Did you see many other Westerners? Other than a friend who lived in Japan, I don’t think I’ve heard of anyone I know doing a trip like this. Really interesting experience!
You must hang out with non-skiers;) It seems everyone and their cousin is doing a trip to Japan these days... I had two other friends there this year alone. We saw so many Westerners (and I count Aussies as Westerners) while we were there. Mainly saw them while skiing - though Kyoto also had a lot of tourists (lots of Chinese there too). I'd say at least 3/4 of the people touring were foreigners. A few of the days were a little overwhelming with guided groups left and right. Other days I took us to more remote spots which was nice. One of the original appeals of Japan 15-20 years ago was the lack of foreigners as the japanese did not ski in the trees leaving all that powder untracked for foreigners to ski. Those days are long gone... Niseko feels like a Japanese Whistler with lots of Aussie accents and fresh tracks only lasting the morning after a dump.
I don’t hang out with backcountry skiers - or even downhill skiers for the most part. Living in Ontario tends to steer one to different activities. ;) Cool, I had no idea! My only visit to Japan was in winter, which was apparently a quiet tourist season but I wasn’t in any ski areas.