Sweden - Norway - Finland - Denmark - Iceland

Treeline Tales blog

Stories on big and small outdoor adventures in the Nordic countries. Find the Scandinavian taiga and treeline, mosquitoes, reindeer and snow. Places where the big sky is a landscape and nature writes a book.

Tribute to a pair of socks

Tribute to a pair of socks

Posted on May 29, 2016 in Clothing

Spring is in the air. Throughout history the change of seasons has been (and still is) a ritual. Nowadays snowdrops, followed by daffodils and cherry blossom trees, evoke at least a pleasant promise of warmer days that are to come. Winterjackets can be stored away and we start searching for those canvas sneakers – and […]

Iceland 2 – A festival of geology

Iceland 2 – A festival of geology

Posted on Apr 9, 2016 in In search of, Nature

Sparsely-populated, this North Atlantic island is one of the most volcanically active regions in the world. And if this weren’t enough, volcanism in Iceland is unusually diverse for an oceanic island. Nearly all volcano types and eruption styles known on Earth can be found here. The place is a festival of geology with a free […]

Iceland 1- Follow a raven to discover an island

Iceland 1- Follow a raven to discover an island

Posted on Apr 4, 2016 in In search of

The blue and the grey, the white and the black and all colors that nature has to offer at this latitude were present in the days when the Vikings steered their vessels towards the land. What we see now is more or less the same. The man made constructions that are added over time, is […]

Owls that foretell the future

Owls that foretell the future

Posted on Nov 17, 2015 in Animals & wildlife

It’s one thing to find the perfect place to hide away, it’s another thing to discover the bird and capture it in an image that is simply beautiful. Patience and the eye of Michelangelo – “for the hands execute, but the eye judges” – accompanied the photo camera of nature and wildlife photographer Graham McGeorge, […]

Nature as a nuisance, meaning mosquitoes and midges

Nature as a nuisance, meaning mosquitoes and midges

Posted on Sep 8, 2015 in Nature

Why we are on the mosquito’s diet is a question to which the answer is clear: the females use our blood as a source of protein for their eggs. How to withstand nature’s nuisance is rather more of a challenge, certainly less simple and unambiguous as well, because a Scandinavian summer is the obvious equivalent […]

A rust brown start of Scandinavian spring

A rust brown start of Scandinavian spring

Posted on Jun 13, 2015 in Nature

Nature’s colors arrange for renewal at the beginning of spring. The grayish green of the reindeer moss, the vivid green of the young spruces, the rust brown of grass. And the birch trees are shown as a haze of purple, stretched out along the hills. Small, tiny spruces are fighting over territory, feverishly throwing in […]

Reindeer’s seasonal adaptation: fur, fat and eyes

Reindeer’s seasonal adaptation: fur, fat and eyes

Posted on May 18, 2015 in Animals & wildlife, General

Arctic seasons are known for their extremes. Variety in temperature and changes in light between summer and winter months are the common environmental circumstances that call for adaptation. With the approach of winter, the reindeer start to put on a lot of body fat and also their coats fill out, in color changing from brown […]

Roskilde, town of bishops and kings

Roskilde, town of bishops and kings

Posted on Apr 20, 2015 in Back in civilization

Denmark, the smallest of the five Nordic Countries, might not be heading the list for wild outdoor adventures destinations, this flat country is more than anything perfect for bike holidays and long walks on sandy beaches. In addition to the sports activities, its rich history guarantees an easy visit to one of the famous landmarks […]

How Messi recovered from last year’s eagle attack

How Messi recovered from last year’s eagle attack

Posted on Apr 2, 2015 in Animals & wildlife

The Sami culture has a strong connection with tradition, long-established reindeer herding being at the heart of it. In Sweden alone there are some 260.000 reindeer and young Messi is one of them. In Spring 2014 the newborn calf was attacked by an eagle and although severely injured, it survived. The animal was brought down […]

Exploring beyond frontiers – Part 2

Exploring beyond frontiers – Part 2

Posted on Mar 24, 2015 in In search of

Compared to the achievements of Isabella Bird, most of our so called adventurous travels are easy walks in the park.  The independent-minded Bird (1831-1904) was the first woman to be elected Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. She visited Australia, the USA and Asia, the extensive travels of this nineteenth century explorer, traveler, writer and […]

Exploring beyond frontiers – Part 1

Exploring beyond frontiers – Part 1

Posted on Mar 16, 2015 in In search of

Nothing ventured, nothing gained. There are people who crave for challenge, adventure and new frontiers. As a consequence they go base jumping or climb Mount Everest. Others will follow their blog posts, look at the jumpers’ and climbers’ GoPro films, meanwhile feeling entirely at ease with their weekly bridge drive. Most researchers do not take […]

