Rusutsu gets snow that almost rivals Niseko's and has both well-groomed trails and fantastic tree runs. The resort caters equally to skiers and snowboarders of all levels, has 18 lifts, more than three dozen runs, a half-pipe and numerous off-piste options. It's less developed and thus usually less crowded than Niseko, and makes for a good day trip.

Rusutsu is only a 20- to 30-minute drive away from Niseko, off Rte 230, on the way to Tōya-ko. Various operators offer Rusutsu day trips if you don't have your own wheels.