24 August 2016

Mountain biking in Syöte

Pytkynharju

If you want to bike in National Park, hiking areas and old forests, Syöte is the right place for you. There are three mountain bike routes and four biking routes in the area. The mountain bike routes are marked paths in the forests and hills, varying from easy to difficult.

Marked routes












In August I did a trip to the easiest one of them with my family. The route is called Syötteen Kierros and it is 17 km long. The route starts from the Visitor Centrer and goes first a few hundred meters on walking road. Then it turns to the forest and soon you have the first of many duckboards ahead of you. For me it was scary to drive on them, but I soon got the hang of it. 
Scenery to Syöte












After that you cross the road, which goes up to the top of the hill Iso Syöte, and dive in to a very old forest of evergreen trees. The path is very good, and it is a pleasure to bike on it, wriggling among the trees. 

Hanhilampi












After a swamp with more duckboards the route starts to climb up to Pytkynharju, which is the main sight on this route. It is a high an narrow hill surrounded by ponds. Going up and down the horseback hill surely makes your sweat, but the scenery is worth it. On the top of  hill there is an ancient shaman tree, a big pine witch must be hundreds of years old.

Old pine




















There are ponds on both sides of the hill and there are two lean-on-shelters, where you can stop to make fire if you want. This time we only stopped to admire the view and then went on, but I think I will come and stay a night there sooner or later.

Latvalampi











Route done, time to pack


09 August 2016

Every month with huskies

My dogteam 2012


















When you think about huskies, your first thought probably, thanks to Disney, is a fluffy dog team running in the snow white forest with Northern Lights on the sky. What about in real life, when you live with your dogs every month of every year? What do you do with them all year round to make the team work and run in winter?

In our family there has been huskies as long as children: 18 years. First ten years it was mainly for my husbands work. He worked as a wilderness guide then, but after he studied to be a fireman, some of the huskies stayed for our own trekking and as my dear hobby. 

During these years in our pack there has been 6-12 huskies all the time. I made a list of things I usually do with them every year. I start the list from august, because that is now and also because in many ways it's the begining of the season.

MONTH
TRAINING
HOW MANY DOGS 
AT TIME
THINGS TO LEARN
august
Running free on field
2
Come back to kennel
september
Short loops with PAWTREKKER
1
Turn left and right
october
30 min loops with ATV
3-4
Stop, go slow
november
First loops with sleigh
3-4
Go fast
december
1 hour loops with sleigh
6
Pause, wait
january
Add skiing trips to training
1-2
Go steady
february
2 hour loops, also with load
6
Pull weight
march
2-6 days trekking
2-6
Travel, stay overnight
april
Competition or happening
6
Meet other teams
may
Short loops with ATV
3-4
Cooling down
june
Running free on field
3
Relax with each other
july
Resting, running only in fence
6
Come, sit, groom

 Here are pictures from every month. It took me two hours to find them in all the old albums!


August: Running free on field 2010
September: Paw trekker 2011

r
October: Training with ATV 2013

November: First fast sleigh rides 2009


December: driving with six dog team 2014

January: Add skiing to training 2015




February: Pulling the boys coming from a cabin 2012

March: Trekking on King's Trail 2014

April: Kuusamo Sprint 2013

May: Cooling down after last ATV loops 2013
June: The whole pack running free 2012
July: Lulu and Kirka relaxing in kennel 2008




05 August 2016

How to pack for Kebnekaise


Fjällräven Akka Dome, Trangia and Primus, Salomon shoes












This post is all about packing and gear. I hope it helps people, who are planning to summit Kebnekaise or any similar mountain in summertime. This is our complete packing-list for two persons and for two or three days in the mountains.