Easy take along outdoor gifts for her

Easy take along outdoor gifts for her

Posted on Mar 6, 2015 in Clothing

Outdoor gifts for her, a lighthearted topic? Yes and no. Apart from the obligatory picnic basket set or an activity bracelet, could the list have a surprise in store? Of course, one should rather specify necessities and wishes for the real outdoors. According to the flourishing trade and discussion forums on bush craft and survival […]

Why a dogsled is pulled by huskies instead of poodles

Why a dogsled is pulled by huskies instead of poodles

Posted on Feb 9, 2015 in Animals & wildlife

Skiing, snowboarding, walking, ice-fishing or a snow scooter ride? The winter’s outdoor activities list is a long one and has to be completed by including a dogsled tour. Dog sledding has its roots in history: travellers and hunters used dog power for transportation of people, food and trade goods, crossing frozen lakes and snow covered […]

Winter’s dark months paradox: less sunlight brings longer days in Dalarna

Winter’s dark months paradox: less sunlight brings longer days in Dalarna

Posted on Jan 14, 2015 in Nature, Places

Wintertime in the Nordic countries brings splendid bright days with ice and snow but also the dark months with limited daylight. During the so called mörketid, the dark period with the Winter Solstice as center point, the sun will be below the horizon for weeks north of the Arctic Circle. More to the south, a […]

Weighing the down or synthetics issue against an egg

Weighing the down or synthetics issue against an egg

Posted on Dec 13, 2014 in Clothing

Furs and feathers are not ours. Unlike the animals living in cold climates like in Scandinavia, we must buy our clothing to keep us warm. For outdoor activities in cooler weather, an insulated garment is one of those indispensable basic wardrobe items, and a lightweight one even more. The question what to choose, down or […]

How firm Old Tjikko relates to Japanese aesthetics

How firm Old Tjikko relates to Japanese aesthetics

Posted on Nov 24, 2014 in Nature, Places

At last I know why I am so fascinated by this Old Tjikko. The tree mystery has revealed itself from the shades of distant memory, coming up with an unexpected explanation. The appearance of this tree, in combination with its natural environment, reminds me of Japan. This needs some clarification. How could a small Norway […]

The oldest spruce tree in the world

The oldest spruce tree in the world

Posted on Nov 12, 2014 in Nature, Places

It is said that every man must do three things in life: plant a tree, have a child and build a house. Ernest Hemingway allegedly added a fourth, i.e., writing a novel. Let’s focus on the trees, commonly liked by everyone. During our childhood they are favourably disposed towards being used as elevated playground area. […]

Snow and wool in Swedish Jämtland

Snow and wool in Swedish Jämtland

Posted on Nov 2, 2014 in Nature, Places

The first snow has arrived. At first hesitant, as if those vanguard snowflakes would like to apologize for their appearance, gracefully swirling downwards in small numbers. Nevertheless they usher winter and cold conditions. A snow covered white world, our Winter Wonderland in songs and ballads, is something of sheer beauty in wilderness regions. Everything out […]

Outdoor is like chocolate

Outdoor is like chocolate

Posted on Oct 27, 2014 in Clothing, General

Summer holidays are over and autumn is here now with its morning chill and rainy days. While organizing the photographs and thinking where to go next year, images of the first time we went upnorth, into the Scandinavian wilderness, come into mind. I have learned a lot ever since. First of all about myself, that […]

It is the scent of a dense forest on a rainy day, the silence of a minus 25 degrees winter’s night, the humming sound of a mosquito filled summer’s breeze. It is the inviting presence of mountains, valley’s, rivers and streams, the sudden weather changes, the magic of untouched nature reigned by its own rules only. It is all out there, to experience and to enjoy, bringing exciting adventures and contemplative moods.

 

The Nordic Countries Outdoor Blog – Treeline Tales is the pursuit of putting it down in words, combining an impressionistic view of Nordic outdoor life with particular details and facts. The starting point is a passion for experiencing the nature and wilderness areas in the northern part of Europe.

 

 

QUOTES

Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

A life without adventure is likely to be unsatisfying, but a life in which adventure is allowed to take whatever form it will is sure to be short.

- Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)
Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564)

It is necessary to keep one’s compass in one’s eyes and not in the hand, for the hands execute, but the eye judges.

- Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564)
Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

Nature has no mercy at all. Nature says: “I’m going to snow. If you have on a bikini and no snowshoes, that’s tough. I am going to snow anyway.”

- Maya Angelou (1928-2014)
Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Only two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.

- Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
Robert Green Ingersoll (1833-1899)

In nature there are neither rewards nor punishments, there are consequences.

- Robert Green Ingersoll (1833-1899)
Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.

- Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)