Kiroro Snow World
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Visitor reviews for Kiroro Snow World Ski Resort
January 18, 2018
JimmyB from Japan
Ignore the review saying it's a dangerous resort for back country. Kiroro has some of the best / most monitored back-country in Japan.
They have opened up the whole backcountry so long as you register in the morning and for the most part it's free of charge. There are certain sections where only paying Mountain Club members (1,500 yen per day or 12,000 yen for the season) are allowed before 11am but the vast majority of slack country is open to everyone from when the lift starts. The whole lot is open after 11. You can always find fresh tracks to be had, and the guys in the place where you register are happy to provide advice about where to go and not to go.
Only drawback is the food. It's overpriced because the only local accommodation is a couple of posh hotels. Bring an Onigiri or just ride the whole day and then head down to Otaru for a proper meal.
Kiroro Snow World Ratings
Overall: 3.2. Based on 3 votes and 7 reviews. Vote
(1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Kiroro Snow World.
Public Transport: 2.5
(1) There are no buses or taxis to Kiroro Snow World, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.
(1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.
(1) No places to stay in/near Kiroro Snow World, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.
Cheap Rooms: 1.7
(1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.
Luxury Hotels: 3.0
(1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Kiroro Snow World.
Ski in/Ski out: 4.3
(1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.
(1) There are no child care facilities at Kiroro Snow World, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.
(1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Kiroro Snow World is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.
(1) Kiroro Snow World relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.
Snow Grooming: 4.3
(1) There are no snow groomers at Kiroro Snow World, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Kiroro Snow World are groomed daily.
(1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Kiroro Snow World is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.
Nearby options: 1.3
(1) If snow conditions are poor at Kiroro Snow World, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.
Regional rating: 5.0
(1) Kiroro Snow World usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.
Lift Staff: 3.7
(1) The staff at Kiroro Snow World are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Kiroro Snow World are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.
(1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.
Ski Schools: 3.0
(1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.
Hire and Repairs: 4.5
(1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.
Variety of pistes: 4.0
(1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Kiroro Snow World has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.
(1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.
(1) No intermediate terrain at Kiroro Snow World, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.
(1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.
Snow Park: 2.0
(1) Not even a kicker at Kiroro Snow World, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.
(1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.
(1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Kiroro Snow World, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.
(1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Kiroro Snow World has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.
Mountain Dining: 2.7
(1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.
(1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.
(1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.
Other Sports: 3.0
(1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.
(1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.
Winter Walks: 2.0
(1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.
Ski Pass Value: 3.3
(1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.
Value (National): 3.5
(1) Overall, Kiroro Snow World is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.
Value (Global): 3.7
(1) Overall, Kiroro Snow World is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.
November 05, 2016
Derek from Australia
I was in Kiroro in February and would say the following about the on- piste skiing. There are some great little bowls and pitches which left me begging for a lot more vertical in the boot to knee deep conditions. There are long flattish sections near the bottom and at the top in some areas. The snow was light and abundant, as the historical statistics suggest. The facilities and both hotels are very good but food is very expensive in any of the restaurants and the only way around it is to eat early in the cafeteria before it closes, and take some snacks for supper.
February 27, 2016
Wilko from Japan
Just like to say how impressed I am with the backcountry reorganising at Kiroro. The Mountain Club and the manning of the gates in the morning by the Mountain Patrol has really put authenticity into side and back country terrain, by registering every individual and group that wants access to this incredible skiing. Making sure every one returns to the resort by signing out at the end of the day saves countless waisted effort by the patrol. For the half hour it takes to register is nothing when you know the resort has your safety in mind. The exorbitant fee mentioned by others is for companies and those that want to complete the registration before 9am. Any individual or group can register after 9am, giving the mountain club members a head start on the lifts. The biggest concern to me is the " Powder Greed" way of thinking that every second counts. Kiroro is the only resort in the area that you can start skiing at 10am or later and still get fresh tracks. Anyone who thinks this is set up for and by corporate greed obviously thinks they are the only ones who like skiing/ riding powder and how dare someone else like it as well. I take my hat off to the Mountain Patrol for looking into the future and acknowledging the fact that every rider wants to ski pow, No wonder it is so crowded now. I love it that's why I'm here and am stoked to see like minded riders enjoying the same. Pow to the People!
January 05, 2016
"Customer" from Japan
"Authenticity" of the powder experience isn't measured by the chops of the "local" guide's experience ninja, it's the ride down untracked deep pow that provides that. If you'd like to skin up to the top of the lifts at Kiroro to access the gates rather than ride the gondola that the 'corporate' constructed for you there are hundreds of other hills in Hokkaido waiting for you and your topo map. The team at Kiroro are doing their best to avoid the mess that has afflicted other Hokkaido resorts which have become a crazy circus of money hungry guiding "authenticity" and if 100,000 yen per season messes up your business plan when you are charging more than 20,000 yen per punter per day you need to have a good look at your maths. May I suggest you set up shop in the Kamchatka Peninsula or Gulmarg where they have no internet, Facebook or other evil influences which reduce authenticity.
December 23, 2015
Hokkaido ninja from Japan
Used to be a secret stash for local guides to take powder hungry people on tours. Now overpopularized by the internet and people talking about it on Facebook, the crowds have more than doubled in the last year and the sidecountry access has been more or less shut off to anyone who doesn't pay an extra fee and sign their life away to be in a special "club" to use the new gated sidecountry system. They have closed access to outside guiding services unless they pay over 100,000 yen for a commercial pass, favoring their own corporate ski school "guides." Long runouts in the bottom, dangerous holes, and valleys that don't all return to the resort can make this a dangerous and cumbersome place without the kind of qualified, licensed backcountry guides that have been guiding there for years and have recently been cast aside due to exclusivity. Same kind of corporate mumbo jumbo that is happening in Niseko, reducing the authenticity of the powder seeker's experience.
March 06, 2015
marcus from Australia
Super dry powder, deep stashes.
Fell into a 3 metre deep hole.
Long traverses on green runs.
Still epic and worth the drive from Niseko.
January 27, 2015
Wilko from Japan
Kiroro is an extremely dangerous mountain that should be avoided by anyone who wants to ski off-piste. The snow accumulation in the valleys is dictated by the wind and often there are large sink holes that if fallen into can cause your day to be a total bummer. It is definitely not a snowboard resort as the out runs are so flat that if there is a new snowfall, you will carry your board more than you will ride it.