Korpijaakko

– my personal views on all walks of outdoor life

Situation report

It’s been once again quiet here for some time. Here is a short “sitrep” about the reasons and things to come later this year and the next.

Sun set at the backyard of the school.

In the school we had the Wilderness Advanced First Aid course that I mentioned in my previous Monthly highlights post. The course was really good but very intensive with no spare time for writing a blog. I will write more about the course in the next Monthly highlights post so stay tuned. In addition we’ve had some entrepreneurship lectures and exercises leaving time for sports to stay fit but once again not much time for blogging after all the gym/running/climbing. And the next week we will spend in the bush on a safety management/leading course lasting until Saturday. So getting to write the next blog post might take some time…

And when not in school I’ve been busy with moving. I spend the weeks at the school in Joensuu and at the moment my girlfriend works and lives in Helsinki during the weeks so there wasn’t much point in paying a rent for an apartment in Lappeenranta that was empty most of the time. So, we gave the apartment away and now I’m spending the weekends mostly crashing at my parents place. Changing residence was quite a gruelling experience. You know that you have stayed in one place too long when the closets appear to be full of stuff that you didn’t even know to own. And once again I’m feeling more and more confident about applying UL principles on every day life but I have to see how it turns out as this isn’t the first time I’m having the idea.

The next week I’ll have to pack all my stuff from the school’s dormitory and bring them with me to my parents as the autumn period in school will end on my part and so will my rental contract for the room at the dorm. I’ll be moving back to the dorm again around mid January next year when the school continues. During the December and first half of the January we have a (voluntary) internship period to get some real-life experience about working as wilderness guides.

Guess what I'll be doing?

I decided to do my internship period in a nice small husky center at Taivalkoski. I’ll spend a month there starting from mid December to mid January. I visited the Husky Center Kolmiloukko on my way back from the school’s autumn hike and the place, dogs and owners seemed all really nice. I’m really excited to learn some dog sledding stuff as it is not teached in our school and I’m interested in it as the dog sledding has a strong historical connection to the (Ant)arctic explorers of the old times. The Kolmiloukko also offers relatively long trips ranging from one-day trips to one-week trips instead of the typical one-hour or so tours. In my opinion this is a really good thing. I don’t think I’ll be doing that much actual mushing but more driving with a snowmobile taking care of the dogs and the customers but hopefully I will get to do also some dog sledding. During the month I will live at the husky center and probably won’t have too many days off and for sure not having a holiday for Christmas as it is the high (midwinter) season in the business. This would mean not seeing my girlfriend at all during the time but luckily it isn’t the case as N will be working at the same place as a guide starting also in mid December but she’ll continue working there until late April – and she gets a sallary for that.

Later this year I'll be spending some time also with these young guns.

In addition to the internship period at the Kolmiloukko I’m planning to do some additional training for Vaiska KY the company of the Ultima Thule 2011 expedition guide and leader Kari “Vaiska” Vainio. I’ll be attending on weekend courses in Kouvola as an assistant instructor and I’ll be also going for a one-week ski tour in Sarek national park in March as an assistant guide. These are actually the same courses that I took in 2010 (Some pictures from the trip in 2010) but now I’ll be a guide instead of a customer. I think it will be really interesting!

The fells of Sarek in March 2010.

Unfortunately I don’t have time to write more as I should finish a presentation about the Ultima Thule 2011 expedition for an annual meeting of the Arctic Club of Finland. The meeting is on Saturday in the Arctic museum Nanoq in Pietarsaari but I’ll be going there already on Friday to meet other members of our expedition and some other interesting people.

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3 responses to “Situation report

  1. Hendrik 20/11/2011 at 19:32

    Have fun cleaning dogshit 😉

    Looking forward to hear how the internship goes. From what I have heard from classmates is that most husky places don’t give much responsibility to interns, and some places almost treat interns as “slaves”. Good on you that your gf is at the same place, though!

  2. korpijaakko 20/11/2011 at 22:34

    I’ve heard the same but I hope this place would be different. At least it is small and the owners were very nice. But I know that at least there is a lot of work to do (if they get snow) but it’s okay for me as it’s only a month or so. I don’t know if I’d like to work 60 hour weeks through the whole winter…

  3. Pingback: Monthly highlights of November « Korpijaakko

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