Cross-country skiing in the Arctic
Cross-country skiing has been a vital form of transport to help with hunting, gathering and accessing remote communities within the Arctic Circle for almost 500 years. Now, it is one of the most adored pastimes in the region. Not only is it a brilliant way to get out into the winter landscape and explore, but it’s also an excellent form of exercise.
What is cross country skiing?
The sport is part of the ‘Nordic Skiing’ family with other varieties including ski jumping and ski orienteering. It involves propelling yourself across the snow using long, narrow skis and poles.
Cross-country skiing has also developed into a popular competitive sport and is said to be one of the most difficult endurance sports, due to it using nearly every major muscle group.
However, it can also be a leisurely pastime. When travelling to Finland or Sweden in the winter, you are highly likely to see adults and children of all ages moving across the snow in this way, as the Arctic landscape is a haven for this time of exploration.
What can I expect from my cross-country skiing experience?
During our cross-country skiing activities, you don’t have to worry about the heavy exertion as we approach it in the same way as the locals and use it as a time to see more of the Arctic surroundings.
You will be given full instructions by expert local guides and be taken to one of the many trails in the area. Cross-country skiing gives you the freedom to explore more of the wintery wilderness away from the crowds of a downhill ski resort and with much lighter equipment for easier movement.
Admittedly, it does take a bit of practice and patience but hopefully, you will discover why the people of Lapland love it so much.
Image credits: Antti Pietikainen, Timo Halonen & SnowGames