Japan’s four predominant mountaineering associations have urged residents to stop all mountain-based activities immediately, including ski touring and split boarding. The announcement was prompted by the Japanese government’s declaration of a nationwide state of emergency, which has already forced premature closure of ski resorts across the country.

In a translation of the statement published online by Sapporo-based not-for-profit Hokkaido Wilds, Sangaku Yon-dantai (the four mountain organisations) acknowledged that “in such situations, one might seek to get away from the city seeking fresh air and nature through hiking and climbing.”

“However, doing so spreads infection to those destination areas, and those themselves who love the mountains risk infecting others around them.

“In order to overcome this state of emergency, we ask all those who love mountain sports to focus on consideration of others, to defend themselves against infection, and we the Sangaku Yondantai* strongly request until the state of emergency is over that people do not engage in mountain-related activities.”

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