Experience the Silence

Have you ever listened to the silence of the Finnish winter?
Wildlife Safaris Finland Oy takes you out to listen to it on skis or snow shoes, or on foot. We will take you to the snowy forests and the icy rapids, to look at tracks of wolverines, wolves and otters and to observe the logging work done by beavers. On the way we will enjoy tea and sandwiches under a snow-coated tree. An ‘atmospheric’ hot sauna and a delicious warm meal will be waiting for you after your experience in the cold beauty of the Finnish winter. Enjoy the silence of the wilds. Shhhh!

Duration: 2-4 hours
Included: picnic, sauna, warm meal, equipment, guiding

In this connection please also see our SNOWSHOE TRIPS.

We recommend combining this option with a traditional Finnish SMOKE SAUNA accompanied by a smoke sauna moose meat hot pot/smoke sauna salmon!

Compile your own programme, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

Photo hiking in snowy landscapes with Lassi Rautiainen

“Off-road” skiing or snowshoe trips for those interested in photography, especially landscapes and smaller winter subjects. Explore snow-bound forests and bogs. Animal tracks and ‘forest art’ forms will be pointed out. Photographic advice given by professional nature photographer Lassi Rautiainen. We will stop on the way and have a picnic with hot tea or coffee. Back at Kuikka we will enjoy a warm dinner and a photo course led by Lassi Rautiainen.

Duration: 2-4 hours
Included: picnic, sauna, warm meal, equipment, guiding

To this effect please see also our snowshoe trips.

Especially enjoyable combined with a traditional Finnish smoke sauna and a smoke sauna hot moose pot/smoke sauna salmon!

Compile your own programme from the list on the right, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

Snow shoe trips

Trip 1:
Starting at the Kuikka base camp, we will progress through the forest towards our “bird bog”, a larger wetland area where one of our bird hides is situated. We will continue to the frozen river to listen to the soft sound of water lapping against the ice. On the way, we can observe wolverine, otter and various bird tracks and see how the beaver is impacting the boreal forest. Perhaps we will even discover its ‘lodge’. Tea/coffee and picnic on the way. Back to the Kuikka base camp where a hot sauna and a hole in the ice are awaiting us, before the fragrance of steaming hot food draws us to the dining table.

Trip 2:
Starting at the Kuikka base camp we will head north across the Kuikka lake. Following the frozen river, we will listen to the water lapping against the ice, examine tracks of otters, wolverines and birds, and see how beavers have shaped the boreal forest. After passing the large beaver ‘lodge’ we will arrive at the neighbouring frozen lake higher up the waterway. Crossing this we will come to our neighbours’ house where either a small meal or coffee and cake (arranged with the group in advance) will be awaiting us in the cosy interior. We will then either walk or drive back to Kuikka where a hot sauna and a hole in the ice will be waiting for us. A warm meal or coffee and cake may be served, depending on the programme chosen.

Both programmes can be booked in the form of either a winter silence experience, or a winter photo hike concentrating on winter subjects with photographic advice from professional nature photographer Lassi Rautiainen, followed by his photo course at the Kuikka base camp.

Duration: walk 2-6 hours
Included: picnic, sauna, warm meal, equipment, guiding.

Especially nice to combine with a traditional Finnish smoke sauna and a smoke sauna hot moose pot/smoke sauna salmon!

Compile your own programme from the list on the right, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

Cross-country skiing

Our snowshoe trips can be accomplished on skis, if desired

  1. bird wetland (bog) trip
  2. along the icy river, with a cosy coffee break at our neighbour’s
  3. animal tracks at our feeding place*

*This skiing trip leads you through old-growth forest and along frozen lakes to one of our predator feeding places, where we will look for tracks. There are nice small slopes, but nothing very steep. On the way, we will take a short picnic break with hot tea/coffee in a beautiful winter landscape.  On our return, a hot sauna will be waiting for us before we do justice to the hot buffet table at Kuikka base camp.

Duration: 4-6 hours
Included:
Picnic, equipment, warm meal, sauna, guiding.

