Hedsjön Lake WildcampJune 12, 2017 in Sweden
Will's research had shown that travelling north from Stockholm, shops and services became more and more sparse. We therefore stocked up at a large supermarket while we still could!
On route we geekishly watched the minutes of our position count up on the sat nav until we reached 60 degrees north of the equator. It was as far north as either of us has ever been- north of UK mainland and just 6° from the Artic Circle!
There were countless large lakes and to aid travel there had been a bridge built over one that touched down on a small island before reaching the opposite shore. Lilly pads floated on the water's surface and they and we were surrounded by mixed forest in which most trees were either pines or Silver Birches. When the sun wasn't hidden behind a dark cloud it shone hot and bright. At one point Martha Motorhome was pelted with huge raindrops loaded with hail and we had to slow down because visibility was so bad. There were some amazing Vändplatz (rest places) off the road where we could have pulled in and stayed within a stone's throw of a lake. We even crossed a small and shallow Fjord leading out to sea.
13km down a dead end road we arrived at our planned overnight spot at a picnic area beside a bay on the Gulf of Bothnia sea (photo #1). Unfortunately we'd passed signs that we translated as 'no house wagon parking'. We guessed they were aimed at us and were very glad we'd seen so many good wild camping spots on our way to this one.
We chose a place in the trees beside a lake about 7km back up the road. We couldn't see any sign of civilisation around and apart from the very occasional car passing by on the other side of the trees, we weren't disturbed at all for the two days we stayed!
Heavy rain fell overnight and strong winds whipped up the waves on 'our' lake in the morning. When the rain stopped the sun came out and we took a walk along a woodland path. Although the blobs of paint and bands of plastc ribbon tied around tree trunks frequently assured us we were on track, the only work done to the route was the occasional path cut through a fallen tree and the lightly trampled undergrowth. Large rocks lay all around, covered thickly with moss, lichen and small Lingonberry plants. Foraging is part of Sweden's culture so when we saw new Spruce shoots, Will picked some for dinner.
We came to another lake and sat, taking in the view. Butterflies, Dragon and Damselflies flitted along the shore, Pond Skaters skimmed across the shallows and fish popped their heads up for flies, while wind blew silver shivers of reflected sunshine over the lake surface. We were just thinking we may be the only ones looking out on this lake when a lively brown Pointer dog came bounding down the path. She looked as surprised to see us as we felt to see her!
Back at the van Will got to work following a Swedish recipe for meatballs with nutmeg in a creamy sauce. The traditional accompaniment is Lingonberry jam but as we didn't have any he knocked up some cherry sauce instead. He also added the Spruce shoots and it all turned out to be very tasty!
We've been keeping an eye on when the sun sets and rises as the amount of darkness dwindles. We are currently getting nearly 20 hours of daylight, with sunset after 10:30pm and sunrise before 3am. The sunset photo here was taken at 11:15pm.
Before leaving our peaceful wild camp we took the canoe and paddled across, then part of the way around Hedsjön Lake, taking the new waterproof camera with us. It was a great way to end our time here and a lovely relaxing start to the day!Read more