For the past two seasons, Washington student and videographer Mattias Evangelista has skied the slopes and documented the culture of Japan. This four-minute video (seen below) perfectly summarizes why the Land of the Rising Sun is such a unique ski destination.

For readers of Coast Mountain Culture magazine the name Mattias Evangelista might be familiar as he’s one of the guys we interviewed for our “Temperamental Little Boy” weather story in the latest issue. Yesterday he got in touch again, this time to share a video he produced showcasing his past two trips to Japan. It’s so good we had to showcase it here and ask him more questions about his travels.

Hey Mattias. You grew up skiing Mount Baker. How does it compare to Japan?

I would say Baker compares to Japan in with the amount of snowfall it receives, that being said I’ve never seen it snow as much as in Japan. Also the terrain is similar. Baker is a place that’s steep with lots of fun natural features pillows, cliffs, windlips, etc. You get a lot of that style terrain in Japan, especially on the main island.

Where do you live when not overseas?

I’m currently living in Bellingham, Washington. Amazing place.

There are a lot of places on earth to ski. Why two trips to Japan?

Japan is hands down the best place I have ever skied. The snowfall and terrain is ridiculous and when combined with the food and culture it’s hard to beat. I hope to ski a month there every year until I can no longer ski.

Where else have you skied?

I’ve done a fair amount of skiing throughout the West Coast: Washington, Oregon, Montana and then up into British Columbia. Nelson is one of my favourite places to ski outside of the PNW.

What’s a unique thing that stands out about Japan?

I don’t want this to sound too cliché but I’d have to say the culture. The people for one are so nice and accommodating it makes travelling really fun. It’s also just such an interesting place – it’s so old but so modern. There’s not too many places on earth where you see such a mix of tradition and progression. Going from Tokyo to the mountain towns almost feels like you’re time traveling! Also the snacks are incredible. If you ever go be prepared to spend way too much money at 7-11.

Is video a full-time gig for you or hobby? What’s your day job?

I’m currently a full-time student at Western Washington University and am trying desperately to graduate so I can focus all my time and energy on my video work and hopefully make a career out of it.