Monday, April 20, 2015

Spring Overnighter

The 11 year old was away for a night, so I used the opportunity to go on a short backpacking overnighter with the 10-year old. We decided to follow one of the trails in the Kurjenrahka National Park.

We started walking at six in the evening. The first part was a mire.
We soon left the mire and followed the national park border for a while.

A tree used by woodpeckers for handling spruce cones.

Going off trail for a while.

Back on the trail.

No reason not to have a little snack.

The signs of spring in the taiga forest are few, but at least there are the willow catkins.

A capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus) was a nice surprise. It wasn't shy, but didn't challenge us either, so we soon let it go on with its display.

Closing in on the goal, a cliff that is a bit higher than the surroundings.

The first business was to erect the tent, A Fjällräven Akka Dome 3 bought used a month ago. A very nice tent that is much too heavy for backpacking, though it doesn't matter much on a short overnighter. I bought it for use when the weight doesn't matter much, like the kayak, canoe and pulk.

We even got a little sun for a while.

Time for the noblest of outdoor foods.

The sunset was a little obscured by clouds, but the evening was nice and I tried to identify the bird sound around me, with success despite not doing that well in my bird sound exam a week earlier. There were mostly the ordinary taiga forest birds, with the most interesting being a Eurasian woodcock repeatedly flying over us. A suprise was a Golden Plover, which could be heard at some distance.

Good night.

The night was surprisingly cold, with a temperature just over freezing. I wasn't particularly warm, but the boy had no problems despite having a summer sleeping bag only. We slept quite well and got up at eight in the morning. We had sandwiches and coffee and hot chocolate.

There was no possibility to get the ground stakes in the ground, but with a freestanding tent that is not necessary. It was probably not necessary to tie the guy lines, but we still had them tied to trees and other objects.

Before leaving.

On the move.

At least some lichens give a little color, but you have to look at the small details.

These willow catkins have come a little further.

Easy walking.

Just when we were done, we saw a real sign of spring.

That's it.

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