What I forgot to put into these posts are the trips to the onsen. Our hotel was equipped with one and we even went to the one in the Vail hotel. And that’s because I wanted to go every day after boarding. Twice wasn’t so bad right? Good enough to keep the pain and aching away in order to get in three full days on the mountain.
It was storming once again so the top was once again off limits. However, there was no need to. We kept to the off limit areas, which for any Niseko veteran equals untracked powder. Sure, there’s a chance you can get stuck, but just plan appropriately and survey the area while you’re on the lift. Only then will you get the true reward. If not, stay on the trails and play in the trees along the routes. You’ll get some amount of gratification with the constant snowfall. Plus, it means less people in our areas. Woot!
Now on to the eating.
170-165, Aza Yamada, Kutchan
Hokkaido Prefecture 044-0081, Japan
Verdict: Yes. Go here.
This was a small restaurant in Hirafu. It gets packed but we were eating late and it was only the two of us. We decided not to eat with the larger group since they ate early and we were coming from Annupuri. The place looks to be run by a husband and wife team, with the husband being an expat. So English was not a problem here. These people know about quality and cater to it. Prices are a little on the high side. Though that didn’t stop us from getting a full meal. Dishes were big enough to keep us in check. I almost ordered one too many dishes. Damn you squid ink paella. Can’t you be a smaller dish! In any case, this was a good find for a small place that makes simply great fresh food.
Man, did I ever mention I love it here.