Hiking in Finland

Climbing, bikepacking, skiing & packrafting in the north

The Week in Review

A day late.



News & Various:

Help Andrew Liveris plant a billion trees by donating $1 to the Nature Conservancy to plant 1 tree.

Learn how to cast and present flies with tenkara.

I'd like to welcome the Outdoor Warehouse on the blog, your online source for such fine lightweight brands like Haglöfs, CAMP, Rab, Montane, GoLite, OMM and many more. Check them out!

Addie interviews Mike Clelland! Yes, you should read this.

Jack provides us some fine reading. For free. Around the World on a Bicycle – Google eBookstore is his latest find.

Here's a pretty nifty map of Andrew Skurka's Alaska Yukon trip.

A pilgrimage to Fusiyama.

Tim and Robin lets us in on their spring cleaning. For Gear. Trekking Poles, to be exact.

Chris went for another Tenkara fishing trip, testing the Henry's Fork.

Jörgen took two of everything to Finnmarksvidda. Well, almost. He only took one Joe =)

Markus reviews the Icebug Celeritas. And you should read it.

Mark went to see Andrew Skurka at Midwest Mountaineering Expo.

Blazin' Backcountry Boiler

Gear:

There's two Inov-8 Bare-Grip 200 Review available this week: 1. and 2.

Backcountry Boiler vs. mKettle video. An epic clash of boilers.

Eugene shares his first impressions of the TrailLite Designs Singletrack Pack with us. If you're looking for a new pack, check this one out.

Dave knows a lot about stoves. He also knows a lot about Super Duper Ultralight Windscreens. He is also so kind to share that knowledge with us.

Need a suitable tripod for backpacking? Read my Joby GorillaPod Review and stop searching!

Alaska Backcountry Camping Techniques - A Learning Experience video.

The Vaude Norrsken mat got two reviews this week, the former by PTC and Carsten compares it against the Exped Synmat 7.5 UL.

Robin gives us the Dartmoor gear roundup.

Chad makes some good arguments for the Six Moon Designs Skyscape.

Maz takes a first look at the OMM Cypher Smock.

Joe talks serious winter gear. More specifically, about the Black Diamond FirstLight.

Stephanie and Dustin also talk tents. For two people. They like the Big Agnes Copper Spur UL2. And so might you.

The Coastrider has a Fatbike Trailer. I'm sure you now also want one.

Casey tried Orthotics in a Minimalist Shoes. And liked it.

Basti tested the Tech4o Traileader one.

Chris reviews the Columbia Heat Elite Jacket.

Matthias shares his Pacific Crest Trail Gear in a video.

A introduction video of Sanpo's CF Stove rounds out the videos I made this week.

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Trips:

Lower Dirty Devil Flash Tour. Bikes. Packrafts. Utah. Recommended Read.

Steven visited the Sitting Bull Falls in New Mexico. Sunshine and waterfalls should make any outdoor enthusiast smile!

Mike went for a little light bagging around Easedale.

What spring doesn't look like in Finland.

Next time you go for a hike, visit a cemetery. They're lovely. Like the Old Springdale Cemetery.

Antti went for a Sunday walk.

Dondo has Flyin’ Shoes.

Gavin went for a lightweight Epiphany in Glen Affric.

Joby Gorillapod SLR

| Comments

It doesn't matter which camera I use, my Joby GorillaPod SLR Zoom is always with me. It is a reliable tool and allows me to photograph Northern Lights, dusk, dawn, the moon, and even myself. A must have for me on any trip.

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At 241 g it is not the lightest GorillaPod available; I got this specific model to carry my Canon EOS 50D which is about 1460 g - the SLR Zoom carries the camera reliably in all conditions and can actually hold cameras up to 3 kg - though I won't get that heavy cameras! I have used it with all the cameras I had to date, and as these were all lighter and smaller the SLR Zoom was sometimes a bit to much, but I believe when using expensive camera gear that a bit of extra strength isn't a problem - it adds piece of mind. If you have a smaller / lighter camera, check the Joby site to see which one would be appropriate for your gear.

The GorillaPod is like a superflexible Chinese Circus Artist who's able to bend in unbelievable ways while keeping your camera safe and on target. If you're not as flexible, and can't keep your breath for 30 seconds and stand completely still, but want to take some awesome photos, then you should consider carrying a GorillaPod on your trips. It wraps around trees, stands even on slippery rocks, keeps you camera aloft in the snow, and flexes down for macro shots.



