Kilpisjärvi Holiday destination
Kilpisjärvi Holiday destination is unique for the real Arctic climate experience, it is apparent at the very first glance you see at kilpis-lake town, especially if it is a clear spring day, with clear blue skies and gleaming white snow all around reflecting the sunlight off the snow covered tundra Fells, all around surrounding the small town of kilpis-lake.
A truly stunning tall tundra fell named Saana, is nearby on the East side, only one kilometer to the base from the town, from the base of the fell it rises up over 500 meters to the summit. See more pictures from this link. Arctic Finland holiday destination.
The landscape to the West side is a flat frozen over snow covered narrow lake that stretches out some 10 km towards Norway to the North West. All around there is snow covered rolling tundra Fells and Tall Mountain peaks towards the Norway and Sweden that can be viewed from the Kilpis-lake town, that are only 10-20 km away.
The location of the kilpis-lake is about 50 km south from the Norway town of Skibothn, and 150 km from Norway Tromssa. 280 North West of Kittilä airports, and some 429 km North West from the town of Rovaniemi.
Kilpis-lake enjoys a cool mountain climate, with a long winter snow season stretching out well into the spring season April-May. The winter sub-zero temperatures start in October with the average low temperature for the month being -3.2 ‘C. The daily mean sub-zero temperatures last for 8 months until June the following year, with average low temperate being 3.6’C according to the Kilpisjärvi climate data.
There are of course exceptional warm seasons, as well as exceptional cold seasons, and the daily temperatures can go above the + C from time to time even during the spring season, from day to day according to the regional climate conditions that are affected by the southern European climate and the Siberian climate conditions on the east. But the high climate of the Kilpis-lake location, the lake altitude being at 473 meters above the sea level, does have the relative characteristic of a high altitude cool climate. It may sound deceptive to some to be speaking of a spring season when there is one meter of snow over the land and a 75 cm thick ice cover over the frozen ice, and no signs of it going anywhere, but spring season it is according to the calendar, meaning that the summer will soon be knocking on the frozen winter ice door, as the planets northern hemisphere tilts more towards the sun and melts the ice and snow for a season.
Surrounded by Tundra fells
The closest big tundra fell is named Saana tundra, at the summit it is 1029 meters above sea level, towering high above the nearby kilpis-lake town. There are many smaller tundra Fells nearby also, such as Salmivaara at only a few kilometres away, which can be easily ascended with the use of snowshoes, to the altitude of 598 meters. Then there is the Ailakkavaara on the South East side at the height of 935 meters, and the Pikku-Malla (small-Malla) at 738 meters to the North West, and Iso-malla (big-Malla) towering at 942 meters at the summit.
There are loads of recreational outdoor activities to do in any season, during my recent visit it was the spring season, so I will mention them first.
Cross country skiing at kilpis-lake.
Kilpisjärvi (Kilpis-lake) is great for the cross country and telemark skiers because of the long winter season; the reason for the cold climate is twofold. The far north proximity, parallel line, the coordinates being: 69°02′57″ North. 20°47′40″East. There are groomed cross country ski tracks on the frozen snow covered kilpis-lake for many tens of kilometres, one track to the three border point is 38km with the return. There is also a groomed ski track that go around the Saana tundra making the distance some 20 kilometres from the town heading East and North around the Saana tundra and down West to the ice and snow covered kilpis-lake and back south to the kilpis-lake starting point. Great ski trip for an experienced cross-country skier.
There are many snowmobile safari operators that take visitors for relatively short sightseeing day trips, night time northern lights viewing, ice fishing or camping trips staying overnight at log cabins. Snowmobiles can be hired and driven with a driver’s license, or the alternative being passengers on the back or the sledge that is being towed by the snowmobile, that may seat 4-6 passengers.
Snow shoe walking.
Snowshoe trekking is great when the weather is clear and sunny, the snow covered environment lights up in the bright sunlight and it is a pure joy to be walking on the top of the snow crust with the aid of the snow shoes, that can carry the weight of a person without sinking much at all, when there is a crust of snow on the top to carry the body weight of the person. Snow covered landscape can be interesting experience, walking along the landscape and around the short tundra birch trees that are only about 2 meters tall, above the snow when there is one meter of snow above the ground. There are also visible animal tracks to be seen, a winter coat pure white colour hare, red fox, and the unique white tundra bird named willow ptarmigan, a willow grouse bird that changes colour into snow white during the winter season.
Dining at kilpis-lake
There are number of restaurants and food services available at kilpis-lake, many of the accommodation services have a restaurant on their property to service their customers. To name a few ff the main road there is the Lapland Hotel kilpis, and Tundra Lomakeskus, the Majatalo Haltimaa, Kilpisjärvi retkeily keskus, and the restaurant at the Kilpisjärvi town main shopping centre.
Novel experiences of Arctic Finland culture.
Hot steaming sauna first, followed by a dip in the fresh waters of the ice lake, that takes the body experience from the extreme steaming hot sauna to the other extreme of the 0’C degree chilling waters that has had the ice cover removed for the willing volunteers to take a quick dip in the chilling cool waters and run back into the hot sauna to warm their frozen balls all over again. It does sound very extreme but it is said to be invigorating and a refreshing bodily experience to enjoy.
There are many various types of accommodation available at kilpis-lake, if you enjoy the cottage style log cabins with open fire places, or the hotel style accommodation with regular daily room service, there are many types and styles to choose from at the kilpis-lake. For more information on the Kilpisjärvi services visit web site www.Kilpisjärvi.org