Sweden 2015

Day 4 Dogsledding Overnight

This was our favorite part of the trip. 

We headed out from the Ice Hotel to the stunning Väkkärä Wilderness Lodge, right at the edge of a frozen lake. We caught the sunset on the way, arriving near dark. The sled path leading in was torch lit, and a fire awaited outside. After unharnessing the dogs, we drank warm spiced wine, relaxed on reindeer skins, and watched as other guests sledded in. Amazing food and company—I can’t recommend Fjellborg Arctic Adventures enough. 

Only downside: we didn’t want to leave the lodge, much less the dogs! I thought Swede was going to try to smuggle out one member from his team—Affe, a mischievous jokester who stole our gloves off our hands.

Born to run! These guys were so sweet and gentle, and raring to go

Quick Basics: I’m hooked and can’t wait to go again!

All Out: Swede wore a GoPro and let the dogs run wide open

The sled: bouncing through a tunnel

Howl at the moon: sled dogs baying at the rising full moon

More pics and videos to come . . .

Day 5 Winter Survival

With our knowledgeable guide, Steffan, we snowmobile-trailered to the woods, part of a Taiga forest belt that runs along the far northern latitudes of the world (and covers much of Siberia). There we learned about shelters and built a fire with a flint and birch shavings. We even brewed pine-needle tea. Learned tons of fun stuff, then got to stop in the middle of the vast Torne River…


Night 5 Sleeping in an ice room

Swede surprised me with a dream ice den, and the sight of it rattled my brain. 

First Look at Tolackuntur: ln Kunza (an extinct language once used in Northern Chile) “Tolackuntur” means “to gather”

Waking up

In the past when we’d booked this trip [we kept having to cancel 🙁 ] we always scheduled the “cold room” on the first night. I’m so glad we changed that up this year. By the time we settled into our thermals and arctic-rated sleeping bags, we were so beat from the week’s adventures that we passed right out. I only woke a few times—the first to remove my socks (I was too warm), and the rest to wish I hadn’t (it got chilly when I moved inside the bag). But all-in-all, it wasn’t bad.



Day 6 Reindeer sledding and intro to the Sami way of life

Yesterday, we went on the Vuoján tour to learn more about the Sami people, long known as the nomadic reindeer herders of the far north. They are indigenous to northern Norway, Sweden, Finland, and parts of Russia. After heading out on a reindeer sled excursion (vuoján is Sami for “reindeer used for transport”), we entered a warm Lavvu, a traditional tent. Our wonderful guide, Therese, cooked reindeer over the fire and prepared delicious souvas for us, while telling us about the culture.

pics to come . . .

Saying ‘Hej då’ and heading south

The lights paid us one last visit before we had to go…

Until next year, Lapland!



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