Madarao Snow Report

Nick popping out of the powder in the snowy heaven of the Tangram trees

What a whopper week of snow and riding...

With huge falls across the region and a perfect powerful storm the snowfalls for January are looking very healthy in Madarao. 

The snow machine was flipped into high gear coming in with a strong wind creating huge powder pockets. Brilliant Madarao found a way to spin the lifts delivering a luck few to the paradise of powder across the resort. It was deep and really fun. Faceshots were difficult to stop and the tree skiing is perfect.

Pic today is of guest Nick ripping in the ...

Posted on Tue 16 January 2024

Guest Olli Hall immersing himself in Madapow

For those heading to Madarao this week you best be sure you have your snorkel packed

For those heading to Madarao this week you best be sure you have your snorkel and thermals packed as the coldest storm of the year is set pack a punch over Monday and Tuesday 15th and 16th. 

After snow continues to fall today at a moderate rate increasing into the evening, we should find ourselves with an additional 40-50cm that'll top up the 17cm that fell last night. 

The Siberian tap will briefly pause and allow the sun to poke its head through the clouds for an epic ...

Posted on Sat 13 January 2024

Deep in the faceshot doesn't make for much of a photo but think about it from the viewers persepctive

We got that magic Madarao Metre overnight...

Last nights snow fall measured on the Snowball Chalet front lawn was 103 centimetres. The snow clearing machinery came out and worked all day to try and get the resort operational.

2WD cars all over the region were off the roads and anyone with even remotely well waxed skis and snowboards were in a constant state of face shots.

A simply perfect day with it going bluebird in the early afternoon. The best of Madarao and Japow.

Posted on Mon 08 January 2024

Snowball Studio love nest

Today is the start of something special with 12cm falling overnight and much more to come

We have an apology to make to all. We know we have dropped the snow reporting ball. Super sorry.

Last week we had a a 40cm Snowball lawn top up. Made for some nice conditions but not the super light Madapow we are used to yet.

Today is the start of something special. We woke up to 12cm of fresh snow and it's snowing heavily and will do for the next day or so. We are expecting significant snow falls. It won't be snowmaggedon but will be proper epic for all.

Madarao will come ...

Posted on Sun 07 January 2024

Cars sometimes get buried in Madarao.

We have missed the last two snowfall reports but now we have a cumulative fall of thigh deep

We are so sorry we haven't kept up with the snow reports. 
3 days ago we had a fall of 15 cm, then 10 cm the next day and last night a gazillion centimetres. We now have a great base and knee to thigh deep fresh on the front lawn of Snowball Chalet.

The cars are buried and that is just the way we like it. The season has truly begun. Woot woot! Once again it will be a white Christmas. The car in the pic was driven in last night after about a foot had already fallen. Even then...

Posted on Sat 23 December 2023

Snowman apartments with 30 cm of snow on the cars

The pre season snow just keeps on falling...

It's not an overstatement to say we love snow and we have had lots of snow. It was falling fast and furiously last night with about 30cm falling on the front lawn of Snowman Apartments, Shiki at Tangram and Snowball Chalet

It is now proper perfect bluebird. For those of us lucky enough to be here now the resort is totally rideable and it is an easy hike to the summit. The snow is cold and dry and for want of a better word total perfection!

Those people who have booked for December...

Posted on Mon 04 December 2023

Snowball Chalet's new natural snow sculpture

The first snow report of the 2023-24 season!

A big wonderful storm dumped 42 centimetres of fluffy white gorgeous snow on the front lawn of Snowball Chalet last night and it's still snowing.

This is the first ever November Snow Report for Snowball Japan and it isn't even the first snow this season. We had 10cm last week which we pretended didn't happen but 40 + centimetres is hard to ignore.

Luckily yesterday we had the good sense to pop snow tyres on the vehicles, put the lawn mower in storage and batton down the hatche...

Posted on Sat 25 November 2023

The white room is a place all advanced skiers and boarders want to spend as much time in as possible. Akira locked the door and threw away the key.

We think about 70 centimtres fell in Madarao Mountain Resort and Tangram but we aren't really sure...

It was a lot of snow and it came in fast and furious. The snow started about 1pm and by 3pm the resort was in a blizzard. Cars and buses were off the roads, people were stuck in lodges, restaurants had guests that couldn't leave and the whole village shut down with the anticipation of a huge powder day for today. Madarao did not fail to deliver with completely epic conditions absolutely everywhere. The strong winds persisted well into the day with heavy snow continuing all day long as well....

Posted on Wed 25 January 2023

Blue skies and powder at the bottom of Kings in Madarao Mountain Resort

Just under 40 centimetres overnight with three big storms lining up like corduroy on the way

The classic Madarao snow forecast of 8 centimetres turns into 38cm on the front lawn of Snowball Chalet and Snowman Apartments. The forecast on its way starting from the 24th with three big storms lining up perfectly. The first says 70cm in the forecast. Anyone care to take a stab at how many centimetres of Madapow will fall across the resort from the first of the storms?

The snow was fast and super dry. Faceshots if you turned too tight. The groomers were perfection and the guests had ...

Posted on Sat 21 January 2023

The Sumo tournament in Tokyo is seriously amazing

50 centimetres overnight and fun right across the mountain!

It's the kind of day we live for. perfect snow across the entire mountain with totally epic conditions everywhere. The guests and staff of Snowball Chalet left no run unridden except for Andy and I because we had a date with the January sumo tournament in Tokyo.

Some may say this was bad timing and that may have been true but what a day it was. box seats right near the arena makes for perfect viewing of one of the spectacles of Japan. The culture here is fascinating and even though I am...

Posted on Tue 10 January 2023

Skiing pow is fun. Skiing pow in Madarao trees is really fun!

