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  1. #26
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    this post is gold. thanks for taking the time to share boltonoutlaw! My goal is to rely on it heavily in the not too distant future

  2. #27
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    GONDORAS & ROPEWAYS

    No soup for you.

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    The silent L is real.

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    I probably would not have gone to Japan if not for this man. If you know you know. If you don't you probably are a skier.

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    Asahidake

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    Hakodate

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    Sapporo Kokusai

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    Otaru Tenguyama Red Box

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    Otaru Tenguyama Blue Box

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    Iconic stairset at Asahidake
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  3. #28
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    GONDORAS & ROPEWAYS

    Kamui

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    Kurodake

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    Sapporo Teine
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    Kokusai. 10 minutes after being offered d e v i l s l e t t u c e
    In civvies foreigners often think I am CIA or military, but in the field I blend

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  4. #29
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    ROCINANTE

    Let me introduce you to my little friend. His name is Rocinante. This faithful fellow and bon vivant is a 4WD Daihatsu Hijet that I bought used for about $5000 all in with upgrades, registration, insurance, and the pre-paid recycling fee (mandatory for when it gets disposed). Most 'Muricans would not fit in the driver seat.

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    At the bends just south of the Hakkoda Ropeway Sanroku Station during the first week of March 2022. Out of respect for my friends in Vermont I am not making corny jokes about the snow. Some of this stack is windload but in W22 over 30' of snowfall was recorded at the stake by my house.

    Also at this spot is the Sukayu Onsen Ryokan which is known throughout Japan as "sen-nin-buro" or 1000-person bath. It is a rare, mixed-gender onsen since that practice has been banned in Tokyo and most parts of the nation as being archaic and out-of-step with modern Japan. I can't tell you what the mixed bath is like for I was alone, so I went into the men's bath with the other sad, limp-dicked old farts. What I found most compelling about this area is that Wiki says it is "the snowiest inhabited place on Earth." Yup, that works.

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    Rocinante parked at Daisetsuzan Sounkyo Kurodake Ropeway. When I returned at the end of the day I discovered the truck keys in the driver door. Everything I owned in Japan is in the truck bed, including 10 snowboards, 4 pairs of bindings, 4 pairs of boots, all my outerwear, backcountry gear, etc. It should have all been gone! But, this is Japan; my error went unpunished.

    One of the reasons I am moving to Japan is because I am becoming more and more prone to doing old-man sh*t like this - "stoner moves" as they are known around TGR. I figure my chances of surviving senility and dementia are far better here, with fewer chances of getting kicked in the shins by weans, too.

    The "ski resort" at Kurodake is anything but. The ropeway ascends steeply over bushwacky terrain to a lone double chair serving very flat terrain. Buy the single ride for each and then skin/climb/posthole to the summit of Mt. Kuro and ski down from there. You will see impressive terrain to the west of the summit. Have a very good crew, or hire a local guide.

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    Mt. Iwaki to the south of vegetable farms, first week of June 2022.

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    Last edited by boltonoutlaw; 10-11-2022 at 09:37 PM.

  5. #30
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    May 2016
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    Wow this has my brain going woot!
    Any suggestions if I wanted to ski Japan for the month of February? Some sort of work stay? I am fine staying in one good location and getting to know it well. I don't speak Japanese but could learn some I think since I already speak a few languages.
    I can learn "front row come on out!" Which is all I say at Cannon over and over again.

    Sent from my SM-G781U1 using Tapatalk
    I <heart> hot tele-moms

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhyatt View Post
    Wow this has my brain going woot!
    Any suggestions if I wanted to ski Japan for the month of February? Some sort of work stay? I am fine staying in one good location and getting to know it well. I don't speak Japanese but could learn some I think since I already speak a few languages.
    I can learn "front row come on out!" Which is all I say at Cannon over and over again.

    Sent from my SM-G781U1 using Tapatalk
    I sent a PM with some options. February is a great month to be there, but you can push into March if you were in north-central Hokkaido, and that might unveil more opportunity.

