Zao Onsen Ski Resort
- With a total of 26 courses spread out over 14 areas and 41 lifts including a gondola ropeway, the Zao Onsen Ski Resort is a ultra-big ski resort that represents not just the Tohoku region but Japan as well. There is such a rich variety of courses catering to both beginners and advanced skiers that it is impossible to cover them all in one day. Many visitors also come from all over the country just to take a look at the frost-covered trees called "monsters" that are created by the cold seasonal winds blowing from the Sea of Japan. You can view the frost-covered trees lighted up at night during the "Frost-Covered Tree Festival" held every year in February. The "Juhyobara" course which allows skiers to view the frost-covered trees while skiing is popular among skiers and if you skill all the way to the Omori ski slope, you can enjoy the longest run at 9km in the Zao Onsen Ski Resort. As there are parallel movement areas, some places may be a bit tough for snow boarders so it may be good to build up momentum to ride across the area. After skiing, you may wish to enjoy yourself at the Zao Onsen street spread out at the base area. Since the olden days, the area has been popular as an onsen district due to the excellent quality of its hot springs. You can see steam rising up from everywhere along the street and you can also have fun looking at the souvenirs and so on.
709−1, Tsuchiai, Zao Onsen, Yamagata-shi, Yamagata Prefecture+D3
Gassan Ski Resort
- Gassan Ski Resort is a ski resort located in the super-heavy snow zone. The opening period is from April to the end of July because there is too much snow to open the ski slope during the winter. In Gassan where all the mountains are ski slopes, basically, you can ski everywhere other than places with danger signs, since the resort is for diverse snow sports as well as skiing on the slopes. The exhilarating feeling of skiing looking down from the sky in midsummer in short sleeves would be beyond description. There are many hot springs around Gassan, each of which has different hot spring water quality, which also let you enjoy hot springs after skiing, the perfect opportunity to heal your tired body.
59 Mazawa, Nishikawa-machi, Nishimurayama-gun, Yamagawa
Zao Liza World
- Zao Liza World is a ski slope located on the western slope of Zao Renpo. Making good use of the natural topography, there are many types of variation including gentle slopes, steep slopes of maximum 35 degrees, a terrain park, and a tour course. As the base elevation exceeds 1000 m, both the snowfall and snow quality are satisfactory, and in the peak season, you can enjoy high-quality powder snow almost every day. The facilities and services such as a nursery that accepts from a 0-year-old baby, which would be welcomed by families, has a good reputation. The park has abundant items and is well maintained, and has a good reputation among the local freestylers.
Bodaira Kogen, Zao, Kaminoyama-shi, Yamagata
Yunodai Ski Resort
- Although Yunodai Ski Resort is a compact ski area with only one downhill course, it shouldn't be despised because there is a Ski Association of Japan (SAJ)-certified cross country course. The ultimate appeal is that it is the ski resort in a heavy snowfall area and the skiers can enjoy finest powder snow every day during the peak season. With the snowfall totals exceeding 3 meters, it is possible to glide on snow from early December through the Golden Week. The fares for chair lift tickets are reasonable and are popular among the local skiers.
4096 Minamiyama, Okurak-mura, Mogami-gun, Yamagata
Tengendai Kogen Ski Resort
- The Tengendai Kogen ski resort is located in the southern part of the Ou Mountains that are surrounded by 2,000 m of mountains. Since the top of ski slope is over 1,800 m, and furthermore, since it is a northward slope, this ski resort has a stable snowfall and snow quality that make it possible to do business from December to Golden Week every year. The course layout is a vertically long ski slope, making good use of the natural topography, and slopes such as "Shakunage Ski Slope" where the slope changes can be enjoyed, and "Tsugamori Ski Slope" that has a high difficulty level are available. It is famous for being able to enjoy the finest powder snow after a snowfall, the lightness of the powder snow can only be experienced in high mountains. You will be happy with the abundant moguls and fresh snow slopes. You can go to the ski resort using the Tengendai Ropeway. During the season, the "Yunotaira Course" route, where you can enjoy a 3,000 m long run to Yumoto Station, is also popular. You can relax and relieve your tired body at "Shirabu Onsen" that is located near Tengendai Ropeway's Yumoto Station.
Tengendai, Shirabu, Yonezawa-shi, Yamagata