Blue bird perfection in the morning with 40 - 50 cm falling overnight making perfect conditions even more perfect...

Woots of joy could be heard across the resort with guests spending a lot of time in the White Room. Madarao pow is light and dry and deeeeep. 

We are so lucky here sitting in the perfect location to get absolutely smashed by snow laden magnificence. We don't actually need a storm for it to snow. Just a bit of NW wind and as it ascends up the mountain the moisture in the air condenses into snow, delivering perfect white fluffy joy to all of us.

The guests had a killer day cont...

Posted on Thu 05 January 2023

The slow sculpture roof slide at Snowman Apartments is pretty lovely

Ha. Groundhog day again at Madarao... sort of

Another 15 cm falls across the village overnight topping up our already topped up base. 

And then this afternoon the heavens opened up with another 20 cm in the first hour of the new storm and it hasn't let up. Tomorrow will see simply perfect conditions resort wide. There is a buzz in the lounge of Snowball Chalet with most of the guests planning to race each other to first lifts.

Pic today is a perfect snap of the slow motion sculpture created off the roof of Snowman Apartm...

Posted on Wed 04 January 2023

Powder in Madarao is light and you can easily ride right through it as it explodes all around you.

Another 15cm brings the storm total to 90cm so far with more snow on the way for tonight

It is kind of hard to establish where one storm ends and another begins. We are calling just over 90cm for the storm because mid morning there was a ray of sunshine. It's snowing again now.

The entire mountain is rideable with perfect conditions pretty well everywhere. We love this time of year because there's enough snow to ride and roam but the bigger terrain features still haven't been filled in. We end up having 20 foot drops turning into 2 foot rollers by the end of a Madarao seaso...

Posted on Tue 03 January 2023

Dan faceplants in a powder puff

Another perfect day at Madarao Mountain Resort with about 80cm from the storm on the front lawn of Snowball Chalet so far

There was an early rush at breakfast after the snow started in earnest at 6pm last night delivering a fabulous 50 centimetres on the Snowball Chalet front lawn.

The whole crew was racing for first lifts knowing the epic day would unfold. Rocking up to the lifts 15 minutes before and being on lift 5 is a special joy especially when the first 4 lifts buzz past Riverline tree run leaving it for us in total untracked glory.

Bottomless pow turns ensued right through the day and a slow ...

Posted on Mon 02 January 2023

The deck of Snowman apartments looking out to the glorious forests

Madarao delivers 40 plus centimetres overnight... again!

For those who follow the weather you may have noticed the forecast called for 12cm overnight. There has been well more than 40 but we have to dig our way out the door to get out and measure it.

Madarao is a very hard to predict place and almost always in a good way. if we have a 20cm forecast that can easily mean a metre. The guests at Snowball Chalet and Snowman Apartments are going to have the day of days with proper perfect bottomless blower pow to ride all day long and the mountain ...

Posted on Mon 26 December 2022

The Chalet kids playing in snow snow snow

Winter has really begun with loads of snow in lovely Madarao

Sorry for the missed few days of updates. It was a mixed bag after the last big snow storm and then yesterday KAPOW! Lots of snow with more than 40cm from the storm cycle. Today we woke up to patches of blue, snow everywhere still and all lifts on the mountain open.

The guests are heading out to ski and snowboard in perfect conditions and are going to have a fabulous day.

We have more snow coming tonight then again in a couple of days. The long range forecast is showing a snow...

Posted on Sun 25 December 2022

The beautiful view from Snowball Chalet's new dining room up to snow covered Madarao Mountain

First Snow Report for 2022-23 Season!!!

So excited to do our first snow report for the season and our fantastic guests will finally be able to come here and play with us in the snowy magic of Madarao.

So far through November and December we have had a few small snowfalls, even 2 days ago we got 10cm on the front lawn of Snowball Chalet and Snowman Apartments but this time the snow gods doubled down and delivered a lovely crop of fresh white fluffy snowy joy. With 20cm on the front lawn 3 days ago will be the last time we see ...

Posted on Wed 14 December 2022

Today's pic Kon exiting the much sought after White Room in Tangram trees. Fresh untracked snow everywhere.

Wake up to thigh deep snow on the Snowball Chalet garden. Know for certain the skiing and snowboarding will be perfection!

There are some absolutes in this world and one of them is if there is thigh deep snow in the front garden of Snowball Chalet the skiing and boarding will be incredible. We tested this absolute and found it to be true. Totally true.

Big storm overnight covering the entire resort in deep perfect shiny white. The tree runs in Tangram and Madarao are really incredible. Thought you all might like to know the path we take to start the day...
1. Hop on the quad in Madarao and ride into Rive...

Posted on Mon 08 February 2021

Adam trying to contain his excitement getting to the top of Madarao's "PIzza Box" (number 13) lift. He knows as well as anyone the ride down will be epic

Snow reports are so hard to keep up with. Keep missing super fun days. Shin deep snowfall yet again and bluebirds everywhere...

Today saw bluebird heavenly skies, shin deep fresh snow and hardly anyone on the mountain.

We ride and ride and ride trying to track out the mountain but we know we have no hope of getting close to laying lines down across Madarao Mountain Resort. We wake up in our respective accommodation, pull on our gear, grab a board or set of skis and ride down to the chairlift. It is all pretty casual. No long lift lines here. If you arrive 5 minutes before lifts open you will be on the 4th or 5th...

Posted on Fri 05 February 2021

Every turn you make in really good snow sprays snow around. On this turn it went straight up...

We are spoilt in Madarao Kogen with another 30 centimetres of snow bringing the two day total to 60.

Today we awoke again to more snow. This time it came in with a bit more wind filling in the last of the remaining tree runs making the whole mountain rideable. There were pockets of windblown in the upper mountain but by and large everything is lovely. It has continued to snow heavily all day bringing another 20 or so centimetres.

