Sun or snow?

The week between Christmas and New Year – where should you go on holiday? Sun or snow? One year we decided that we wanted a really truly winter holiday. So we booked ourselves onto a week’s wilderness activity trip in northern Finland with Exodus. We were based at Basecamp Oulanka in their toasty log cabins. It was absolutely fantastic and we had a really wonderful time.

Oddly, we didn’t feel the cold too much and it was -30°C at its coldest. Your eyelashes freeze into mini icicles outside. The warmest day was a sweltering -11°C.  The camp kitted us out with the appropriate clothes. As the Nordic saying goes, “there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.”

We were active the entire time it was daylight.  There were lots of things to do – dog sledding, cross country skiing, walking trails, snow-shoeing, building igloos, sledding down hills, ice-fishing, climbing an ice wall. There were day trips out to a reindeer farm and to a downhill skiing resort. After an exhilarating day out, the sauna was a daily late afternoon ritual. Then, a book by the fire, dinner, chatting with other people and a few drinks. Ahhh.

One night, we saw the Northern Lights. It wasn’t as techni-coloured as some of the pictures I’ve seen, but an impressive sheet of light nonetheless. And there was the option of sleeping out in the igloos overnight.  How many people can say they’ve done that?

~ Spotted Cow

Basecamp Oulanka

Snow walk

Snowy bridge

Cross Country Skiing