Nukabira2.5 out of 5 based on 1 reviews
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Wagner Custome Skis
Wagner Custom Skis

Nukabira Ski Resort Hokkaido
Nukabira Ski Resort Hokkaido
Nukabira only has several runs left
Nukabira only has several runs left
Nukabirakan Kanko Hotel
Nukabirakan Kanko Hotel
Nukabira Hokkaido
Nukabira Hokkaido
You'll have to skin if you want decent terrain
You'll have to skin if you want decent terrain
Nukabira Japan
Nukabira Japan
The lift is no longer operational
The lift is no longer operational
This trail is no longer lift serviced
This trail is no longer lift serviced
Nukabira Ski Resort Hokkaido
Nukabira Ski Resort Hokkaido
Nukabira Hokkaido
Nukabira Hokkaido
The lift no longer operates
The lift no longer operates
Nukabira Ski Resort Hokkaido
Nukabira Ski Resort Hokkaido
Nukabira Japan
Nukabira Japan
A summer road passes through the ski area
A summer road passes through the ski area
The former top lift
The former top lift
Pre-historic rental equipment
Pre-historic rental equipment
Nukabira Japan
Nukabira Japan

Nukabira

Nukabira Ski Resort

The Nukabira Gensenkyo Ski Resort is a little Hokkaido ski area that’s now a has-been. It used to be a secret little powder hound ski resort that was soooo quiet that it couldn’t make enough money. Like too many Japan ski resorts that are struggling post the bubble era, Nukabira Ski Resort closed the top lift to save money, which probably put people off from visiting because this serviced the only decent tree skiing. And then to add to the insult, they also closed the 2nd top lift as well!

For now, the Nukabira Gensenkyo Ski Resort is a complete waste of time for powder hounds but if they can re-open the lifts, it’s a whole other story!

Summary of Pros and Cons of Nukabira Japan

Pros
  • Nukabira is well and truly off the beaten path of international ski tourists. This is a good spot to get away from the gaijin. It’s so uncrowded that you might not see many locals either!
  • The lift ticket prices won’t drain your cash reserves.
  • The snow quality is often super oishii!
  • The Nukabira Onsen village at the base of the ski area has beautiful hot springs that are renowned for having a continuous flow from the source, so it’s the very purest onsen experience.
Cons
  • The closure of the top two lifts has taken away most of the powder fun.
  • Nukabira has shrunk to become a very small ski resort.
Pro or Con Depending On Your Perspective
  • Nukabira is not linked into public transport, which helps to keep the crowds away.
  • Nukabira is a pretty quiet place with not much to do other than ski or snowboard. To completely get into relaxation mode, a soak in one of the onsens is a must, and you can go ice fishing on Lake Nukabira and check out the striking Taushubetsu- Bridge.
  • You can skin up to the top of the decommissioned chair lift to enjoy the former glory of Nukabira Gensenkyo (the trees to skier’s left), but there are far better places to go ski touring in the region.

Nukabira Ski and Snowboard Terrain

The Nukabira ski area used to offer 660 metres of vertical (570 - 1,230m) but now the vertical is only about 250 metres. It has a detachable hooded quad lift which was running very slowly for some unknown reason, as well as a slow double chair lift.

The Nukabira ski resort only has 7 courses, and unfortunately the best groomers commence with a very annoying flat run (on a summer road) that gets tedious after you do it more than once, especially for snowboarders.

The trails are mostly rated for beginners and intermediate skiers and snowboarders, and there are two short “advanced” runs but these are mellow.

Nukabira Snow

Nukabira doesn’t get the massive snow volumes of the coastal resorts such as Niseko and Sapporo Kokusai or even the other Central Hokkaido ski resorts, but the quality of the powder is often superb. The slopes are mostly north facing which further improves the snow quality.

Where is Nukabira?

Nukabira Onsen is located on the eastern side of Daisetsuzan National Park (on the other side from Asahidake) as part of the town of Kamishihoro. Nukabira Gensenkyo is just southwest of Lake Nukabira. Nukabira is 63km north of Obihiro and other nearby ski areas include Kurodake (63km northwest) and Sahoro (80km southwest).

The best way to visit Nukabira is if you have your own wheels.

Accommodation

If you really want to get away from it all, you can stay in the little village of Nukabira Onsen which is across the road from the ski resort. As the name suggests, it’s a hot spring village, and it has a few pensions and ryokans.

Nukabira Accommodation Listings

We stayed at the Nukabirakan Kanko Hotel which was rather tired, but the meals were great and the onsen was fantastic, especially the outdoor baths which overlooked the forest.

Ski Resort Facilities

The base area of Nukabira Gensenkyo Ski Resort has facilities and services that cover the basics including equipment rentals and a run-of-the-mill cafeteria.
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