Learn more about the adventure in Japan while filming the first episode (called Yōtei-Daiko) of Icelantic's new "Return To Nature" series. Go deep into the heart and soul of Hokkaido ski culture as Icelantic athletes get immersed in bottomless pillows, silver birch forests, fish markets, sacred temples and the ancient rhythms of the traditional Taiko drummers.Read now
Icelantic athlete Hayden Price brings us up to speed about traveling with fellow Icelantic athletes in Japan filming episode 1 of the Return To Nature series. Click here to get some of the Japanuary Japow action!
I couldn't handle any more pictures of friends skiing in Japan flooding my Instagram feed. I made a promise to myself last year that I would finally make it there this season and as these images of deep powder and epic tree skiing took over my thoughts I decided it was time to pull the trigger and experience it for myself.
Impulsively I called up Ben to see if he wanted to join me for a boys weekend in Japan to chase powder, sushi, and adventure. He couldn't say no and a week later we found ourselves on the other side of the world with our skis in hand.
We reached out to Japanese Icelantic athletes Shogo Kawano and Yuhei Yamada to see if they could join us short notice and they said yes. This was perfect, Ben and I both have been wanting to visit Japan to ski with these guys so it was game on!
We caught a direct flight from Denver to Tokyo where we met Yuhei and hopped directly into a car and drove straight up to Hakuba. The drive from Tokyo was intense and exciting as we raced through the urban metropolis all lit up at night and into the mountains where we were elated to find deep snow.
Yuhei and Shogo took us to a resort called Cortina and we lapped the sidecountry there for a day and a half skiing pow in the trees, it was hard to quit. One of my favorite aspects of this trip was the universal language of skiing shared between all of us. The language barrier was a fun challenge since Ben and I knew no Japanese and when it came to skiing and shooting photos there was a mutual understanding of what was going on and what we were doing that goes beyond words. Navigating in the sidecountry and lining up shots was easy for us without commonly shared words, just a rich passion for skiing with the same snow monkey instincts.
Check out this vid to follow us on our 48 hour adventure skiing and adventuring on the Main Island of Japan.