After a quick blat on the northern side of Nissho Pass, up on Mumei-ho (‘no name peak’), we drove the 1km or so up Nissho Pass to the entrance to the Nissho Tunnel. Just to the left of the tunnel entrance was the large parking area where we stopped, scoffed down some lunch, and got kitted up to do some more skiing.
Once again, we were taken aback at the relative lack of snow this year. Usually around here, all undergrowth would be covered, save for a few errant haimatsu pines. It didn’t affect the downhill skiing too much, but it was surprising nonetheless.
By the time we got onto the ridge proper, we were being buffeted by a strong wind blowing up from the plains below to the east. Highway 274 slowly disappeared into the distance as we climbed, and was replaced by big views across the Tokachi Plains to the east.
The Nissho Peak summit was a general mess of low haimatsu pines with very thin snow cover. While not essential for the ultimate goal of downhill skiing, we made the pilgrimage to the peak anyway. From the peak were great views of Tomamu Ski Resort to the north.
The downhill ski from the summit was actually much better than we’d been anticipating. The northerly aspect of the slope had kept a nice layer of powdery snow as we skied generously to the skier’s right, towards the gully.
This was my first time to the Nissho Pass area, but with the two routes so close to the road, it will probably become a regular place to stop off for a ski when passing through the area.