As Nordic ski racers, we are incredibly lucky and spend many months of the year travelling around the world, training and racing in faraway lands. Most of the winter is spent living out of a suitcase and moving from place to place. But with the focus centered squarely on racing fast, training and resting takes the priority over sightseeing on these trips. It’s easy to get into the habit of seeing the only ski centers, hotels, and their connecting roads at each race location. Visiting other places in the local area is often overlooked in favor of time off our feet, letting tired muscles recover. However most times, these outings become refreshing breaks from the normal rigors and routine of training. I promised my brother that I would take pictures of all the towns that I visit while travelling this season and I think I will be able to thank Eben for helping me get the full experience of this winter’s travels.
Yesterday afternoon I went for a long walk around the town of Muonio. With warm temperatures and a sunny sky, it was hard not to go outside. I didn’t even need my puffy coat and my biggest regret was forgetting to wear sunglasses!
The red area on the map shows the province of Munio which was established in 1575 and has a current population of around 2500 people. We are staying in the town of Muonio in this province and it's about 300km north of the Arctic circle and a couple of kilometers from the Swedish border.
Here are the Lomamaja Pekonen cabins, our home in Muonio. We are staying in the cabins on either side of the cars which happen to be the exact same cabins we rented last year.
One street that goes through town
And the other street in town
A very bright sun for northern Scandinavia. I boosted my immune system today with a healthy dose of Vitamin D.
This is the church that overlooks the town. There is a cemetery behind it that has candles next to each grave and makes for a neat after dark.
S-Market is one of two grocery stores in town. The other option, Kmarket, is somewhat visible in the background. Groceries are somewhat limited at this latitude so we've eaten a lot of meat, potatoes, beets, and other root vegetables. I was very surprised to see Ben&Jerry's ice cream in one of the stores here, but at alsmost 7Euro/ pint, it's a bit out of our budget.
The sport store in town caters almost exclusively to Nordic skiing, Nordic walking, and snowmobiling.
There is a wide river flowing through town with marshy sections like this one which is across the road from our cabins. There are also a lot of lakes in the area.
The ski area, Olos, is at the base of this hill. If you look closely you can see the big windmills that spin over our heads while we ski.