All of Japan is feeling the effects of winter today ranging from unusual heavy snow in western Honshu to Tokyo seeing gusty cool winds with passing flurries.
This storm was triggered on Thursday as a low pushed over the country bringing wide spread precipitation. Even in Tokyo flurries were seen Thursday morning and again during the evening hours.
The big thing is though that this pulled the jet stream south along with a huge surge of cold
air south triggering off a wide spread sea effect snow event from Kyushu all the way north through Hokkaido.
High winds have also been impacting the region, off the coast of Akita several fishermen have gone missing after venturing out in to the 5-6 meter high waves.
The heaviest snow reported in the past 24hrs has been in Western Honshu in Hiroshima prefecture where over 70cm of snow was reported. This is one incredible snowfall report but the big thing is that it has occurred in a area that typically does not get a lot of snow, or really any of at all for that matter. In fact just east of Hiroshima in Tottori one town where I pulled up the graphic below is well above its average snow depth for this time of year.
This image is also from the same location that we seen wide spread travel problems due to heavy snow last month, this weather setup is very similar and we can expect a similar outcome. Already in Hiroshima as of writing this update there has been reports of traffic accidents.
The “winter weather setup” will continue to dump heavy snow throughout the weekend due to a blocking high to the north keeping this pattern right in place over the next 96hrs. Like a conveyor belt it will pump moisture on shore across Japan leading to snow totals which could top over 2 meters when this is all said and done.
The snow actually is not forecasted to taper off until Tuesday, so for those hitting the slopes this coming weekend you will have plenty of fresh powder to play with. On the other hand getting to and from the mountains will be a slow go and the threat of avalanche and reduced visibility will be high. So be careful out there on the mountains.