Information about Skiing in Japan


Hakba Iwatake | Hakuba, Nagano

Hakuba Iwatake snow field


Hakuba Iwatake snow field(often simply known as Hakuba Iwatake or Iwatake) is located in Hakuba village in the northern part of Nagano Prefecture and situated just to the northwest of Happo One ski resort and to the south of Tsugaike ski resort. Hakuba Iwatake is especially famous for its majestic panoramic view.You can enjoy 360 degree's panoramic view from Japanese northern Alps to the foot of Mt.Hakuba.

Hakuba Iwatake is a medium sized ski resort which has 26 courses, 12 lifts, vertical drop of 539m (1289m - 750m), and longest distance of 3,300m. It has two main areas - the base "Village Side area" and the "Mountain Side area", these two areas are connected by Gondola. ”Mountain side area” stretches around the peak of the Mt.Iwatake offers plenty of slopes for all level skiers from beginner to expert. Although it doesn't have long cruising slopes,there are a variety of courses which have a nice character. For example, in the "Sawa slope" you can enjoy a natural half pipe and in the "View+α" you can go to tree-run zone, and in the "North course" you can try Terrain park called "DC-Park" . The highlight of this area is "South slope" near the gondola peak station which has the wide, gentle slope from which you can enjoy a majestic view of the mountains. Even beginners can enjoy this attractive slope. In case of going down to the base area they can take the gondola.


Recently Hakuba Iwatake has enhanced tree run zones and off-piste slopes. They have been expanded to 7 courses(and zone) for the 2019-2020 season. On the powder day after heavy snowfall many skiers descend on the ski resort such as Cortina and Happo-one. Since Hakuba Iwatake is more peaceful than them, you may have chances to enjoy fresh powder in comparison. In 2019 at the peak of Mt.Iwatake "Hakuba Mountain Harbor" has been opened. You can enjoy panoramic mountain view with foods and drinks there.

Basic Information

Courses 26
Area 120ha
Longest run 3,300m
Elevation 750-1,289m
Open18th Dec(2020)

Course ratio



12 ropewaygondralift_4
0 1 1
1 8 10


  • Near the peak there is plenty of nice slopes which has around 1,000m length including beginner course.
  • Iwatake offers majestic panoramic view on fine days. It is the best in Hakuba area.
  • At the terace cafe on the peak "Hakuba Mountain Harbor" you can enjoy great view with dirnks and snacks.
  • Other ski resorts in Hakuba sometimes due to wind they stop lift operation, but Iwatake is relatively rare.
  • On the powder day Iwatake is more peaceful than other ski resorts. You may have a chance to enjoy no-track and fresh tree-line.


  • Availabilioty of long cruising course is limited.
  • The snow quality can be affected by warm temps due to the lower elevation compared to other resorts.
  • Iwatake accomodation has a few nigh life compared to Happo area

Hakuba Iwatake's off-piste skiing and tree-skiing

Hakuba Iwatake has 7 off-piste slopes including tree run zone. All of them are located in the mountain side. We will introduce recommended slopes as follows.

VIEW A(length 830m. gradient: Max.24° Ave.19°)

VIEW B(length 720m. gradient: Max.32° Ave.14°)


(Left)(Uper Right)VIEW A couse (Lower Right)VIEW B course

One of the most popular areas for powder snow people of Iwatake is the "back bowl" on the reverse side of the mountain. View-A is an off-piste slope which offers a rich variety of geographical features. The slope snakes to the right and left. Some part of the slope seems to be a natural half-pipe. View-B is a steep off-piste slope which allow skiers to muster enough speed to turn and spray powder snow.

View+α(length 500m. gradient: Max.36 Ave.22)


View+αis one of the pupular tree-run zone which is located at the Iwatake back bowl. Since the intervals between trees is moderately spaced, you can enjoy the smooth tree run. Depending on the weather and snow condition this tree-run course may be closed.

HIKAGE A(length 520m. gradient: Max.30° Ave.15°)

HIKAGE B(length 350m. gradient: Max.30° Ave.19°)


(Left)(Lower Right)HIKAGE course (Lower Roght)FIVE SIDE

Since the slopes face north, the snow condition can be kept better than other slopes. It is located in mountain side near the peak and it is a little difficult to find so it is kind of "secret place" for powder hounds .

