Tjuonajokk



Place: Tjuonajokk, Lapland, Sweden
Coordinates: Lat; 67.61422, Lon: 19.01883
Mountain Map: BD8 Kebnekaise-Saltoluokta
Time: 7 days in August

As I've spent way too little time in the beautiful Lapland I got really glad when my dear friend Per called me up and asked for some help up at Tjuonajokk FishYourDream. My good adventurous American friend Kate is in Sweden so we take this opportunity for some adventure together. No roads lead to Tjuonajokk so the helicopter ride out to the fishing camp is the usual way to get to this paradise. But Kate and I choose to hike out instead. From Nikkaluokta there's a 35 kilometer walk down to Tjuonajokk. The bus out from Kiruna Airport takes about one hour and at 05:00 pm we find a small and rough trail with a worn sign saying "Tjuonajokk". We get stoked as we realize this trail hasn't seen a pair of boots for some while. After a two hour walk East through the blueberry forest by Sweden's highest mountain Kebnekaise we decide to make camp for the night. Good idea to take some rest before we head South up the mountain Lárkinchokkas in the morning. After a nice dinner between friends the rain start falling so we hit the tent for some sleep. Feels great to be on our way!


Foto: K. Morley


Close Encounter with Bear
Around 06:00 am Kate and I wake up when we hear footsteps outside the tent. At first I think it's a person approaching but then a big curious nose pushes the tent tarp against my head and I realize that this is a bear. He smells me for a couple of minutes and we can feel the animals compact body against the ground. As we don't feel threatened we stay quiet without scaring the bear away. After he's left Kate and I start whispering and sudden the nose is back by my head again, this time after a soundless approach. Darn that we don't have a window in this direction; the pics would have been awesome! We get to settle for enjoying the bears shadow over the tarp. When the magnificent creature is gone we surprisingly find our food bag still hanging up in the tree outside the camp. Thanks for breakfast Mr. Bear!




Up the Hill
The rain and wind increase as we start climbing the hill. We get wet all over which is refreshing as the heart speeds from this beautiful and natural StairMaster; 20 kilos on the back and a steep climb offers a nice workout. As we want to reach Tjuonajokk on time we keep our boots warm only stopping for a couple of 5 minutes brakes. This trail is mainly used by snow mobiles in the winter so the maintenance don't have summer hikers in mind. Therefore you'll have to be prepared for some wading cross mires and rivers if you are going this way during summer. After three hills, three mires and ten hours of hiking we can knock on Tjuonajokk fishing camps cozy door.



Foto: K. Morley
 


First Class Fishing
Tjuonajokk offer the absolute best Greylings in the world. One night I get the honors of breaking my personal Grayling record with the help of a magnificent 48 centimeter (19 inches) Grayling. Also the Brown Trout and the Pike make your dreams come true up here. Fly fishing is the name of the game in these waters and the fishing guides make an incredible nice job in getting the guests up the river and showing them where the fish hangs out. I'm also impressed with the Tjuonajokk fishing camp's restaurant; fabulous food out here in this breathtaking wilderness. Tjuonajokk is genuine Sami ground and I can feel the wings of history as I walk this beautiful land.



Foto: A-M Persson
 


After a week of inspiring meetings with people from all over the world and working in these great outdoors it's time for me to say goodbye for now and it's with great respect and gratefulness I peek out the chopper window as I head back to Mid Sweden for some deer hunting via Kiruna Airport. During this healing week we have gotten to enjoy both Summer and Fall and I already long back to experience other seasons here in the magical Lapland.





Gear
For you gear junkies; here's some of the stuff I brought on this trip.

Osprey Xenith 105 Backpack
Biltema Kevon Tent
Boots Hi-Tec V-Lite Altitude Ultra WPi
Keen Newport H2 Sandals
Karesuandokniven Giron
Loop Fly Fishing Set Adventure 2
Camera Olympus Stylus TG-2
Multi tool Leatherman Surge
Paracord Bracelet Skarek
Kitchen Primus EtaPackLite

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Osprey Xenith 105 Backpack

Foto: ospreypacks.com


I've now tested the Osprey Xenith 105 for some time and I like it. It's a roomy and nice backpack for week trips or longer. My first impression of the Xenith is high quality, robustness and comfort. The choice of materials and the good fit gives a serious and inspiring impression. I've used the pack both in the Urban Jungle and out in the woods. The smart zippers along the bags sides and at the bottom enables an easy reach of the packs content, a nice feature when I'm operating in a urban environment. However when I'm out in the great outdoors I use the old technique of applying a big plastic garbage bag inside the backpack to keep my gear dry. Personally I think this works even better than the rain cover the Xenith comes with and as a bonus I get good floating assistance from the plastic bag if I end up in deep water.




I like the easy to reach pockets on the Xenith's bag, conveyer belt and lid. The zippers are robust and easy to manage. The different attachment solutions and compression straps makes a very flexible backpack. But remember to tie up all loose straps when checking the bag in for flight. The elastic pockets makes it easy to store sandals, jacket and water containers. If needed the lid can be removed and used as a separate hip bag.






A bigger backpack doesn't necessary need to come with a heavier load. If packed right I think a bigger packs advantages is the possibility to store all stuff inside and then yarn on the compression straps to give a tight and comfortable backpack for the long trip. This gives you a better balance than if you have to strap underlays and other stuff on the outside of the bag. The big Xenith bag comes in three different sizes (M, L XL), my backpack is a medium.

The Xenith's carry system consists of a light weight frame in HDPE (Polythene), a soft an ventilated back pad, robust and easy adjustable shoulder straps and conveyer belt. It's also possible to adjust the torso length of the pack. I've been carrying this pack for long periods of time loaded to about 20 kilos and so far with no problems. The manufacturer recommend a comfort load of 25-35 kilos and a maximum load of 45 kilos. If I compare the Xenith 105 with one of my other week packs; the Haglöfs Sumo 95, I think the Xenith is competing very well.  I'm looking forward to future adventures together with the Osprey Xenith 105.

Specs (according to manufacturer)
Volume: 105 liters
Weight: 2,49 kg (empty)
Size (M): Height 82 cm, Width 36 cm, Depth 38 cm
Price: 3000 SEK (Sweden 2013)

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Biltema Kevon Tent



I seldom use tents when out in the great outdoors. I prefer to let the sleeping bag and the fire keep me warm at night. And when it starts raining I roll myself up in a light weight tarp. But when up in the mountains (Fjäll in Swedish) it can be nice with a tent when the weather is shifting fast and there's no natural shelter around. During my latest Lapland adventure I didn't wanna bring my old about four kilo heavy 4 man tent so I took the opportunity to try out Biltema's cheap 2 man dome tent Kevon (art no. 37-040). The Kevon weighs 2,8 kg (3 kg according to the manufacturer) and is a two layer tent.





After spending a rainy night in Kevon by the foothills me and my roommate could agree on that the tent did the job well. We didn't get wet from above or from underneath. The tent is quite roomy and I like the "hallway" with it's nice floor. The three bows consisting of several 7,9 mm thick glass fiber sticks hold together by an elastic line could have a better fit to hold together better. The Kevon comes with a lot of tent pegs and I understand why; they bend very easy. The inner "door" is equipped with a ventilation window with a mosquito net. This night the wind wasn't too hard so we'll see in future tent hikes how well the Kevon's thin outer tent holds up. But for 399 SEK I'm very satisfied with the Kevon so far. I'll get back to this post after additional nights spent in the tent.

Specs
Size: 2 man tent, 120 cm wide, 205 + 60 cm long, 100 cm high (erected tent according to manufacturer). 50 cm long, 15 cm in diameter (folded directly from the shop).
Weight: 2,8 kg
Outer tent: PU-prepped polyester, 1500 mm waterproof
Floor: Polyten plastic
Price: 399 SEK (Sweden 2013)

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Keen Newport H2 Sandals



I've been using these water resistant sandals on and of since 2009 and they are still keeping up very well. They are perfect for kayaking, tropical fishing and as camp shoes when on long hikes. Keen Newport H2 has a funny feature; they are prepped with perfume to avoid feet ordure. And it actually works. At first I just thought this was a one time thing, but my sandals actually still only smell vanilla. I like these shoes high quality and good fit which makes these sandals work great for all kinds of activities.

Specs
Weight: 894 g/pair
Material: Rubber, polyester webbing and plastic
Price: 700 SEK (USA 2013)
Plus: High quality, good fit
Minus: Pretty heavy

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Loop Fly Fishing Set Adventure 2



Price: 1550 SEK (Sweden 2011)
Plus: Good quality, nice price
Minus: Don't include a box of flies

After years of spin fishing I've now entered the world of fly fishing. I was recommended to try out a all round set from Loop called Adventure 2. The set consists of a three piece 9 foot rod, a Loop Evotec CLW 2six reel and a class 5 floating line. This comes in a nice transport tube. So far I'm satisfied with this set. Have had the honors of working some nice graylings with it and yet I haven't grown out of this nice all round set.

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Boots Hi-Tec V-Lite Altitude Ultra WPi

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Price: 600 SEK (Thailand 2011)
Plus: Good quality, low price
Minus: Hard to find in Sweden
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After three years of nice hiking in my old Hi-Tec boots I bought another pair while visiting Thailand. Unfortunately I haven't yet found this brand in Sweden that's why I've gotten my Hi-Tec boots in other countries. Hi-Tec Altitude is a light and water resistant mid high boot that continues surprising me regarding  quality vs. price. These new ones I've now hiked another two years without trouble. My advice to you is though to pick one size smaller than you think cause of the leather stretching under extreme conditions.

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Spin Fishing Gräsö

Place: Gräsö, Roslagen, Sweden
Coordinates: Lat: 60.429077, Lon: 18.401632
Time: 2 days in August

Sonia and I get in the truck and head east for some summer adventure in the archipelago. These are my childhood fishing grounds. Here I learned the basics of spin fishing. I'll never forget when that first pike swallowed my little gold atom lure. Feels great to be back in this place. The weather shifts between cloudy and sunny, the water has a temperature of  +19°C (+66°F)... this is life!


 

 

I cast from the rocky shore and immediately a nice pike is interested in my Mira-spinner from Myran, but he won't bite. Therefore I change lure into a Atom spoon from ABU Garcia, but still no contact. So I change back to a spinner, this time a Blue Fox Super Vibrax size 3 and... BAM! here we go! I catch and release three nice pikes. These small crocs are real fun with their feisty temper. 




Good thing I use a short wire on the end of my fishing line. The wire is all messed up after the pikes chewing as me and Sonia pack up to leave Gräsö for now. I'm so grateful to be able to do this nostalgia trip and to be able to show my little Sonia all of this!




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Still Hunting in Långhundra Härad

Place: Långhundra härad, Uppland, Sweden
Coordinates: Lat: 59.75041, Lon: 17.91107
Time: 1 day in August

Time for Sonia and me to do some hunting. Today we'll be still hunting (stalking). The sun sits high in the sky so I put on my little Sonia a sun hat à la Sniper, lift her up on my back and off we go.





Still hunting is a great way to get to know the land and also get a grip on what game it shelters. We hope to see some roe deer, or at least traces of them, to be able to take a guess about how the buck hunt this year will turn out. The buck premier is the 16th of August. We stalk slow and quietly with the rifle at hand in case we should find any suitable game (fox, badger, wild boar). After a couple of hours Sonia get a bit grumpy. But as Sonia really love blue berries this is easily fixed with some twigs of delicious berries.



But although Sonia is an ideal side kick in the carrier out hunting we only see tracks and traces of the game today. This looks to be a great hunting season; see a lot of traces of deer, wild boar and moose. After Sonia has finished off her packed lunch by tower 5 we continue stalking and thank the Forest for the knowledge.




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Brunton Resync and Solaris 12

As you have noticed on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram I've been more connected during my latest adventures. This is thanks to Brunton's clever power systems Resync and Solaris.





Unfortunately today's smart phone batteries hasn't got such a good capacity, so when out on longer trips the electric gadgets soon die on me. But with a fully charged Resync in my pocket I can recharge my phone, camera or pad several times without having a socket at hand. The Resync can be charge in advance using a socket (ca. 7 h), USB-port (ca. 9 h), car cigarette lighter (ca. 6 h) or during hiking using the solar panel Solaris (ca. 9-12 h). A fully charged Resync can reload a smart phone about 8 times. I like the easy used Resync's handy design; 68 x 146 x 23 mm and 284 g (according to the manufacturer). I've used the Resync also in the deep urban jungle where it works just as well.




The Solaris comes in four different sizes and capacities. I've been using the Solaris 12 which is a light and easy to use panel that at it's best delivers 12 volt and 800 mA. The measures are about 230 x 130 mm (folded) and about 730 x 440 mm (unfolded). The Solaris is very thin and flexible, a smart feature are the grommets in the corners enabling attachment for charging when on the go, for instance on the outside of the backpack or on the snow sled. You can also charge your gadgets using the Solaris directly without the Resync.




I'm very pleased with these robust and flexible Brunton systems and it will be very interesting to see the technical development within the area of battery capacity and power in the future.

A Resync cost about 1500 SEK and a Solaris 12 about 3700 SEK (Sweden 2013).
Below you have some technical specifications I found on Brunton's web page.

Resync
  • Perfect for demanding USB devices like tablet computers and electronic book readers
  • Compatible with smaller USB devices like smart phones, music players and GPS units
  • Compatible with Brunton Sync Tech enabled headlamps and task lights
  • Output: 5 volts 2,100 mA USB
  • Input: 5 volt USB or 12 volt DC
  • Compatible with USB-based or 12v Brunton solar panels
  • Capacity: 9000 mA rechargeable Lithium Polymer battery
  • Water resistant
  • Durable rubberized shell
  • Power gauge and auto shut-off prevents overcharge
  • Dimensions: 2.7x5.7x0.9"
  • Weight: 10 oz.

  • Also see Brunton Outdoor's movie on the Resync by clicking HERE.

    Solaris 12
  • Flexible high performance CIGS solar cells
  • Multi-section folding panels for ease of storage and use
  • Link up to two or more units together for more output
  • Works in all types of weather, even in low light conditions
  • Built-in blocking diode prevents reverse battery discharge
  • Overall dimensions: 29" x 17.5"
  • Weight: 11 oz
  • Max output: 12 watts (12volts / 800mA)

  • Also see Brunton Outdoor's movie on the Solaris 12 by clicking HERE.

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    Blind Hunting Fox in Bogesund

    Place: Bogesund, Vaxhom Municipality, Sverige
    Coordinates: Lat: 59.41233, Lon: 18.23497
    Time: 1 night in August

    Tonight it's premiere for my hunting season. This beautiful summers night I'll be blind hunting fox and badger. It's truly high summer and everything feels so perfect when I stroll down to my hunting tower number 40 here at The Swedish Hunters Association's hunting grounds in Bogesund.




    Even before I climb into place in the tower I'm joined by a good looking roe deer couple just 80 meters from me. It's a magnificent trophy buck courting his female.




    As the sun slowly sets I'm joined by 6 other individuals out on the field; 3 nice bucks and 3 appreciated females. This looks promising for the upcoming buck season just 12 days away. The 2 younger bucks is chased away by the first trophy buck and another impressive old buck. Later on these two bucks let a fight decide who's the king of this field. The younger trophy buck can relax and continue courting the area's ladies.

    The evening runs peacefully and no sightings of fox from my end. But as the clock is to strike 10:00 pm a dark grunting is interrupting the silence. 17 wild bore come running along the edge of the field. It's 10 piglets with their 2 sows, a robust boar and the rest of them yearlings. Exiting to study these fascinating animals up close.

    Now it's dark and time to end this hunting day. Me and my 4 hunting buddy's meet up and summarize the evening to one young fox laid down.




    Inspiring to have such a nice start to the season. I'm already looking forward to my next hunting adventure. Perhaps it'll be later this week.


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