January 20, 2011

Picture it,

Jukkasjarvi, January 2011.  Its -28C, around 10pm. Helena and I are out walking on the frozen lake.  And a little dream of mine comes true!  We get treated to a spectacular show of the elusive Northern Lights!!
And no, I didn't take any pictures.  I just stood still and watched.  Here is a pic off the internet that gives you an idea of what they were like.

Our night in the Ice Hotel room of -5C was happily event free.  It was cold in the room but warm in the sleeping bag.  I slept better once I figured out that you can make the face hole in the sleeping bag smaller.  Much more comfy and considerably less draughty.  The toilet break at 3:30am was an experience as I had to walk through the hotel (-5C) and then outside (-20C) to get to the Dressing Room area in the warm section of the hotel - JUST IN MY THERMAL UNDIES!   Think camping but in the arctic circle.  In the morning we were woken with a cup of hot ligonberry juice. Yummo!

And then at lunch time the Bron arrived.  O happy days!

Off to the snowmobiles!  What an adventure. For 2 hours we snowmobiled over frozen lakes and through fairy tale forests which have been untouched for years.  "Into the wilderness" as our guide put it.  All in the dark with a full moon.  The snow was all sparkly and thigh deep.   It was so cold on the home stretch that Helena literally started to freeze.  Put it this way, its around -28C and then you are on a snowmobile going around 55km out on a lake which is frozen solid.  We were only 400km from the Russian border - I got a real kick out of that.
A frozen Helena - note the icicles on her eyelashes and frozen hair!

Snow suit up!

Waiting for our guide - its 4pm

Moi! (its blurry coz our hands were frozen!)

Into the sauna to thaw ourselves out and then out for dinner - I had elk with a lovely french wine which Hans chose for us - I was tempted to try the "Game bird of the night"  but Elk seemed more exotic.

Game bird of the night, stealing glances....

I willl leave you with some more pics of the Ice Hotel.  Thanks Bron for a lovely time in the Swedish Wilderness. 

Sun rising over the hotel at 12

Entrance to Ice Village

Full moon over Ice Hotel at 3pm

Ice Hotel Entrance

Little Cabin where we spent our second night

Ice Hotel Chapel

Themometer outside our cabin just before we left at -27C



  1. What a sensational post!
    Gosh Lis - you saw the beautiful Northern Lights!
    What a thrill!
    And your ride through those forests in deep pristine snow, over frozen lakes . . .
    The mind boggles!
    The experience of a lifetime -
    Thanks so much for sharing it so beautifully.

  2. Hey Lis!

    Wow - how lucky are you to have SEEN them!! Awesome... everything sounds absolutely magical. I can't wait to sit down over coffee and hear all about it.

    So pleased Bron could join you too. Have fun.
    Caio L

  3. Unbelievable....what a unique experience! I feel like I have experienced it alongside you. Thanks so much for posting regularly my friend!

    It is truly a holiday of a lifetime.
    Miss you.
    K,T,M & the two little birds.


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