  7. #32
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    Those vibes when you leave the seat up

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  8. #33
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    JaPOW Is BACK! Unofficial Networks

    Footage of 07 February 2022 unbeknownst to me gets posted at Unofficial Networks, Music is Floaty by Foo Fighters.

    JaPOW Is BACK! Deep Powder Skiing Going Down In Hokkaido

    Skip the UO link and go directly to the Instagram reel Monday Madnis

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    #grillmount
    @theprostandard
    Last edited by boltonoutlaw; 10-11-2022 at 08:48 AM. Reason: Links

  9. #34
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    Is that in the trees off the Diamond/Twister double chair? Looks amazing. Aiming to get there late January or sometime in February; will definitely get in touch.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ2 View Post
    Is that in the trees off the Diamond/Twister double chair? Looks amazing. Aiming to get there late January or sometime in February; will definitely get in touch.
    100%
    Please do reach out. I have been side-limbing the beeches so very likely cleaner than your last sortie.

  11. #36
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    Damn. Stoke level for these vids is through the roof. Dropped you a follow on IG. Question, what do you use to film? Go pro on the chest?

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuntmonkey View Post
    Damn. Stoke level for these vids is through the roof. Dropped you a follow on IG. Question, what do you use to film? Go pro on the chest?
    I am glad you asked:
    https://www.prostandard.com/products/the-grill-mount

    Thank you; FYB @IG

  13. #38
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    W22 JAPAN

    4% humidity level snow. This is what it looks like:

    https://www.instagram.com/reel/CZj0nvXAuUn/

  14. #39
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    boltonoutlaw - what would you say the SWE is for the snow in tohoku (generally)? Couldn't believe the snow in central hokkaido a few januarys back. Better than the best snow we get in UT.

    Been curious about that but haven't found the answer online anywhere

  15. #40
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  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by boltonoutlaw View Post
    Footage of 07 February 2022 unbeknownst to me gets posted at Unofficial Networks, Music is Floaty by Foo Fighters.

    JaPOW Is BACK! Deep Powder Skiing Going Down In Hokkaido

    Skip the UO link and go directly to the Instagram reel Monday Madnis

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    #grillmount
    @theprostandard
    That's me as the header pic
    Unbeknownst to me

    This clip I think

    https://www.instagram.com/p/BfXxMk-nWm2/

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Pow View Post
    That's me as the header pic
    Unbeknownst to me

    This clip I think

    https://www.instagram.com/p/BfXxMk-nWm2/
    Choke Pow. Sick!

  18. #43
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    W22 JAPAN

    Morning faceshots, 2022.01.05

    https://www.youtube.com/shorts/85_imeM8l7A

    Edit: The dumbing down of the internet for short attention spanners prevents me from uploading this clip as anything but a "short" and that prevents me from embedding the video in this post. Apologies.

  19. #44
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    PARKING LOT PALS

    I had my eye on various RV configurations available in Japan and the Toyota Hiace seems to be the most common chassis for RV upfitters. I did not see many truck-based RV's in Tohoku, but in Hokkaido there were many more. Kei-truck chassis have been on the rise as upfitters respond to consumer demand for compact, energy-efficient adventure vehicles.

    Below is the parking lot scene at Hakkoda, as seen from the Hakkoda Sanso. This was (IMO) the best apres hang in northern Honshu.

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    The following four images feature RV build outs on the popular Toyota Hiace 4x4 chassis; the first and last photos show typical solid-body fiberglass pass-throughs:

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    The Kei truck category defines the smallest highway-legal passenger cars, trucks, and cargo vehicles in Japan. Hugely efficient, they have been adopted in recent years by RV upfitters and there are some clever and attractive designs. Initially I had been leaning into this category but decided I want something that allows me to stand up inside.

