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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011

    TR - Early season Yotei vibes from Hokkaido

    Photo: Shin Doi, Hokkaido Backcountry Club

    This year, my first turns in Japan were on Mt. Yotei on an incredible bluebird day with views across the island.
    I've wanted to peak out on Yotei ever since last February, but hadn't had the chance.
    One problem: while Canada was getting blasted last week, Hokkaido had very little snow coverage.

    Photo: Mark Barsevskis, BD Tours

    Our group from Black Diamond Tours and Hokkaido Backcountry Club downclimbed through crust and scree into the main avalanche slide path on the mountain's east face.

    Photo: Mark Barsevskis, BD Tours

    Here's a shot of me skiing the crazy early season Japan conditions - plenty of brown and rocks!
    Definitely a shock after I slayed pow throughout the winter last year.

    Photo: Mark Barsevskis, BD Tours

    The approach to the crater was packed sastrugi and boilerplate.
    We opted to ski down from the summit hut on Yotei, but a small group did circle the crater, ultimately not dropping in due to poor conditions..

    Despite the lack of snow, here's an amazing view across the Pacific to the southern tip of the island. Great visibility and gnarly skiing.

    Here's a shot from three days later - 20cm dump overnight means the Hokkaido Powder Machine is back on!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Paper St. Soap Co.
    Hopefully a snowy January!

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