Direct transfer to Abashiri for Drift ice in Shiretoko by Ryuhyo Limited Express Okhotsk no Kaze

Abashiri, Shiretoko-Shari
KIHA183 North Rainbow Express is one of the trains to be used for Furano Express trains. (C) Sonic Rail Garden
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KIHA183 North Rainbow Express is one of the trains to be used for Furano Express trains. (C) Sonic Rail Garden

This train has not run in the last few years. Please do not use this train in your trip plan.

This is a seasonal operation of Limited Express Okhotsk that connect Sapporo (札幌) and Abashiri (網走) in Hokkaido. This train is operated from late January to early March for Ryuhyo (流氷=Drift ice) viewing. The operation, like time required and route, is completely same as Limited Express Okhotsk. But this seasonal train is operated by specialized car. The accommodation is much better than regular train of Limited Express Okhotsk.

You can take this train by Japan Rail Pass with no restriction. Let’s see the details.

Route, schedule and time required

One round trip of this train is operated between Sapporo and Abashiri. As I mentioned, this train is operated on completely same route as Limited Express Okhotsk. It takes 5 hours 30 minutes to get Abashiri from Sapporo. So it is quite long trip. Please refer the post of Limited Express Okhotsk too.


Sapporo (札幌)x
Iwamizawa (岩見沢)x
Bibai (美唄)x
Sunagawa (砂川)x
Takikawa (滝川)x
Fikagawa (深川)x
Asahikawa (旭川)x
Kamikawa (上川)x
Maruseppu (丸瀬布)*
Engaru (遠軽)x
Ikutahara (生田原)x
Rubeshibe (留辺蘂)x
Kitami (北見)x
Bihoro (美幌)x
Memanbetsu (女満別)x
Abashiri (網走)x

x:All trains stop

View Okhotsk in a larger map


Limited express Okhotsk serviced by KIHA-183 series (C) Sonic Rail Garden

Okhotsk is operated by KIHA 183 series that is the oldest type train for Limited Express in JR Hokkaido. But this seasonal train is operated KIHA 183 North Rainbow Express. Those two types of trains are same series, KIHA 183. But both exterior and interior are completely different. Try to compare the images on this page (KIHA 183 North Rainbow) and the post of Limited Express Okhotsk (common KIHA 183 series).

This train is 5 cars formation. Car#1, #2 #4 and #5 have higher passenger’s deck than regular floor. Car#3 is double deck car. It has ordinary seats at upper deck and salon space at lower deck. Usually upper deck on Car#3 is assigned as non reserved seat. All seats are ordinary class seat. It does not have any green car. The seat configuration is 2+2 and the seat pitch is 960mm.

Train formation


H=Ordinary seat on higher passenger’s deck car D=Ordinary seat on double deck car SL-Salon
(R)=Reserved ordinary seat (NR)=Non reserved ordinary seat

*Sonic Rail Garden has copyright for all images of accommodations below.


Ordinary seat at higher deck car (Car#1,2,4 and 5)

Ordinary seat at double deck car (Car#3)

Salon space

Baggage space

Sanitary space


  1. k2ts818
    Kenneth says:


    I would like to take this train for my upcoming Hokkaido trip. It seems that this train is not in operation for 2018 Season. JR Hokkaido’s schedule does not have any info for this train. Can you confirm this?

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