Day 4: A day at the Kamisak Huskey Farm

Ivalo Travel Blog

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At Saariselkä's ski lift.
Finland's longest sled run is located in Saariselkä. As a matter of fact, the hundred meters we had tried on Sunday evening were the very end of the full 1200 meter run down the Kaunispää, which is a fell and not a small town as we initially thought. I'd read somewhere that it was possible to take a single ascent with the ski lift for 5 Euro and then go down the sled run, so this seemed like an opportunity we should not miss. We took a walk to the bottom of the hill where the lift and end of the ski runs were located. When we bought tickets we asked the girl behind the counter where we should get our sleds. 'Well, normally you would have to take them from your hotel or from the bottom of the sled run'. Bugger, that would mean walking all the way back! 'But you're in luck today because I took some with me when I came here this morning.
In the Great Whiteness.
They're outside.'

And so, excited as little boys we grabbed our sleds and jumped on the ski lift. When we arrived at the top of the Kaunispää fell everything was white as far as the eye could see. At this height it wasn't only quite foggy, but the snow also stretched in all direction with hardly any trees around. The Great Whiteness, that's what it was. We located the start of the sled run that was indeed 1200 meters long and 130 meters high. Jumping in our sleds we whizzed down the fell, to the obvious amusement of the people we passed on our way down. At one point Paul overtook his own sled, but in the end we arrived back at the bottom unharmed.

With huge smiles we walked back to the hotel for a cup of coffee. There was a weird stew available for lunch but we decided that a few buns with butter would probably be safer.
Nothing but snow to the left ...
At 12 o'clock we were picked up and taken to the Kamisak husky farm by Simo, one of the farms guides. We would take a two day husky sled trip on Thursday and Friday but had also booked the bed & breakfast facilities of the farm. Somehow this seemed to be a bit more adventurous than staying in Saariselkä all week. And what a pleasant surprise it was. Where the hotel had been rather disappointing (and not just because of the food; lack of clean towels and refills of complementary coffee were other slight nuisances) this place was amazing. I'd expected a couple of cramped beds in a cabin the B&B actually was the full second floor of the farm, including living room, fully equipped kitchen and two bedrooms for up to four people.
... nothing but snow to the right.
Mika, the farm owner, welcomed us and explained that we could use all facilities of the apartment. He would later explain that he used to live here with his wife, but since they had a baby they moved out to a place that was more quiet, not just because of the dogs but because of visitors as well. Since they moved they've rented the apartment out as a bed and breakfast, a name which really doesn't do it justice.

I noticed that while the apartment was located on the second floor of the farm the backyard was actually at ground level. Curiously I walked outside and was immediately jumped by five 15 week old husky puppies and their mom. Now, I'm not really a dog person but for some reason I've always likes huskies, and these fellows were so damn cute! Fighting for attention they were all over us.
Ready to go down the sled run.
After cuddling with them for a while we went back in to make ourselves some coffee. What an amazing place this was, probably one of Finland's best kept secrets!

We spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing in the apartment, reading and cuddling the dogs. We also took a walk around the farm and met the house cat, Pabo, who sneeked back in with us. I slept part of the afternoon and was still feeling very tired. I hoped I wasn't coming down with a flue or something. Mika had asked us if we wanted to cook our own food, go to Ivalo or if his wife should prepare something for us. Since we liked this quiet day of relaxation we opted for the latter. And a good choice it was. Around seven Mika brought us some delicious pasta with chicken and fruit, the best food we'd had so far.
Down the 1200 meter sled run.
And it also did me a lot of good. I almost felt reborn after having eaten something decent again.

I had a chat with Mika who told me that there were 109 huskies at the farm. Two litters were born every year and training the young dogs was a lot of work. When there were no sled safaris during the summer season Kamisak would organize husky trekkings and  horseback riding and receive busses with visiting tourists to continue to make some money. When he said goodbye he gave us the key and we realized that we were all alone in the farm. It was just Paul, me and Pabo the rest of the night. And 109 huskies of course ... ;-)
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At Saariselkäs ski lift.
At Saariselkä's ski lift.
In the Great Whiteness.
In the Great Whiteness.
Nothing but snow to the left ...
Nothing but snow to the left ...
... nothing but snow to the right.
... nothing but snow to the right.
Ready to go down the sled run.
Ready to go down the sled run.
Down the 1200 meter sled run.
Down the 1200 meter sled run.
Down the 1200 meter sled run.
Down the 1200 meter sled run.
Down the 1200 meter sled run.
Down the 1200 meter sled run.
Kamisak Husky Farm.
Kamisak Husky Farm.
Kamisak Husky Farm.
Kamisak Husky Farm.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Husky puppy at Kamisak.
Husky puppy at Kamisak.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Husky puppy cuddling at Kamisak.
Pabo finds a warm spot.
Pabo finds a warm spot.
Husky puppies at Kamisak.
Husky puppies at Kamisak.
Kamisak Husky Farm.
Kamisak Husky Farm.
Should have worn snow shoes ...
Should have worn snow shoes ...
Paul and Pabo at Kamisak.
Paul and Pabo at Kamisak.
Ed and Pabo at Kamisak.
Ed and Pabo at Kamisak.
Ivalo Hotels & Accommodations review
Try a night at a husky farm !
We booked a husky safari with the Kamisak husky farm, an activity that in itself comes highly recommended (see blog). When I was informed by Mika that… read entire review
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photo by: eefab