Skiing in Sweden

Photography course at Freeride campJuliette and I are back safe from Sweden and finally settled in. After a very long series of flights, we started at the pure freeride camp in Abisko. Tired and jetlagged, we joined a great group of people to ski Friday morning. Despite being well above the arctic circle, it was warm and raining lightly which turned to deep snow into deep slush. Unfortunately, on the first run, Juliette caught an edge in the bad snow and turned her knee, so we called it a day.

Juliette’s knee continued to bother her, so over the next couple of days, I skied with one of the groups in the morning and spent the afternoons with Juliette down in Abisko. The tourist center is a very nice place, but there isn’t much to do if you aren’t skiing, so by Sunday, Juliette was going a bit stir crazy and was anxious to move on to Riksgränsen for a change of scenery.

Snowed in at RiksgransenMonday, our first day at Riksgränsen, we woke to a crazy snowstorm that closed all of the roads and even the ski lifts, so we had yet another day of cabin fever. Juliette rented some snowshoes and organized an expedition to the grocery store with Jennie, but other than that, we spent the day trapped inside.

Tuesday, Jennie, Rich and I were booked to go heliskiing, so we watched the weather reports anxiously. We woke in the morning to bright sunshine and deep fresh powder, heliskiing was on!

HeliskiingWe spent the morning getting shuttled up to the peaks in the helicopter and skiing to wonderful powder down into the valleys. I had taken a ski photography course in Abisko, so I put all of my new skills to the test and came home with some great shots and even better memories.

Juliette’s knee was still sore, stiff and weak, but she spent the morning skiing at Riksgränsen and we joined her for the afternoon. Skiing on a bad knee is tough though and she twisted it again ending her day with a long painful ski down.

That evening, we drove into Norway and down into Narvik where we found a beautiful little pub with friendly staff and amazing food. It was a welcome change.

Wednesday, we drove to the Ice Hotel near Kiruna for a chance to see it, then caught the overnight train south. We had originally been heading to Salarna to ski tour, but with Juliette injured and my knee starting to act up too, we decided to cancel that part of our trip and head for Stockholm via Gävle, Jen and Rich’s home town. More on that part of the trip in the next post.

I took over a thousand pictures with my new camera while I was there and have spent the last week paring them down into a manageable number. The first half, the ski photos are up and the remaining photos will probably be uploaded tomorrow.

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