The waiting is the hardest part.

The final few hours of waiting to set off on a journey are the hardest hours. Anyone who has planned an adventure will know what I mean, all the planning has been taken care of, the kit is sorted and packed and the anticipation builds with a small sense of frustration that you can't quite make a start.
Because you have to wait!

Oh well, to pass the time, I've had a look through a few previous moments in Sweden:

Portaging between lakes and rivers can be hard work. This forest road was one of the better ones because vehicles use it. Others are little more than rough, rocky and muddy single tracks. A rare moment of sunshine between heavy rain squalls on this day. If I wasn't soaked by the weather, I was soaked in sweat!

Beavers! Amazing creatures, beaver. There are places where downed trees block the portage trails and subsequent manhandling of the canoe over or around these obstacles can be a very strenuous exercise. Good fun though, it always gives me a thrill to see beaver. They're usually active around dusk and can be quite approachable with care.


Wind shelters are a welcome feature in the Swedish National Parks. Most of them have a firepit and a stock of wood for warmth and cooking. They are a welcome sight after a long hard paddling and portaging day in bad weather. This particular day was very cold, wet and windy with snow and sleet. I was exhausted when I finally landed on this island, but conditions became even worse on the following day. A committing crossing of Stora Gla into a big swell and a snowstorm followed. I was really thankful I brought the drysuit, a capsize in those conditions would have been serious.


It's often that bad weather during the day gives way to spectacular sunsets and calm evenings. There was an active beaver lodge about 50 metres away from my camp. I watched these interesting creatures through the darkness until tiredness took over.
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