Jumping in the car is always fun, especially when going somewhere new. Today we are off to Niseko Moiwa, a short 10 minute drive around the mountain and lucky for us it is a clear morning as is often the case at sunrise for some reason. So with our bellies full from a home cooked breakfast we are off, dropping in for a take out coffee on the way through Hirafu village.
We head out of Hirafu Village towards Annupuri. It is a pretty easy drive, just go straight until you hit a T intersection and then go right. Just after we make a sweeping corner our destination of Niseko Moiwa is in site with a beautiful pink hue and a fresh dump of snow, oh today is going to be fun.
Through the Niseko Moiwa arch over the road and it isn't long before we have our tickets. We hit the 2 seater lift for our first runs as this opens earlier but end up riding the quad hooded for the rest of the day. For our first run off the quad we pretty much go straight down under the lift in the fresh powder on the edge of the course. For our second run off the quad we hit the side country as we have been told this is where it is at. Right off the chair, then riders left into some trees and then right off the ridge back to the base of the chair, a nice little powder bowl to be had, “sky slope” or course 4 if you look at the Niseko Moiwa trail map.
Next up we go for the same side but go through the gate and take the high traverse for a bit and then drop, 4 runs later and we haven't been down the same fall line yet and pow all the way. The further you go out riders left of the chair the greater the traverse back is , let you be warned it is a long traverse and good intermediate level is needed or you may end up in the creek. A fun morning was had before we grab a ramen for lunch in the cafe.
In the afternoon we decide to check the riders right off the hooded quad in much the same fashion, going a little further out each time and finding some good runs. It is good to note since Niseko Moiwa is half the vertical drop of Niseko Annupuri, about 500metres, don't get too carried away and start you traverse back to the base early until you know you can get back, unless of course you don't mind walking out.
In what seems to becoming quite a regular occurrence at the end of the day we soak up an onsen hot spring after the day as Moiwa area has many onsen to choose from. Then back on the road to the comfort of our home away from home, Shiki and Koyuki.