlessly across the powder though, as plumes of smoke billow into the air from the cone above, is priceless. This snow is the stuff of dreams for hardcore riders, coming down in hefty instalments of up to 30 centimetres a night. To get started arranging a guide, contact any of the inns on this page if you’re staying with them, or the Kamifurano Tokachidake Tourist Association.
The volcanic rumblings of Tokachidake heat up natural springs below to temperatures of more than 40°C, which are harnessed by a cluster of hot spring inns in the village of Tokachidake Onsen. Perched at altitudes in the 1,200-metre range, their outdoor hot spring baths command superb views above the clouds, and are a welcoming haven for riders who have been out enjoying the powder all day.
How long does the journey take from?
Kamifurano: 25 min (bus)
Asahikawa: 1 hr 55 min (bus)