Finland: 20/04/14 – Day 4

This morning we went for a walk after a breakfast of porridge and bread. On our walk we came across a number of tracks, bear poo and bear prints! It was quite a weird feeling knowing where we was stood a bear had been rather recently!IMG_2213

We wandered around quite a bit in the forest, and along a road!

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After a good few hours we headed back to charge equipment and have lunch which was Bolognese and a warm berry and ice cream dessert before headed off for our first night in the hide at Boreal Wildlife Centre.

It took about 5 hours until the bears arrived! Which was possibly the longest we have had to wait, we saw 3 just as it was getting dark. Many pictures and videos later we went to bed to see what the morning would bring.

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Finland: 19/04/14 – Day 3

Woke up stiff, hip aching, and rather cold. It was not a comfy sleep it was like 3 peas in a pod…Looked out the hide windows, bitter cold but one bear was outside it looked as if he had not moved all night as he was in the same place as the previous night.

Got packed and dressed and after a bit more snapping it was time to leave the hide. It was very icy outside, there was bear prints and poo outside our hide (last night we heard a tapping/scratching on the hide door….a visitor perhaps?). Apparently a bear sniffed the sleigh and walked over the sleigh! Maybe he wanted a ride.

Once back in accommodation, we freshened up and packed as today we move to our next location, the Boreal Wildlife Centre in Viiksimo.

We left at 11am, the journey was good and scenic, I love looking out windows on journeys! Again loads and loads of tress and quite a few lakes! Though they do call it ‘The land of many lakes’. Once we arrived we relaxed in the room until lunch at 3pm which was chicken rides and salad and a berry dessert which was delicious!. After we looked around across the road, by the bird feeder and down by the lake which was completely frozen over for a big lake!  We then napped and woke up at 11am to get some night shots. The sky was slightly purple and green!

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For the first part of the trip we stayed at Martinselkosen in Pirttivaara, Suomussalmi and would defiantly recommend paying them a visit if you are ever going to Finland or looking for somewhere to go bear watching! Even though we went near the end of April when bears where just coming out of hibernation we saw plenty! The accommodation was lovely and the people very friendly and helpful!. You can visit their website here: http://www.martinselkonen.fi/index.php?id=7&la=en


 

Finland: 18/04/14 – Day 2

Fell asleep in the hide bunks last night, woke up around 4 as heard the guide saying that there is 2 bears outside. I dozed off again for a bit then woke up to ”3 bears”, I looked around no … Continue reading

Finland: 17/04/2014 – Day 1

Woke up feeling refreshed after all the traveling the day before, we looked out the window this morning and was fascinated by the amount of snow we could see! We could also see a frozen lake and it all looks very pretty. Stepped outside in my pj’s, I must say my first reaction was that it was a little bit nippy. Once showered, dressed, fed and watered (sugar and salt water is yucky….I was dehydrated still), we went to explore.

The snow is very deep, it comes up to my knees, wow!!. The scenery it very pretty, its lovely so much snow and so many trees!. The snow is also like ice not soft and fluffy, we explored opposite the centre down a path before trying to get down to the lake but found the snow got deeper and deeper so decided to backtrack.

After our explore, we packed our camera bags and rested until lunch (3pm…odd lunch time?). I think I may have eaten reindeer not sure what the burger meat was, tasted different but nice, with carrots, potatoes and salad.

At 4pm we set off to the hide! Started off in a jeep then swapped onto a snowmobile which was fun! I think I enjoyed that part a little too much. As soon as we got to the hide we had only just walked through the door and a bear had already come! Crazy!. The bears stayed a few hours, drifted away before coming back again. We saw 3 bears at once it was unbelievable, they are not as big as I would have thought either. We also saw a number of white tailed eagles too! They are huge!!!

Other birds seen today include: Great tit, marsh tit, bullfinch, chaffinch, crows, ravens and great spotted woodpecker.


I got trigger happy and took over 800 pictures (oops) so here is a couple 🙂

P.s – I will write next one in a couple of days time 🙂


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Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major)

Brown Bear (Ursus arctos)

White Tailed Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla)