Hakuba Cortina

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Hakuba's freeride resort
Resort Summary
Resort Name Cortina
Location Hakuba Valley
Resort Altitude 850m
Winter Season Best in Jan and Feb
Terrain Overall: Offpiste, perfect trees, steep.
Beginner: 40% (only of you include connected Norikura)
Intermediate: 30%
Advanced: 30% (steepest in Hakuba)
Lift System
Highest Lift 1400m
Lowest Lift 850m
Vertical 550m
Longest Run 3500m (cat track)
Avg Snowfall highest in Hakuba, over 900cm
Terrain Parks No (go to connected Norikura)
Snow Sports The usual things
Facilities One big hotel with food and onsen.
Nearest Town Hakuba
Lift Pass
Adult 5 Day $
Adult 1 Day $
Child 5 Day $
Child 1 Day $


Overview 

Cortina is strictly not actually in the township of Hakuba, rather it is part of neighboring Otari. About 30 minutes drive from Hakuba, Cortina is a unique ski area for the quantity of snow it receives, the steepness of the terrain and the more progressive policy regarding skiing off piste (as of the 2009/10 season most restrictions were relaxed).

Location

The northern-most resort in the Hakuba Valley.
Latitude, Longitude: 36.775587804869495, 137.88751602172852 (Base area)

Pros

  • Steepest inbound terrain in Hakuba
  • Highest snowfall in Hakuba
  • Some inbound trees are open on an enter at your own risk policy (rescue fees apply)
  • Great views from upper lifts
  • Some of the in-resort food and coffee in Hakuba
  • The resort is designed so that all runs lead back to a common base
  • Large onsen with a popular semi-outdoors area offering a view over the resort
  • Popular and easy access side-country
  • Links with Hakuba Norikura ski resort, which offers extensive beginner skiing that is very uncrowded

Cons

  • About 30 minutes drive north of Central Hakuba.
  • Not much nightlife if staying on site.
  • Large ugly out of place hotel dominates the scene.
  • Off-piste is very busy on days with fresh snow
  • Most off-piste is steep and challenging for intermediates
  • Some lifts are scheduled to open late and shut early

Contacts

Phone: +81-261-82-2236

Fax: +81-261-82-3127

Postal: Chikuni 12860-1, Otari Mura, Kita Azumi Gun, Nagano 399-9422, Japan

Planning

Getting There

The closest JR Station is Minami Otari, on the JR Oito Line. Shuttle buses run between Minami Otari Station and the ski resort (timetable needed). The Hotel Green Plaza offers a shuttle service for JR Nagano Station. Check with the hotel for schedule and pricing.

Accommodation

Hotel Green Plaza Hakuba 4-5 star hotel at the base of the Hakuba Cortina Kokusai Ski Resort. 3-4 restaurants, Natural Hot Spring bathhouse. Japanese - Western Rooms (2 beds + futons) or Maisonette Style Website Tel: +81-261-82-2236


Lift Tickets

Cortina's lift prices are lower than other popular resorts in the valley. They offer Cortina only and Cortina - Norikura combined Lift tickets (for an extra 500 yen)

Special coupon deals including lunch and spa tickets are available and are released prior to the ski season (add when released)

All mountain lift tickets are valid at Cortina.

Ski School

The Hakuba Cortina Ski School offers Japanese language private and group lessons. If English language lessons are required they should be booked well in advance.

Equipment Hire

At present there is ski hire available on the ground floor of the hotel (in Japan, the ground floor is called the 1st floor).

Resort Facilities

Parking

Huge free parking right at the resort base.

Activities

Kids play area on the flats near the lift base. Included blow up castle type of thing.

Dining

There is a relatively inexpensive food hall str up on the 2nd floor. This has a reputation for poor food and being disorganised.

On the ground floor there os a very well known and popular cafe that serves good Italian food and very good coffee. A lot of people enjoy the self-made pizzas and on a busy powder day it usually has a great vibe. Most people consider it a drawcard of Cortina, compared to other ski resorts in hakuba which lack good food and atmosphere. On quiet days, the place is empty.

Bars & Entertainment

Not much. The huge red-roof hotel is the only building at Cortina and it offers limited bar facilities (which is quite normal in Japan)


Children

There is an outdoor fenced pay area for kids near the lift base.

Ride Guide

Beginner Areas

The cat tracks, with all the limitations they entail, and the main run at the bottom of the Cortina basin. Beginners should upgrade their ticket and head over to the connected Norikura resort for a much wider range of suitable terrain.

Groomed Runs

What ever takes your fancy. Note that some runs are considered too steep to be groomed and can get pretty bumpy.

Off Piste

he off-piste policy is much more liberal than in the main Hakuba resorts as Cortina is not covered by the restrictive Hakuba Local Rules policy of a blanket banning most off-piste.

Out of Bounds

For true out of bounds, head to the top of the resort and look for a 'backcountry sign' indicating that from this point onwards you proceed at your own risk and need to have avalanche equipment. This terrain eventually leads back to the Norikura ski area via a long stream gully.

Cross Country

None

Parks & Pipes

None. You can find a small park if you head for the far side of Norikua ski resort, which is connected to Cortina with a shared ticket (see ticketing section for extra pricing)

Bumps

On the runs too steep to groom.

Powder Zones

Almost anywhere you can find it.

Sheltered Runs

In the trees and down low. It gets very windy on the main ridge and the connection ridge between Cortina and Norikura.


Other

Weather

Being closer to the Sea of Japan, and less blocked by large mountains, Cortina gets much more snow than the main Hakuba resorts.

Geography

Cortina is enclosed within a clearly defined basin with all runs funneling back down to the common base, which makes it relatively unique in Hakuba, where most other ski resorts are situated on ridges that widen as you descend. The Cortina basin is generally pretty steep, with the lower section the only place where wide and long low terrain. Again, like most of Hakuba, there is are no rocks or extreme terrain in bounds, however the off-piste is without doubt consistently the steepest in the valley, and the trees offering the best spacing thanks to large stands of mature beech.

History

After earlier attempts, in 2009/10 season Cortina was the first ski resort in Hakuba to open up most of it's off-piste terrain to freeriders.

Resources

PLACE LINKS TO RESORT WEBSITES HERE

Maps

PLEASE EDIT