Day 15 – Tour de Finlande 2010: Enontekiö – Muonio

The last night I had the best night sleep in tent so far. I guess the temperature was perfect, I just woke up once during the night. After having breakfast, I decided to have a tour of Hetta, the core village of Enontekiö. From there starts maybe the most famous, or at least most popular, hiking paths of Lapland, heading to the Pallas-Yllästunturi National Park, which is just on the other side of the river. Also on the north there are up to 26 km-long hiking walks, which start from the Tunturi-Lapin luontokeskus, a Natural Centre worth visiting in itself, as it hosts temporary exhibitions of Sami culture, manufacts, and art. This time there was the exhibition of a Lappish painter, which used a particular burning process to make black drawnings on pieces of wood.

I had a small walk on the hills as well, taking a 3 km hiking path, before it started to rain a bit, so I stayed at the Natural Centre for lunch. Fortunately it didn't take long before it stopped, so I could start the proper trip. Today no big problems on the leg, so it worked very smoothly up to Muonio.

I found a nice scenery taking a detour through Yli-Muonio, a very beatiful small villages on a slope in front of the Muonionjoki river. Wonderful wooden houses, so wonderful that when I decided to take a picture of one of them, I made a fast u-turn which turned out to be even too fast, as I felt down for the first time in this trip. Nothing bad, not even a scratch, but it made me realise the drawback of clipless pedals. I have a couple of cycling shoes which get attached to the pedals with a so-called clipless mechanism. In a few words, I always have to remember to detach the shoes every time I stop, which is not a big deal except in case you have to do it very fast, as it was in the case I fell down. Lesson learned, I guess.

Now I have camped in the woods for the second night in a row. It's a particular place this one, as it is very close to Muonio at the riverside, just behind the Finnish toll. Which by the way doesn't look very lively anymore. There is a bridge here that marks the border between Finland and Sweden (funny if you think that I crossed the border between Norway and Finland just yesterday), so the first thing I decided to do was to cross it, of course. Well, on the other side the asfalt ends, and no sign of life whatsoever, just a road sign with the number 404, like page not found. Guess there's not that much life on the Swedish side at this latitude. Well, let's stick with Finland now, there might be a chance to do a detour to Sweden, but farther in the south.

Day 15 – Tour de Finlande 2010: Enontekiö – Muonio

Trip distance (including some hanging around Enontekiö): 99 km
Actual trip time: 5 h 40 m

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