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  • Writer's pictureJacob Maguire

Mountain Spotlight : Iwatake

Definitely one to save for sunny day as it acts as a lookout back to Happone, Hakuba 47 and Goryu, at 539 metres of vertical fall its no monster but a fun day out with a bit of everything for everyone. If you like groomed runs its got a nice wide thigh burner running for 3800m from top to bottom and a fun glade riding area over the back( although this gets tracked pretty fast) Around behind the top eatery is a nice freestyle park with an intermediate and learner line running conveniently under a twin chairlift so you can see your mates sending it.... or eating it. This is one of those mountains they rope a lot of areas off so be prepared to lose your pass if you duck ropes, here and Hakuba 47 seem to be the most heavily enforced by ski patrol and forget it, the fact you don't speak Japanese wont save you. If you do want some cheeky lines and steep bits head for the View Zone. Lacking in altitude often means you will have 2 different types of snow pack so be prepared for the concrete zone down low if there has been a thaw freeze, not the best base for learners due to this fact. Iwatake has a nice authentic Japanese feel and the accommodation out here reflects that. Once your done for the day head over to the Brewhouse and restaurant Its got nice cozy feel, brews a mean beer and if you're in luck the deep fried Korean popcorn chicken is still on the menu. There is usually a nice acoustic guitar set being played most apre afternoons and they do free transfers as well.


Another notable mention for is Mountain Harbor cafe, located toward the back bowl it has bakery style food and an amazing view back to Hakuba.



There needs to be special shout out to Iwatake for taking the lead in summer mountain biking, Hakuba has been slow to adapt but Iwatake have built some fun runs over the last few years and run the gondola to carry the bikes, well done.

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