Experience Niseko's Guide to Grand Hirafu's Resort Terrain
Explore Niseko's incredible variety of in-resort ski terrain with our ultimate guide to Grand Hirafu's beginner, intermediate and advanced runs!
Grand Hirafu makes up the biggest of the four resorts that make up Niseko United. In Winter, the snow constantly falls, the area is blanketed in the renowned jaPOW, which draws in a number of international visitors to the area.
Grand Hirafu offers a variety of terrain for all levels, with approximately 27% of the runs designated for advanced skiers and snowboarders, 28% for intermediates, and the remaining 45% suitable for beginners.
Niseko Tokyu Grand Hirafu Resort Ski Area Guide 2022/23
With 22 courses and 12 lifts/gondolas, it can be intimidating to explore a new resort. To help you make the most of your time on the slopes, our Experience Niseko team has shared their favourite runs within the resort, as well as local-only secrets to help you to plan your perfect days out on the slopes.
While we'll save the gate and backcountry runs for another blog, we hope that these tips help you to have a great day out within the resort boundaries.
Grand Hirafu Resort Full Map
Beginner - Green Runs
All in all, there’s a huge variety of easy runs across Niseko. It’s hard to pick a favourite. For those just starting out, you’ll be sticking on the Family run or Boyo Run.
However if you’re a confident beginner our pick would have to be Shirakaba. It's located higher up the mountain, so it's generally less crowded than other beginner runs. Plus, there's a nice patch of off-piste powder to the right of the run for those looking to take their beginner powder skills to the next level.
Intermediate - Red Runs
This is a hard one, there’s so many great intermediate (or red runs) across Grand Hirafu Resort. The crown jewel of these runs in our eyes is Center, located on the upper half of the mountain.
With its ideal gradient and wide open terrain, it's the perfect place to find some fresh powder. For those looking to hone their off-piste tree skiing skills, there's a patch of evenly spaced trees between Center and Rinkan that are worth a try.
Intermediate - Special Mention: A special mention must go to Kokutai, which offers stunning views of Hirafu on a clear day. It's also well-covered, making it a great option on windy days when snow is blowing down from the top.
Advanced - Black Runs
There’s no denying it! All of our advanced skiers and boarders out there, get the first lift up, and do the Miharashi run. After taking the Gondola, there's a short hike to the top, but it's a great warm-up. On a powder morning, you'll be able to enjoy multiple runs of fresh snow. You can choose to dive through the trees or take on the powdery ungroomed slope.
Advanced: Special Mention: It was hard to not give this run the top spot but Dynamic is a must-ride, for two reasons.
1. You get to ride the most terrifying chairlift in Niseko, the Grand Hirafu King #4 chairlift, also known as the 'Pizza Box Lift', is ready to challenge even the bravest of skiers and snowboarders.
2. When you get to the top, especially on a bluebird, the views are endless. After a good dumping of powder, this run must be tried!
You can't go wrong with riding anywhere in Grand Hirafu, but we hope this article has convinced you to explore a few additional runs. Whether you're looking to step up your game or try something new, we hope you enjoyed this read.
Please note that this blog only covers in-resort runs in Grand Hirafu. There's plenty more fun to be had out the gates, in the backcountry, or by popping over to Hanazono.
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Check out our previous backcountry blog and lift-accessed backcountry guide for more information and inspiration! If you're venturing out of the gates, make sure to read up on the Niseko Rules before your trip.