Husky Ride, Snowshoe climbing + Toboggans

Trip Start Mar 15, 2012
Trip End Mar 19, 2012

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Flag of Finland  , Lapland,
Sunday, March 18, 2012

After a hearty breakfast we went to the Dog Sled Centre to meet our team of huskies! After a brief tutorial in how to 'control' the sled and stop it was time to set off. As we approached the huskies they began barking and howling in excitement as they just love to sled.

So I took my seat in the sled, wrapped up all cosy in a blanket, while Chloe took the drivers spot at the back on the brakes. Then when we were given the go, Chloe released her foot from the brake and ZOOM!! So much power and speed we go from zero to full speed very quickly and the adrenalin immediately rushes! Suddenly we are speeding along trails through the forests and meadows, gliding along the snow.

The dogs are so eager and stop at nothing- not even to poo (they just do it whilst running) and occassionally stick their tongues out to lap up some snow. After a while we swapped places (ensuring someone was always on the brake!!) and I had a go being driver. An amazing sensation of the fresh cold wind on your face as you rush along through the beautiful winter wonderland.

On a few uphill bits you have to take one foot off the sled and kick along the floor to give the huskies some help, or even step off completely and run along holding the sled for a short section. This I tried on one occassion not realising how deep the snow was... so down my foot sank and suddenly I was being dragged along behind the sled. This was highly amusing which didnt help my efforts to climb back on as I was giggling too much to muster the strength to pull myself back in. Heroically though I did manage to hold on, yelping at Chloe to help (who of course couldnt) and eventually heaved myself back up and onto the sled. Phew.

We then stopped at the halfway point for some lunch and drinks. This time a kind of teepee in the middle of the forest which our guide lit a fire in the middle of to all huddle in and keep warm. As soon as we ventured out again the dogs leapt up with uncontrollable enthusiasm, again howling and running on the spot, buzzing to go. The dogs were untied and as soon as Chloe released the brake again we bolted off (almost straight into a tree which we bounced off of) and away we went again on this magical journey.

On our return we thanked the dogs and then got to look around the centre which had some CUTE husky puppies to play with. Absolutely adorable as they fell over each other and tried to chew our gloves.

For our last afternoon we decided to hire some snowshoes and attempt to climb up the big ski slope near our chalet. It was tough going and in places it was one step forward and then a big slide back down the snowy slopes! The trick though, was to really dig in the toes as these had some spikes on to help grip. However on our off-piste mission it was more thick powder so difficult to get a grip on anything. Nevertheless we persevered and were greatly rewarded with stunning views from the top of the mountain, just as the sun was setting. A breathtaking view of sparkly white as far as you could see, with snowcapped trees and the few odd buildings.

Then for the way down. The ski centre had by this time closed so we figured the best way down by far was going to be by descending the ski slopes on our bottoms. So we did. Haha tremendous fun as we skidded down and even better when we got to the jumps and whizzed down the steeper declines on our backsides. Who needs ski's?!

Our last dinner we were treated to grilled goats cheese with salad and herb oil, followed by roasted wild boar, basmati rice, creamy red-wine pepper sauce and carrot chips (or for me some delicious veggie pancakes) and to satisfy the sweet tooth; blueberry-chocolate muffin and vanilla icecream. After our full days adventure we were then pleased to retire to our room and enjoy our private Finnish Sauna, before curling up in bed for our last sleep in Lapland feeling very satisfied from our adventures....

A few hours into our sleep there was a loud BEEP. The Aurora Alarm. So off we went again throwing our warm layers on over our pyjamas and dashing out into the cold night air. We scurried along the path near our chalet to get away from any light pollution for the best view. And there it was again, that now familiar green glow in the black night sky. Nothing as spectacular as the phenomenal display we had been blessed with the previous two nights but nevertheless, the Northern Lights were radiating in the sky in what most people would be satisfied to witness ordinarily on their search out here for them.

So on our final night gazing at the sky, we basked in the glory and joy of being priviledged enough to observe this ellusive marvel 3 out of 3 nights. And then in amongst all the twinkling stars, a shooting star shot across the sky. Perfect.
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