Arctic adventure

Trip Start May 01, 2006
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Sweden  ,
Monday, March 19, 2007

We´ve just returned from the wilderness after easily our most amazing travel experience so far - almost a week in the arctic driving husky teams through the Swedish mountains.
We each had a team of four huskies and, led by our intrepid guide Niclas and chef Stetan, we and three other travellers ventured along the Kungsleden, or King´s Trail, a fantastic trail through the pristine wilderness near Kiruna in northern Sweden.
Each day we traveled for 30-40kms, a testiment to the incredible endurance of the dogs and more than a little hard work on our part (a laden sled won't get up steep inclines of soft snow without some leg work from the driver).
Up in the highest points there were no animals to see or even any plant life, except the tough grass buried beneath the snow.  We had a mix of nice days of blue skies and relatively comfortable minus 5 degrees, and also some days where the snow came in at us in howling winds of minus 15.
At night we stayed in unpowered cabins, but they were very cosy and there were occasional creature comforts like a wood-fired sauna (JP did the mad nude leap from the sauna into the snow, an invogorating experience to say the least!).
After five days out in the wild we became very attached to our dogs and were very sad to say goodbye to them; we left with such an appreciation and respect for the huskies.
We returned to Kiruna on Friday afternoon desperate for a warm shower and a change of clothes.  We then had a last dinner with some friends from the trip (reindeer stew). 
On our way back to our hotel we noticed what looked like weird cloud in the sky, which after a while started to turn green and we realised it was the northern lights!  It was amazing to watch the show, even if it was relatively weak for the lights. 
We really had not expected to see the lights, and to catch it on our last night in the arctic was the cherry on the top of an incredible week.  
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