The temperatures hovered around -4 degrees C so the conditions have been absolutely perfect. Following this years theme even on a Sunday there is hardly anyon...

Posted on Sun 31 January 2021

Dan riding out of a powder puff of air born snow on a bluebird day at Madarao Mountain Resort

Waking up to bluebird skies and 30 centimetres of fresh snow is so good

It is always so nice waking up to fresh snow and blues skies. The visibility was perfect, there was fresh snow covering all the groomers and the tree runs were starting to fill in again.

We blasted around the mountain finding fresh snow absolutely everywhere. So much fun.

Still wishing all our guests were here to enjoy the fabulous snow we have.

Temps at minus 6 degrees Cs keeping the snow in perfect condition. A light northerly breeze and sunny skies for the morning. As...

Posted on Sat 30 January 2021

The views in Madarao are exceptional

Bluebird, fresh snow everywhere, super fun crew. As good as it gets?

Today was just one of those days that we dream about... Bluebird, bottomless light dry powder, uncrowded riding, super fun crew. Wow, wow, wow!

Sometimes I have to pinch myself that I can wake up in my own ski chalet, look out the window at a most gorgeous mountain, ride untracked powder. I know I have been crazy lucky to end up in this situation. It hasn't been without loads of hard work but that is satisfying as well. I am incredibly grateful. I know things are really hard for a lot o...

Posted on Wed 20 January 2021

Adam coming out of the white room covered head to toe in snow

Woke up to knee deep snow and it just kept coming delivering bottomless pow across the resort

With only 8 centimetres forecast it was a lovely surprise to wake up to knee deep snow and it was absolutely dumping still which it did all day long.

The whole resort went bottomless and there were just no people on the mountain giving us fresh tracks all day long. It snowed and snowed and snowed. It is still snowing. Snow snow snow. It is dumping at around 15 centimetres and hour. Not the biggest Snowfall for Madarao (we can get 50 an hour) but this one has been non-stop.


Posted on Tue 19 January 2021

Japanese handmade green tea whisk

No new snow today and our first day of warmer temps for a long time

No fresh snow and temps hovering around 0 degrees meant we actually managed to have a rest day. It is so hard to rest when you know the snow is perfect so today was a good opportunity to do a little less than normal.

In the spirit of getting into the zen of it all we have added a video of the beautiful cultural craftsmanship of the Japanese people. Enjoy...

Posted on Thu 14 January 2021

Dan coming out of the white room after a big toe side turn in the Madarao Mountain back bowls

Really sorry about the lack of reporting. There has been so much incredible riding it has been hard to do the snow reports as time is short

Over the last three days we have had really consistent temperatures at -6 to -8 degrees C and around a meter of snow. The riding has been nothing short of perfection and we have found a whole heap of back country runs we never knew existed.

Madarao is really a perfect resort for beginners and intermediates with gentle groomers, intermediate groomers with meters of pow on the sides to learn how to ride in pow in an easy way and you won't get stuck. Where most resorts fall over is the lac...

Posted on Mon 11 January 2021

Adam big rooster tail in Dan's rearview mirror

40 centimetres of fresh snow and a resort with almost no people

The Japanese holiday period is finished. It snowed 30 - 40 centimetres overnight and there is almost nobody on the mountain so fresh tracks are everywhere.

The temps were pretty cold between -6 and -8 degrees with a moderate wind from the west. There were some wind loaded sections in the trees today that made for some super fun riding. More snow forecast for next 36 hours so the good times will keep on rolling.

We have changed our morning routine a little because the new run j...

Posted on Fri 08 January 2021

Bluebird turns in the Madarao backcountry

2 centimetres overnight, flashes of blue sky and a beautiful back country run

Well it really was a lovely day. The storm has broken, the winds were gentle the skies were occasionally blue and Madarao was beautiful.

Today was the first day of the season we headed into the back country. Did a few avalanche training refreshers hiked to the peak, dug a snow pit, snow pretty stable, dropped in for some perfect turns. Today is a good day.

Am thinking it would be a good idea to rinse and repeat tomorrow. Why not!

Pic today back country joyfullness...

Posted on Mon 04 January 2021

Kudo san riding the deepest powder possible without needing a snorkel

Just 15 centimetres of new snow. The perfect excuse to ride abandoned bottomless ski resorts.

Japan is littered with abandoned ski resorts. There are two within a couple of kilometres of Madarao. Sympathetigue (possibly a spelling error) is below Madarao on the way back to Iiyama. It only has two lifts and we rode one of the lift lines today in insanely deep bottomless joy powder. The terrain is super fun. Think small pillow line.

Cold temps today at -6 degrees. We have a couple of very light snow days coming up and a lot of people in the village are going to try and get on top ...

Posted on Sun 03 January 2021

Dan coming out of a face shot kicked up from a fat heel side turn

Snow snow snow for the last day of the year and it was good. It was very very good...

It started snowing in the morning yesterday but not all that much fell and then at around 7pm everything changed. By 8:30 we had 60 c's of fresh on the Snowball Chalet front lawn and at 9:30 pm we knew we had no choice but to start digging Snowball out. a couple of hours later and we had a clear path around the Yurt and from the road to the front door. 

It was clear the 152 Storm Chaser wasn't going to be enough board for me so I waxed up the 158 Mind Expander. Still not my step up...

Posted on Thu 31 December 2020

Dan riding untracked bottomless powder on the Tangram side of Madarao Mountain

Easily the best day of the season so far. 40 centimetres of fresh and the whole resort open for the first time meaning riding on a 3 meter base that has no track in it at all.

