After rolling our snowmobile, one of the most pressing questions I asked the doctor was “Can I still go on my husky ride?”. I’m such a tourist. Luckily the answer was yes!
On the day, we arrived on foot to a winter wonderland – picture perfect woodland under a blanket of snow (just like the rest of Finland!). We paid up and had a talk on how to operate the sled. On the downhill you have to brake, and on the uphill stretches you have to run to help the dogs. Continue reading
Snowmobiling is a practical method of travel for locals in Nordic Countries. We wanted to try it, and found out that the options were either (1) rent your own, or (2) go on a guided tour. The price difference wasn’t that big so we chose the latter for safety reasons – I would be nervous to drive a snowmobile over a frozen lake without a guide, as how do you really know it’s safe? Plus if anything happened, it would be good to have a guide with us. As it happened, this is one of the best decisions we have ever made!
The morning dawned bright and sunny. We were breathalysed before we were allowed to hire a snowmobile. We also had a demonstration on how it worked, and a safety talk. We were told that if we rolled the machine over, Continue reading
“Why Finland?” is a question we have been asked a lot. “Do you have family there?” is the popular follow-up question. No we don’t – we just thought it would be different. We’ve been to the Alps before on several occasions. And it is beautiful. But why not try something new?! So to Finland we went! 🙂
Ruka (pronounced Roo-ka) is a small ski village ; the largest in Finland. Continue reading
So… here we are – my third skiing blog. Following my Austrian skiing and French skiing attempts, I confirm that I have not improved. I’m still terrible and my bottom still has a fatal attraction to the ground.
We started the day gently with a walk in the snow (no skis involved) to take in the beautiful scenery of Alta, Utah. The crisp air, sunny blue skies and beautiful mountains conspired to create a very pleasant stroll indeed. Just when I thought this might be for me after all, I saw an infant ski class follow each other off a cliff one by one like lemmings (they were unhurt and delighted, I should add. I was not.)
We hadn’t packed full ski gear for this trip obviously, so it was just a matter of wearing normal trousers and a waterproof coat and hoping you didn’t fall over. Continue reading
After going to bed in flip flops, we were surprised to wake up and find snow! Being a genius, I got in the car and decided the best way to clear the window of snow was to roll the window down… I did not think that through! The window was indeed cleared but I had a snow all over myself for the rest of the morning.
After panic-buying an extra layer of clothing from Walmart, we headed towards the Grand Canyon, excited! We have been to the West rim of the Grand Canyon before but not the South rim, which is meant to offer the most spectacular view of the Canyon. The snow was falling but drive-able so we decided to go for it.
Unfortunately after a while the snow was getting thicker and thicker on the road and the car kept started skidding Continue reading
In a vaguely sporty moment we decided to get a bus from Salzberg to a nearby ski resort. This proved more difficult than first expected, but we ended up trying two resorts, by public transport and a private bus.
Attempt 1: Werfenweng
Train from Salzberg to Werfen. Very good. Bus from Wefen to Werfenweng. Not so good. The timetable online was obviously out of date so we missed the bus and ended up taking a rather expensive taxi instead. The tourist office was helpful and gave us a new timetable for the bus.
Once we arrived at Werfenweng however I fell in love with the place. Cute ski chalets, a quiet ski resort, and lovely big baby-slopes (photo below). I had never skiied before and was surprisingly not like Bambi, but managed to actually ski. In amateur fashion of course, but what matters is I was on my feet not my bottom. I absolutely loved the baby-slopes, but when it was time to move on to a steeper slope, I found this way too steep. Nothing in-between.
We were lucky enough to experience Salzburg, a beautiful romantic city at the best of times, covered in snow. For us Brits, unused to snow, this added a certain excitement to the proceedings! Salzburg was all domes and spires, castles on hills, horse drawn carriages and little chocolate balls filled with yummy marzipan! It was also freakin cold.
Partly to warm up, we decided some vigorous exercise was in order, so we climbed the two hills each side of the town. We were rewarded with some lovely views and the feeling that we had stepped into Narnia Continue reading