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On the other side of the ocean awaits another world, a land so foreign it doesn’t seem quite real. Its forests are magical, silently still, and filled with untouched snow cradled in natural forming pillow lines. Above the tree line and hiding in the storm clouds are peaks so giant you’d believe you were in Alaska. The people are mysterious, the food is strange, and snack refueling stops at 7-11 are the center of every day. This is Japan. A place so epic, someone named a whole month after it.

 

One Japanuary, with the forecast coloring up for consecutive foot-a-day snowfall, Sammy Carlson, Karl Fostvedt, and Lucas Wachs packed their bags to chase the storm 6,000 miles. The season on the main island can be short, and timing it right is key. Two planes, 2 trains, navigating Tokyo Station with ski bags, a bullet train across to the west coast, 3 hours over a snowy pass only wide enough for one car at best, and 2 days lost in transition – and the trio converged on Hakuba just as one of the biggest systems of the season touched down.

 

This is 7 days in Japan.

 

Music:

“Ha!” Portland Taiko Big Bang portlandtaiko.com

“Japan” Watermark High Culture Lust Vol. 2 Musicbed.com

By:


Dakine, freeride, hakuba