Magazine

Evergreen Backcountry Day Tour - Hakuba

Nov 22, 2017

A backcountry tour with Evergreen is a highlight of a trip to Hakuba for any intermediate or advanced skier or rider. Photo: Scout

Evergreen Backcountry Guides are certified avalanche professionals and seasoned backcountry guides. Explore the vast Hakuba backcountry and some of the very best powder skiing in Japan. Private and group tours available for intermediate to advanced skiers and snowboarders and varying levels to cater to your backcountry experience. Evergreen offers backcountry tours between mid­ December and mid-April depending on the conditions and resort operations.

Book Evergreen Backcountry Guides as part of a Hakuba Ski Package on Scout.

Tour Includes:
  • Beacon, shovel & probe, & backpack
  • Basic rescue insurance
  • Transport to/from your locations

Equipment Required:

All backcountry and off-piste tours include a 3-piece avalanche gear set (beacon, probe and shovel) and backpack. They also rent BCA Float Avalanche Airbag Backpacks. If taking a backcountry tour (as opposed to an off-piste/side-country tour) you will need touring equipment:

Snowboarders:  Evergreen has a variety of split-boards with split-board bindings. All split-board rentals come with skins and telescoping poles. They strongly recommend you to have a split-board rather than employing snowshoes for BC Kitsune or BC Kamoshika tours since those advanced level tours require you to ascend faster and travel further than basic level tours.

Skiers:  Evergreen has a variety of powder touring skis with alpine touring bindings. Any ski boot will fit the step-in style AT bindings. All touring ski rentals come with skins and adjustable powder poles. 

TOUR DESCRIPTIONS

Private Groups:

Backcountry Private / Off-piste Private: If you and your group are looking to venture off on a backcountry (touring) or off-piste/side country (no touring) tour of any level, Scout can arrange a private Evergreen guide for you. This type of tour would be recommended if you have a group of friends with similar skiing/riding ability and you would like to keep the crew limited to your group of friends. This tour will be tailored to the lowest ability level in your group and can include terrain from any of the other BC (or off-piste) tours listed below. If you are a seriously advanced group and the conditions are right, they might be able to take you even higher where Japan powder skiing really steps it up to another level!

Group Tours:

Join a shared group and meet other powder-hounds for a fun day out for an off-piste/side country tour or a full backcountry tour. Tours are priced per person, per day with a discount for 3 days or more. Choose from the following tours:

Off-piste Advanced / Intro: Hakuba gets huge snowfalls but with the keen local skiers and riders lined up first thing in the morning after a big dump the resorts get tracked out as quick as anywhere else. Several of Hakuba's resorts have excellent side-country access where you can get excellent turns in off-piste terrain, without requiring any backcountry touring (or equipment). Access the goods with the lift services of the resorts and then ride the excellent "side-country" terrain. Go with the knowledgeable and expertise of local professional ski & split-board guides into the best steep powder stashes in Japan...right here in Hakuba! Skiing and riding will be lead safely into great off-piste Japan areas where we can play in open glades, ride soft pillows and slide through superb tree runs! Get lots of vertical in a day, ride with guides who know the terrain and can guide you off-piste and back again with little or no hiking.

Back-country Kamoshika: These tours are for the advanced skiers and riders who have joined back-country tours earlier. You must be fit and experienced in back-country to join these challenging and exciting trips into Hakuba's steeper terrain. Pace of this tour is little faster as they aim to access little further off the beaten tracks in search of best lines. BC Kamoshika requires hiking up slopes and ridges using alpine touring bindings & skins for skiers or split-board with skins for snowboarders. There will be approximately 3-4 hours of hiking broken up in a day so approximately 1,000-1,500 vertical meters of skiing/riding. Head off into deeper back-country and slide into some first-rate Japan powder in the Northern Alps. Japan powder skiing/riding doesn't get much better than this!

Back-country Kitsune: These tours are for those who have experienced back-country trips a few times and are confident in abilities skiing/riding in variable conditions. People in this tour group should be capable to ski/ride powder in gladed trees and steeper terrain and have fairly strong fitness level. BC Kitsune requires hiking up slopes and ridges using alpine touring bindings & skins for skiers or split-board with skins for snowboarders (snowshoes are occasionally allowable.) There will be approximately 3-4 hours of hiking broken up in a day so approximately 800-1,000 vertical meters of skiing/riding. Enjoy fabulous landscape from alpine ridges and epic terrain in the Northern Alps.

Back-country Usagi: Evergreen's Usagi tours are designed for those who just started to explore the backcountry. At least intermediate level of skiing/riding abilities and a solid fitness level are all that is necessary. People in this tour group should be able to competently ski/ride powder and negotiate through gladed trees and open bowls. Usagi tours requires hiking up slopes and ridges using alpine touring bindings & skins for skiers or snowshoes or split-board with skins for snowboarders. There will be approximately 3 hours of hiking broken up in a day so approximately 500-700 vertical meters of skiing/riding. This introductory level tour is a great way to get off-piste, access epic terrain and ski/ride the fantastic back-country Hakuba has to offer. 

Itinerary: 

All backcountry tours, regardless if they are Group Tours or Private Tours, will have Pre-Tour Meeting the evening prior. On the day you will need to be ready to jump in the van by 7:55 in the morning with all of your personal avalanche gear (beacon, probe and shovel,) backpack, skis or split-board (both w/ skins & poles if doing BC), money for ski pass (if required), your lunch and plenty of water. Evergreen can rent touring equipment, however they must be organised the evening prior. More details will be provided once booked.

Cancellation Terms & Conditions: 

Evergreen reserves the right to cancel any tours / programs due to: inclement weather, insufficient booking or events beyond our control. In these cases, alternative dates may be offered or Evergreen will refund the tour fee in full.

In cases where guests cancel their bookings once the booking has been confirmed, a cancellation fee will be applied as follows:

Cancellations made 7 days prior to tour or earlier 10%
Cancellations made 6-­2 days prior to tour 30%
Cancellations made the day before the tour 50%
Cancellations made on the day or no shows 100%

Changing the date 2 days prior to tour (group) 2,000yen/person
Changing the date 2 days prior to tour (private) 5,000yen/group
Changing the date the day before (group/private) - Not possible
Changing the date on the day (group/private) - Not possible

Book Evergreen Backcountry Guides as part of a Hakuba Ski Package on Scout.

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