Night skiing in Japan is like no other! Grand Hirafu is a prime example, situated at the foot of Mt. Niseko Annupuri in the northern island of Hokkaido. The day draws in around 5pm as the sun sets. The rose coloured hues project onto Mt. Yotei, bringing the volcano to life. It’s quite the backdrop to a quick selfie on your way down!
During twilight hours the mountain becomes deserted with holiday makers heading back to their hotels for an onsen and afternoon tea. The lifts keep rolling until 8:30pm so it’s well recommended to stay out a few more hours to make good use of having the whole mountain to yourself.
Perfect time to get some training runs in if you want to work on your technical performance. The flood lights line the runs from top to bottom making visibility clearer than day. The dark shadows contrast against the bright snow, highlighting every rut, bump, rock, tree there is in Niseko!
Shredding the same lift over and over at night skiing can become boring, however Grand Hirafu has made half the mountain ski-able after hours! thats 4 lifts and 11 runs, basically everything below Ace Pair 3 and the Hooded Quad remains open giving you so much variety on terrain choice. Difficult mogul fields on the black runs, hard packed red runs ideal for perfecting your performance or the cruisy, wide-open green runs and not forgetting the tree runs in-between. Plenty of skiing to be done before dinner even with a dip in the onsen if you’re quick!