A nice programme to combine with a traditional Finnish smoke sauna and a smoke sauna hot moose pot/smoke sauna salmon!

Compile your own programme from the list on the right, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

Traditional Finnish smoke sauna

The smoke sauna is a very old and highly esteemed Finnish tradition. In olden times, the family’s father and children would heat it on a Saturday. As is common in Finland, our sauna is located in a separate log hut next to our Kuikka lake. Your visit to the smoke sauna will be a special experience! A cube-shaped large stone oven is fired up for five to seven hours. We then remove all the ash and embers from inside the oven. Inside, the sauna is hot and completely black, since there is no chimney in a smoke sauna. Before use, we release all the smoke, wash the soot away from the benches and let the sauna cool down a bit. Then, with a traditional sauna beer, we enjoy the special atmosphere in the hot darkness, perspiring freely in the caressing steam, before cooling down in the fresh lake water. The water feels warm compared to the air temperature - wait and see!  Along with the heating up of the Wildlife Lassi Rautiainen smoke sauna, we will prepare a hot moose meat pot or smoke sauna salmon in it for you. The meat is cooked to perfection after several hours at low temperatures in our smoke sauna oven. Salmon needs less time in the oven but is also cooked at a low temperature. Don’t miss this Wildlife Lassi Rautiainen delicacy!

Compile your own programme, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

Sauna and ice hole swimming

There are two traditional saunas at the Kuikka base camp. One has a wood-burning stove with a chimney, while the other is a traditional Finnish smoke sauna, now very difficult to find elsewhere. Both are in use. However, the smoke sauna has to be heated up in the early morning (is thus available only to order). For the real Finnish feeling you will have to stick a toe into lake water at plus 4°C (that is far higher than the outside air temperature). You will discover that it does not feel as cold as you feared!

Compile your own programme from the list on the left, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

Ice hole fishing in the silence of the Finnish winter

Follow the Finnish tradition of ice hole fishing whether on the nearby Kuikka lake or on a smaller pond within 1-3 km of the cabin. In winter you will most probably catch perch, which can be prepared for you in the Wildlife Lassi Rautiainen Kuikka kitchen. Enjoy a small walk to and from the pond through the wild beauty of the Finnish winter and experience total silence and solitude while fishing. This is the Finnish way to meditate.

Duration: as required.
Included: equipment, map or guiding, picnic with hot tea/coffee.

Combine with a hot sauna or smoke sauna afterwards!

Compile your own programme, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

Husky sleigh riding

Meet lovely sleigh dogs and enjoy the ride. But wait a moment, you yourself will have to control the sleigh and the dogs! Every dog is an individual and you will quickly notice that fact on your ride through the Finnish wilderness. Enjoy a hot tea/coffee in the dog owner’s small house. There you will learn a lot about his work with the dogs.

Duration: sleigh ride 1-3 hours, whole trip 3-6 hours
Included: transport, picnic, tea/coffee, equipment, guiding.

Compile your own programme, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.

River raft swimming

For those seeking more action as well as the silence of the Finnish winter, this is one of the oddest activities this region has to offer you. Not to be missed! You will protect yourself with warm clothes, a waterproof overall, rubber boots and a neoprene bonnet. In these you will have to toddle through the village (only a short way, we promise you!), then walk on the ice until you fall into the icy water...

First you will be shown how to get out of the water. Then you can walk on the ice and fall into the water again. Try this a few times - it’s great fun! After that, the guide will take you down to the raft which will rush you down the river. The next part of your adventure will be to crawl up the river bank, toddle back to the start, then hurtle downstream in the raft as many times as you like. At the end you will be served hot chocolate or coffee round the camp fire in a Samì “kota”, the Samì-style tepee.

Included: transport, equipment, hot chocolate/coffee in the ‘kota’, guiding, warm meal

After all this excitement youwill most probably feel like a hot sauna / smoke sauna followed by a wonderful warm meal back at Kuikka base camp.

Compile your own programme, then CONTACT WILDLIFE LASSI RAUTIAINEN.