It's a perfect day. Not just the best day of the season but one of our best ever snowboarding days. Very few people around, bottomless pow, tree runs open everywhere, pow on every groomer slope just pow pow pow.

We woke up and it was still a little cloudy but as we were heading up the first lift the blue started to poke through and by mid morning we were riding bluebird bottomless Madarao. We had to hit River Run first and it did not disappoint. Steep tree runs are amazing but for those...

Posted on Sat 26 December 2020

A white Christmas at Snowball Chalet means Dan had to wear his Christmas jumper.

A white christmas in Madarao Mountain Resort

Merry Xmas everyone. We so wish all our guests had presents under our tree and we would be celebrating with all the kids.
We love watching them open all their Chrissy presents and it is even better when it is a white Christmas and today is a white Christmas.

We woke up to 15 centimetres and it has been snowing heavily ever since. Now there is 30 centimetres. The forecast for the whole day was 46 so we will go well past that because most of the snow fall was supposed to be tonight....

Posted on Fri 25 December 2020

Kudo san big heelside turn on way down from the top of the peak run from the other day

Bluebird perfect day in Madarao with stunning views to the sea, Shiga range and Iiyama

Every direction you look today it is just gorgeous. The mountain started the day glowing orange and then it's icing cake mantle shone the brightest gorgeous white. We have so much snow it is silly.

Lot's of roofs in town slid today. You had to be really careful where you walked because many of them had the 2.5 meters of snow still on them. Tractors were bogged everywhere and the Snowball Chalet tractor had its first mini service for the season.

Temps started at -6 degrees C, Brief...

Posted on Tue 22 December 2020

Dan in the Tangram trees with snow lit up by the sun.

Bluebird Tangram perfection. Meters of fresh snow from the storm and 6 people on the mountain.

We have been wondering if there would be many people riding this season. Now we know the answer. It is 6. 6 people in Tangram. Just 6. Kudo san and I were two of them. That makes 4. Just 4 people. We now know it is impossible to track out the resort with just us. In fact we did a pathetic job of it. There are too many fresh lines to be had.

Weather today a glorious bluebird blue, a fresh dusting of just 10 centimetres which is nothing for here, a light breeze and -6 degrees C this morni...

Posted on Mon 21 December 2020

Kudo san and Dan finding freshies. Actually there were freshies everywhere!

Well it is the gift that keeps on giving. Way more snow overnight.

The roof of the yurt is now attached to the snow on the ground. Yep. They are one. As stated previously we have lost the snow clearing battle. We are ok with this. We have come to terms with it. so we went riding and we found the deepest, lightest most joyous pow to set our souls at ease despite defeat.

In theory the snow is supposed to let up tonight. We will believe it when we see it. Little to no snow over the next four days and then another beast of a storm will settle upon the kind...

Posted on Sun 20 December 2020

Snowball Chalet completely covered by snow. That is more than 2 meters in the front garden.

245 Centimeters from the Madarao Mountain storm so far with more snow tonight and tomorrow

We are battling to clear snow but we simply need to accept the fact that we have lost. We may yet win the war but this battle is over. We lost. We have accepted it.

So far the storm has delivered 250 cm's of perfect light dry pow to Madarao. It has covered every accommodation and at Snowball Chalet we have all but given up. 

We managed to dig our way out this morning and we managed to dig our way back in this afternoon.

More snow in the forecast, they are saying ano...

Posted on Sat 19 December 2020

Madarao Mountain from the balcony of Snowball Chalet. Perfection.

Blue bird perfection today and the mountain opens tomorrow

Today the weather went a beautiful blue. Madarao Mountain looked like an icing covered cake without a single blemish. Just perfect un ridden snow staring at us all day.

Temp in the village got to about 1 degree colder on the mountain. There was almost no wind. Just glorious.

It started snowing lightly again tonight and it will get thicker as the night wares on. We managed to dig out the cars, Snowball Chalet and the Yurt AKA Luxury Suite. We turned on the heating and within a ...

Posted on Fri 18 December 2020

Riding Madarao which is totally deserted is a special kind of weird. It feels naughty but it is also joyful.

In all seriousness this is the stuff dreams are made of!

We consider ourselves to be extremely lucky and honestly we also feel really sad we can't share this fantastic experience with all our amazing guests. It is just a ridiculous situation. Of course we are also really determined not to spread Covid but it feels like a terrible waste that so many more people can't enjoy the magic of Madarao Mountain with huge amounts of snow everywhere.

We did have some trouble getting out of Snowball Chalet accommodation today on account of the snow. ...

Posted on Thu 17 December 2020

Kudo san embracing the perfect snow at Madarao Mountain Resort

Wow wow wow! Today was a day of days...

It is hard to believe a one run day could be the day of days but wow wow wow. Today exceeded all expectations. We hiked to the peak of Mount Madarao and rode down it's perfect face in bottomless joyful pow.

It has been snowing non stop for days. The snow in the front yard of Snowball Chalet is well over a meter now and it has stayed nice and cold so the snow is as dry as dry could be.

We hiked from the very bottom as no lifts are running yet and breaking trail in this much snow is...

Posted on Wed 16 December 2020

Big heel side turn in Nozawa Onsen Yamabiko area on a big snow day

Snow, Snow and more Snow in today's report

We have already lost count of how much snow has fallen in Madarao Mountain Resort and it is still snowing.

We know this though. In the Snowball Chalet front garden it is thigh deep. We are very very happy.

Today we headed over to Nozawa Onsen to ride fresh pow and check out the new gondola. Madarao Mountain and Nozawa now have a joint lift pass so you can stay at Snowball Chalet and use your Madarao pass at Nozawa for fun day trips.

It was so good to ride perfect powder agai...

