Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Spring in Lapland - 27th May

So I was up at about 02:15 to try and find the beaver (there are Chaffinch and Redwing singing in this piece of film).

The first birds I saw were a pair of Long-tailed Ducks sitting on the ice outside the cabin.

I walked around the lake and on the northern edge I could hear gnawing of bark and could see the water moving. I moved very slowly and managed to get to about three metres of the beaver, who was completely unaware of my presence.

I even filmed it for a short time

before it noticed I was there and with a slap of its tail on the water it was gone.

Pleased with my success I walked over to the marsh where there was nothing unusual and then made my way back to my bed.

After breakfast I decided to walk to a much larger lake that I had visited last autumn. Minerals in the ground mean that a compass can not be relied upon for navigation so as I travel I keep looking back to note distinctive features that I can look out for as I travel back. I also make small marks on trees to help define my return route. The picture below shows a mark on the left of the tree so I know I must turn left here.

The lake is in a low valley and it was almost like going back a week in time as there was still a lot of snow and most of the lake was frozen!

Smew, Goosander and Goldeneye were the only birds here and I also flushed a female Capercallie as I walked back.

I spent the rest of the day rubbing down and painting more windows and I finished the kuksa I was making.