Overall Rating

Tenjindaira Backcountry Tours

Tenjindaira Backcountry Tours4.5/518
Tenjindaira Backcountry Tours4.5 out of 5 based on 18 reviews
  • Recommend
    94%
  • Would Revisit
    94%
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Tenjindaira Backcountry Tours - Reviews

Tenjindaira Backcountry Tours - Reviews

epic late season day

Alex19/03/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    36-50
  • Ability
    Advanced
  • Rider Type
    Snow Boarder
  • Country
    Russia
  • Month:
    March

epic late season day

Alex19/03/2019
I am a regular visitor - this is not my first time at Tenjin, and it won't be my last. I've seen Tenjin on snowier days, but despite the warm weather and the relative lack of fresh snow (by Tenjin standards), we found pockets of great untouched powder, all within easy access from the backcountry gate. Tanigawadake is a dangerous mountain, but Kieren knows the area extremely well and plans his routes in great detail, with lots of attention given to safety. Every tour I've ever been at in Tenjin was safe, enjoyanble, and fascinating enough to want to come back. I certainly will, and I can't recommend this place enough.

Brilliant guide, amazing tour, great lodge!

Jack Blatter03/03/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    36-50
  • Ability
    Advanced
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Country
    USA
  • Month:
    July

Brilliant guide, amazing tour, great lodge!

Jack Blatter03/03/2019
We had 3 days of this....
Kieren was an excellent guide, very patient, safety was his top priority while trying to get us the best lines with the deepest pow. He has a great knowledge of the area and I will be coming back to test it some more.

The lodge is a comfortable, relaxed, social environment that has everything that you need. It isn't luxurious but has everything that you need.

I definitely recommend Kieren's guiding and the lodge. I will be back!

Late Feb/Early Mar 2019 trip

Steve03/03/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    36-50
  • Ability
    Advanced
  • Country
    Australia
  • Month:
    March

Late Feb/Early Mar 2019 trip

Steve03/03/2019
We booked a week of private guiding with Kieren and stayed at Tenjin Lodge. We were a group of 4 experienced skiers.

We were hoping for epic pow, but unfortunately got epic sunshine and bluebird the whole week. Of some comfort, albeit little, the whole of Japan was the same and no new snow fell anywhere this same week. So just unlucky.

Despite this, Kieren was excellent as a guide and proactively looking to find us the best conditions. Each night and morning he presented various options for us to choose. He was/is extremely knowledgeable about the area surrounding Tenjin Lodge and this made our stay and the lack of pow still a fantastic trip.

As Tenjin is reknown for it’s steep terrain (which is very true!) and tendency to avalanche, it was very important to us that Kieren’s knowledge of the mountains and his mountain safety were up to scratch. From the initial contact to enquire about the trip through to the daily guiding and in situ activity, we thought Kieren was excellent. He’s a safe and diligent operator who also has a great sense of humour and great guy/guide to have with us. We were very appreciative by his manner even in less than ideal conditions (read ice, crud, slush etc) as he never showed any lack of enthusiasm and was always willing to ‘go’.

Having been a Japanese snow guide myself in previous years, I know first hand when lack of motivation hits in poor conditions and after weeks on the snow guiding various people, it can be very hard to get up and out every day especially when it’s sun and icy. Kieren looked at every day optimistically and never pressured or tried to steer us in a direction that would make his life easier.

All up, I can highly recommend Kieren and his team at Tenjin Lodge for their professionalism, commitment, value and all round good attitude/vibes.

Looking forward to getting back.....with some deep deep pow!

Tenjin 2019

Doug24/02/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    18-35
  • Ability
    Expert
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Country
    Australia
  • Month:
    February

Tenjin 2019

Doug24/02/2019
Tanigawadake
Spent three day's on a guided Backcountry tour with Kieran at Tenjin and wish I'd stayed longer!
Great lodge, friendly atmosphere and epic skiing.
Will definitely be back!

The best resort for advanced powderhounds!

Fritz Weise16/02/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    18-35
  • Ability
    Advanced
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Country
    Germany
  • Month:
    February

The best resort for advanced powderhounds!

Fritz Weise16/02/2019
We booked the Tenjin package really short-term after we spent a week skiing in northern Honshu, because of the really good reviews on this website.
Overall we can confirm the recommendation as a powder heaven with steep and wide mountains.
Unfortunately it was raining on our day of arrival everywere in Japan, even on the high mountains. It was the first rainy day of the season! So all powder was gone and the snow was covered with ice.
Our two guides, Brandon and Kieren, the owner of the lodge, did everything to find the best spots in this conditions so we still had beautiful days of skiing. It was slightly harder with variing snow, but we could see the amazing potential of this resort, so we have to come back one day!

The lodge and staff was really nice and a very international powder community. It was a refreshing mix of ryokan and hot bath with international food and guests to sit together after a long day of skiing.

Many other guests have been there multiple times and we can understand why.
Surely we get better conditions next time as the mountain is a real powder magnet. Kieren found a good spot for his lodge and knows how to make your trip unforgettable.

Amazing backcountry with genuine guides and warm hospitality

Al12/02/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    18-35
  • Ability
    Expert
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Country
    Australia
  • Month:
    January

Amazing backcountry with genuine guides and warm hospitality

Al12/02/2019
The trip was amazing. I highly recommend Tenjin lodge to all backcountry enthusiasts that are looking for something different from the mainstream resorts. Keiran and the team were fantastic - the lodge has a warm family communal feel and was a great place to socialize with other westerners. Very easy to arrive via train and the staff are nice enough to help out with a lift from the station if you have lots of gear.

