December 22, 2009

Last Day in Niigata: Snowboarding is Not Torture

Forgive the delay on the last day; I didn't take many pics with my iPhone on this day, and so had to get them from my camcorder. Plus, I wanted a little suspense about whether or not I survived snowboarding.

From Niigata Trip

I knew that if it finally properly snowed, my boarding fate was sealed. We woke up to a white Christmas at the Naspa resort [map], then headed to the Gala ski grounds [map][website]. Both are in Yuzawa, the setting of the famous novel Snow Country.



From Niigata Trip

This is a shinkansen ticket gate right in the Gala building. For about 20,000 yen, you can make a quick package deal journey, with train and ski tickets together, to Gala from Tokyo in a very short amount of time. So if you weather permits, like mine did, you can zip right up to Yuzawa.



From

I was actually a bit anxious because I haven't boarded since I was a gangly teenager. But now I am a gangly man, and a blogger for hire, so I did my duty and went up that mountain. That beautiful, murderous mountain.




From Niigata Trip

But you know what? I did good! I managed two runs without falling that morning! A snow storm came along while I was between runs and provided us with some wicked powder to help too.




From Niigata Trip

After a hard day of boarding, enjoying seaweed-laced soba is a nice reward.
Soon, I will be making videos. Actually, one is rendered and scheduled to be uploaded today. But I hope theses posts come to be of use to people out there that are thinking of going to Niigata. As for me, I want to live in the Uonuma area (where the cool art was in temples surrounded by snowy mountains) now!