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Terakoya Skiing Area - a ski resort that boasts some of the highest-elevation slopes, even in the Shiga Kogen Area

# Ski & snowboard
October 06, 2020
Terakoya Skiing Area is home to some of the highest-elevation slopes, even in the Shiga Kogen Area. Although the courses and facilities are not very large, this ski resort is famous for its snow, which is powdery with little moisture. There’s a lot of snowfall particularly around the summit, making it an extraordinary area where you can enjoy fresh new snow even during the day. Here we will introduce you to some of the details of the Terakoya Skiing Area.

Slope that lets you enjoy some of the best powder snow in the Shiga Kogen Area

Slope surrounded by powder snow

The greatest thing about the Terakoya Skiing Area is, of course, its high elevation. It has the second-highest elevation of any ski resort in the Shiga Kogen Area, preceded only by Yokoteyama Shibutoge Ski Resort, and boats a max elevation of 2,043 meters. For that reason, the entire area is always covered in fluffy powder snow. The snow is so soft that when you pick it up to pack it into a ball, it sifts away from between the fingers.

Another thing that comes with the elevation, however, is changeable weather. It’s common for you to have a perfect view of the scenery in the morning, then not be able to see anything in the afternoon because of snow flurries. Though snow flurries will make it easier for you to ski down the slopes, it can also make it quite cold near the summit. The ski lifts can, at the worst, come to a complete stop due to strong winds. Depending on the weather conditions, it may be better for you to find a different ski resort.

How to get to the Terakoya Skiing Area

Slope under a clear blue sky

Terakoya Skiing Area is located in the Ichinose Area, with its many ryokan and guesthouses. It can be accessed from the upper area of the Ichinose Family Skiing Area, which is known for its family-oriented slope. At Shiga Kogen, they sell lift tickets that are shared across all of the ski areas. As such, you only need one ticket to ski in all of the neighboring ski areas.

Beginners will have to be careful on the course leading to Terakoya Skiing Area. Though it is short, as it can get quite narrow and steep. People who aren’t used to skiing might especially be afraid of going off-course, so just stay calm, and try to go slowly down the slope. Those in groups should have the more advanced skiers/snowboarders help the less advanced, for a smooth descent.

Slope configuration oriented mostly towards intermediate-level skiers/snowboarders

A wide course

The course configuration is geared mainly towards intermediate-level skiers, with a difficulty breakdown of 30% beginner, 40% intermediate, and 30% advanced. Though these courses are short, they tend to have abrupt changes in steepness. There are also many courses that branch out from the summit. Many groups visit this area for ski training camp, since it has many courses that are perfect for practicing. Though the courses in general tend to be quite steep, they are also made from compacted snow, and are relatively easy to ski/snowboard on. This assortment of courses is very well suited to just going up and down the ski lift and practicing again and again.

Long season, meaning you can ski in the spring as well!

Skiing in the spring

This ski resort is also known for how long its seasons are, since it’s located at such a high elevation. Even as the other ski resorts in Shiga Kogen close their slopes, one by one, the Terakoya Skiing Area tends to keep them all open and running normally. Since this ski resort is open all the way until around May every year, it has come to be known as the best spring skiing spot in the Nagano area.

Though the snow quality during the day in the base area tends to deteriorate as it gets warmer, the summit area will still maintain powder snow unchanged from the winter days. It’s the perfect area to enjoy some late-season skiing.

The cutlet curry, which comes in a generous portion

Rest House Terakoya is located to the left of the main lift of the Terakoya Skiing Area. It is a two-story wooden lodge, with bathrooms on the first floor and a restaurant on the second floor. Since there’s a heater in the middle of the restaurant, many people use this space as a rest area as well. Though the restaurant has many seats, it does get crowded around lunchtime, so watch out.

Out of the ski slope cuisine, we particularly recommend the cutlet curry. This is an amazing meal, offered in generous portions and delicious too! We also recommend the hot chocolate if you want to relax and take a breather. The hot chocolate, a Terakoya specialty, will be sure to warm up your body, chilled after being outside skiing.

Very easy to get to the surrounding ski resorts

Slope with few people

Since the Terakoya Skiing Area is located in the central area of Shiga Kogen, it’s very easy to get from there to the ski resorts around it. Go down the slope and you’ll find the Ichinose Family Skiing Area, and near the ryokan area, you’ll find the Ichinose Diamond Skiing Area and Tannenomori Okojyo Skiing Area - so there’s a whole variety of courses for you to choose from. It’s great to be able to go easily to a different slope when the weather conditions are bad or when it gets very crowded at the Terakoya Skiing Area.

Lots of day-trip onsen in the base area!

Onsen area

Shiga Kogen is a town famous for onsen. At the base of the slopes, where there wafts the smell of sulfur springs with a host of benefits, there are many onsen ryokans. Though their hours are irregular, they offer many day-trip onsen - so why not stop by an onsen to cap off your ski trip? The famous ones near the Terakoya Skiing Area are the Takamagahara Onsen and the Hoppo Onsen.

A compact ski resort with the highest-quality powder snow

Full view of the slopes

This is the end of our introduction to the Terakoya Skiing Area. Since you can only get to it from the Ichinose Family Skiing Area, it’s actually more like a composite slope that combines two ski resorts. While Ichinose is oriented towards families, Terakoya is geared towards intermediate-level skiers/snowboarders. If steep slopes, windy courses, and fluffy powder snow are what you’re after, then this is a must-visit ski resort for you.

Pricing information and schedule may not be up to date and are subject to change without notice. Please check before your trip.

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Shiga Kogen Mountain Resort Nagano Prefecture

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Nov 14 - May 05
Courses84
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Longest run distance4,000 m
Maximum gradient38 °
Courses84
Lifts48
Longest run4,000 m
Maximum38 °

Adult 2 people1 night

2020-12-11
USD 114〜
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