Posted on Tue 15 December 2020

Sunset over Lotte Arai ski resort. Snow is coming

The true start of a huge storm will bring 2 meters of snow to Madarao Mountain

The snow has been falling in earnest all morning and the temperature is -3 degrees in the village. After yesterday's 10cm’s base that was laid down this is the start of the main part of the storm cycle. The Snow forecast is calling for storm part 1 over the next 4 days to deliver 150cm’s (not a typo). We will then have a day of bluebird followed by storm mark 2 with another 45cm’s. Typically the forecasts predict way less than Madarao gets as it creates it’s own weather pattern and it must b...

Posted on Mon 14 December 2020

The very start of the storm looking pretty spectacular on Madarao Mountain

The first snow report of season 2020/21 brings a huge forecast of snow to Madarao Mountain Resort

Well 2020 has been a truly insane year and it has had an enormous impact on the planet. Sadly there will be almost no international travel to Japan and that means no guests at Snowball Chalet but it doesn't mean we won't try and bring you the joy of Madarao to keep you going.

We just want to start by saying how sorry we are about all the people on the planet suffering at the mercy of the virus and its effects on health, community, mental health, jobs, businesses, education, security...

Posted on Sun 13 December 2020

Archived Madarao Snow Reports

Luke skiing deep deep pow at Seki Onsen near Madarao Mountain

Totally fell behind with the reporting. So sorry everyone.

It is so hard to keep up because we have just had so much snow and all we want to do is ride ride ride.

After the 46c's of last Sunday we entered a fantastic storm cycle that delivered 1.85m of the fresh white stuff over the following few days.

We have been here there and everywhere. One of our highlights was the joy of a 50cm morning (Tuesday). We headed out on tour to Seki Onsen. Rode freshies there all day long. Seki is a family run resort with just 2 ski lifts that accesses a ...

Posted on Sun 17 February 2019

Dan in the white room at Madarao Mountain

Yesterday was bluebird. Then the snow started. Then the avalanche unzipped the snowpack!

We woke up to 46cm's of beautiful snow. The white fluffies that make our hearts skip a beat. It is hard to fathom how different the mountain feels when it is bluebird compared to when it is snowing so heavily you end up with a cm or more on your ski jacket just while riding the chairlift.

We have had a sensational day but it has also been interesting. We knew the layers would be weak today so we decided not to go out the back or into the side country.

We set off a few small slough...

Posted on Sun 10 February 2019

Snowball Chalet guest Nathan ripping in the trees of Ninja at Madarao Mountain Resort.

Just 30cm's of new snow and our day is looking up...

We have had a 5 day warm spell... It happens once or twice a winter but the storms always return and we are at the start of the fun again.

We got 30cm's overnight and it has snowed all through the day. We think we will get another 70cm's in the next few days. Adding a meter over a couple of days will be amazing and it is just the thing that amazes us about incredible Japan.

When our guests start exploring Madarao they often return marvelling at how amazing the mountain is. As they...

Posted on Fri 08 February 2019

Huge heel side powder turn and rooster tail

Madarao has blown minds today. 50cm's overnight of super light powder.

The report is very late today because there was just no time to sing praises to the gods of snow this morning before become immersed in the mana that fell from the sky overnight.

We scored first lifts on Tangram lift number 1 today which means first tracks through the most perfect steep, fall line trees on the mountain. This is truly the stuff dreams are made of. We rode with our guests Nicola and Lisa and they were absolutely ripping. We even showed them a bunch of our favourite secret...

Posted on Fri 01 February 2019

Akira waist deep with a bow wave and rooster tail.

Well it started snowing last night and now we have another 70 centimeters of fresh snow in Madarao...

Mind blown... Where does it all come from. The snow just keeps on falling and we keep riding incredible powder. Powder!!!

We have had to organize extra snow clearing help because there is so much snow and we are being totally engulfed. This is not like anything we have seen before. We are losing the battle.

The snow out there today will be real nice but we think a few of the lifts will be closed because it'll be windy windy windy. It does mean tomorrow will have bucket loads of fr...

Posted on Tue 29 January 2019

Distance view of beautiful Madarao Mountain with blue skies.

Skys clearing followed by more snow tonight...

The skies have cleared and we can see the mountain again after the constant snowfalls of the last few days. So stunning. We love the view from Snowball Chalet.

Today's conditions are perfect. there are fresh lines all over the mountain and the groomers are silky smooth. A great day to get acquainted with Madarao. These days have been rare so the Snowball Chalet guests are pretty excited.

Pic today is of our beautiful mountain taken from the balcony here at Snowball Chalet.

Posted on Mon 28 January 2019

Powder pieces flying at Dan while snowboarding at Madarao Mountain.

Ok... Now this is just silly. 76cm's on the lawn at Snowball Chalet

The accommodation at Snowball Chalet is slowly disappearing as it is being buried by snow. We can no longer see the Snowball Chalet logo on the wall 3 meters above the ground. You can now step off the second floor balcony onto snow. It is unbelievable.

And then we get 76 centimeters of pow pow overnight and Madarao has lit up like a christmas tree. There are fresh lines everywhere and there will be for days. The snow here is producing face shots at every turn. It is just crazy fun to ri...

Posted on Sun 27 January 2019

Tom in the trees riding a snowboard

35 cm's of light dry powder descends upon Madarao and the lodges here

Well it just keeps on coming and there is a lot more on the way...

This season has been nothing short of sensational. Every guest we have had has scored at least one day of perfect conditions and the ones who have stayed for longer periods have been in powder paradise.

Today will be spectacular with big snow drifts in the trees and the groomers will be yield 30 foot rooster tails with a foot of powder on top of the corduroy.

Pic today of Fuzz well and truly deep in the snow....

Posted on Sat 26 January 2019

Toe side turn shows Akira snowboarding heaven.

