Powder Odyssey5 out of 5 based on 5 reviews
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GUIDED SAFARI - TOHOKU
7 Nights | 6 Days Guided Skiing
From price based on twin/double-share option.
Base/invoice currency is in AUD inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
From price based on twin/double-share option.
Base/invoice currency is in AUD inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
USD 1,888
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Expert
If you are looking to go off-the-beaten track in Tohoku (northeastern Honshu) where there are abundant lines of fresh powder and no foreigners, this tour is perfect! Visit Tohoku ski areas you've probably never heard of before and immerse yourself in the Japanese culture.
View Inclusions & Add-ons
Inclusions
  • 7 nights twin share accommodation (3 & 4 star with ensuites)
  • Daily breakfast
  • 6 days lift passes
  • Morning guiding (max 1:5 guide:guest ratio)
  • All grounds transfers in private 4WD van
Add-ons
No optional extras to display
Location: Japan | Tour Focus: Guided | Terrain Focus: Off-Piste, On-Piste, Sidecountry
Click here for rates, dates & availability
These dates are for fixed date tours. Most fixed date tours are for mixed groups i.e. you can join a group as a solo, couple or small group Fixed Date(s)
These tours have a set number of days as shown below Days
Price
We try to keep the availability as accurate as possible however things can change regularly. The following statuses roughly equate to:
  • Available = 5 or more spots
  • Filling = 3 – 5 spots
  • Almost Full = 2 or less spots

Please “enquire” to get a definitive answer
Availability
Jan 06 - Jan 13, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Jan 13 - Jan 20, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Jan 20 - Jan 27, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Jan 27 - Feb 03, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Feb 03 - Feb 10, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Feb 10 - Feb 17, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Feb 17 - Feb 24, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Feb 24 - Mar 03, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Mar 03 - Mar 10, 2018
8
USD 1,888
Available
Future rates & dates are currently not yet available for this operator. Click here to enquire.

Powder Odyssey Tour Overview

The Powder Odyssey Tour is a great value trip that takes you to Tohoku, the northeastern part of Honshu, the main island of Japan. This Tohoku ski and snowboard tour heads to ski resorts that are well and truly off the radar of foreign skiers and snowboarders, so very few gaijin (foreigners) visit these areas.

The Tohoku ski areas are delightfully the antithesis of Niseko and Hakuba that are completely over-run with westerners. In Tohoku, there is very little competition (if any) for the abundant fresh powder, very little English is spoken (but your guides will help with communication and organising logistics), the cuisine is authentically Japanese, and other cultural experiences are plentiful. Some of the accommodation is likely to be in a ryokan with an amazing onsen (hot spring) for soaking the aching body, and some evenings the guides will take you to the most amazing Japanese restaurants in nearby cities or towns. By snowboarding or skiing in Tohoku on a Powder Odyssey Tour, you can experience the real Japan and satisfy your appetite for riding fresh powder.

Besides the abundance of fresh powder and lack of westerners, there are characteristics that are common to many of the Tohoku ski resorts. Many are small and only have enough off-piste terrain to keep you entertained for a day or two, so they are not destination resorts you’d want to head to for a week long trip.

One of the major benefits of the Powder Odyssey Tour is that you can sample multiple ski resorts. The guides can drive you around and can get you straight to the goods and show you where the powder stashes are. Off-piste riding may be considered taboo at some of the Tohoku resorts, but with discretion and leadership from your guide, you’ll be rewarded with abundant freshies in the trees. This Tohoku tour also provides the flexibility of being able to chase the best conditions.

Each tour runs for one week with a Saturday departure from Morioka. The tour heads south and finishes at a Shinkansen train station so you can easily get to Tokyo or your next destination.

 

Areas and Resorts Visited
You and your guides are in search of the best lines and best conditions….this means that the actual destinations visited are subject to the weather and where the powder will be the deepest. So the guides keep it flexible and chase the snow and best weather…..of course they do it in consultation with the group as you discuss each night the following day’s plan of attack.

