Japan is arguably THE premier deep powder destination in the world. The number of ski areas in Japan offer a lifetime of exploration; where we choose to go has largely to do with individual group goals. The country offers unique cultural experiences, amazing food, and a many options for skiing in-bounds, fantastic lift-accessed “side country,” and pure backcountry touring.


LODGING and PACKAGES: Japan… Here are some highlights:

  • The lodge only takes 12 guests at a time. Each guest has his/her own private King Suite
  • Located in a remote valley on the Troll Peninsula, only a mile from the Arctic ocean coast and surrounded by big snow-covered mountains
  • Length of Trips: Typical lodge packages at Deplar for heli skiing are 6 days and 6 nights, with travel on either end. There are opportunities for different length stays; call me to discuss this.
  • In-lodge spa is epic and includes hot tubs, heated indoor-outdoor pool w/ bar, steam, sauna, work out rooms, stretching classes, masseuse and more.
  • High end personalized service from lodge-based staff
  • All food and booze included! The chef is very creative and the food is incredible, with a bent to local fare. In-lodge bars are open 24-7, so no tab at end of trip. No other operations I know of offer this.
  • Side activities are awesome and include: sea kayaking, arctic surfing, whale watching, horseback riding, deep sea fishing, snowmobiling, cat skiing, groomed trails for Nordic skiing, skeet shooting, in house game room, and more. These are all included in the package (!) and we can do as much or little of these as we want… I work w/ guide staff to create a custom itinerary for your group every day. This is a HUGE value compared to other lodges… Usually there is very little, even “nothing” to do when you’re not skiing…. And with 20hrs of daylight in spring, there is plenty of time to fit it all in…
  • 6-day Packages include 6hrs of HOBBS flight time per heli load (generally a group of 4). This is a great amount of powered up flight time. How many runs and how much vertical you get out of this is largely a function of how close or far afield we fly each day. I keep all groups updated daily on their HOBBS.
  • Cost: Contact me directly to talk about package costs.

TRAVEL: Travel to Japan is a bit of a trek from the US, but worth it. Destination airports depend on ski goals, though the most common airports we use are Sapporo and Tokyo. Length of travel and direct flight options vary depending on your home base. One thing I like to do for many trips is hire a driver who can help us navigate the options available to us depending on conditions and group goals each day. It is often worth exploring zones a bit and sampling the variety of what Japan has to offer.

SEASON: The season for powder in Japan is generally January through March. On big winters there can be great skiing in December and into April as well.

BOOKING: Booking trips to Japan can happen essentially anytime. Constraints come with flight and lodging availability the closer to the desired date we get. I generally prefer to book at least 6 months out for planning purposes. Contact me to discuss your specific goals and we’ll take it from there!

TERRAIN AND SNOW QUALITY: The mountains near Deplar Farm are magical, rising up over 3,000 feet straight out of the Arctic Ocean. The amount of terrain to choose from seems limitless – there are beautiful lines right outside the lodge, layers upon layers moving deep into the interior, and countless options among the incredible fjords that make up the coast line. And there is something for virtually all ability levels – from wide open low angle slopes to steep faces and couloirs. It’s an amazing experience to ski 3,000 vertical feet directly down to the Arctic Ocean’s coast, only to get picked up by a helicopter for another run! Like any mountains you can ski on, the snow quality is variable over time and there are no guarantees. That said, Iceland in the spring months tends to be a mix of everything from cold powder to primo spring corn.

HELI / GUIDE STAFF: I work with a truly awesome team of guides and pilots at Deplar Farm. The pilots are very experienced in the mountains who take the prime directive of “safety first” very seriously. We only fly in A-Star B3s, which are the very best helicopters for small group heli skiing. When at Deplar, I work as a guide along with a small team of other guides I have known and worked with for many years. They are solid professionals and together we focus on safety and delivering the best possible ski and side activity experiences for our guests!


SAFETY:  Safety is always my primary concern, regardless of location, and I’m very careful when it comes to choosing who I work with! At Deplar, we have top notch pilots, the best helicopters, and a very experienced guide staff. Together, we make safety the priority all day every day. When injuries do occur, guides have basic medical equipment in their backpacks, with more advanced medical equipment on the helicopter. In the unlikely case of serious injury in the field, we stop everything and focus on getting the injured party to an appropriate medical facility. Iceland is a first world country and medical facilities are excellent.


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