Netherlands, Finland · 9 Days · 10 Moments · June 2018

My first mult-hiking experience Karhunkierros

11 June 2018

8 Day: Flight Cancelled! The Nigh Before: Finally I could try the hammock, I have to say I did get rest (I got rain, temperature was 10 degrees, dropped to 5 at some point). Commuting: We woke up early, took a car and one bus to Oulu, and was time to eat lunch. I have tried many vegan burgers but at Cafe Rooster was delicious, full of favour and meaty texture. Next stop: Airport Finnish airport focus a lot in comfort, has this chilly relaxed cafe vibe, full of power outlets, puffs, kinda beds structures, everything made our wait relaxing. Until we saw the screen and noticed our flight was cancelled :(. The good news, the airline provided accomodation, exquisite dinner and rebooked our flight for next day. But well 'cause we bought our tickets using, after waiting 1 hour for CS we got better time with crazy schedule but with the chance to be at home earlier.

10 June 2018

Seven Day: Staying in the country side 💓 In our last night we had the opportunity to spend it in a local Friend of a Friend's farm, the plan was setup our Hammocks in the backyard and deliver a special gift for a lovely little girl there. In our trip we have a unexpected traveler with us, a small horse toy called Ruka, my friend took many pictures of his adventures, at the end she created an album and wrote a story about it. Everything went perfect and the lovely Eliza liked. Lessons learned in my first time with the hammock: - Buy a proper pad or underquilt for isolation, the one I was using was too slippery and not too much wide. - Get a proper pillow - Bring a plastic to put in the ground as a base for my backpack and shoes In general I loved the experience, hearing the rain, birds, rosters and other animals was relaxing. As well big +1 for my ticket to the moon gear (tarp, hammock and mosquito net), easy to setup, no tiny mosquitos and no leaking.

9 June 2018

Six Day: Tourist mode: ON After leaving the trail, we did a long commuting to Rovaniemi - Lapland. Rovaniemi, inside of the arctic circle, famous because Santa's house and norden lights. Attractions we visited: 1. Santa's Village's, we did visit his office and have a small casual chat (quite interesting), took pictures and jump around. The village is full of souvenirs stores, some restaurants; things are really overpriced here, but well was nice to visit. 2. Santa's Post office (inside the village), I love this place, you can send Christmas postcards from here that will arrive in the Christmas week, with the stamp of Santa's office, as well for kids, Santa's letters :). 3. After visiting the village we went for a small walk to the Ounasvaara view point, it is incredible how in less than 10 min walking from the center we were in the middle of the forest with a well marked trail. In the city we could find some nice street art and beautiful lake view from the main bridge :).

8 June 2018

Rovaniemi here we go :)
Five Day: In the middle of nowhere(Salla), arctic circle :) What will you do with with a wait of 4 hours in a tiny town? In our case the answer was food! we spended our time, eating, cheking out the only souvenir shop, eating a bit more, visiting a small street market and explore the local cuisine, in others words eating more. All the calories I burned the days before were recovered in this town!

7 June 2018

Four Day: Pieni Karhunkierros After arriving to the cottage the day before and having an rested night, a new day started, porridge for breakfast and get ready to walk 12 km in the pieni Karhunkierros (small section of the whole trail). Highlights: 1. Without the backpacks, felt really easy to complete the trail, a lot stairs though. 2. Views are just breathtaking, cliff's, rivers, currents, rapids, tall green trees, islands in the middle of the river and green everywhere. This was also a day when I slowed down and could appreciate nature in full expression. 3. Spots to have snacks and lunch are in the trail, we brought our canister and made warm soup. As well for me, doing this small trail arised a lot of thinking, sometimes I get into this vicious cicle or rushing mode that I forget to enjoy the present. After the trail, sauna in the cottage (Finnish people know how to enjoy life here) and jump in freezing water 💦💦.

6 June 2018

Third day: changing plans Starting this trip, our main goal was to do the whole trail, in total 82 KM in 5 days, but after day two we realized this will be impossible, we just walked 15 Km in two days, meaning we will have to do around 23 kilometers in the other days. After thinking a lot, the conclusion was: we can't continue with our heavy backpacks, cold weather and muddy trail, I have to admit, at the beginning I had this bittersweet in my mouth, but also I was aware that due to our inexperience doing hiking, this was the best decision. New plan: Stop in Oulanka Basecamp, rent a cottage for 2 days, do the small trail on Thursday ( pieni Karhunkierros - 12km ) and Friday morning head to Rovaniemi (Lapland Capital and Santa's house). Before arriving to the cottage, I took an amazing coffee with raspberry pie 😍, I missed coffee so much! The cottage had an amazing lake view, sauna, kitchen, bed... everything!! I firmly believe, one day I will come back to finish Karhunkierros

5 June 2018

Second day here I go! The day before, after almost 4 kilometers walking up and down, we had to stop in the top of a mountain, it was a red alert due to the wind and we decided to pass the night there. And yes, we got snow next morning, with a lovely cold windy weather 🌨️. After waking up a bit freeze, I was impressed with the snow outside, we are in June! For breakfast some proteins bars(stars of this trip), and let's just get out of the house, find a better place and cook a proper warm meal. The hiking after, was full of snow, rain, wind, slippery trail with mud and after some time, we finally arrived. Was time to test the jetboil! porridge ready in less than 10 min 😍. After feeling renewed, hilly walk again. I have to say, Finland has this vibe of real nature, green everywhere, water everywhere, breathtaking cliff's, It is just stunning. Second day was hard but worthy, we got a small place to sleep that night, next to River, with a fireplace, toilet and even a kitchen.

4 June 2018

First day! After 1 flight from Helsinki to oulu and 3 busses from Oulu to Ruka we were ready to start our adventure. Things I learned in the first day: 1. Gas for the canister stove can be found in S-market, I was really concern I couldn't find it but yeiiii was there ( if you are doing Karhunkierros is really useful to bring you own stove, I got the jetboil zip model, it is light and amazing in terms of speed) 2. My backpack was way to heavy with water and food , probably 12 KG, I should carry maximum 10 because of my weight. 3. Walking poles: a must have, starting from Ruka the terrain is full of ups and downs, for me the weather was rainy, cold and windy. 4. We started the hike around 18:00, after the whole day commuting, not a good idea. 5. Proper shoes, I have my light hiking boots but it doesn't have proper waterproof material, a huge mistake 6. Wool! merino wooool , will save you for freezing. 7. Proper layering system.

3 June 2018

This picture is probably one of the most ugly pictures I have ever took, but means a lot for me. Before this plane: I was in Berlin because of a conference, my flight to Amsterdam was at 14:30, at 9:40 am I received a message "sorry your flight is delayed almost 2 hours". Nooooo, my heart just stopped for few seconds, my next flight to Helsinki was scheduled at 18:20, the plane from Berlin will arrive to Amsterdam at 17:40, as well, I have to leave my current baggage with my love one and take the backpack. Statistics in life: The percentage for me to make this flight was almost zero, in fact: change my shoes, pick the backpack, security and run to the gate in less than 10min is almost zero. But in statistics almost Zero Is not 100% zero, and I made it!! The other flight had a delay of 20 min, the security girl in Schipool helped me to skip the line, I did not fell running to the gate, and now I am in the plane. Looking forward to do Karhunkierros!! 💪💪