SLEEPING
- tent (Fjällräven Akka Dome 2)
- two foamed plastic mattresess
- two down sleepingbags (Marmot Saw Tooth and Marmot Angel Fire)

KITCHEN AND FOOD
- cooker (Trangia with one full gas bottle and only one kettle)
- 2 plastic cups and 2 plastic spoons
-  4 portions of breakfast (Mountain House Bacon and Eggs, Eloveena Porrige)
-  4 portions of lunch (Homemade sandwiches, Lämmin kuppi -soups)
-  4 portions of dinners (Mountain House, Real Field Meal)
- 12 portions of snacks (dried fruit, nuts, seeds, raisins, chocolate)
- instant coffee,some teabags, sugar, salt, pepper
- empty plastic lemonade bottles for water 2 x 1.5 l and 4 x 0,5 l


CLOTHES TO WEAR FROM START:
-  t-shirt, sweatpants, hiking socks
- light trekking shoes (Salomon)
- a hat and sunglasses

CLOTHES BOTH HAD IN OWN BACKPACK:
- merino wool underwear with long sleeves and legs (North Outdoor)
- jacket (Fjällräven Eco-Shell)
- light windproof trousers
- a light long sleeved hoodie
- Puff and gloves
- a light travel -towel
- one set of clean underwear, socks and t-shirt

OTHER ESSENTIALS:
- Maps and timetables (In paper and in phones)
- Phones (Samsung Galaxy S5 with lifeproof covers)
- Power Station for loading phones (Absolutelu great!)
- First Aid Kit
- Repair Kit
- Hygienic Kit
- Mini-size sun lotion and mosquito repellent
- Toilet paper

RENT FROM THE MOUNTAIN STATION:
- two pairs of hiking poles

BUY:
- meals when driving the car to and from Nikkaluokta
- one or two meals from the mountain station when trekking

We carried all the things on the list from the Mountain Station to Kitteldalen. We both took our own clothes, sleeping bags and sleeping mattresses. I carried the food, first aid kit, hygienic kit and some of the water. My backpack in the beginning was 11,5 kg. My husband carried the tent, the cooker, the snacks, the repair kit and most of the drinking water. His backpack weight was 19 kg.

You may wonder why we carried water, but we decided to drink only from the brooks that came straight from the glaciers. I think it is not safe to drink water on the hillsides of Vierranvarri  and Kebnekaise, because so many people walk there every day, leaving their waiste on these hills. In Kitteldalen there is plenty of clean water coming straight from Björlings- glacier. Going to the top that is the last place to fill the bottles. On a hot day you need to take at least 1,5 liters of water per person to the summit. We prefer normal lemonade bottles to real drinking bottles, because you can roll then really small when they are empty and they never leak in the bag.

To summit we only took jackets, merino wool underwear, hats, gloves, water and snacks. On a hot summer day it may seem silly to carry warm clothes in your bag, but I would never go to a mountain without them. This time we did not get any of the  heavy winds or a thunderstorms the forecast promised, but what if we did? You start to get cold really quickly, if you are only wearing a t-shirt and shorts. It takes many hours to get down from the mountain, and there is always the possibility that the weather gets so bad or so misty you can not move. A wind sack is good for that.

I am ashamed to say we forgot one really important item at the tent: The first aid kit. It is a fact that many people hurt their knees or ankles trying to climb these stony paths. Not to even mention how often one needs a bandage for blisters, when you walk for eight ours! Luckily we didn't need any of these that day, but next time I won't take my chances. Fist aid is not only good for you, but also often to help someone else on the way.

After the summit I had planned we would buy one or two meals ready. Yes, in the Kings Trail that is possible in some places. The day we walked back to Nikkaluokta, we had a hotel-like breakfast in Mountain Station and a super tasty lunch in a new burger place, which you can find by the boat station in the east end of Laddju lake. It is an experience worth taking to have a look at their modern sami style interior and to enjoy their famous reindeer burger, before walking the last five or six kilometers to Nikkaluokta.

food




packing snacks

Snacks packed

Making sandwiches
Sandwiches packed




Power Station

My clothes, sleeping bag and mattress
Hygienic and first aid kits













Boat timetable




Helicopter timetable