After a local train to Nagano, a Shinkansen to Tokyo, a JR train to an airport train to Haneda, a plane to New Chitose Airport, by Sapporo, and then an interesting drive at night in the snow, and a closed road where we had to turn back and drive a longer way around, we finally got to Niseko. Pfew! :)
Niseko United itself is a huge resort made of 4 smaller resorts linked with lifts. We stayed in the southmost one, Annupuri, due to its side country gates and nice open bowls that sometimes are reserved to people who stayed there if the winds close the top interconnecting lifts. Turns out the winds did actually cut off the resorts a few times while we were there, and on our 2nd day skiing there, we had to make a mad traverse from Grand Hirafu's top all the way back to Annupuri and barely made it across over the "do not cross" point while the lifts that help you get higher and make an easy cross, were already closed for wind.
Niseko nicely has side country gates and maps to help you navigate the terrain
single chair lifts, don't fall off :)
we went all the way to Niseko Hanazono, used its side country gates, and I got to see kids towed on a life raft :)
pass observer, cute :)
many quad chairs had a bubble that would hit me over the head, try to throw me off the lift, and if it failed, kept us shielded from the wind
another side country gate, gateway to more powder ;)