Chikuniotsu, Otari, Kitaazumi District, Nagano Prefecture 399-9422, Japan
Powder skiing in HakubaSpent 3 great days in snowboarding in Hakuba, Japan. We stayed at the Ridge Hotel which is near the Happo-One resort.
A storm was expected to pass through during our second night. So I decided to hit the slopes at Happo-one which has some nice terrain but not much for off piste. With the fresh powder the next day, I hit the nearby resort Cortina (25 min free bus ride). Ski patrol is more relaxed here regarding accessing off piste terrain. The snow was waist deep and the lines were fairly short.
Lift tickets in Japan are very reasonable and you may be able to get additional discounts from your hotel. I was able to get a one day lift ticket, discount on lunch and access to an onsen in Cortina for $40 US!
Although there wasn't much for apres-skiing, there are a number of excellent local cuisine/food options in Hakuba (Izakaya Kaz, Ohyokuri, Maeda, Antlers).