Those planning a snow skiing trip in the region are advised to not commit to an overnight destination until they have checked the wind forecast. There are several cosy, rustic spots to spend the night in the fell highlands of Kilpisjärvi, including Meeko, Terbmis and Saarijärvi. An adventurer can rent a private cottage or opt for a wilderness hut, an unlocked cottage that allows anyone to claim a resting spot. Carrying one's own tent allows for complete freedom, of course, but the additional equipment will also slow one down. A sled can also easily tip over when making a turn or crossing a bump. One way to avoid this is to attach small auxiliary skis to the sides of the sled to prevent it from falling over. At times, the fell highlands resemble a white sea no trees, no rocks, just tundra extending in endless, tranquil shades of blue and white. Occasionally you may see a herd of reindeer digging lichen from under the snow. If you're lucky, you may catch a glimpse of a wolverine trotting along the fells and hoping for a reindeer steak. A few dozen of them still live in this area. With luck, one might also spot a rough-legged buzzard or a golden eagle gliding by. oPEN-dooR PoLIcY The Terbmis wilderness hut draws an eclectic group of visitors. A French couple has been skiing with randonée (Alpine Touring) equipment and set up a tent near the hut. They say it was too hot inside the shelter. A few men whiz to the cottage with dogsleds late in the evening, saying they plan to leave again in the wee hours of the morning. A few skiers have just returned from Halti, Finland's highest peak at 1324 metres (from Kilpisjärvi, it is a trip of about 40 kilometres). Perhaps the most unusual arrivals are the snowkiters, who sweep in silently on the wind. Don't commit to an overnight destination before checking the wind forecast.
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