Get it, guys? I-snowy-gawa? It’s alright if you don’t, I’ll wait.
Okay, I’m sorry. That was terrible. But it is snowing really heavily today!
Itoigawa is located in the part of Japan known as Yukiguni, or ‘snow country’. While the winter temperatures here never drop much below freezing (lows average at about 0-1°C), winds blowing from continental Asia pick up large amounts of moisture while crossing the Sea of Japan. This moisture-laden weather system then breaks up upon hitting the mountain ranges that run along the center of the Japanese islands, releasing heavy snowfalls across this area.
It is not unusual for some areas of Itoigawa to see several meters of accumulation throughout the winter season. While this weather can make life in winter quite difficult (we’re all pretty sick of snow by March!), it’s another one of the wonders of nature that gives the Itoigawa Global Geopark its spectacular scenery.
Unfortunately. this heavy snowfall makes many of the geosites in Itoigawa inaccessible in the winter, but it also makes for beautiful landscapes that you do not want to miss!