Monday, May 5, 2014

Levaneva overnighter

Labour Day was on a Thursday this time and the kids had the Friday off from school. It was thus easy to lengthen the weekend and I went with my family to Ostrobothnia to visit the kids' grandfather. The area around Närpes does not offer that much for a mountain bike rider compared to my ordinary surroundings, but I still wanted to go on a spring overnighter. It turned out that a suitable destination, Levaneva, was found not too far away. There are a few routes around a large mire and also several shelters in the area. I took the car for the 60 km ride there and was joined by Simo at Rajavuoren erä- ja retkeilykeskus.

We checked out the view, which was rather flat, from a tower and then started riding.

We took a first loop to the west, but unfortunately rode it the wrong way, taking the descent on easy dirt road and ascending back on more difficult trails.

Simo immediately got his feet wet in a section softened up by ATV:s. Ordinary bikes tend to sink a little more than fatbikes.

There were easier trails...

.. some clearcut sections...

...and nicer trails.

After a one hour loop we passed the cars and continued towards our actual goal. The route started on easy ground...

... but it soon turned out that the trail would be rather poor and little used for the nearest two hours.

A boardwalk section provided a relief and very easy riding for me...

... though Simo had difficulties due to not being used to ride boardwalks and the front fork being out of air, making the steering too nervous for the boardwalks. Not being used to technical trails he also got little too tired to ride safely.

For the final hour we again had a good trail, which had seen enough use to be very rideable. The boardwalks also consisted of two planks and Simo could again ride everything.

We soon arrived to the Levaneva mire, which turned out to be a lot bigger than the mires around Turku.

The weather didn't really feel like spring. The temperature was probably around 5C, but the wind helped us stay cool.


It was still quite beautiful on the mire with the sun soon setting.

After four hours of riding we arrived at the Maalarinmaa shelter and immediately started a fire. In addition to sandwhiches we had sausage this time.

Simo can't decide between resting and having a beer.

Much to my suprise, Simo had a pump that actually could give enough pressure to fix the suspension fork.

The was a bird tower nearby and we went up to look at the actual sunset. Some clouds had been faster, though.

I even had a bottle of beer. This one was quite ok.

We spent some time around the fire talking and listening to the surroundings. There were a lot less bird sounds than on my overnighter two weeks earlier, probably because of the different biotope. I would still have expected more, but there was at least the Willow Ptarmigan, which isn't found in the southermost parts of the country. Sometime after eleven we went to sleep.

I wasn't cold, but not particularly warm either in my ultralight summer sleeping bag. The temperature was probably around freezing. I woke up sometime when it was no longer entirely dark and noticed that the birds again were active. One or two hours later I again woke up, but could not hear any birds sounds, the explanation for which was revealed when we got up around 7:30. It's spring, but with a twist.

We made coffee and toasted the sandwhiches over the fire, after which I took some photographs. Everything looked rather different than in the evening.

We started riding again around nine in the morning. Nate and Knard tracks in the picture. Size matters.

Poor Simo had such narrow tire tracks, but he is about to get fat this week.

We rode back to the cars on small and larger roads.

After one hour or so we were back at the cars and I arrived back in good time before lunch. A really nice overnighter, thanks to Simo for joining me. We only had time to ride about half of the routes, so I will certainly return to the area again.

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