With 60% of the courses at Madarao ungroomed, there’s a good chance that you’ll catch and ride on some of the best fluffy and deep powder; and there’s lots to go around. Madarao sits on Mt. Madarao, which stands at 1382m with 28 courses and 15 lifts. Despite its relatively small size, the resort offers powder, powder and more powder and will keep the powder hounds happy for sure. On top of that, Madarao gives its guests some of the greatest freedom of any Japanese resort, so run wild. As well as ungroomed terrain, which includes tree runs courses; there are also a number of groomed runs, back country tours and a fully-fledged kid’s park and Free Ride Park. Backcountry tours are run by an experienced local and personal friend of founder Hiro, allow us maximum insight and the latest information on both the area and the activities. A particularly distinct feature of the resort is the ‘Ninja’ course which includes a handmade sections built into the course, including a jump over 7m high. You can now run around the forest like a Japanese Ninja. The two main hotels in Madarao are located right by the ski resort and provide an easy access, ski-in ski-out stay. Despite no village, the town of Iiyama is just under 30 minutes away and can provide you with extra facilities and services as well as restaurants and bars for a relaxing nightlife. Just over from Madarao is Tangram Ski Resort. Options for a pass that works across both areas are available for an extra ¥500 upon arrival.
In preparation for the 2015-16 Winter Season, Madarao is increasing the number of ungroomed and tree run courses at its resort.
Madarao Kogen is located about an hour away from Nagano City in northern Nagano Prefecture.
From Tokyo it takes around 2 hours by the Hokuriku Shinkansen, to Iiyama Station, where there is a shuttle bus running to Madarao Resort. The bus ride takes about 25 minutes. Services also run from Nagano Station.
Coach and Private Transfers
Alternative modes of transfer from Iiyama or Nagano Station can be arranged.
Getting Around Madarao
Buses travelling from Madarao to Iiyama town cost around ¥500 one way, with the last bus leaving Iiyama at 9:00PM.
Lift passes for Madarao do not allow access to Tangram, however with an extra fee, access can be easily organised for both resorts.
For non-skiers there are a range of options including tubing, snow rafting and snowshoe tours, as well as a Kid’s area for the young ones. For the powder hounds there is backcountry tours offered in English to make the most of the area. Experience options include activities such as Soba noodle making and arts and crafts. Onsen hot springs are also there to enjoy
Equipment Rental & Ski School
Rental stores are located in the resort entrance plaza and offer a range of gear for adults and children. Those looking to ride the powder have fat ski rentals available at the Powder Station.
The schools offer ski and snowboard lessons in a number of formats for varying skill levels as well as telemark ski lessons, and other skills that will help beginners and experienced skiers’ alike make the most of their time at Madarao.
Madarao Kogen Hotel is the most popular hotel in the Madarao high lands.
Many guests visit Madarao Kogen Hotel in both the green season and ski season.