Ski Trip to Nagano

By Anissa Ratna Putri - Februari 28, 2017

After being a tour guide for Rizky's family for a week, I only had another week for rest before starting another trip. This time is a ski trip to Nagano, a prefecture famous for hot springs and winter sports. To be frank, I myself not really into winter sports (except for ice skating). The first excuse is because I feel like I had enough coldness this winter, so I don't feel like playing with snow anymore. But an essential excuse is because it's just too wild for me. The idea of sliding down the mountain, letting your feet on the board decide on which way to go, frighten me in some way. I sound like a paranoid, aren't I? Maybe I am becoming my mom now. 

Anyway, the first day we arrived in Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort, there was a blizzard. Maybe I am exaggerating since I don't really know to which level you can call snowy day as a blizzard, but at least for me, it was. I tried to slide, despite the weather, and found out that I managed to keep the balance. This actually feels like skating - except the fact that sometimes the board may bring you slide down contrary to your willing. Long story short, I rode the ski lift and slid down the hills three times. I managed to not fall at all, but I was sliding like a rollercoaster, unstoppable. On the third trial, I slid with Lauren who taught me that I should slid in an S shape instead of slid straight. I did what she taught me and I feel like finally, I can control my speed. If I am willing to do more practice, I might excel this ski thing. However I had enough adrenaline rush that day, and as I said before, it's just too wild for me. So the next day I chose to not skiing despite the sunny weather that actually perfect for winter sports.

On the second day, I and Muti explored the neighborhood: take a walk and stops in several spots to take pictures. Around noon, Rika joined us to have lunch. We then continued our exploration: we had culinary experience (we did not stop chewing from the top of the hill down to our lodging) and we played a lot with snow. I can say even though I did not play ski that day I was really happy. I found that my happiness is as simple as sharing Kitkat Apple and Oyaki with Muti and Rika or seeing Muti sprinkle snowflakes to Rika face during her snow angel photo session (a failed snowy day effect). 

Other than my activity in Nozawa, I think it is worth to tell a story about the place itself. Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort famous as a skiing venue, completed with lots of lodgings, public baths, and hot springs around. My trip was arranged by Jefry and Kura, who both patiently managed these amateurs who want to try winter sports for the first time. There were 11 of us, and we stayed in a lodging called Ichiryu. The one who operates the lodging is an old lady, who provided us with Japanese style room and fulfilling Japanese dinner and breakfast. I did not take pictures of the room, yet on the picture below you can see what kind of food we enjoyed after tired skiing on the first day. 

After the trip, I cannot say I like skiing, yet it did trigger my curiosity to try my sliding skill even more - someday. However, I would suggest any beginner who easily gets tired to not try their luck skiing in this area. This is due to a large area of Nozawa, that cause you need to carry all the ski equipment walking up and down the hill - which is tiring because the equipment are heavy. It's better to do a trial in an integrated place like Gala Yuzawa Snow Resort in Niigata or Biwako Valley Snow Resort in Shiga since the area is quite compact - from what I heard from people that have been there. All in all, I can say that I enjoyed my day in Nozawa. What I like the most is that each of us enjoyed the trip in our own way without any hard feeling. We went back to Kyoto later that night on the second day, with a night bus. Goodbye, Nagano. Thank you for the snowy days and the ski experience!


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