By shinkansen via Nagano
Take the JR Hokuriku Shinkansen from Tokyo to Nagano (100 minutes, 8000 yen) and then an express bus from Nagano to Hakuba (60-90 minutes, 1800-2000 yen), where the bus stops at Hakuba Station and directly at the base of several ski resorts. The Japan Rail Pass covers the shinkansen trip but not the bus journey.
A pass of interest for accessing Hakuba from Nagano is the Nagano Snow Resort Pass.
By limited express train via Matsumoto
Take the JR Azusa limited express train from Tokyo's Shinjuku Station to Matsumoto and transfer to a local train on the JR Oito Line to Hakuba. Some Azusa limited express trains run all the way to Hakuba. The one way journey takes about 4 to 4.5 hours and costs around 8000 yen. It is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass.
By direct highway bus from central Tokyo
During winter, 5-7 bus round trips per day are operated between Tokyo (Shinjuku) and Hakuba, where the buses stop in the village center and at the base of the Goryu and Happoone resorts. The one way journey takes about 4.5 hours and costs 4850 yen. A round trip ticket is available for 8700 yen and must be used within seven days.
By direct highway bus from Narita Airport
During winter, one round trip per day is operated between Narita Airport and Hakuba (Goryu, town center and Happo-one). The one way trip takes about six hours and costs 9000-9500 yen depending on where you get off.
Take the JR Shinano limited express train from Nagoya to Matsumoto and transfer to a train along the Oito Line to Hakuba. The one way journey takes about 3.5 hours and costs around 7000 yen. It is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass.