Japan Ski Touring 2020

Join us for some Deep Pow on this amazing Japan Ski Touring vacation! 

The Destination:

For 2020 we’re headed into the Japanese Alps around the lesser known area of Tenjin on the main island of Honshu. The small town Minakami, found a few hours north of Tokyo by train, will serve as our base for the week. From there we’ll make forays into the local mountains using the various ski lifts to gain access to some amazing backcountry ski runs through picturesque Japanese forests. We’ll also use the lifts to jump start some higher elevation ski touring and ski mountaineering.

But be warned, the area gets a massive amount of snowfall.  In the event that the lifts at a local hill are closed due to weather or avalanche hazard (yes that does happen!) don’t worry we’ll throw on the old skins and head on up for some tree skiing in the deep pow.

The Snow:

Japan Ski TouringIt snows pretty much every day here, day after day! And this daily accumulation of snow is deeper than what many popular ski areas see in a week. But what’s really amazing is the quality, we’re talking cold blower pow! So if you love undulating terrain, widely spaced deciduous trees, beautiful landscapes and consistent snowfall day-in and day-out then this is the trip for you.

The Scene:

Now half the fun of a Japanese ski touring holiday is checking out the local culture and of course the local food. Japanese apres ski culture always involves a long soak in an Onsen, a traditional natural hot spring, to ease tired muscles. That is followed by an amazing meal. Sushi, ramen, okonomiyaki, takoyaki, omo-rice and more might not mean much to you now, but they’ll soon become favorites!

Of course no foreign vacation is complete without sampling some of the local beer and spirits! Not to worry, Japan’s famous for its amazing Scotch and Sake, but of course it also has a booming craft brewery scene that begs to be sampled as well. It doesn’t matter if you’re a Foodie, fine beverage connoisseur or an avid skier just looking for some filling food at the end of a big day you will be more than happy with the local offerings.


Cost:​​  $3,599 CAD plus GST
Only 2 spots left!
January 11-19, 2020
Skill Level: 
Intermediate/Advanced downhill skiers or split boarders

The Itinerary:

  • January 12th: Arrive in Tokyo
  • January 13th Travel to Minakami in am, ski in the pm
  • January 14th through 17th: Ski the resorts & mountains around Minakami
  • January 18th: Ski a half day in the am before traveling back to Tokyo for an evening out
  • January 19th, Departure Day: Party’s over,

You will want to plan to arrive at Tokyo, Narita International airport on January 12th.  Most international flights from North America arrive in the late afternoon. We’ll meet at 5pm and then travel to our hotel in Tokyo for the evening. First thing in the morning we will take the trains to Minakami. Of course you can always just meet up with the crew in Minakami if you prefer. From there we check into our hotel and get ready to ski!

The train travel from Narita International to Minakami is as follows:

  • Tokyo to TAKASAKI: SHINKANSEN MaxTANIGAWA (Bullet Train).
  • TAKASAKI to Minakami: JR Joetsu Line (Regular Train)

Full train schedule can be found at: http://www.hyperdia.com/en/

The Guides:

The lead guide for the trip will be Monte Johnston, an ACMG certified Ski Guide and climbing guide. Monte is the owner of Black Sheep Adventure Sports and an absolute outdoors enthusiast. He works year-round as a guide, leading mountaineering and climbing trips in the summer and ski trips in the winter and travels all over the world for both work and personal adventures. Photo: @Mountaindarlin


  • 6 Days Skiing
  • ACMG Certified Guides
  • Ground Transportation
  • 6 Nights Accommodation
  • Dinners at the lodge in Minakami
  • Onsen entrance (hot pools)
  • Lift tickets
  • Breakfast
  • Black Sheep Adventure Sports Swag


  • Flights to/from Narita
  • Train travel to/from Minakami (about $75 each way)
  • Personal ski & safety equipment (transceiver, probe & shovel, etc.)
  • Lunches (we will make sure you have the opportunity to buy something)
  • Dinners outside the lodge
  • Food & Lodging in Tokyo
  • Travel & Medical insurance

Fine Print:

Canadian Avalanche Association