What is Zao Juhyo?
Zao Juhyo, a winter-only art created by nature.
Also known as “snow monsters,” the sight of giant ice formations lining up is a mystical sight.
Zao’s juhyō, or tree ice, is formed when the aomoritodomatsu (Abies sachalinensis) that grows on the subalpine plateau is covered with snow and ice. They are also called snow monsters because of their distinctive shape.
If you want to enjoy Zao Juhyo, Yamagata Zao is the best place to visit from late January to February when the Juhyo is at its best.
In Yamagata Zao, you can enjoy a panoramic view of the powerful juhyo field from the ropeway, join the “Juhyo Fantasy Corridor Tour” to see the illuminated juhyo up close, and have the rare experience of skiing through the juhyo.
How to get to Juhyo: Bus from Yamagata Station
Yamagata Station→Zao Onsen Bus Terminal (bus)
You can get off at the east exit of Yamagata Station and find the Yamako Bus Information Center on the first floor of a building on the north side of the station, where you can buy a ticket to the Zao Onsen Bus Terminal, which is close to the ropeway stop, and a set of tickets for the ropeway.
The bus departs from bus stop No. 1, which is close to the information desk (confirmation required). Buses will be large sightseeing buses. According to the timetable
about one bus per hour, but due to the large number of passengers, there was an extra bus service.
Zao Onsen Bus Terminal→Zao Sanroku Station (ropeway entrance)
It takes about 10 minutes on foot from the bus terminal to Zao Sanroku Station, the entrance to the ropeway.