Summer in Finland, part 2: The Cabin by the Lake

After our week of cycling, we booked a cabin at the northern end of Finnish Lakeland. For those familiar with the area, it was near the village of Korpijärvi (between Varpaisjärvi and Rautavaara, about 80 km north of Kuopio). We had the cabin for a whole week, and it was the best week ever… The cabin came with a large sauna and its own rowing boat. During the whole week, we used the car once – to go food shopping in Varpaisjärvi. The rest of the time we cycled, we walked, we rowed, we swam… 🙂
Here are two photos to give you an impression of the cabin…

Our cabin by the lake... perfect place! Paul took this photo with his kite, you can see our very own beach :)

On the first day we cycled around the Korpinen lake, and quiet forest roads. We found a nice jetty to have a break, and a dragonfly kept us company 🙂

Time for a break during our round-the-lake cycle trip My little friend the dragonfly :)

In the evening we tried the rowing boat. It took some practice before we could row in straight lines instead of zigzags, but we mastered it by the end of the week 😉

Rowing took lots of practice but by the end of the week I could row in a straight line instead of zigzagging ;) In the evening it cleared up

In the evening it cleared up, and the small lake in front of our cabin turned into a painting, reflecting the sky….

The calm lake was like a painting... Paul couldn't get enough of rowing around the lake

The next day we cycled to Älänne, a small nature reserve only 5 km from our cabin. There, we hiked one of the trails through the forests and on the shores of the lake. It was beautiful!

Hiking in Älänne, a small nature reserve only 5 km from our cabin Mushrooms in the forest

There were lots of big sandy beaches on the lake, and at the end of the trail there was a nice shelter where we made a campfire. Funny story: during our hike I accidentally stepped next to one of the boardwalks, into a marsh. I got my shoe and sock pretty wet, and Paul offered to dry them on the campfire. I kept asking him if they were safe, if they were not too close to the fire etc… but in the end I relaxed and just enjoyed our break. When we wanted to leave, I found out my sock was half burnt away and the show was smouldering from inside the sole… OOPS!!

Some of the lakes have very nice sandy beaches Campfire at a shelter at the end of the hike

The next day was our first day of sunshine 🙂 and we decided to explore the winding river that feeds into the lake. Metallic blue/green dragonflies darted around the river, we had fun chasing them in the hope of a good photo 😉

Sunshine! Time for a rowing trip :) There were lots of these pretty dragonflies with metallic blue/green wings

The water lilies were very pretty as well!

Some very pretty water lillies Close-up of the waterlilly

In the evening I took some sunset photos in the field behind the cabin, and then the full moon rose over the lake…

Evening in the field behind the cabin A full moon rising over the lake

Wednesday was another sunny day, and we explored the large lake and another river by boat. We cheated this time, and put our engine on the boat 😀 (we had our inflatable zodiac with us).

Another boat trip with great views :) A sunset panorama of 'our' beach and lake

The sunset was so beautiful, everything was blue and pink, the lake was a perfect mirror, and the moon rose on the far side….

Reflections The full moon rising over the lake at sunset... beautiful

We went for a row in the boat in the moonlight, while patches of fog drifted from the fields over the lake. A magical evening!

Water lillies & the moon, taken from the rowing boat A magical misty evening Rowing in the moonlight

On Thursday we went back to Älänne to try one of the other hiking trails. It had looked boring on the map, but it was a fantastic hike 🙂 The best part was when we crossed a ridge between two lakes – so pretty!

Another hike in Älänne, on a ridge between two lakes Through the pine forest

We stopped halfway to have dinner and a campfire at another shelter. We found out afterwards that it’s not wise to stay in the forest after sunset, as the mosquitos come out in full force… So we hiked back in record speed, and enjoyed cycling back along the deserted roads….

Hot dogs from the campfire at another shelter along the trail Cycling back to the cabin on deserted roads

And then sadly, our last day at the cabin arrived. It was another warm sunny day, and we spent it picnicking in the boat and swimming in the lake. In the evening we made dinner outside, and enjoyed this sunset view…

Sunset on our last evening at the cabin

We had another sauna and a magical swim in the lake after midnight. Behind the cabin there was a nice display of noctilucent clouds, while the moon lit a shallow layer of mist over ‘our’ lake. Another magical night…

Noctilucent clouds! A final photo of our pretty little lake in the moonlight

It was very hard to say goodbye to the cabin the next day, but it was time to leave for our final destination in Finland. To be continued 🙂

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