Japan Guided Backcountry-The Island Volcano

Ski Mt Rishiri, an island volcano in the Sea of Japan

Over the 11 day trip, you will ski the secluded Central Hokkaido backcountry, and then transfer to the volcano island of Rishiri. You will ski its huge flanks accessed by snowmobile on the approaches.


This is a true Japanese backcountry ski adventure, combining touring from a hot spring accommodation, bathing in hot thermal springs and savoring the delicious local seafood.


This is on the bucket list for many Japanese backcountry skiers.


The Areas

Furano is flanked by the Daisetsuzan and Yubari Range of mountains. Low humidity levels produce some of the lightest consistency powder in the world. 


Rishiri Island rises out of the Sea of Japan to 1,721 meters. The island was formed by the volcanic peak of Mount Rishiri. The area is part of the Rishiri-Rebun-Sarobetsu National Park.


Trip Type

Backcountry focus trip. Up to 1,500 meter vertical ascent days.

Terrain and Snow

Alpine and tree terrain with deep powder


Typical Program

Day 1

Transfer to Furano located in the geographical center of Hokkaido. It is known as the 'Navel of Hokkaido' for its central location. Meet you guide over dinner to discuss logistics for the trip.


Day 2

Journey south to a local resort for your first ski day. This destination always provides great skiing with dry and colder temperatures than other parts of Hokkaido. The tree skiing is some of the best in Central Hokkaido with widely spaced birch trees. The sidecountry terrain provides easy circuits in and out of the resort with a number of different aspect options.


Day 3

This is the first of our backcountry days. You will be transported by snowmobile across the five kilometer approach before the skinning ascent. Ski some of the finest tree skiing in Central Hokkaido. This is our favorite terrain. Runs like 'Time Warp' which our guides come to ski on their days off.


Day 4

We will again be skiing in some different backcountry terrain, accessed via snowmobile on the approach. You will ski the highest mountain in our backcountry terrain. This has one of the longest verticals in Hokkaido which is around 1,500 meters from the peak. Even if we don't make it to the summit, there is some amazing tree skiing at the lower elevations. We then transfer to Asahikawa which is the second largest city in Hokkaido. 


Day 5

We travel further north and on the way ski a roadside backcountry location. We sometimes refer to it as the ‘Chuting Gallery.’ Transfer to a city on the northern coast. 


Day 6

Travel day to the north west point of Hokkaido. We will be seeing the sea ice of the Sea of Okhotsk. From our departure port, we will see Russian influences due to the town’s proximity to Sakhalin Peninsula. If there is clear weather on the voyage you will see the remarkable sight of the volcano protruding from the ocean. You will be staying at a hot spring hotel on Rishiri Island. 


Day 7- 9

Over the next three days you will transported via snowmobile accross the approaches to the mountain before skinning. You will then ski some of the longest verticals descents in Hokkaido. If there is a clear day, ski from the summit and on low visibility days you will stay in the sheltered tree-line areas where the powder is deep. Each day enjoy the thermal outdoor hot-spring to finish. In the evening, enjoy expertly prepared seafood by your hosts.


Day 10

Morning return ferry. On our return journey to Asahikawa we make a stop at a local resort for some sidecountry turns. Arriving in the evening, we will celebrate our last night at a traditional 'izakaya' restaurant.


Day 11 

Airport transfer