2009 Trip – Day 5

Distance Average Speed Max Speed
67.4 km 13.1 km/h 36.9 km/h

Left Jänisvaara at about 1030 and decided to take Northern route towards Saija.  I followed the snow mobile trail and had lunch at Harjajärvi.  Pressed on along the ridge by Kylmäluomajärvi and after several false turns found myself at Ahveninen.  One interesting trail looked very promising until it passed a reindeer pen whereupon I decided to turn back.  Several other turnings looked interesting but I had already had a very long run.

Arrived at Saija at dusk after a very long day!

Harjajärvi kota photographed in 2017


2009 Trip – Day 4

Distance Average Speed Max Speed
45.1 km 12.4 km/h 26.1 km/h

Woke at 0630 to find hut still quite cold.  Clearly, I haven’t got the hang of the fire yet.  I managed to get away by about 1100.

I met a group of snow mobiles and on re-starting nearly lost the team.  I also found my way to a lake last visited many years ago.

I arrived a Jänisvaara at about 1440.  The fire was already alight (presumably Sonja had recently been through with her guests) so I soon heated some sausages.

I lightened the sled and had a go at the canyon trail. On the way back I followed a new (at least to me) trail to the very top of Jänisvaara hill.  The views were spectacular.

I returned to the hut and, after feeding the dogs, discovered that there was no gas left to heat my meal and no spare cylinder.  I send a text to Timo who had a new one delivered.  It subsequently turned out that there was still some gas, so the problem may have been with the valve.

2009 Trip – Day 3

Distance Average Speed Max Speed
25.5 km 13.7 km/h 29.3 km/h

Morning entirely spent fixing bag, loading sled and buying replacement thermals.  I went with Sonja to Taivalkoski where I paid €20 into the SIM card and got some new thermals.  I also visited a weird shop/museum and stopped for a brief cup of tea.

I finally set off after lunch.  Storm was again reluctant to start and barked for many km.  I arrived at Kÿlkeinen at dusk.  The hut was cold and as always impossible to heat quickly.  Timo has moved the kitchen again!

Sonja lent me her old phone, but when I got to the hut I discovered that it was flat, despite having been switched off.  Fortunately, mine still worked to send text messages.

2009 Trip – Day 2

Distance Average Speed Max Speed
44.2 km 14.3 km/h 29.3 km/h

This year’s team is:

Storm Paz
Homerun Bowie
Sven Gunner

Still no sign of missing bag, but the lantern has been found.  After the usual fuss to find things to take I left at about 1200.  Sonya and Lotta asked if they could come along too and they agreed that I should lead.  Visited Tilsa and Kÿlkeinen.  Sadly, at Tilsa on of Lotta’s dogs chewed my GPS case.  That evening, in what I can only describe as a sewing tour-de-force, Sonja made a new case which re-used the straps from the old one.

Timo’s son’s snow mobile broke down and I volunteered to help him retrieve it with the aid of a sledge on the back of his snow mobile.  The broken machine was 20km away and we didn’t get back until 0015.

2009 Trip – Day 1

Uneventful flights from Tallinn, but security unhappy with my bag again.

At Oulu bus station, hundreds of students were trying to catch buses to Ruka.  Apparently I had clashed with some species of holiday.  I finally got onto the 3rd and last bus which left 45 minutes late.  I tried to phone Timo:  Good news, SIM card still active, but bad news, he can hear me but I can’t hear him.  I discovered that text messages still worked OK.

At the farm I discover that my lantern and bag of clothes are missing; Timo instigated a search and after a while delivered a map case for me to borrow which turned out to be the one I lost two years ago and thought was somewhere at home!

2008 Trip – Day 1

Distance Average Speed Max Speed
32.7 km 9.6 km/h 25.6 km/h

Uneventful trip on Ferry.  Long wait at Helsinki railway station.  Thought had compartment to self, but slightly drunk Finnish dock worker appeared just after train had started.  Got some sleep, but train seemed to have square wheels.

Got sled sorted out quite quickly and after helping to get a couple of other groups off I left after lunch.  Headed N and found Marco’s special route never driven before.  Went all way to near road and then back via Jänisvaara.  Very tired and soon to sleep.  Lots of snow during day and night.

2007 Trip – Day 1

Ick, uck!  Sleepless (almost) night on the train arriving hungry and thirsty at 0605. Unfortunately, bus station doesn’t open until 0700. A kind Finn directed me to a very small kiosk, but they could only sell me a fizzy drink and a Mars bar which made my teeth hurt.  I took refuge in the railway station waiting room and was the first customer at the bus station.  A grumpy lady sold me a Jurmu ticket together with a tea and a pasty.

Amazingly, the bus driver hadn’t heard of Jurmu (despite it being a scheduled stop) and had to look it up. After we left Pudasjärvi he even got out his GPS, presumably to help find the stop.

I was met at the bus stop by Timo. When we got to the farm I helped to start some guests, but then went to sleep.  I woke up for lunch and dinner.