Furano

Furano is the home mountain for Alpine Backcountry Guides. The two ski areas Kitanomine and Furano (New Prince Hotel) are connected by the ‘Link’ lift. Other than the New Prince hotel, the Ningle Terrace (arts & craft stores and tube ride), and the best ramen restaurant (in my opinion), there is not much else around on the Furano (New Prince) side. The Kitanomine side is more of a ski village with restaurants, the only pub with nightlife (open from 6pm) and Apres Ski cafe / bar (close by 7pm) near the base of the mountain. The great thing about Furano is that it is a small city with a ski village and ski resort attached. There are plenty of great restaurants and places to hang out after dark in town a short taxi ride away.

Enough non ski related information. The skiing on piste is phenomenal especially the first runs in the morning. A well planned approach with the right mix of chair lifts on either side of the resort will definitely be worth the early morning start for the first line of powder run on a firm groomed base. Hero condition does not get any better than this, especially when it can be as deep as boot to knee high on the best of mornings. There are many off piste lines available since the gate system was introduced in the 2015-16 season. Be sure to sign in and out at the ski patrol station on either side of the resort before venturing off piste, even though it is not strictly enforced.

I may be biased, but Furano has got to be one of the best places to ski hard and fast in variable terrain with pillow lines, trees, open glades and bowls. With the main attraction of lift accessed off piste, the effort to reward ratio is optimum. The main hazard here is glide crack, although a major storm slab avalanche was seen at the top of the resort in 31DEC2015. There are enough options to keep anyone happy even if you are ripping it up everyday for 3-4 days. After that there is the whole of the backcountry to explore. To stay safe and maximise your enjoyment and exploration, check into Alpine Backcountry Guides and we will show you some of our favourite areas to ski, and a few hidden gems which may be a little off the beaten track in this increasingly popular resort.

Here is a collection of Furano ski articles with short clips and a lot of photographs:

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‘Home Town Glory’

2017 started off with a bang, max out powder and no crowd on an off day…

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‘The Freed Thing Episode 1’

The day I skied with 2 ski instructors and their dad with some big powder turns and soft landings…

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‘Furano Resurrection’

The day when Furano recovered from a rain event and became all white and fluffy again…

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‘Furano Diamond’

Some slo-mo ski action in the Diamond…

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‘Furano Majik’

Cavo Toddo & Majik Garden, two of my favourite lines in Furano…

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‘Majik Garden Furano’ 

Ridiculous face shot in slo-mo…

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‘Nishidake Furano’

Backcountry in tough conditions, earning our turns…