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Clare
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Day 7: A walk in Äkäslompolo

All the activities of the past few days have been rather tiring, so we decided to have a more relaxing day today and go for a stroll around Äkäslompolo. As we stepped out of the apartment, we could tell that there had been fresh snowfall again overnight. Everywhere looked brilliantly white.

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This was the view as we stepped out onto the pavement outside the apartment.

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We followed the pavement along towards the centre of the village.

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We were heading towards Äkäslompolo's frozen lake. We could soon see it in the distance.

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On the way we passed a thermometer which announced that today's temperature was - 12.

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As we approached the lake, Tim caught sight of some animals in a nearby field.

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Reindeer! These are the first reindeer we have seen in Lapland so it was quite exciting, although we could smell them from a considerable distance away so I didn't regret not having booked a trip to the reindeer farm!

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We walked out onto the lake, which was completely frozen and criss-crossed by several cross-country skiing and snowshowing trails, same as last year. At least this year we realised that we were walking on a lake :)

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It was a nice clear day and so we had good views of some of the fells in the distance.

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We set off walking along one of the tracks; technically it was for snowshoeing, but it was possible to use it without snowshoes as well.

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Walking on the fresh snow was quite tiring though and I started to feel some sympathy for the huskies from the other day!

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The lake is deceptively large and it took us quite a long time to make it to the other side.

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Eventually we arrived at the far side and found ourselves in a little wooded area.

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The trees looked beautiful in the snow :)

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The further we went the deeper the snow seemed to be and the harder it became to walk through it.

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It was quite easy to accidentally step onto a bit of snow which was deeper than it looked.

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Ultimately we came to a hill slope which looked steeper than we were able to climb without snowshoes, so we turned around to retrace our steps back to the village.

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The views were just as wonderful in the opposite direction.

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As we crossed the lake again we could see that there wasn't much more daylight left.

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It was about 2pm, so we decided to go to our favourite restaurant from last year for a meal. It was now open, although the pizza oven was broken so I had to have a burger instead. We had a table by the window which looked out onto mounds and mounds of snow, on what I think is probably the restaurant's terrace during the summer. It was a nice end to a relaxing day :)

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