Welcome to Lapland (6.)

Last day in nature

Last night we weren’t alone. One student from Tampere (Erasmus, and he is from Germany) joined us and we had some company. Later came one girl from Utsjoki with nice husky puppy, but she made a tent next to the fireplace outside, because the puppy was very curious about everything.

I don’t know why, but next morning I invited her to have some hot black tea inside. Because of that, we began our journey an hour later than we wanted, but it was nice to have some not nervous talking after long time. She was there to see “some trees” and it made me curious. I absolutely need to go even more north.

After that, we said goodbye and went our way back to the civilisation. We knew, it will be long journey to go close to the Kiilopää. Our intention was to sleep in some hostel, have shower, sleep in real bed and next day go back to Rovaniemi. I wrote about the plans lot of time. Nothing here went as we planned.

Exhaustion

We were tired, boyfriend was sick, I started to be sick. We had about 20 km before us in a not easy terrain. But we had to go. After few metres from the hut we stopped at the river bank. How the hell we can go through? It was deep. At least, it looked deep and it was much deeper than the rivers we were usually crossing.

Thinking was short and my boyfriend stepped into the stream. I was watching him. Water level was high, almost on the edge of the shoes. And going 20 km with completely wet shoes? That is not good idea. He carefully continued, thought about every next step. And he made it. Now it was my turn. I was little bit afraid, but I had to go there. I made it.

We were glad but the next way went straight uphill. Steep uphill with that small path. We continued going up and down next few kilometres. Last hill was too much for me. I couldn’t catch my breath and I must stop few times.

Finally, we were on top of that hill and I was happy for only short time, because I saw, we must go down again. On a very steep slope. With only thin path and lot of trees laying on the way. It was hard with such a heavy backpack and I had to concentrate a lot to the ground. Considering every step.

And when we went down to the small river valley, what do you think, that happened next? Where the path led? Uphill of course… It was only four kilometres of this terror, but it was enough. When we saw hut and fireplace, we sat down there and ate something, drunk something. After short break, we could continue.

The journey was…well… very boring and I couldn’t think at all. Most of time I simply had total emptiness in my head. And because I wasn’t thinking about the landscape and everything else, I had lot of time to concentrate on pain.

Man with a dog

I don’t know exactly how, but after such terribly boring, painful and boringly boring time we arrived to the shelter. To our desired shelter, where we wanted to rest and make after-lunch (it was lunch, but not in lunch time). There was sitting some man with a fox-looking dog, shaking, when it saw us. We greeted, took our bags off and started to do our staff and had some conversation with that man. I put my camera just on a nail just next to man’s rifle and sat too.

That man stopped here to make some food, now only a sausage. We were happy we don’t have to make a new fire and started to cook. Talked about some things, enjoyed the nice view to the river and swamp. It was nice to rest there.

After some time, the man took his stuff and went somewhere to the forest. We were sitting next to the fireplace few moments longer, but we had to continue. I didn’t want to. My feet were hurting and I was tired, but we had to.

All the next way I tried to figure out, how to walk differently, to not to feel my feet and my back. Pain in feet was strong and I mentioned it…a lot. I was truly trying not to think about it, but I couldn’t. Forest was same all the time, anything to come to my mind. My boyfriend tried to help me, to cheer me up and it worked…a little.

Civilisation

When I was prepared to give up, first buildings began to appear. It was simply amazing. We started to talk about different topics and surrounding was interesting again. We were looking at those houses and talked about it. Too many houses. And car! Can you imagine that? We saw a car! And we could hear road. It was amazing, I felt much better after that. At least, mentally.

Because of our position, I wanted to have small “architectural” excursion and see glass igloos (Arctic hotel resort). I saw it few times in architectural magazines and when I find out, we will be going close to it, I wanted to see it. Because is huge difference between reality and nice magic photos in magazines.

I wasn’t surprised. It looked awful for the first sight. For next one it was little bit better, but still…why? Why on the Earth will somebody want to pay 162 euros for staying overnight in this? Maybe in winter it is nicer, but I don’t believe it. My imagination is good enough and I can imagine spring in an autumnal forest and when I go there at spring, it is almost same as I imagined that. No. It is not very nice in architectural speaking and the location is not much better. And it is so close to each other… no. Just simply no. I don’t like it.

After some time, we realized, that this place with unbelievably big amount of buildings, is just a huge and very expensive hotel which is not even nice (of course, I wasn’t been inside). Maybe for some sort of tourists it is good and nice, but not for me. But we had problem. If every building all around is hotel, where we will sleep? The cheapest one was 100 euros per night. I didn’t want it. Rather I will sleep somewhere in the forest with just sky above my head.

Sleeping place

We’ve got an idea, because we couldn’t go next 10-15 km (depends on the road) back to the Saariselkä to have more options and day hut, we used our sign with Ivalo. It took only about 15 minutes or less, before some car stopped to us. Two guys in a big car. They confused me a little. They were heading right to the Ivalo, but they thought, Saariselkä is on the other way. I was little bit confused, but I was totally sure it is that direction. They looked on the map and I was right.

And they took us. It was short journey, but one of those guys asked from which part of Czech Republic we are. It was surprising only for a short time, because after that, he told us, he was there as a student in nineties. It was nice. We ended our journey exactly on the same parking place, where we started. Except now it wasn’t white and dark.

For first, we went to the shop to buy few things for next journey and for having nice breakfast next morning. After that, we ended in a coffee bar just next to the shop to eat something warm and different. We had burgers. My boyfriend two smaller and I one bigger. It was just great. And even I enjoyed the coffee with a cinnamon roll and I don’t drink coffee, I don’t like the taste.

After that, we were satisfied and went to that day hut next to the village and went to sleep. Satisfied and in the warm.

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