Appi Kogen

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Resort Summary
Resort Name Appi Kogen
Location Iwate
Resort Altitude 1328m
Winter Season
Terrain Overall:
Beginner: 30%
Intermediate: 40%
Advanced: 30%
Lift System
Highest Lift 1328m
Lowest Lift 500m
Vertical 828m
Longest Run 5.5km
Avg Snowfall
Terrain Parks
Snow Sports
Facilities
Nearest Town Morioka
Lift Pass
Adult 5 Day $
Adult 1 Day $Y5200
Child 5 Day $
Child 1 Day $Y3000


Overview 

Appi Kogen is a big commercial resort and probably the largest in the northern part of Honshu. It is great for direct fall line vertical. Highest point is around 1300m and vert is around 800m. So it is an excellent choice if you like plenty of very long, wide, fall line runs. Upper sections are reasonably steep and while it does mellow out lower down, you don't get the flat spots you sometimes get at other japanese resorts.

Location

Iwate prefecture. About an hour north of Morioka by bus or train.

Pros

Good long, wide open fall line runs. Big vertical. Great for fast open cruising. Some specific runs are left ungroomed for powder and bumps.

Cons

Tree skiing a bit limited (officially prohibited).

Contacts

Phone: 0195 73 5111

Fax: PLEASE EDIT

Postal: Appi Kogen, Hachimantai, Iwate, 028 7395

Planning

Getting There

From Tokyo it is about 3 hours on the Shinkansen to Morioka. These usually operate about twice an hour.

From Morioka you can then go by train, bus or car.

By train it is about 1 hour on the Hanawa line. Note however that the first part of the trip up until Koma is operated by Iwate Galaxy Railways (IGR) before returning to JR even though it is the same train. So if you are travelling on a JR pass you may strictly speaking have to buy a ticket to Koma (although if you are lucky they will let you through anyway). At Appi Kogen station there will be a bus going to the resort. The trains don't operate very regularly through the morning. Fare (2009) Morioka - Appi Kogen Y1110, Morioka - Koma Y630.

Buses leave from bus bay no. 6 on the west side of Morioka station and go direct to Appi Kogen. They take around 50 mins and run about once an hour through the morning, returning in the afternoon. One way fare is Y1070 (2009). You can get up to date info on on the bus as well as the ski area from the information centre at the southern end of Morioka station.

If you doing it as a day trip from Morioka or staying at the resort then the bus will be the better option. Otherwise if you are staying in the pension village it may be easier to arrange for them to pick you up from the station.

Accommodation

On Mountain

On mountain accomodation is limited to just the resort hotel and villas which are rather expensive.

Off Mountain

There is a quite a large pension village about 1 km from the resort, with many reasonably priced (generally in the Y7000-9000 range inc meals). The pension owners will generally drive you to/from the resort.

One very good one is Pension Mutti. Kayoko the owner speaks excellent english having previously spent a few years in Australia in Jindabyne as an instructor as well as time in Sydney. This also makes it very easy to book via email. And you won't go hungry there - the meals are huge.

Lift Tickets

An adult day (8 hr) ticket bought at the resort will be Y5200. If you are staying at the resort hotel there will be hotel & lift package deals. If you are staying in the pension village definately buy your tickets there. eg. A 2 day pass from the resort is Y9400, while buying from the pension it is Y7000.

Ski School

Yes

Equipment Hire

Yes, In the resort centre.

Resort Facilities

Getting Around

There is a regular resort shuttle bus which runs between the ski centre base, the hotel and the villas. There is another which goes to the railway station to meet trains to/from Morioka.

Getting to/from the pension village to the resort or railway station if you don't have your own car is by arangement with the pension owner. There is a hut just below the resort base and gondola for people waiting for pickups from pensions. Otherwise the walk from the pension to the resort would probably be around 10-15 mins.

Parking

Reasonably large car park below the Central ski centre base and also at the Sailor base.

Activities

Dining

Plenty of lunch time options in the resort centre, including a large food hall. Several restaurants in the resort hotel as well. If you are staying in the pension village meals breakfast and dinner are normally included.

Bars & Entertainment

Not much in Appi. If you really need these stay in Morioka.

Shopping

Some shopping in the resort base, but again for serious shopping head to Morioka.

Children

Children appear to be well catered for with a special enclosed area.

Ride Guide

Beginner Areas

Lower slopes of central area.

Groomed Runs

Majority of slops are groomed and quite wide. The run immediately beside the Appi Gondola does tend to have more traffic and the steeper section up top can get a bit slick in the afternoon. Runs further right served by a T-bar hold up much better through the day. The Sailor and Second area also have a combination of groomed and ungroomed runs. There are plenty of very long fall line runs.

Lifts

A note on the Appi and Sailor gondolas. They are both 8 seater gondolas but with old style racks on the outside which will only take narrow tailed skis. Boards need to be taken inside with a protective sleeve. You might get one pair of wider skis on the end of the rack but otherwise they may need to laid on the floor. The quad chairs in the Sailor and Second areas are therefore a good alternative, particularly in Sailor as the section below the chair is pretty gentle so less interesting.

Note. Snowboaders are not permitted to ride the Tbars or pomas and curiously also the chair lift to the right of the Tbar.

Off Piste

There are a number of areas which are left ungroomed which can mean either powder or bumps.

Out of Bounds

In the trees, under lifts and outside the patrolled area are all officially prohibited. However like other places there are always opportunity for a bit of discrete tree skiing, although usually fairly tight. The Kakkou run by the Tbar is one example.

Cross Country

Doesn't appear to be any.

Parks & Pipes

There are some parks on the lower slopes.

Bumps

Certainly a few of these. The most serious one is in the Sailor area on one of the ungroomed runs accessed from the top of the Sailor gondola. While in some resorts in Japan an ungroomed line is sometimes left on the edge of a run for bumps to form, the run here just has a narrow groomed section on the side and the middle is one very long zipper line of bumps, so if you are after a serious bumps workout this is the place.

Powder Zones

Again the ungroomed runs in all areas after fresh snowfall, but in particular the Nishimori area to the right which is the highest part of the resort.

Sheltered Runs

Kakkou & Kitsutsuki in the Central area are probably best when it is very windy up top.

Night skiing

Night skiing is available on the Central area chairlifts until 8pm. (Y2400)

Snowplay

There is a snowmobiling area and snowshoeing nature trips are also available.

Other

Weather

Wind can be a factor here, which can close the gondolas. In this case the alternative is to ride the 4 chairs in the central area to the top which will take around 30 mins. If the top chair is not running you won't be able to get to the Nishimori area, so best bet will be the Tbar runs.

Geography

PLEASE EDIT

History

PLEASE EDIT


Resources

[1] Resort english section

[2] Pension village information (japanese)

[3] Pension Mutti (japanese with english page)

[4] Train timetable (note enter appikogen as one word)

Maps

[5] Ski area trail map (PDF 993KB)

[6] Snow Japan Iwate region map