The final day of the NYT SPORTS: SNOW 2011 was spent in Sapporo City. The bus ride from Rusutsu Resort to Sapporo is relatively short. It was a cold day in the city but with lots of excitement in the air for the annual Sapporo Snow Festival. This is the 62nd Sapporo Snow Festival which attracts tourists from all over the globe. There are several festival points with one being only a few blocks away from the hotel. The Odori site is impressive with the Sapporo TV Tower as the backdrop. The Odori site stretches down Odori Park from east to west through the center of downtown Sapporo and represents the main festival site. The site features many snow and ice sculptures which are on a grand scale. There is even a big air session and competition for snowboarders. Local snowboarders showed their skills they brushed up on some of the best mountains in the world. The festival is exciting and is a must if you are in town during the festival time. It is hard to miss this amazing event as the sites are the main points of the city during those times. Make sure to check out the world famous Ramen Yokocho after your walk! Check for visual after the jump. Be sure to join us for our next NYT SPORTS: SNOW! A video of the trip is coming soon!


The NYT SPORTS: SNOW 2011 group went out to day 2 of Niseko from Rusutsu Resort today. As usual, we were dropped off at the Welcome Center at the basse of the Hirafu mountain. We were a bit unlucky with no new snowfall. The top lifts were closed in the morning due to high winds. The runs were pretty choppy but got better as the day got warmer. We mostly spent the day at the Hanazono side. The park riders at Niseko are some of the best we’ve seen. American mountains have plenty of rippers but Niseko has a big concentration of both male and female park riders that keep Niseko exciting. We ended the day early to go explore the town. There are a number of souvenier shops, snowboard/ski shops, and plenty of fun looking places to eat. The Rusutsu shuttle took us back to the tower. Everyone went on to do their own thing to shop for souveniers for friends and family. We are off to Sapporo for Day 7! Check out our day in photos after the jump!


The NYT SPORTS: SNOW 2011 group took a trip to Niseko from Rusutsu Resort today. Niseko is only a 40 minute drive away from Rusutsu. Niseko is a resort with a lot more traffic and international crowd. The Australian and New Zealand riders make most of the international group of riders. It was interesting to see more Americans at Niseko compared to last year. Maybe word is finally getting across to the US about Hokkaido? We ate a grand breakfast as we do every morning at the beautiful Rusutsu tower. We hopped on the bus to Niseko and were on the mountain in no time. The conditions weren’t as great as Niseko hasn’t seen snow in a few days. It was a colder day compared to the last few warm days. We spent most of the day over at Hanazono. The Hanazono mountain has a good concentration of freestyle riders. The park is well built with riders that put the features to their potential. The lodge Hanazono308 has the best food we’ve ever ate at a mountain resort period. There is just not enough time in a day. We didn’t get to check out Annupuri or Niseko Village today. We will be making our way there tomorrow!



Day 4 of NYT SPORTS: SNOW 2011 was another day at the beautiful Rusutsu Resort! We can’t believe that half the trip has already gone by. We started off the morning with the usual amazing breakfast buffet at The Atrium at the Rusutsu tower lobby. The day was partly cloudy with the day ending up being cloudy and foggy. Some flurries added excitement for new snow. There is still plenty of powder left even though the easily accessible pow was already tracked out. Can you believe the fluff was from 4 days ago? That’s unheard of where we come from (East Coast). Today was all about tree runs. We explored several spots and decided to keep taking the same runs to see if there was anything we missed. Rusutsu has infinite runs to explore. You would need a lot more time to really understand what’s on this mountain. The crew will be visiting Niseko tomorrow! Stay tuned.


DAYS 1-3

The tour group was able to fight off their jet lag and get up early for a day of snowboarding. Everyone couldn’t been happier with the amazing suite and service provided by Rusutsu resort. The service is unmatched! The first day of riding was ideal for the riders. Bluebird skies with powder. There were still plenty of untracked snow in the trees. It’s only day one and the crew has suggested that everyone should come back to Rusutsu every year. Rututsu is too beautiful not to experience.


When you’re riding in unfamiliar terrain, you’ll need to make sure that you have the best possible gear. Since we’re traveling on plane, we are limited to the amount of gear we can pack. FLUX BINDINGS are the choice for us. With improvements and new features every season, we feel FLUX BINDINGS are some of the most versatile and durable bindings on the market. Style? Durability? Versatility? Check.


We went to Teine on the last tour!


We have great news for the riders participating on the tour! Your lift tickets for Niseko has been upgraded so that you are covered for all 4 mountains at Niseko! Now you’re really getting an amazing deal that you can’t beat! For more on the mountains: NISEKO UNITED (Annupuri, Niseko Village, Hirafu + HANAZONO).


Kazu takes 2nd at Burton European Open!


Kazu Kokubo and the Hokkaido boys have come up with a video/photo/media project in documenting their trips across the world. Follow them through their episodes and see how they shred and hang out in different countries. They have covered France and the US so far.


Need to rent cell phones when you land in Japan? Here are some options:

Rent from IACE:

– Free* up to 11 days (after 12th day, $1.5o per day)
– you can pickup/drop off the cell phone at IACE NY office or $10 delivered
– In Japan
— $0.99 / min when you call to someone in Japan
— $1.50 / min. when you call to someone in US
— $0.00 when you receive incoming calls
– model :  Soft bank
– more info:  http://www.m-trend.com/iace

Rent from DOCOMO:



Kazu Kokubo now has a little section where he checks in with some snapshots over at snowboardermag.


collabos like this make sense!


good news!


Niseko is crazy right now!


Our choice of films are snow films for the winter. The Bicycle Film Festival, soccer film festival, and now snow film festivals are gaining popularity. These theme focused films have been becoming more creative , diverse, and improving in execution. However Japanese snowboard films are find to catch outside of Japan. We will be screening some great Japanese snowboard films on Dec. 22 (Wed) at 7PM at White Rabbit. The featured films are HEART Films Vol. 4, Indre’s Revolver Wolves and Hywod’s The Age. The screening is free admission. Music will be provided by empanadamn. There will also be giveaways! RSVP below!

Heart Films Vol. 4


HYWOD – The Age


INDRES – Revolver Wolves



shredding is fun no matter how much snow there is!


HEART Films is a snowboard film company by one of the greatest snowboarders in the world, Tadashi Fuse. Tadashi Fuse has been relevant in the snowboard scene for years with his progression in all aspects of snowboarding. His approach to the backcountry with street influenced lines are unmatched. HEART Films was started to show the world on what Tadashi and crew get to shred – the vast backcountry of Canada to his homeland mountains in Japan. The series is now up to volume 4. The series is a progression of how the riders have progressed throughout the years. You can check out the series here! Check here for more!





Fun edit of Niseko found on vimeo!


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And NYT SPORTS: SNOW 2011’s partner is Rusutsu Resort, again ! Internationally known and awarded with “Best Small Resort Award 2008” by Great Skiing & Snowboarding Guide UK, Rusutsu is the resort to visit in Hokkaido. You can find extensive off-piste riding filled with secret lines and fresh powder you won’t find anywhere else in the world. All your needs from coach transportation, hot springs, meals, lift tickets, and a welcoming comfortable stay will be taken care of by Rusutsu Resort.



We’re excited to announce that we’re doing it again! How was the trip last season? Check out the videos above!