Despite being here a couple of times, it’s still an endeavour from start to finish. This time we skied over the lake towards Akka, whereafter we more or less followed the summer trail to Gisuris leaving the snow mobile track behind us as soon as possible. During the days the weather changed a lot. We usually had really nice mornings but every day around 11am the wind picked up and the surrounding scenery disappeared in white out or flat light. Once we had to lay down on the tent while pitching it for safety reasons. Smiling of course. We asked for adventurous days and we got it! Living in a freezer with metres of snow under us for more than a week has its advantages. Pulling most of our gear and food in a sled we chose wisely and brought a lot of good food that we normally don’t take with us, like 1 liter of orange juice on our daily breakfast menu. Also having the opportunity to dig a hole in the vestibule so we could easily stand up or sit on the side dangling our legs while melting snow and chatting about the day was perfect. It’s very easy for my mind to wander off during the days while I’m on skis. Still I end up doing adventures like this because I love them and it’s easy to get back to the moment “now”, taking it all in. Before this trip we trained back home in south of Sweden on green grass and almost no freezing temperatures at all, so we had to re-adapt ourselves to a life in the cold and that was an adventure on its own.
Notes from my field journal
“In the evenings when hanging out in the tent I think I had appreciated a wool blanket to wrap myself in or even to cover my legs and knees while cooking food in the vestibule. Maybe more a cozy factor than practical? It’s been on my mind the hole trip.”
“Doing the dishes. Put on the mittens, put some snow in the pot and then rub the inside of the pot with your hand. Repeat until satisfied. The snow gives a grinding effect and easily removes most leftovers. Change snow know and then.”
“Some people go to church.. I ski through a valley. Same result?”
“I like how everything is cut down to basics needs when out on trips like this. It’s all about being here, connected to now. Being warm, dry and fed. It’s not about the looks, the barber you go to, the new jacket you bought or other “rubbish”. It’s not about money.. When you’re cold, you’re cold. Can’t buy anything out here. It’s about the details in what you do, the routines and the people you’re with. Team spirit. If you don’t do your routines, don’t listen to your body, don’t do maintenance on your gear and you’re not humble to the daily tasks, you somehow pay the price. I also like that everything is a process. Today you easily google things or do things and the result is seconds away. Here you go through a process in everything you do.”