For the 2nd leg of our journey I planned a 2-night stay in Rusutsu Resort. Niseko was heavily booked and I suspect there will be another time when I will bring the entire family there.
In order to reach there we had to take a train (Super Hokuto) from JR Hakodate to Lake Toya. The journey was approximately 1hr 40mins but we had to stand throughout as it was the peak season and the designated seats were all taken! And when we reached Toya we had just missed the connecting bus to the actual lake area so we roamed around the area for a quick ramen before the next bus came around.
When we reached Lake Toya we were blown away by the view of this crater in the middle of the lake. It was simply magical. Unfortunately as we missed the earlier bus we didn't have time to walk along the lake but we made a promise to come back and stay in the future. The next bus from the bus terminal at Lake Toya brought us along the lake towards Rusutsu. Every chance we got we tried to take in as much of the view in front of our eyes as possible. The lake was simply amazing... no wonder they chose such a secluded spot for a G8 summit many years ago.
By the time we reached Rusutsu resort it was around 5pm and we went for Genghis Khan BBQ. Thats what they call the BBQ with lots of lamb~~ I loved it~~ That washed down with beer was the perfect way to end the day~
For the next 2 days we enjoyed all the fun the snow had to offer us~~ Automobiles, horses, dog sleds and even rubber tubes down the slope! We had fun without having to go on the ski slopes. Of course the rides weren't for free and didn't come cheap but they were all amazing experiences~~
By the time we left Rusutsu on the 3rd day, we had nearly decided to bring the whole family back again next year.