Cross Country Skiing
Hut to Hut tour
Perfectly picturesque and surrounded by the 7 softly rounded, snow-capped fells of the Pallas-Yllastunturi National Park, the village of Akaslompolo makes for superb cross-country skiing exploration whatever your ski ability. With over 300km of designated tracks - the most in Finland - trails vary from flat and easy to more demanding routes into the fells. There are even about 40km of trails that are illuminated at night for superb skiing even in the atmospheric twilight of the Polar Night in December and into January. The intricate network of signposted trails crisscross and intercept each other, so your route can even be changed halfway through, giving countless alternatives through the beautifully preserved Lappish landscape.
The trails are dotted with traditional Finnish kotas - small wigwam shaped huts where you can take a break from skiing to marvel at the silent snow covered landscapes - or enjoy Finnish hospitality in a skiers' cafe where you can try the local energy booster of a pulla (sweet sticky bun), munkki (the doughnut equivalent) and a hot blueberry juice.
Just 200km north of the Arctic Circle, this far north there are good opportunities to glimpse the celebrated Northern Lights. Street lights here are turned off at 10pm to showcase this extraordinary natural phenomenon.
This 8-day trip (6 ski days) in Finland is designed to teach you the basics of Nordic skiing
and introduce groups to the joy of hut to hut touring.
Whilst some previous skiing experience is helpful, it is not essential as this trip,
it is primarily aimed at novices. Nordic skiing is not only a fantastic way of staying fit but it is easy to learn, meaning that even beginners will soon be out exploring the trails.
At a Glance
Hotel accommodation/bunk rooms & mountain huts
2 day travelling
2 day skiing instruction & 4 days touring/expedition
Group normally 5 - 8 per leader
Meet at Akaslompolo
B&B in hotel, self catering in the huts
Consistent snow conditions
Fantastic Scenery and instruction
A warm welcoming hotel at the end of the training day.
Staying in a remote cosy mountain hut.
Is This Trip for You?
This week is designed for complete beginners.
Inevitably we start with the basics, including how to stop using the snowplough technique and how to turn. You will be on skis for at least 5-6 hours a day with a focus on tuition, getting comfortable on skis and building towards longer tours through the winter landscape. For at least 4 of the 5 days skiing, you will be on full day tours, returning only at the hotel or mountain hut at the end of the day's skiing.
Scroll down for an outline itinerary
Day 1 Travel
The group will travel independently to Akaslompolo. Ylläs is located 115km north of the Arctic Circle in Lapland, Finland in Scandinavia. The Ylläs area consists of two original Lappish villages. Äkäslompolo village is on the northern side of the Ylläs Fell and Ylläsjärvi village on the southern side.
There are many transport options but the simplest would be to fly to Helsinki and then either get the train/bus or an internal flight to Kittila.
Day 2 Ylläs
0800 - 1700
Start of two days of cross-country ski training.
We prefer not to specify in advance where we will ski each day. This is to allow flexibility and adapt to weather and snow conditions and to some extent the ability of each group. The following is a guide.
Beginners will start on a flat area of land near to the hotel where it’s safe to get a feel for the skis and the basic techniques.
After two days instruction the group will depart on a four day tour, staying in a mountain huts overnight.
Cross-country skiing around Ylläs
0800 - 1700
There is an endless range of skiing possibilities on varied tracks through forests and open
country, as well as a good selection of downhill runs. Today the group will practice their new found skills in preparation for their expedition.
Day 4 - 7 Hut tour
0800 - 1700
Today we set off on our four day hut tour into more remote areas. You will set off and ski along the trails navigating independently to your overnight hut.
We will spend each night at a hut relaxing around the log fire.
Each day we will ski to another hut before returning to the comfort of the hotel on the final night.
Day 8 Travel
The group will travel home independently. Advice on travel will be provided.