The primary base areas for the Powder Odyssey Tour are Morioka in the Iwate Prefecture where the tour commences, Yamagata, and the Mt Bandai area.

Examples of ski resorts visited might include:

Morioka – Hachimantai, Geto Kogen, Tazawako, Shizukuishi
Yamagata – Zao Onsen
Bandai area - Alts Bandai, Inawashiro, Nekoma, Minowa, Grandeco

A few ski resorts are so deserted midweek that they'll almost feel like your own private ski resort!

Ability Level

So that you get the most out of the adventure, the guides try to group the tours into ability levels. You don’t have to be a pro, you just need to have a sense of adventure and want to ride powder. A huge feature of this tour is riding off-piste in fresh powder, so ideally the minimum ability level is advanced. However intermediate riders that want to just ride the groomed runs could also join the tour.

Groups and Guides

There will be either 1 or 2 guides depending on the size of the group, however the guide to client ratio will not exceed 1:5. The head guide is an experienced snowboarder (14 seasons in Japan at over 200 resorts), certified instructor with off piste/back country knowledge of the ski areas, and avalanche qualified.

Transportation

Transport for the tour will be provided in private 4WD vans. The tour will incorporate a fair bit of driving, but your guides do it all for you, so you can just sit back and relax.


Get to go where others don't...

..get driven around...

...the powder is superb.

Accommodation

The Powder Odyssey Tour is a road trip, so you need to be happy to pack up your bags every 2-3 days and change accommodation so that you can chase the powder and best conditions.

Accommodations are typically 3.5 star and above and in most cases rooms have a private en-suite. Rooms are all on a twin or triple share basis. The quality of some of the accommodation will surprise you given the low cost of this tour.

The only exception to all of the above is if you stay at Geto Kogen in the unique hostel on the mountain (which has shared facilities and one of the best indoor & outdoor hot springs complexes you will ever see). This is a pretty special experience!



Alts Bandai Hotel...

..Shizukuishi hotel...

...Bandai ryokan.

Itinerary

There is no set itinerary for the Powder Odyssey Tour because the whole idea is to chase the best conditions at the many different resorts.

However the general idea is to visit three key areas. The tour starts in Morioka (Morioka is easily accessed via bullet train - you’ll receive information after booking about how to get to Morioka) and from there, you’ll visit the nearby ski resorts for a few days.

After this, the tour will head south, potentially to Geto Kogen and/or the Yamagata area, and then onto the Mt Bandai region where there are lots of ski resorts to choose from. At the end of the tour your guides will drive you to a bullet train station, where you can easily travel onto Tokyo or your next destination.


Experience the real Japan...

..and its amazing food...

...ahh and the daily onsen.

The Powderhounds checked out this tour first hand. See the Powderhounds' Powder Odyssey Tour review.

Powder Odyssey Tour Inclusions

A Powder Odyssey Tour includes:

  • 7 nights accommodation in traditional Japanese or Western-style rooms
  • Daily buffet breakfast
  • 6 days morning guiding (Sunday to Friday), 1:5 guide to guest ratio
  • 6 days lift passes
  • Private transport to and from ski resorts, lodging and train stations (on arrival and departure)
  • 24 hour hosting - staff support as required
  • Access to premium ski/snowboard rental equipment at discounted prices
  • Dinner for the first 4 nights of the tour
  • Information pack issued 2 weeks prior to arrival in Japan


Powder galore...

..no competition for the freshies...

...great dining experiences.
Inclusions
  • 7 nights twin share accommodation (3 & 4 star with ensuites)
  • Daily breakfast
  • 6 days lift passes
  • Morning guiding (max 1:5 guide:guest ratio)
  • All grounds transfers in private 4WD van
Optional Extras
No optional extras to display
Not Included
No exclusions to display

Booking Conditions

  • All bookings will be held for 7 days once quotes have been issued. 
  • A 25% deposit is required to secure bookings (credit card payment available)
  • Payments will be invoiced in Australian Dollars (AUD)