Hakuba Happo-one at Nagano is one of my favorite and one of the most well-known ski resort in Japan. Japanese skiers and snowboarders who often go to nearby snow places also go out of the way to go to Happo-one from Tokyo, Osaka, and other place. They usually stay for one or two nights on the weekend. Of course I do that too.
Skiing at Happo
It depends on where to stay, first I usually get on Nakiyama ski lift and go toward the heights. Using Nakiyama-Triple-Lift and Riesen-Quad-Lift, it arrives at the same place as the Gondola-Adam.
Then, I repeat Riesen Slalom Course unitl Riesen-Quad-Lift is crowded. Since Riesen's lift is fast, it is nice to warm up and enjoy comfortable cruising there. If the Riesen lift starts to be crowded, move to the next place.
If the weather is fine, maybe you should try to go further up. I usually head for Riesen Grat (the top of skiing are). Riesen Grat has an excellent view.
The next, almost I head to Panorama course because Sun Terrace Panorama has the special morning-coffee service. That is JPY 100 yen coffee and is only available until 10:00 AM. After 10:00, it gets back to be normal price.
Where to ski after a coffee break? It is good to repeat Panorama course or to go other courses too. Or, you might want to have lunch because restaurants are so crowded during lunch time. In my case, repeating Panorama course and Olympic Ⅱ course more often. Panorama is a intermediate course which is suitable for practice. The distance is not long and there are three ski lifts. It is located in the center of Happo, so it is convenient to go to other courses. The Olympic course Ⅱ starts on a steep slope from the Panorama rest house, and is satisfactory course for advanced. At lower of the course, it joins the Sakka slope. If you repeat this course, take the Kokusai ski lift.
Central Course is the slope I want to go at least once a day. It is not a comfortable cruising course, but I cannot help going down that steep slope. However, the Central ski-lift is inconvenience a little for going to other course. In that case, it is better to use Gondola Adam or it is also good to traverse to the Nakiyama ski-lift if Gondola is crowded.
Skyline course has two slopes. One is groomed, and the slope is smooth and comfortable. The other is ungroomed. When it snows a lot, it will be powder zone with trees. It can be enjoyed two types in this course. A little unfortunately, the skyline ski-lift is usually crowded because everyone gets there.
Lunch at Happo
That is one of the very worrisome issue where to have. No matter where you go, although it is very crowded during lunch time. This time, I had lunch at Cafeteria Kurobishi but it was not good. Cafeteria Kurobishi has a ramen restaurant this season. Originally, noodles of ramen should be eaten before getting soggy. However, it was not able to do that there. Unfortunately, the staffs lacked finesse in their operation and it took time such as dishing up toppings after the noodles were boiled. On top of that, the payment via credit card also took time. The line was getting even long. It was hard to have delicious. The place where I usually have lunch are Usagidaira Terrace and Sun Terrace Panorama. As long as you have your table, you will be able to have deliciously there. Anyway, although it is different from the city restaurants.
Happo hot spring is alkaline hot spring quality. There is public hot spring facilities in the town and some hotels and Ryokans ( traditional Japanese inn ) have one inside. If you stayed at Ryokan, you could enjoy hot spring and Japanese style Ryokan's dinner.
You can get some information at Hakuba Happo-one official site.