We awoke early after our first night in the tiny lodge and bathhouse in central Hokkaido that we would call home for the next 10 days. We felt complete cultural alienation, but engulfed in our element; winter in its purest form.
We had flown into Sapporo the day before and driven through the night as massive snowflakes the size of nickels shrouded the world beyond our little Toyota Van’s headlights. Snow continued to fall as we set out from the trail head on our first tour of what would be a three-week trip in the modern Mecca of powder skiing - the north island if Japan.
Unaware that there was a track set no more than a quarter mile away, we bushwhacked through dense bamboo, and had to cross a handful of shallow tributaries, steaming and unfrozen because of the hydrothermal water being shouldered fourth by the ancient roots of a volcano below us.
Almost any day of skiing for your average individual would never include walking through a river in the midst of a frozen and remote wilderness, but is was precisely why we had gone there, and what made it the amazing and unique experience that it was.
In capturing this image I wanted to convey the wild nature of having to cross a river to get to the days ski objectives, helping to define just how wild the landscape we traversed indeed was.