We arrived in Stockholm at 10AM at 28 December 2001 and we had 700 km to drive towards Åre, first 400 km of that on the highway E4. In Sundsvall we turned to the narrower roads. The weather was stormy and the driving was quite difficult. We made also stops on the way for coffee and rest.
As the daylight in Sweden (especially in the Northern part) is limited, the last part of the driving was in the dark. In Stockholm the temperature was -5 degrees Celsius, when we arrived in Åre at 8PM, it was -23. We were hopeful that it will improve and it will be warmer next day.
Belwobyn cottage was as good as in the description, it was really comfortable. We made a fire to the fireplace, went sauna and relaxed after the long driving day.
We woke up 9AM next morning. The thermometer outside showed -24 degrees Celsius. We have never been in the mountains with that temperature and thought it might be not comfortable. We spent time with the breakfast, but still decided to go looking around, rent skis etc. When we arrived in the center of the icy village and found ski rental, it looked pretty cold. But we also saw several people hanging around with skis and it looked nobody really care about the temperature. There is a saying that “there is no bad weather, there is just bad gear”. So, we also bought some additional gloves for such weather.
The atmosphere in the village motivated us to go to the slopes. We thought that if others can, so can us to ski with such temperature. -25 degrees feels differently in mountains compared what we have experienced in Estonia, at the sea. In mountains the air is dry and therefore it is easier to handle the cold.
We started skiing from the slopes next to our cottage. It felt great going downhill on World Cup run, although cold a little bit.
We were skiing four hours at first day on the different slopes of Are village area. It was cold, but it was also really beautiful, sun was shining and snow-powder was everywhere.