The joys of winter! Skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing

Student Lauren Sekiguchi reports on the eighth grade ski trip.

A sprinkle of snow greeted us on Wednesday as we arrived at our destination, Naeba Ski Resort in Niigata Prefecture. The resort is located northeast of Tokyo, and is a popular ski and snowboard destination, renowned for its snow conditions throughout Japan. We stayed at the resort for three days and two nights at the ski-in, ski-out Prince Hotel- lucky us!

After stowing our bags in the hotel rooms, we snowshoed for several hours. It was the first time for many of us, and was an interesting challenge. Some of us caught on quicker than others, and many of them chose to challenge themselves by trudging through the thick, untouched snow, carving their own paths. Others chose to walk on the well-worn paths. We climbed over many hills and stray fallen branches peeking out from underneath the powdery snow. After conquering a particularly steep hill, most of us, exhausted and red-faced, plopped down on the snow to rest. Soon after regaining our energy, many of us played in the powdery snow, some even practicing their batting skills for the spring season using their ski poles and snowballs!

After returning to the hotel in the evening, everyone bonded and enjoyed time with friends through games such as “Apples to Apples,” or “Monopoly” and air hockey after dinner. The following morning, on Thursday, we took either ski or snowboard lessons, and then skied or snowboarded with friends in the afternoon along the 45 trails at the resort. Many of us also witnessed the teachers whizzing by us on the slopes. On the last day, Friday, we were rewarded with powdery snow conditions, since it snowed heavily Thursday evening. Unanimously, the ski trip was one of the most memorable extended campus trips, because we had a lot of fun, and got to ski and snowboard on school time! (Lauren Sekiguchi, Grade 8 student)