Keiran is a decent Aussie bloke (getting rarer and rarer in to find in Japan) and really takes a personal interest in ensuring that his guests are not just happy, but also enjoying the skiing/riding. He is highly experienced with the local terrain (I believe 2nd to none for a foreigner) and takes safety seriously whilst still taking on the appropriate level of risk to ensure an awesome time.

Thanks Kieren

Scott12/01/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    51-70
  • Ability
    Advanced
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Country
    Australia
  • Month:
    December

Thanks Kieren

Scott12/01/2019
Tenjin Lodge Tour Tenjin Lodge Tour
Thanks Kieren and all at Tenjin for very memorable three days. First and foremost, the professionalism and local knowledge of Kieren is unbeatable for anyone planning on visiting the Minakami area and other hills close by. Safety is, and should be a priority for all of us, and for this quality we both highly appreciated having Kieren leading the way! particularly as we are not young chargers any more. We could see he was wanting to let rip at times, but he duly accommodated our initial caution in the deepest snow we have seen or skied, and no matter how you ski the shallower stuff, it is a completely different skill set in that waist to chest (and above in parts) deep environment. We got lucky in some ways as the snow during our visit was unbelievable for us to see and ski (over 2m in 3 days) and Kieren put us on the goods every day possible and encouraged us to have a go, which for us unfortunately we thought was not Tenjin itself (closed too much snow!) ), but Kagura and Hodaigi which had never heard of, but now we rate as two of the best places we have skied in Japan (we have skied over 20 different Japanese hills). Spent the final day skinning up a creek way below Tenjin which was hard going in 30 to 60cm of blower and soft below that! but a couple hours of good hard slog was truly enjoyable as was all of the trip to Tenjin Lodge. Thanks mate.
The lodge itself was fun, efficient and friendly, and this was due not only to the staff, but also the other guests (mostly repeat regulars). True lodge feel.
Having missed an opportunity for a Tenjin hike, of course we will have to return :) and highly recommend this tour guide and lodge. Great experience.

Tenjin: Kieren's Backyard

POWDERHOUNDS.COM05/08/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    36-50
  • Ability
    Expert
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Month:
    January

Tenjin: Kieren's Backyard

POWDERHOUNDS.COM05/08/2018
A nice little route Hiking to the peak A really cool onsen nearby Kieren took us to an onsen in Minakami Lucky the dog's backyard
Definitely do this tour! Firstly because Tanigawadake Tenjindaira is phenomenal and secondly because of Kieren.

Kieren ensured that we made the most out of our time in the Tenjindaira area and got us dialled in. The snow conditions were a little testing, and this gave Kieren more than the average challenge in picking the right ski area and zone to visit each day. Thankfully Kieren and his team know the area really well, are well connected with the local ski resorts to get the goss in a timely fashion, and they recognise the typical storm patterns. We could see many factors in his decision making and he let the group know the pros and cons of the options. He knew if the Tenjin ropeway would be going, whether the terrain under the ropeway would be open, and whether the weather patterns would be conducive to hiking to the peak. Or when Kagura or Houdaigi would be a better choice.

Kieren has some avi qualifications and whilst he isn’t an IFMGA qualified mountaineer, it’s probably more important that Tenjindaira is Kieren’s backyard and he knows it intimately. Tanigawadake is a finnicky mountain with a lot of associated risks. It was obvious how much effort he put in to maximise safety and keep the group tightly in control. His guiding was appropriately much looser at Kagura and he was more of a funster, and it was apparent that he knows the Kagura terrain very well too.

Despite the unusual snow conditions, Kieren made sure we had an epic time. He kept the stoke levels high whilst out skiing, but also facilitated onsen visits, a night at a Minakami restaurant, and made sure we had all we needed at Tenjin Lodge.

Tenjin Lodge is a very friendly lodge and so long as you’re not looking for deluxe accommodation or ensuite shower/bath, you’re highly likely to enjoy the vibe of the lodge. You can see our Tenjin Lodge reviews here.

Fantastic mountain, great food and good powder hunting

Jennifer Showers05/03/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    51-70
  • Ability
    Advanced
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Country
    Japan
  • Month:
    February

Fantastic mountain, great food and good powder hunting

Jennifer Showers05/03/2018
Keiren spent a huge amount of effort looking for the best powder and suitable terrain with a warming season and little fresh snow. He was very particular about our safety, and ensuring we experienced the local food and facilities. Although obviously our own responsibility a reminder about carrying water when hiking as it is getting warmer would be a good idea.

We really enjoyed the wonderful food, large room and surroundings at Tenjin Lodge but would like to see improvements in the drying room and provision of tea and coffee making facilities. Have enjoyed self serve breakfasts at other accomodation and maybe that might be an option.

Tenjin backcountry tour

Christian Mcewen24/02/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Age
    36-50
  • Ability
    Expert
  • Rider Type
    Snow Boarder
  • Country
    Australia

Tenjin backcountry tour

Christian Mcewen24/02/2018
Hi all. Myself and 3 others recently had Kieran for a 6 day inclusive backcountry tour
Over this time we hiked tenjin ridgeline leading up to mt tanigawa/ summeted mt tanigawa and and rode surrounding areas. Specifically at tenjin, we dropped into the gullys and smashed the ridge's finding what I would say was the fastest deepest and steepest terrain I ever encountered on a backcountry tour in japan, all with the watchful eye of Kieran ensuring our safety.
If you are looking for serious time on board or skis riding as much pow as you can handle and milk every last second of the day doing exactly that then this is your place to do that.

The hospitality and food at tenjin lodge was amazing, the crew made us feel so relaxed.
The crew will be back next year to stay longer
Thanks guys.
Christian
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