Another 60 centimeters of perfect snow...

Where do we find the adjectives to describe perfection? We are finding it seriously difficult to convey the magnificence of this place.

Here is what we know... When 14 centimeters is forecast and we wake up to thigh deep snow in the snow garden at the front of Snowball Chalet fun will be had. There may be comments such as "Why do I love it so much?", "This snow is perfect", "Oh no... I am never going to be able to ride mountains anywhere else because I have been to nirvana and there is ...

Posted on Thu 24 January 2019

Dan in the white room with backpack and Mont Bell jacket.

A perfect storm creates a perfect day

Well that day was proper perfect. We couldn't write a snow report today because it was too perfect and we absolutely had to go riding first thing.

Overnight we had lots of snow... We couldn't work out how much because on one side of Snowball it was 45cm's and on the other side it was 1.2 meters. The difference was because of the wind direction. I guess the true amount was somewhere in between.

The snow started last night with a lot of wind and by morning it was totally calm and ab...

Posted on Mon 21 January 2019

Dylan covered by snow on a big heelside turn

When 20 centimeters of snow falls and it is time to go home...

When 20 centimeters of the most perfect light dry snow falls from the heavens and it is still absolutely dumping and you are leaving Madarao and Snowball Chalet the devastation sets in. Then you realise you are saved... You don't need to be at the airport until later and Snowball Chalet is close by Bullet Train so you don't have to be on your way until 4pm. You boot up, strap in and drop into the perfect lines Madarao has to offer.

That was yesterday's story. The Adler group and the Jan...

Posted on Thu 17 January 2019

Telemark ski turn in the deep powder at Madarao Mountain

More than a meter of snow overnight so we stopped measuring

We scored big time. More than a meter of snow overnight greeted the Snowball Chalet guests. When you arrive at your accommodation in the snow and start doing a snow dance and are rewarded with insane amounts of powder from the skies you know you have good karma. We have Larry Adler and family here and they are very happy indeed and their karma must be very very good!

We had Larry at Snowball last year and he came back to us. Larry has also sponsored Snowball Chalet with Mont.Bell gear f...

Posted on Tue 08 January 2019

Young Henry snowy face shots for days

Heavy snows have given us knee deep pow in the front yard of Snowball Chalet

Yesterday it snowed lightly all day and the temps were just about 0 degrees. At around 4pm everything changed... the temps dropped to minus 5, the wind came up and white flakes of gold fell from the skies.

We woke up to knee deep snow in the front yard. It'll be proper bottomless up on the mountain. Can't wait to get deep in the deep. Gotta bust out the snorkel though because there will be head high drifts in the trees. Woot woot.

Pic today is young Henry showing us that 7 year ol...

Posted on Sun 06 January 2019

Pascal making a huge powder turn in the trees

Did it snow again? Yep. Will it keep snowing? Yep!

Waking up to another 25cm's of fresh light dry perfect powder makes us happy... Every single time.

Yesterday was so totally perfect. I did a backhand snap that blew my mind. Got to ride with one of our guests Pascal who tore the tree runs apart and we found a totally new area that a whole season of exploration last year had never revealed. I love yesterday and today is going to be just as good. Go Madarao Go.

People often ask me if 7 days or two weeks in Madarao is too long. The a...

Posted on Thu 03 January 2019

Tom rolls the snow clearing tractor

Only another 30 centimeters of powder over night...

After yesterday's stunning perfect bluebird powder day we are back into the next storm cycle.

It started snowing lightly at about 8pm last night adding to the 3 meters of snow of the previous 4 days. We have snow falling in the forecast every day for the next 12 days. The storm won't be the monster we have just had but will definitely create some totally perfect powder joy for the lucky few that are staying at Snowball Chalet. We do have a small three day window from the 5th of Jan in a...

Posted on Wed 02 January 2019

Snowball Chalet covered by snow

Unbelievably still snowing...

In an attempt to provide you all with information despite the perfect snow calling me up the mountain I am posting a snow report this morning.

This storm cycle has been so spectacular. We have had metres of snow. Honestly have lost count. I can telly you this though... At the start of the storm we had the lawn cleared down to a few centimeters of snow. Check out the pic for the snow shot. Remember we are talking just 4 days. Snowball Chalet is 2 stories high.

Yesterday I blew my m...

Posted on Mon 31 December 2018

Skier in deep snow in the trees at Madarao

Wow... Did we drop the ball! There is just so much snow...

We are just so sorry. We have now worked out it is really hard to write snow reports when there is bucket loads of snow cause all we want to do is ride super dry fresh powder puffs of perfection.

It started absolutely dumping days ago and has been that way ever since. The first night of the storm saw 78cm's which we thought was amazing but actually that was just the beginning. Over the next 3 days it seriously never stopped snowing heavily. We have had well more than 2 meters.


Posted on Sun 30 December 2018

Snowboarding with blue skies in the background

The Snow Started Falling Seriously Around 6pm Last Night...

Today sees a fresh 14cm's of perfect snow at Madarao Mountain Resort. It came in with no wind so it should be dreamy light perfection.

It snowed very heavily from 8-10pm last night but must have stopped not long after that because at 10pm we had about 10cm's of fresh.

Looking forward to a big day on the mountain today at Nozawa Onsen. The Snowball Chalet team want to go and ride at Nozawa and eat delicious Oyaki Ringo (traditional apple dumplings).

Nozawa is just 25 minutes ...

Posted on Thu 20 December 2018

The Snowball Chalet team ready to go snowboarding and skiing

Just 1cm of fresh snow overnight...

We have had just 1 cm of fresh snow overnight which won't change conditions much on the mountain. The weather is lovely with sunny conditions making for perfect skiing and boarding.

