Day 8 – Tour de Finlande 2010: Sodankylä-Kakslauttanen

I'm trying to post this while I'm in the middle of the forest, so at least for the first version there will be no picture whatsoever, as I still wonder whether I'll be able to post it at all through the plain GSM network.

Anyways, here's the surprise: my tour plan has changed. While I originally thought to turn west from Sodankylä and go towards Kittilä and Kolari, after all I realised that once I've got up here I could also go a little bit further. That is: further north!

I left this morning with no big hurry, after having a brunch with Annina, Pauliina and Lauri, some of the few people remained at the school once the film festival was over. And everybody was heading north: Lauri also by bike, Annina and Pauliina hitchhiking towards Utsjoki.

After leaving I immediately felt lighter, maybe because I decided to leave behind a pair of trousers, a belt and a denim jacket. But maybe it was just a good day, with some sun and a perfect temperature to cycle in T-shirt without sweating at all.

My plan was to reach Ivalo in two days, which is about 160 km north from Sodankylä, so the idea was to stop in Tankavaara, the "Gold Village", after about 95 km. The E75 in that area gets the name of "kultainen tie", the streets of gold", as it seems that while digging the soil to built the road they found several hundreds of kilos of gold. Not bad for the Finnish Road Administration. As a matter of fact, the whole area around here seems to have gold, as many people enjoy panning for it. I think I skip my personal attempt for this time.

However, once I reached Tankavaara, the camping was completely empty, poor looking and it costed 12 euros. So I decided it was better heading to the woods. To my surprise, I happened to realise after some kilometres that after Vuotso the next big river is in Ivalo, and in the middle only very little brooks. As I wasn't excited at all to do 160 km in one day, I tested the water of one brook and it turned out to be wonderful. I then stopped, looked for a good place close to the E75, put up the tent and cooked some pasta trying to move all the time to avoid the millions of mosquitoes around to bleed me dry. All this after 125 km from Sodankylä, which is more or less what I did on day 1, although today it seemed much easier, either the training worked or the weather conditions were much better. Either way, I really feel well and relaxed, maybe it's time now to have some night sleep. Night, well, here at this time of the year there is no change in the light of the sky at any hour. Better to put blinkers on.

Ah, and if you're wondering where's Kakslauttanen, check it on Google Maps, it should be 10 km before Saariselkä. Here there's no way to open a picture on the net!

PS: it seems my destiny to tent next to dogs. This time I guess there should be a husky farm in the surrounding, right now they shout like wolves. Not scared, I have a puukko next to me 🙂

Day 8 – Tour de Finlande 2010: Sodankylä-Kakslauttanen

Trip distance: 125 km
Departure time: 13:00
Arrival time: 21:00
Actual trip time: 7 h
Feeling: not bad after all

Update 24.6.2010: Picture and route added

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