Day 3 - Downhill skiing in Yllas

Trip Start Mar 09, 2008
Trip End Mar 16, 2008

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Flag of Finland  ,
Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Downhill skiing is safe in Yllas.  The resort height is just 718 metres.  The majority of the slopes are illuminated so not even the twilight will slow you down the slopes.   We skied for the next 5 days, leaving for the slopes before 10am and returning just after 4pm.  There are 61 slopes and 29 lifts which are mainly drag lifts and T-bars.  One chair lift and one gondola.  Yllas provide an excellent opportunity for learners as there are numerous easy blue runs.  Even the reds are nice and easy.  There is no ice on the slopes and the best thing is one does not queue at the lifts unlike many ski slopes in Europe.   One of the best thing is skiing on natural snow rather than icy slopes.  There was hardly anybody on the slopes.  You do not get into each other's way on the way down the slopes.

It was very cold on top of the mountains, visibility was bad.  We could hardly see a few metres in front of us.  On the 3rd skiing day, the weather was pretty bad.  We were skiing to Hotel Saaga on the other village.  We were skiing blind as we could not see through our goggles.  Icicles formed on the goggles.  We tried scrapping with our gloved hands but they were stuck firmly on the goggles.  It was continue skiing or freeze on the slopes.  I  tripped a few times.  On the last day of skiing visibility improved and we could admire the beautiful landscape. 

The first ski-lift to the slopes of Akaslompolo village was built in 1957.   There are ski shops and rental which provide not only skis and boots for hire but also arctic thermal wears.  There are some restaurants on the slopes.  One of these restaurant was so covered with snow that one could dismissed it as a snow covered hut.  The bus 718 takes skiers and boarders to the slopes. The cost of the bus ride is included in the lift pass otherwise it is about 2 euros one way.

There are log fires at several stops on the slopes.  We brought along sausages to barbeque for our lunch.  Some even brought along cheese sandwich wrapped in aluminium foil barbequed over the fire.  The melted cheese looked so good that I was tempted to do the same the next day.

Many people visit the area for cross country skiing.  One can ski from the door of our log cabin.  
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