Guide to Japan snow season in a campervan // vanlife

Guide to Japan snow season in a campervan // vanlife


Jared: What are we covering today Hajime?
We’ve got to cover snow tyres Onsen, very important
Sleeping spots Snow tyre change spots
Winter tyres Heaters
Sleeping Eating
Snowboard rentals So many things
Roll the tape *Intro music* We’ve also gotta talk about Hakuba Why Hakuba is great
Well, the reason why Hakuba is great
is because Australians made it great
*laughter* Basically
Let’s be honest Gemma: It’s all Australians
So all these Australians went up there and did some Marketing
and now that’s the place everyone goes But it’s a lot of great mountains in the valley
A lot of great ski hills People can’t get spots there because it’s
so popular So there’s a lot of good spots
It’s really well catered for Australians There’s lots of restaurants
Ramen shops which sell Vegan options Flat whites
It’s really set up for Australians But there’s not many
Not much accommodation there So we have customers already booking our vans
to go to Hakuba And we thought it’d be great to set something
up in Hakuba too So we’re actually holding a trial right now
on this indoor sleeping spot where you can park
for the night have a fire pit
set up your camping gear It’s pretty close to the snow hills of Iwatate
and Tsugaike Tsugaike – thanks Hajime
Iwatake It’s quite close to those areas and yeah,
it’s an interesting spot So if you’re interested in trialling that,
hit us up And we’re running trials this winter
We might do something much bigger next year Another good thing about Hakuba is they’ve
got plenty of private onsen So you can book onsen just for you and your
family or your significant other These places can be called in English
They – basically everybody in the area speaks English or has English assistants
So it’s good to call them a day or two, or three in Advanced
If you know which days you’re going to be there
So you can have a private onsen if you’re not somebody who wants to go in the more communal/tradition
Japan onsen experience That’s something worth looking at too
We’ll put a link in the description for a spot we went to
It’s pretty cool Just a word of warning
If you don’t Most onsen have bathing places before you
go in Where you can like wash and use shampoo
Some of these private ones don’t have that It’s just a
It’s just a bath of water
It’s outdoors It’s in nature
You have the snow falling on your head while you experience it which is cool
But yeah, you just want to prepare, bring some
Make sure you’ve got your shampoo and your soap
Which if you use DreamDrive will be included in the kit
So! On a safety point Erhm, when driving on the snow
Obviously, there’s a lot of things that can go wrong
A lot of issues, especially if you don’t have the right equipment Even if you have the right equipment – Things can go wrong So, let’s just talk about a few little like
obvious points Driving in the snow, you’re going to need
to have snow tyres ideally Or snow chains
Or both You also would want to a 4WD Van, ideally
Which we do not even provide at DreamDrive So, that’s why we’re setting up some other
facilities for people in these areas To make it much safer
In the snow, on the way too these places If you rented a van from us you’ll have winter
tyres If you didn’t
You can use snow chains And you obviously don’t want to drive with
the snow chains until you’re in the areas where there’s snow on the ground
The snow The roads in Japan are pretty well-kept
and cleared Especially the main roads
But when you’re going up into where the resorts are
That’s where it gets pretty sketchy You’ll see on the side of the road
They have a lot of these tyre change Change areas
Where it’s a well-lit location And you can pull over and put the snow chains
on and keep going
Some of these chain kits can be pretty difficult to put on
Especially when you’ve got cold hands Which is why snow tyres are way better
But yeah, you go there You put your chains on
When the snow disappears You pull over and take them off
It’s quite It’s quite simple
*PARKING* In the actual snow towns of Japan we’re focussing
on Hakuba At this point
They have a lot of Nice little things set up
A lot of the tourists come by car So a lot of convenience stores use like saltwater
Or some kind of way of clearing the snow So you can park there without getting snowed
in A lot of the towns also have onsen
A lot of snow towns So Hakuba has got a bunch of onsen
Some of these onsen, like the foot onsen Are free
And they’re open 24/7 So it’s actually a really good spot, we’ll
put it in the description below
Where you can park and camp Some of our customers actually told us that
people parking there in tents and sleeping in tents as well
It’s a bit wild But it’s a place where, in this town where
you can park You can use the hot spring at nighttime
For your feet Which is kind of a nice little feature
And they have Lawson:
A convenience store Right next door too
So that’s a really good spot Also near the slopes,
they usually have a 24/7 bathroom with heated seats and so forth
Where you’d park next to That’s where we parked on our recent trip
to Hakuba When renting a van
A campervan to do the snowboard season
There’s a few things that can go wrong basically For one, storing equipment after a day in
the snow Uh, you can be covered in snow
and it melts It can let a lot of water into the van
So ideally, you’d want to change outside the van so you don’t get too much water inside
Also you leaning
You have to be careful not to lean skis snowboards onto the van
it can damage the paintwork and the vans can get snowed in
if there’s a snowstorm which is why we’re kinda offering better facilities
for this in Hakuba A good thing to do is actually just shovel
snow and try and If you know a snowstorm is coming and there’s
nothing you can do Try and shovel some snow to block the underneath
of the vehicles so you can actually drive away
The owner of the Hakuba brew hub, Daniel, told me that it’s really quite common that
people park There’s a heavy snowstorm
It gets underneath the van And the car ends up sitting
The bed of the car ends up sitting on snow The wheels just spin
And there’s not much you can do, you’ve got to call the services to get you out
Which can easily damage the vehicles So yeah, these are the sort of things to be
aware of Before you go
So, the slopes at Hakuba and a lot, many other places
have great rental available You can use the rental on the slopes
But you can also If you rent with companies like Rythm
You can sometimes book it, pick it up the night before
I believe if you pick it up after 4pm or 5pm You don’t pay for that day’s rental
And you can have your gear ready for the next day
When you actually hit the slopes So that can be a really good system
And they sometimes offer much better gear And if you get to the slopes to rent your
gear, it can be very… You can be waiting in very long queues
Which can take a long time So definitely recommend using those services
We’ll put a description in the link below (lol) too
So you can basically better prepare for that The great thing about using a campervan for
snow travel Is, you can park
If the conditions are good Right next to the ski lifts
You can seriously be in Japan Ski in and ski out accommodation
And it’s a great place to cook during the day
All our vans obviously have cooking equipment Our customers like to use it
for cooking too, mid-day or for breakfast or for making a coffee
It’s kind of a really cool feature Which to try and find ski in ski out cabins
in Hakuba It’s just going to be astronomical prices
So that’s something which people really enjoy And the vans we’re making are cosy
We’re fitting this week, heating systems to our van
FF parking heaters as well as snow tyres to all of the vans we’re sending
up At the time of booking, we can
Just contact us and we can tell you which vans have those systems in
But yeah, this makes it a very cosy cabin to stay in the snow too
And our customers so far have had a great time
So yeah, that’s it I hope that was helpful
If you have any questions Throw them in the comments
Of course you have to subscribe Because there’s going to be a lot more good
content coming And yeah
See you later! What should we say for like ‘hello people’
Everybody’s ‘hello everybody’ *laughter* Hello campers?
What’s up guys? Hey guys!
Hey, I got one Hey you – no no no no
That’s good I like it
Hey dreamers Drivers
Hey dreamers, hey drivers, hey people, all around

Antonio Breitenberg

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4 thoughts on “Guide to Japan snow season in a campervan // vanlife

  1. Dream Drive says:

    Let us know if you have any additional tips for driving in the snow or in Japan!

  2. TheJapanChannelDcom says:

    Another excellent video, well done!

  3. Nacho Nacho says:

    Awesome video 🔥🔥🔥

  4. Andy Battye says:

    Nice one

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