Have you ever stood on top of a mountain, in a blizzard, at a causal negative 18 degrees?
Yeah, me neither. That was until I spent a week snowboarding in Niseko, Japan.
After losing the feeling in my face on the first day, I quickly learnt that this wasn’t going to be the same as the snow back home in Australia. I had f***ed up! It was going to take plenty more layers to keep me toasty warm while hitting these slopes!
You probably think I’m crazy being outside in the snow in that kind of weather but once you’ve experienced the infamous #japow you’ll understand why people do it!
Packing for the snow can be daunting, especially for a week in Japan, so I’ve put together the ultimate female packing list to keep all your fingers & toes (and face) snug!
The Ultimate Japan Snow Trip Packing Guide
On the Slopes
Ski & Snowboarding equipment
What you can hire:
If you don’t own gear yet, or you simply want to keep your pack light, you can hire the items below once you get to Japan.
- Ski/Snowboard Boots
- Snow Jacket
- Snow Pants
- Wrist Guards
- Après-ski Boots
We hired our gear from Rhythm Japan at Niseko. They have either Standard or Premium Ski & Snowboard hire, (approx cost for 6 days was 19500, 28000 yen respectively). Premium hire ensures you have the best new season boards to ride and can trade your board or ski’s in a different set up depending on what style of riding you want to do. If you get the standard hire but change your mind you can always pay the difference to upgrade your gear! Rhythm also have stores in Hakuba!
What you can’t hire:
Unfortunately due to hygiene reasons you are unable to hire the below items, you can either bring the items with you or buy them once you’re there.
- Waterproof gloves or mittens, with inners (good quality is a must!)
- Goggles (low Light Lens work best for the conditions)
- Balaclava (highly recommended) or a neck gator & face mask
- Jumper & thermal long sleeve top (for under your snow jacket)
- Thermal leggings (for under your snow pants)
- Long socks for under your boots
Off the slopes
At the snow, layering is key. You’ll be pulling on and off layers as you go from warm, cosy bars and restaurants, to the sub zero temperatures outside, especially at night.
- 2x Warm pants/jeans with thermals underneath
- Après ski boots – long, warm waterproof boots
- 5x Long sleeve shirts
- 2x Dressy tops
- 2x Warm jumpers
- Long down coat with hood
- 2x Warm scarves to mix and match
- 2x Cute beanies to mix and match
The other stuff
- Warm PJ’s
- Bathers – If there is a heated pool (or just get naked and get in the Onsen!)
- Fluffy socks and slippers
- Sports bra
- Normal bra
Besides your usual toiletries make sure to take the below items:
- Lip Balm – Super important. Make sure its good quality
- Sunscreen with SPF – Remember you can still get burnt at the snow and to check the UV!
- Good quality face and body moisturiser – the altitude, wind and cold temps severely damages the skin. You’ll need extra moisture while at the snow (and the week following). Look after your skin gals!
- Deep heat or something similar for any muscle aches and pains
- Small packs of tissues for your pockets
- Go Pro and mounts
- Waterproof, shockproof case for your phone
- Travel Insurance that covers snow sports