It is much more fun writing snow reports when there has been a lot of snow but you gotta roll with the punches and remember it can't snow every day although in a perfect world it would.

This evening should see more heavy snow falls but the weather is the weather so we shall see what the snow gods decid...

Posted on Wed 19 December 2018

Brendan skiing against a blue sky backdrop

Madarao Mountain Resort and Snowball Chalet have fresh Snow Snow Snow

It started snowing lightly at around 8pm last night after a beautiful sunny day. We have had 15cm's over night and the temp is now -1˚C.

The forecast from this afternoon is saying heavy snowfalls for the next 3 days. The prediction is for around 75 cm's. We will keep an eye on actual depths and let you know what we end up with.

The season was little late (normally we get good snows in the first few days December) but it has arrived with a vengeance.

Standby for updates.


Posted on Tue 18 December 2018

Perfect turn with bluebird skies at Madarao

Bluebird with fresh snow for days...

After the heavy snowfalls of the previous two days we woke up to perfect sunny conditions on the mountain. Cloud came in around 10:30 and the snow was amazing.

A few of the Snowball Chalet crew caught the number one lift half way up the Mount Madarao and hiked to the top. We had to break trail with snow shoes and skins but it still only took just over an hour because we were absolutely frothing to get that dream run.

Pic from today is a still from video of Jack Forster our Snowbal...

Posted on Sun 16 December 2018

Snowboarder in the white room with powder snow everywhere

The snow here is insane and Madarao Mountain Resort is open!!!

After yesterday's morning snow report it snowed moderately for most of the day with a short period of an hour in the afternoon with no snow. We probably scored another 20-30 cm's bringing yesterday's 24 hour (7pm to 7pm) total to 70-80 cm's.

This morning we are astonished to see another 30-50cm's more and it is snowing super heavy right now. The temp is -4°C in the snow garden at Snowball Chalet

It is so hard to fathom the sensational quality of light dry snow in the volumes it de...

Posted on Sat 15 December 2018

The Snowball Chalet car is completely covered by snow

Snowing heavily right now with perfect conditions on the mountain

The snow started again in earnest late last night and it is still absolutely dumping.

We have had 40-50 centimetres so far and there is no slowdown in sight. The temperature is -5 degrees.

Again the forecast was wildly inaccurate calling for just 9c's. It is so nice waking up to 5 times more snow than was forecast.

We have now had around 70 cm's over the last two days and well more than a meter in the last week.

Madarao Mountain opens for the season tomorrow and it wil...

Posted on Fri 14 December 2018

Wide view of Mount Madarao

The snow keeps on coming...

We have had light snows most days since the last big snowfall of a few days ago and then last night we had heavy snowfalls for a few hours giving us 20 more cm's to top up the village. The forecast was for just a couple of c's.

Tonight we have another forecast showing 12 c's so we shall see what kinds of brilliance we end up with.

Even now the ski resort has more than enough snow to open and anyone with the legs for it who is in the mood for a hike would have a dream run down cham...

Posted on Thu 13 December 2018

First run down Giant at Madarao Mountain with blue skies and perfect snow

1st Snow Report of Season 2018/19!!!

Snow Snow Snow!!!

We are so excited... It is currently absolutely dumping with heavy snow falling and 25 cm's since 4am so far. What is even better is that for the next 7 days at least we have snow in the forecast.

Of course the forecast said we were going to get 1-2cm's... 25cm's later with heavy snow still falling we couldn't be happier.

Madarao Mountain is uniquely placed to attract far more snow than it rightly should. If you stand on the peak of Mount Madarao and look...

Posted on Sun 09 December 2018

10 cms of fresh snow tops up the resort...

Last night we had 10 cm's of fresh snow fall from the skies and it has made for a super fun day with excellent conditions across the mountain.

There were no face shots to be had buit we rode fresh March lines all day long with just a handful of people on the mountain.

It couldn't have been more fun in the trees.

Gotta love March Madness.

Today's pic is Snowball Chalet's Harriet in the back bowls of Mount Madarao.

Posted on Sat 10 March 2018

5cm's over night with a big storm on the way for Monday...

So sorry for the radio silence over the last few days. We have had a bit of everything, wind, very cold temps, rain, warm temps, sleet, snow and madness.

Snowball Chalet has been totally booked out and the crew have been loving life.

We had a fresh top up of 5cm's and the kids at the Chalet are having a ball.

On Monday night we are expecting big falls in the range of 40-80cm's and days of cold temps after wards. Given today there are about 20 people on the mountain we are ex...

Posted on Fri 02 March 2018

1cm of snow overnight and a windy morning...

The conditions at Madarao over the last few days have been excellent.

Our guests are still finding plenty of fresh in the trees. We had just 1cm overnight which won't change the resort but expect to have excellent skiing and boarding across the whole resort.

This morning bought strong winds but everything has settled down now so it should be a very nice day out there.

It is snowing lightly now so bring your light lens and get on out there.

Today's pic - Emma and Tom po...

Posted on Sat 24 February 2018

It happened again. We got ten times the forecast amount of snow...

We had a forecast of 2cm's and scored 20cm's of the most perfect, light and dry Japanese Powder.

Woohoo... It is going to be fantastic out there will plenty of untracked areas from the day before being topped up.

It is still lightly snowing now so stick close to the trees or in the trees so visibility is good.


Posted on Wed 21 February 2018

Fantastic conditions across the resort with more snow forecast tonight...

Today will be excellent at Madarao with plenty of snow, blue skies this morning and no crowds.

Chinese New Year saw more people than normal on the resort although by all other ski resort standards it was still uncrowded and they are now gone. We have returned to our normal happy place with less people and excellent snow.

There were still fresh tracks to be had all over the resort. Our guests absolutely loved it out there in the trees today. The groomers were also totally perfect a...

