The snow-covered slopes of Hakuba beckon snowboarders and skiers seeking an adventure beyond the usual ski trip. The village, deemed Nagano Prefecture’s prime locale for winter sports, certainly caters to visitors in search of a leisurely getaway with some fun on the slopes. But it also has plenty in store for thrill-seekers.
This year, Hakuba’s Tsugaike Kogen resort is the site of TELL’s first Mountain Challenge: an event that dares the most adventurous of athletes to dash down the equivalent of the world’s tallest or iconic mountains.
For a weekend, the Mountain Challenge gathers ambitious skiers and snowboarders to participate in one of three events: the Team Challenge, the Individual Challenge, and the Kids/Beginners Challenge.
The entire mountain is open for participants to ski any piste they deem suitable, and map out a course that allows for the fastest descent and lift back to the top.
Groups in the Team Challenge are given the ultimate task of going down the slopes until they’ve traversed 8,848 meters—the height of Mount Everest—within one day. Endurance and stamina are key components to ensuring survival here. And of course, team members with intermediate or advanced skiing or snowboarding skills are vital as well.
Those who prefer to go it alone can do so in the Individual Challenge. Here, the challenger is pitted against the length of Mt. Fuji, which stands majestically at 3,776 meters. Meanwhile, children and novice skiers and snowboarders can tackle a course the equivalent of the 1,898-meter-high Mount Yotei, Hokkaido’s highest mountain.
The challengers will record the distance they travel throughout the day with the Ski Tracks app.
It’s not all about the distance you’ve skied, but also how you do it. The challenges will conclude with prizes in various categories, awarded to the fastest individuals, as well as the best-dressed teams and single challengers. A charity raffle ensues, increasing the chances of going home with a grand souvenir beyond the snow in your boots. The prizes will be given out at the monster after-party, which will feature DJs and bands from Tokyo.
The Challenge, held in partnership with winter sports travel group Tokyo Snow Club, is a new series in TELL’s fundraising events, joining the non-profit organization’s lineup of annual walks and frequent live music events to raise both funds and awareness.
Participants are encouraged to get sponsored by friends, family, and colleagues using the CrowdRise online sponsorship platform. The proceeds will go toward funding TELL’s ongoing work to provide mental health support, as well as face-to-face and anonymous telephone counseling to Japan’s international community.
Are you up to the challenge of being a hero on the slopes—and in the community?
TELL Mountain Challenge
Dates: Mar 25-27; challenge day: Mar 26.
Packages including round-trip transportation from and to Tokyo, two-night accommodation, three meals, ski passes, participation fee, and entry to the TELL Mountain Challenge after-party are available, starting from ¥32,900. Challenge-only package also available. Equipment rental available onsite. For inquiries, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://tellmountainchallenge.com.