If you wish to go to the woods TONIGHT!

Warning! This blog post contains many, many lists!

Heikki and I were talking about how we’re not able to train staying out in a tent for months when I said NO. I won’t be cooped up inside until Spring. I won’t do it. So we decided to take a small step for mankind but a giant leap for our hobby! That’s not to say it was an easy decision.

Against:

  • Yesterday someone complained how the weather sucks and how they can’t wait for Summer.
  • I’ve been looking at myself as too much of a beginner to go for a night out in a tent during Winter, even though I’ve owned a pair of snowshoes for a decade.
  • I suppose you need to learn how to camp and hike during Summer first?
  • I’m just going to freeze!
  • If you haven’t done it in Summer, how are you supposed to succeed in Winter?

Blah blah. We’re going out there, this weekend or the next, never mind that it’s Winter and we haven’t done our week of Summer hiking, have never been to Lapland and are no masters of hiking and camping in general. What we do have, is basic equipment:

  • Snowshoes
  • Warm sleeping bags
  • Tent
  • Winter clothing and footwear
  • Food and fire-making tools

Winter hiking doesn’t differ so much from its Summer counterpart (a few comprehensive lists can be found, in Finnish, from here and here). You just need to pay more attention to clothing and sleeping attire. The way I’m planning this particular trip, is taking too much with us is better than not taking enough. Because of the burden I shortened the amount of walking to a minimum, which means we’re spending the night fairly close to the parking lot. Once we set up camp, we can make short hikes all around. We found a perfect destination not too far from home and you’ll hear all about it later. Once I’ve ”tested” our equipment, I know how to better prepare for the next trip.

Negotiations are finished, risks have been estimated and minimized. The most important thing is that we made a decision. We also have a permission to back down if the weather ends up being dreadful. It’s good to have a way out.

Considering risks

  • I chose a spot near a sturdy lean-to.
  • The parking lot is close by.
  • I won’t be going alone.
  • We’re taking plenty of extra food and clothing.
  • We’re telling at least a couple of friends where we’re heading.
  • Also coming along is a spare cell phone that will be kept warm.
  • It’s just for one night.
  • The destination has extremely well marked trails and the terrain is easy.
  • Weather forecast looks good!
  • Remember: you can always drive home if something goes wrong!

Did we leave anything out? Did we miss something?

We’ll get back to you in the next couple of days with more specific plans and next week you’ll be looking at beautiful Winter sceneries (fingers crossed)! If we have any cell coverage, we’ll also update our social media!

– Anne

P.S. If there are any burglars online reading this, you can just forget about breaking in while we’re away. We have everything of value with us in the tent!

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