Posted on Tue 20 February 2018

Perfect snow conditions today with blue skies and no wind...

Today is going to be absolutely perfect.

There were still fresh untracked lines everywhere when the lifts closed yesterday so all of those spots will be good to go this morning with temps cold overnight.

Inbounds resort riding will be sensational!

Get on it...

Posted on Mon 19 February 2018

The forecast 16cm's has turned to more than a metre...

In classic Japanese snow reporting fashion they have predicted far less than the massive dump we received and we love it!

We have had more than a metre of the most magnificent Japow. Madarao is truly going to live up to it's Madapow reputatioon today.

Yesterday the Snowball Chalet crew went up and scored perfect powder turns all over the resort.

Today's pic is Ari again discovering that face-shots are awesome!

Posted on Sun 18 February 2018

A clear night followed by snow...

The snow has started falling at around 6:30 am. We are expecting around 20cm's for the day.

The day will just keep getting better and better. There's still bucket loads of untracked terrain out there from yesterday and today will be no different.

Can't wait to get out there. Woot woot!

Have fun. Don't kiss trees!

Pic today... More of guest Ari from yesterday in perfect light and perfect trees.

Posted on Sat 17 February 2018

15 more cm's of perfect light dry powder...

Yesterday's 10 cm's has been topped up with another 15 cm's which has well and truly opened up all the tree runs of Madarao. The sun is peaking through the clouds so the riding is very pretty.

There is an excellent base and no people around. There are fresh tracks to be had just about everywhere. We spent the morning doing our best to leave our mark at Tangram. We didn't get close to tracking out even one tree run.

Get up there if you can!

The pic today is guest Ari from Plu...

Posted on Fri 16 February 2018

New snow overnight...

10 cm's of fresh snow fell overnight.

The resort has had a top up overnight making for some lovely ski runs at Madarao and Tangram Ski Circus today. It's not bottomless but it is definitely nice.

Get on up there for some perfect groomers and powder stashes in the trees.

That's Snowball Chalet and Shaggy Yak on the right in the pic.

Posted on Thu 15 February 2018

It looks like winter again in Madarao

We have had a few cm's of fresh snow overnight and it looks like a winter wonderland again here in Madarao.

The conditions on the mountain will be good for intermediates and beginners but we will need more snow to really open up the tree runs. Lucky more cold dry stuff is on the way today and tomorrow.

Get out there...

Posted on Sun 11 February 2018

New snow is coming tonight...

We have more stunning bluebird conditions this morning with mild temps around -1 c in the village. The afternoon will bring the start of a snow storm which is forecast to drop less than 10 cm's across the resort. Last time they forecast 10 we got 40 so we are all pumped about tomorrow.

We will be getting 4 days of snow with Monday looking like the pick of days with heavy snow forecast Sunday night and Monday morning.

Madapow is on the way!

Posted on Sat 10 February 2018

Another perfect bluebird day...

If you are a fair weather skier or boarder you will love today...

There isn't a breath of wind or a cloud in the sky. It is bluebird in the most extreme sense of the word.

We had no new snow overnight so get out your carving gear and hit the perfectly groomed groomers.

We have snow coming... for four days... starting tomorrow in the afternoon.

Today we will be heading over to Maguse Onsen to watch the sun set up Kijimadaira Valley while soaking in the healing hot water...

Posted on Fri 09 February 2018

2 cm's turns into 15 cm's just like magic...

The forecast 2 cm's fell yesterday afternoon as perfect light dry snow across the resort.

We woke again to perfect bluebird so skiing conditions across the mountain are excellent. Views are magnificent of course.

There will be powder stashes in all the trees and the groomers will be corduroy joy for those that want to feel the wind in their hair.

Snow has been forecast for Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday so we should have epic conditions all over for the lucky few who w...

Posted on Thu 08 February 2018

Just a few cm's of fresh snow...

For the first time this winter the snow report predicted more than what fell.

We have had less than 5cm's fall across the resort overnight. It is pretty much blue bird out there today.

The riding out there will be fantastic and there will still be loads of fresh dry powder snow in the trees and the groomers will be perfect as temps have stayed low since yesterdays snowfall.

Pic for today is from yesterday's session. Our guest Jason was testing the depth in the trees at Cryst...

Posted on Tue 06 February 2018

35 cm's with more fresh on the way...

We had a forecast of 12 cm's and in true fantastic Madarao Mountain fashion we have had 35 cm's fall at the bottom. Will update with snowfall up at the top later.

The start of the storm came in with a bit of wind which will have filled up all of the tracks from yesterday and then turned to windless lovely light snow making for the perfect face shot producing turns.

We have a forecast of heavy snow tonight as well. Bring it on.

Today is a good day to be alive here in Madarao ...

Posted on Mon 05 February 2018

New snow on the way...

We haven't had snow for a few days now but the temps have stayed cold so we still have really nice conditions on the mountain.

For those willing to hunt there's still fun fresh tracks to be had in the trees especially in the secret spots in Tangram.

This morning is bluebird so head up to the top of the single chair for stunning photos of Lake Nojiriko, Mount Myoko and the Sea of Japan.

We have heavy snow forecast for tonight... The report is saying just 12cm's but they typic...

Posted on Sun 04 February 2018

Bluebird perfection...

We have a perfectly clear bluebird day today at Madarao.

The groomers will be magnificent early and there is still plenty of fresh high quality powder in the trees for those prepared to go hunting.

The Snowball Chalet and Shaggy Yak team are heading into the back country today with North Nagano Outdoor Sports the local guiding company.

We will make sure we share lots of the pics of our imminent mission.

There is a very light snow forecast for this evening. It doesn't l...

Posted on Sun 07 January 2018