I think we really needed it, based on the hours upon hours of chattering.
I’d seen my tent buddy Elina last spring and even though WhatsApp had been very, very active between us, it didn’t entirely live up to actual face to face conversation.
School was out for both of us and graduation peeked round the corner, so we had lot of ground to cover. Heikki, our trusty photographer, had to endure the whole novel of topics, the poor thing.
But I’m so glad to have this particular group with me. It’s so much easier to talk to like-minded people from similar starting points.
I remember someone saying one should never go on a hike with a coworker, because you end up talking about work too much but for us it was vital to get it all out in the open.
Elina told us about her internship in Kiilopää and about her co-guide gigs. I had my summer in Pallas behind me and shared my own adventures too. The future came up more than once: what’s next now that school was finally over?
We had so much to talk about yet surprisingly little of it involved worrying about our progress and gear.
In our studies, we had zero long hikes, but only a few couple overnight trips where we presented our skills to our teachers. This didn’t sit too well with us so we did what anyone would do: went into the wild amongst ourselves!
Day 1: Kiilopää – Suomunruoktu, 14 kilometers
The beginning was a bit of a highway, to be honest. The Rautulampi circle route is fairly popular. But then again, I’m happy all that traffic is focused to a certain path.
We stopped in Niilapää to check on the hut and have our first sandwiches. We continued on steadily in a thick fog. Elina said she was sorry we could see the view but we’d see it on our way back in a week.
A week! We were so excited!
The first accommodation was in Suomunruoktu. The path leading to it was smaller but still, you know, a path.
We had lunch by the river and saw a bit of sun as well.
All the exciting things we’d see during the week! Like crossing a river barefoot – something neither me or Heikki had never done before. Who knows how much water was flowing in the river!
Well, not a whole lot.
Pitching tents, checking the hut and lighting a fire. As an evening special event we roasted sausages and made faces:
We didn’t let little showers bother us but just turned in.
Despite all the feedback conversations, these little details stuck with me: