One of the reasons why I opted for a half-season wardenship this winter was that I wanted to keep an open window for a tour of my own, and right from the start the Easter holiday seemed like a good time. Now, I know full well that lots of other people also think so, which carries with it the risk of crowding, but the load is usually lighter out in the cottages compared to the fjeld stations. In the end I planned for a four-day tour in the well-known and easily accessible fjelds of Jamtland, with the start in Storulvån, the end in Vålådalen, and a good deal of roundabout movement for freshness, as it were.
Something else that had been a part of the plan right from the start was to make the pack as light as possible; my aim was to get by with the 30-liter rucksack I otherwise use for day tours in winter. In order to accomplish this I only brought a minimum of clothes, food and other equipment, and no sleeping bag, electing to complement my provisions in the cottages along the way. I was successful in cramming the remaining stuff into the sack, although there was not too large a margin in the beginning, and I really looked forward to doing a longer tour with such a light burden.
My packing list was as follows:
|cap and gloves
|thin skiing cap and gloves
|Fischer BCX Europa 99 Crown
|Alpina Back Country
|McKinley Discovery 30
|large, warm cotton shirt
|micro fleece suit
|pants + T-shirt
|drinking vessel, tableware
|collapsible cup, mini whisk
|food and drink
2 packages of bacon
1 small bag of pasta
2 dl couscous
4 dl oatmeal
10 Varma Koppen/Cup-a-Soup instant soup packages
4 Ögonblink instant chocolate packages
5 tea bags
12 ready-made sandwiches
1 package of biscuits
1 chocolate bar
1 package of Dextro Energy tablets
1 small slab of dried reindeer meat
|silk travel sheet
|Other required stuff
|bandage, anti-chafe adhesive, ointment, sunscreen
|toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, mini-shampoo
|map and compass
|fjeld map (Z6: Storlien-Ljungdalen) + Silva mini
|cards, bills, paper, pencil
|Donald Duck comics
|deck of cards
|camera and accessories
|Canon PowerShot S3 IS, batteries, memory card, mini tripod
|Lowepro Apex 100 AW
Add to that half a liter of warm water in the thermos, and another half-liter of cold water in a bottle carried in a pocket of the jacket.
The day I got back from Aktse it was still cold, but after that it had been rather warm – also during the nights – which meant that the snow cover in and around Östersund had shrunk back considerably. I therefore felt it necessary to check in with both Storulvån and Vålådalen how things were up there, and receiving encouraging responses I made the final decision to go on Thursday the 9th – that's the advantage of living close to the fjelds...
Here, then, is the account of what transpired during the subsequent four days. Each section has a header consisting of a short overview of the stage in question, complete with a map showing the route travelled. A ring marks the starting point, a square the lunch break locations, and a star the destination. Vertical distances have been calculated from the map and have an accuracy of 20 m. All cottage breakfasts consisted of oatmeal porridge, tea and a sandwich, and all lunches of two cups of instant soup and a sandwich.