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Ski rentals in Hakuba?

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
200 posts
58 reviews
70 helpful votes
Ski rentals in Hakuba?

We're looking to rent skis and boots while in Hakuba and were thinking of renting from the Rhythm Wadano store.

I'm not sure what size boots I need and my feet are also quite wide so I'd prefer to try on instore before I rent.

If we wait until we get there is there likely to be enough variety in mid Feb for us to hire skis and boots in our size?

Are there many other ski hire shops around if Rhythm don't have enough?

Thanks

6 replies to this topic
Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hokkaido, Nagano
Level Contributor
16,335 posts
188 reviews
99 helpful votes
1. Re: Ski rentals in Hakuba?

Rented my skis in late Jan from Rhythm Happo store, which has taken over Spicy rentals in terms of location. Overall my impression was they're professional and caring - they offer a free service to collect your skis/boots from your hotel/ryokan as an option.

No experience with its Wadano store. Mid-Feb would not be super busy, you should be fine with fitting the right boots and skis upon arrival. Maybe arrive early when they're open. If you book skis online in advance 10% discount is offered.

In Happo you might check out Woody Rentals.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
200 posts
58 reviews
70 helpful votes
2. Re: Ski rentals in Hakuba?

Thanks for calling out the existence of the Happo store, it looks like its only 20 min walk from the Wadano one but much closer to our accom so I think we'll be going there instead!

Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hokkaido, Nagano
Level Contributor
16,335 posts
188 reviews
99 helpful votes
3. Re: Ski rentals in Hakuba?

Welcome.

The guy who fitted my medium-fat skis in Rhythm Happo was from Sydney, if my memory is correct. He offered cool advice and friendly service.

Happy and safe runs in Hakuba :)

Nara, Japan
Destination Expert
for Kamikochi
Level Contributor
13,874 posts
4. Re: Ski rentals in Hakuba?

Rythm in Wadano had a wide variety of gear, though, Ime, I saw not a few cumstomers in one late evening of Feb last year. I chanced to come here, since my accommodation place was next-door (just across the hotel parking lot) and got to know what ski boards they had on offer. Not only did they rent many, but they put price tags on some new models (2023-2024 season). Comparable to what I buy in Osaka, price-wise. Staff were all (but one) non-Japanese.

One thing to note when you rent ski boots if you are a female, is: female types usually/often feature low back (because their calf is located lower compared to male's). And Japan-make boots are wider with insteps higher, compared to overseas/imported ones like Lang/Nordica/Head. So if your sole is wider than normal then Japan-make ones are god-sends. (Yes, the height of your instep means a lot though). Should you need high back ones, you should try on male types. Forward-bent angle becomes greater, so is boot compression, and the inner layer thinner if you are a competition-type skier. If not then the opposite is usually the case. Mine is Rexxam, a Japan-make (compression 120); it helps soften/ease the boot compression syndrome I had and fits me well. Problem is, Rexxam is quite hard-shelled, so takes more time to slip-on and slip-off.

Btw, Rythm in Wadano looks to me like their flagship shop. From here to one of the ski runs in Happo-one (called Kokusai) is only a couple of min walk, and that with boots on. Yes, shuttle buses come around too in case you go to another nearby ski resort in Hakuba. (Besides, they have a shuttle going to your accommodation place.) So if you do the walk, then a liftchair whisks you up to an upper ski run (a superbly well-groomed blue run that offers ultra-nice alps views). Yes, a long ride, but you don't have to get back to the gondola station, so helps shorten your access time. Hope that helps.

Canberra
Level Contributor
39 posts
22 reviews
13 helpful votes
5. Re: Ski rentals in Hakuba?

Mid Feb is Chinese new year and most accommodation is booked out. This is followed by Snow Machine starting 26th. I suggest you book some equipment, I understand there are dates when it is already hard do book rental equipment in Feb.

Canberra
Level Contributor
39 posts
22 reviews
13 helpful votes
6. Re: Ski rentals in Hakuba?

Rhythm and Central Snowsports are the big ones.

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