Site of the Winter Olympics shows off multiple seasons’ splendor in one shot.

Nestled in the mountains of Nagano Prefecture, Hakuba is one of Japan’s best ski resorts, which you’d expect from the venue of several events during the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics. However, it’s worth a visit even if you’ve got no plans to strap on skis or a snowboard, because it’s also one of the most picturesque spots in the Japan Alps.

As proof, take a look at this photo from Japanese Twitter user @inagakiyasuto, and notice all the little points of beauty. The local train rolling past the fields of autumn rice. The steep-roofed farmhouses at the base of the mountain, and the leaves changing to their fall colors as you get up near the top of the ski jump courses.

But all that’s just a small portion of the dazzling scenery Hakuba has to offer…even if you’re standing in that exact spot. That’s because the cropping of the photo in @inagakiyasuto’s tweet doesn’t show the whole view without a tap-through, which reveals this:

There are actually four distinct mountain layers in the photo, and as the elevation rises, the temperature drops and the colors change. Down in town, there’s still plenty of greenery, with some color starting to appear in the foothills. Further back, the foliage is progressing towards brown, and at the deepest section of the mountains, there’s already snow packed in even far below the peak.

The gorgeous full version of the photo has online commenters saying:

“Hakuba has this much snow even before the start of winter?!?”
“It doesn’t get any more beautiful than being able to see snow and autumn leaves at the same time.”
“The Oito Line [the train line seen in the photo] runs through some flat sections of the Azumino Plain farther to the east, but at this part it’s one of the best alpine train routes in the world.”

Of course, Hakuba’s mountains don’t just look amazing from far away, but from up close too, as @inagakiyasuto’s photos from the Hakuba Mountain Harbor recreation area show.

So again, while winter is the peak travel season for Hakuba, there’s definitely an incentive to go before the end of fall.

Source, images: Twitter/@inagakiyasuto
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