A critic I have heard is that it is low (in height) in comparison with normal tripods. While this can be a concern, I see it as a benefit as it allows new angles - it gets boring to see photos shot always from head hight. Besides, if there's trees around, wrap the GorillaPod around it and Voilá, head hight. In my two latest videos I also made extensive use of the GorillaPod to get some fine new angles. Thinking outside the box? Then the GorillaPod is a worthy instrument in your toolbox.



The GorillaPod has some nifty accessoires, like a ballpoint head with a bubble level and spikes to get more hold in soft terrain like snow and mud. Both are accessoires I'd consider getting if you are serious about photography. The bottom line? An item that I carry on every trip as it allows me to take some fine photos where point and shoot ain't enough.

Get yours:




Northern Lights and a telephone mast
Something you can't do without a GorillaPod: Taking 30 seconds exposures of Northern Lights at night.

The Week in Review

Proper spring has sprung. +6°C, sunny, and the first flowers are blossoming. Time to start new projects.



News & Various:

A couple of weeks back I read about the plans of a few construction companies who got permission to build along the shores of Lake Inari in the protected Natura 2000 wilderness area. Lake Inari is a wonderful nature area and a sacred place for the natives of the region, the Sami. Now Benidorm style hotels, villages and Villas should be build along the shore of this sacred land, destroying protected areas and with it the habitat of many animals and plants. Please show your support and sign the petition! You can read the open letter in English here, and more information and photos can be read in this Spiegel article.

Brian made a DIY Bridge Hammock. It looks sweet, and at 10.5 oz all in it is SUL!

Seems hammocks are gaining traction, as also Black Goat Gear published a very detailed Double Layer Hammock Guide. Order those materials and start sewing!

If you speak and/ or understand German, you definitely need to go and see the Yukon Arctic Ultra documentary.

The trekking-lite-store.com now has Hyperlite Mountain Gear tarps and rucksacks in stock, so if you were waiting for them to be available in Europe, check their shop!

Brian is giving away a complete Kupilka Starter Kit which is your chance to get some kick-ass Kupilka gear!

European cottage news, Lite Mountain Gear is a German cottage which now opened their website and shop and will roll out some more gear during the spring & summer. Colin Ibbotson's Tramplite shop will open on October 1st, so start saving for those Skins 2 packs!

Mark is coming back to Finland - and the Nordic Lightpacking guys and I rejoice!

Tenkara: Sweetness on the Bitterroot.

John writes about Barefoot Hiking - Torture or Bliss, a honest look at his experiences with VFFs.

Cracking open.

Gear:

Thomas shares his first impressions on the MLD Trailstar. Its yellow, so it is awesome.

PTC shares his view on the Haglöfs Bivvy Down Vest with us.

David plays with fire and his new Trail Designs Ti Tri Sidewinder Inferno.

Dug lets us know about all he’ll be wearing on the PCT.

Basti revies the North Face Khyber 100 fleece.

I reviewed the Julbo Dolgan sunglasses and the GoLite Tumalo Storm jacket and pants.

Skis. Boots. Poles.

Trips:

Jaakko sends his first greetings from Svalbard. Make sure to subscribe to his blog as he will deliver regular updates during the next three weeks while skiing in the arctic!

Fraser shares some impressions from his birthday weekend at Rothiemurchus with us. Superb photos which you should check out!

Chris shares some photographic impressions form the last months in Japan, before the disasters struck.

Sabine hiked the E4 on Cyprus, and it was quite an adventure she had! Great photos of a lovely spring!

Back north we can now follow Joe's and Jörgen's tall tales of their adventure in Finnmarksvidda.

Jake and his mates went on their 2011 Legends Patrol Trip- AT section hike.

Marcel went on the E5 from Oberstdorf to Bozen. 250 km, 15 Days, 3 countries, lovely views.

James was on a wilderness slackpack on the Isle of Rum, some fine sunrises there!

Alberto keeps on teasing us with perfect skiing in the Italian Dolomites.

Robin visited Dartmoor. No sunshine there, but varying degrees of gray and serious rain also make for a trip to remember.

Dave was in Huldreheimen. He and his friends had a really big tent with them.

Adam went to Lost Lake in Alaska. Stunning photos which you must see.

David went Bikerafting the Minnehaha. I want a bike. That's how cool this is.