    This homemade camper drew me in like a moth to a flame. I had to go see for myself what was up with this. The owner did not speak English but I made sure to convey how much I admired the spirit of this build. DIY is very popular in Japan and this garnered a lot of attention for such a simple vehicle.

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    Come on, y'all, let's take a ride, Don't you say sh*t, just get inside!

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    The Bug Truck was my initial swoon. I saw a lot of this vehicle and eventually befriended the owners as I visited the shop often, ran in to them on weekends, and saw them at the local surf break. When I purchased my my kei truck I did so after asking which chassis they were using for their build-outs. They preferred the Daihatsu Hijet over the Honda, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Subaru, or Suzuki models. So, that's what I got.

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    Quick link to their website HERE

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    This was the first truck-based chassis RV that I saw in Japan, appropriately at Hakkoda. I unashamedly gawked and coveted.

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    In Hokkaido there were many more RV's than Honshu, and therefore I saw more on the truck chassis. This one was at Furano.

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    Not an RV but I love a well-cared for Toyota Landcruiser, favorite of revolutionaries and combatants around the globe. I crashed one of these in '86 when the passenger urged me to try a handbrake u-turn after the bars on a rainy night in Nantucket. Straight into the trees. I'm glad it was his and not mine.

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    Lastly, here is the 2005 Nissan Caravan 4x4 Turbo Diesel that I plan to buy from a friend when I return next month. That sticker is coming off pronto:

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  20. #45
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  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtran10 View Post
    boltonoutlaw - what would you say the SWE is for the snow in tohoku (generally)? Couldn't believe the snow in central hokkaido a few januarys back. Better than the best snow we get in UT.

    Been curious about that but haven't found the answer online anywhere
    I saw this and wrote to a guide friend with this inquiry but still have no response. I don't have any accurate info myself. Will agree that snow quality is excellent.

  22. #47
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    #DRAINSPOTTING IN JAPAN

    As you all know the Japanese are known for being detail-oriented and this is seen in nearly every aspect of daily life, including the Department of Public Works. Almost every town has its own distinctive cast, and finding these became a pastime for me on sunny days of summer and fall. Some friends who have lived in Japan for 20 years did not ever notice these under their feet, including one who had a cover 10' from his front door. It is easy to miss, after all, who is noticing all the details in their day-to-day life?

    What follows are a selection of #manholecoversofjapan from various municipalities in Tohoku and Hokkaido. Very often they illustrate what the highlight feature of that town or region is known for, e.g., agriculture, fishing, industry, etc. Scroll to the bottom to see how they are made:

    Ajigasawa:

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    Furano:

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    Hakodate:

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    Hirosaki:

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    Kamifurano:

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    Kamikawa:

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    Mashike:

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    Otaru:

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    Tsugaru:

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    The following are from various towns, but I have lost my notes. Sharp-eyed readers may be able to identify them properly:

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    Last edited by boltonoutlaw; 10-25-2022 at 01:06 PM. Reason: Link

  23. #48
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    2022.01.19


  24. #49
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    Drainspotting

    Most excellent

  25. #50
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    SIM CARDS: JAPAN

    When I left my job I forfeited my company phone so I had a problem to solve - finding a SIM card that offered BOTH a Japan telephone number (voice calling) and a data plan at an affordable price. This proved difficult due to Japan's tough anti-terrorism laws. As a foreign resident I struggled with regulations; for a short-term visitor the task is nearly impossible.

    The best solution that I discovered is a provider called MOBAL. Website is HERE. You must upload a valid photo ID (driver license will suffice).

    The SIM you purchase can be shipped to your home address in advance of your trip (mine arrived today, prompting this post). It can also be collected at NRT or HND upon arrival (but I see no advantage to this unless time is pressing).

    Short-term plans less than 30 days do NOT include voice calling. The least expensive, shortest term plan is 30 days and it is offered at a fair price (see below). Their customer service is excellent.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by boltonoutlaw; 11-07-2023 at 04:10 AM.

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