Late morning, Saturday 22 July 2006, 11:00 o'clock
Location: At Tarrekaise, beside lake Tarraure / Darrávrre
Today we have a relatively easy hike in front of us, only 13 kilometres and the terrain doesn't look too challenging. The perfect excuse to make a lazy start to the day, and leave our campground a bit later then usual. The sun is shining brightly bringing us into a good mood. I toss my backpack on my back again and it feels lighter then before, I most be getting used to the weight! Hahaha, or maybe it is because we ate up some of the supplies ;-)
Our aim for the day is Såmmarlappastugan. So far we have hiked two days, day one from Kvikkjokk - Njunjes and day two from Njunjes to Tarrekaise, and like the first two days this leg of the hike will also mainly continue through a forest of birches.
The last bit of today’s hike is the toughest part. From the more open landscape you dive into a dense forest area, winding and twirling up and down, left and right. Climbing over a fallen tree, jumping over a little stream hoping not to get the feet wet, ducking for an overhanging branch.
It is getting late, and the sky is getting dark, letting us know that rain is quickly on its way towards us. And despite our relaxed mood we do decide to hurry on. And we hurry on and on. Not only is this the toughest part of the trail, it is also a part that seems surprisingly long. On the map it is only a few centimetres, but in reality it is quite a bit more. But we made it! And just in time for the rain to arrive as well.
Såmmarlappastugan is located on a nice spot in the dense forest. But one side of the mountain hut has an open view, and that is towards the river. And a lovely view it is! We are welcomed inside with a nice piece of home baked cake, a pure luxury in this remote area. The 'Stugvärd' on this occasion is a young woman, who is bursting with energy and good spirit, and seems to cherish this place and spoil the guests that arrive. This is a good place to end the day, which has been another wonderful day in the Fjällen. I stare out of the window and slowly start to wonder what tomorrow might bring......
The best memories of this day? I guess that must be this moment you see in the photo. The sun is shining so nicely, the mosquitoes are taking a break somewhere in the woods, and as they are taking a break, why shouldn't I? Just after crossing a little river, about halfway through the day we settle down on a nice improvised bench. This spot is perfect to stretch the legs, give our backs a little break and warm up some hearty soup, which tasted delicious! The trail is even easier to walk then I imagined. If it wasn't for the load on our backs, it could have been a nice stroll in the park. Well, I guess almost, hahaha, as the distances are somewhat longer here ;-)
The last three days we have been hiking through the valley of the river Tarra (Tarradalen) and the river is a major obstacle if you want to go towards the west. The only way to do so is to cross the Tarra River at some point. And here at Såmmarlappa is one of these rare chances to do so. They have a little cable ferry which makes it possible to cross the Tarra River without getting wet feet. This route is not a 'normal' route to take though, as there are no official hiking trails on the other side of the river.
To give you some idea of where Padjelanta, Kvikkjokk and Såmmarlappa exactly are, I've added some maps for you. The first map is of Sweden with all its National Parks. In the very north of Sweden you can see a little dot where Padjelanta is located. Together with the National Parks of Sarek and Stora Sjöfallet it makes a huge area, also called "Laponia" or "the last wilderness in Europe". The main part of this hike along the Padjlantaleden is through Padjelanta National Park, but you also will go through a tiny bit of Sarek and Stora Sjöfallet. Såmmarlappa is located just south of the entrance into Padjelanta National Park.
The second map is a detailed map of the National Park (from the parks website). On the map you can see the hiking trails, roads how to get to the park, the places where you can stay overnight, etc.
The third map is a map of my hiking trip through the park, which is also the official route of the "Padjelantaleden / Padjalanta Hiking Trail". The total hike is about 160 kilometres long.
On my Padjelanta page you can find some more practical info how to get to the park