Sweden has turned into another great trip. I do really feel like a tourist while I am here, something that I don’t really like. Abisko has a year round population of 150 people which balloons to 650 in the winter with seasonal employees. The thing is there is not a lot of housing in town and all the build able land has been built and the surrounding land is owned by the government and is used by the Sami people to herd their reindeer (all reindeer are owned and they are the same species as caribou, but smaller (60-70kg smaller) since a Sami herder is with them, protecting them and preventing natural selection). In order for the town to grow it would have to petition to the government for more land and take it awY from the Sami people. A lot of the seasonal employees live in campers, crammed a million into an apartment, or their cars, but rent is reasonable cheap, $500, for a small two bedroom plus despite the housing shortage.
Yesterday we went for a 2 hour snowmobile rode which was pretty cool and it was a super sunny day up until 6pm when it started to snow. The sun does stay low over the horizon all day long since we are in a transition period to the midnight sun.
We went to the grocery store and grabbed some smoked salmon, a pound of hard cheese which is a mix between manchego and Parmesan, a beer, crackers, and a diet coke for $25. The beer is a ton cheaper than Norway, a beer only costs $6-9. If you want any alcohol greater than 3.5% you need to order it from the grocery store which acts as a liquor store agent and then it comes in 2-3 days later in the standard shipment. Planning is a must to drink….
Today went dog sledding, it was a 6 hour tour, consisting of hooking up your team of 4 dogs (the guide thought I was fat so I got the big dogs, I was the largest person of the group), driving your own sled 15kmish, eating lunch of butter fried smoked reindeer and onions put in heavy cream.
It is cloudy at the moment and we are going to the sky station in an attempt to see the northern lights again. We have been skunked the last two attempts.