FIVESIDE(length 500m. gradient: Max.23° Ave.13°)

Fiveside is a tree run zone in which intermediates can also challenge and enjoy. Since the slope run along south No.5 lift, this tree-run zone is named as "Five side". The people on the lift become your spectators!

Comfortable slopes for beginner & intermediates at Hakuba Iwatake


(Left)South slope  (Right)East slope

The highlight of Hakuba Iwatake is a variety of slopes in the "Mountain-side" which is located in the upper part of the ski resort including peak of the mountain. The most recommended slope is "South slope" which is directly accessible from the gondola peak station. It is gentle and wide slope in which beginner and children can enjoy skiing in peace with the majestic mountain view. In the Hakuba area only Iwatake,Tsugaike and Goryu has wide, gentle slope in the upper part of the ski resort. Among them we give the 1st prize to Iwatake's south slope in terms of width, moderateness, and the view. "East slope" which is also located in the "Mountain-side" is also a nice slope for beginner.



The "Back bowl" is on the reverse side of the mountain (Mt.Iwatake) and you can enjoy skiing taking magnificent panoramic scenery. In this area you ski toward the big mountains, while almost all courses in Hakuba towards Hakuba town. This is why you can see a great view! VIEW-C slope (Length:1,100m, gradient:Max.29° Ave.13°) is a beginner slope in the "Back bowl" area. Hakuba Iwatake have opened "Hakuba Mountain Harbor" in 2019. It features an amazing sky deck which is the perfect place to enjoy the incredible scenery of the mountains. You can also enjoy delicious bread, snacks and drinks there.


(Left)Big bahn   (Upper Right)Up-bahn  (Lower right)Sunny valley course

The foot of a mountain is an area called "Village side". This area has many technical slopes which are used in Alpen ski competition and ski skill examination. We can say compared to "Mountain side", the majority of this area is intermediate and above. Main slope near the base area has several courses. Big bahn (Length:440m, gradient:Max.22° Ave.16°) is indicated as beginner course, but it is a little steep for beginner to enjoy. Up-bahn (length 390m. gradient: Max.15° Ave.24°)is a good slope for intermediates to practice. If you are a beginner, we recommend you to take gondola to go down from the peak to bottom, since on the way to the base you need to go through some intermediate courses.

Hakuba Iwatake basic information

Lift ticket charge

TypeAdult 6~12 yeasr oldover 60 years oldunder 5 years old
1 Day JPY4,600 JPY4,100 JPY2,800無料
Half Day JPY3,600 JPY2,900 JPY2,200Free




12056 Hokujyo, Hakuba-Mura,Kitaazumi-gun, Nagano Prefecture,399-9301 JAPAN

Access to Hakuba Iwatake


The most popular route from Tokyo to Hakuba Iwatake is a combination of high speed train and bus via Nagano station. The high speed train (Hokuriku Shinkansen) from Tokyo to Nagano takes about 1 hour and 20 minutes at a cost of JPY 8340 for reserved seats, which is followed by a 80 minute bus ride to Hakuba iwatake. Name of the bus stop is "Hakuba Iwatake mountain resort. " The total journey time from Tokyo to Tsugaike is around three to three and a half hours, including the time to change from high speed train to bus. During winter season direct bus from Narita airport is available. It takes around Five and a half hours. Since the bus stop is only Hakuba station, Happo bus terminal, and Goryu, it is required to transfer to shuttle bus at the Happo bus terminal. It takes around 10min. At the bus terminal you many be able to catch a TAXI.

Hakuba Iwatake Accommodation

Accommodation in Iwatake is mostly simple pensions or minshuku (Japanese inns) which offer Japanese style rooms with futons on the tatami flooring. There are around 60 numbers of accommodation in two areas "Kirikubo" and "Shinden". Both are walking distance from the base of Iwatake ski resort. There is no ski-in ski-out style hotel. It has a few Izakaya and restaurants. Most of the guests who stay in this area have dinner in the staying accommodation.Since shuttle bus service which runs thru Hakuba major accommodation areas and ski resort is available, it is no problem to stay in the other accommodation area such as Happo, Tsugaike and visit Hakuba Iwatake as a day trip.