As the Hanazono Music Festival wraps up another jam packed summer of events in Niseko, all thoughts are on the rapidly approaching powder storms of winter.
Autumn is well and truly here, the leaves are starting to fall from the trees and the temperatures are starting to drop.
We’ve already had our first snowfall up high, and it will only be a matter of weeks before the first snow blankets Niseko’s ski villages.
While everyone is starting to get excited about winter, this is a good opportunity to reflect on the long, very hot summer.
The summer calendar was bulging with a colourful range of festivals, events and competitions that continues to grow year after year.
Niseko Cycle Week received a major boost with one of Japan’s premier cycle races, the Tour de Hokkaido, holding a 186km stage finish in front of the Niseko Alpen Hotel in Hirafu, at the bottom of the main ski lifts. As well as an all new addition to the race calendar with the Hanazono Hill Climb.
Summer’s headline act, the Kutchan Potato Festival (Jaga Matsuri), celebrated the town’s favourite produce as well as the peak of the summer season. And Hirafu this year got its very own summer festival – the Hirafu Bon Odori Festival.
Soccer competitions were all the rage including the Hirafu World Cup Tourney, and thousands of visitors enjoyed all the local activities on offer in the mountains, forests, lakes and streams of Niseko’s great outdoors.
Meanwhile the final big event of the summer, the Hanazono Music Festival was this year run over three weekends, and held inside the resort’s mountain base complex, Hanazono 308, ensuring there was no way the weather could put a dampener on it like last year.
Niseko Photography's Yasuyuki Shimanuki captured some of this year's indoor action here.
Summer gets bigger and better every year, so we’re excited what it’s going to bring next year.
But at this stage, maybe not as excited as we are about another little season about to descend on Niseko – winter.
If you haven’t booked your ski accommodation yet, check out the widest range of Niseko accommodation rates and availability using our accommodation search engine now.
Bookings are way up this season so make sure you don’t miss out!
Keep an eye on www.powderlife.com for all the latest in the leadup to 2010/11!