The camp consists of ‘double’ rooms in the form of lavvu tents (that looks like a tepee) furnished with comfortable beds, stoves and cosy furnishings inspired by nature and the Sami culture. Each of the 5 tepees/rooms is detached. Here you keep the fire burning with birch wood in the wood stove – we will provide all that you need to be able to light the fire including know-how. At night, a powerful automatic stove heats your room so you can sleep all night – regardless of the outdoor temperature. The automatic stove runs on diesel but there is no smell from the heater inside your room. During the night you hear a low, relaxing sound from the flame in the stove and a genius little automatic fan will help spread the warm air in the room. The diesel stove will not run during the daytime – it’s valuable if we can cooperate to reduce the environmental impact of our stay here and not using fuel when it’s not necessary is one way to do that.
The temperature in the room varies a lot from the hot stoves in the middle of the room to cold temperatures on the floor. No matter how much we try to feed the wood stove – it’s impossible to get room temperature on the floor itself. So when you are in the room – keep your shoes on to keep your feet warm. If the room is cold after a day outside, it will take 1 hour to get it warm again so start the fire inside and come into the log cabin and have a cup of coffee/tea while the room is warming up again. Thank you in advance for your help!
Our beds are comfortable double beds – 160 cm wide (unless you sleep in the one room with two 90 cm single beds). You will use a sleeping bag liner, a sleeping bag and a warm, cosy duvet. You will not get cold when it’s time to sleep – no matter the outside temperature. We will not change sheets/liners or make the bed during the stay. There is a difference in temperatures depending on the side of the bed that you will sleep in, the warmer side is closest to the heaters in the middle of the room.
When it’s time to go to bed, your host will start the automatic stove for you. I suggest that you wear your base layer (read more about how to dress in the Arctic later in this document) with long sleeve shirt and longjohns and thick, wool socks on the feet. Use the sleeping bag liner and the sleeping bag and put the duvet on top of you if needed. Do not fill the wood stove with wood before you go to bed – it will just be steaming hot inside for a couple of hours and you will start to sweat from the excess heat. That will make you chilly later when the fire in the wood stove cools down in a couple of hours. If you get cold on your head that you can’t put inside the sleeping bag – put a warm cap on. Try not to cover your face with the sleeping bag – you will breathe in moisture in the sleeping bag and that will make it more chilly inside the sleeping bag after a few hours.
There is a baggage rack in the room for your bag and two armchairs and a small table where you can sit and relax. We will have a couple of battery lamps in the room. There’s a fire extinguisher in each room and we will have a safety demonstration for you when you check in to the room. Your electrical equipment stays warmest inside the log cabin (computer, camera batteries etc) where you always can go and get it from whenever you like. I usually keep my phone inside the sleeping bag when I’m out winter camping, that might be a good idea.
There is no electricity in the camp so we rely on solar power, battery lamps, candles and kerosene lanterns for light. You will get to borrow your personal head lamp from us during your stay and hopefully we will have some natural light from the sun, moon and northern lights that reflects on the snow cover to make it brighter despite the lack of sun hours in midwinter. Be sure to have fully charged batteries in your electrical devices that you bring here and maybe even bring a power bank.
Headlamp, water bottle to your room, napkins and personal cup will be provided during your stay. Our Sami inspired cups made from an eco-friendly, natural fibre composite from recycled energy sources. You will have a personal cup to use during your stay – under the cup, there’s a number to keep track on which cup is which. The cup is also a perfect, useful and sustainable memory that you can buy and bring home with you for your future adventures. You might drink tea or coffee from a Sápmi Nature cup for the rest of your life?!
You can drink the water straight out of the river! We have a prepared water hole in the ice where you can have a drink and/or fill up the water bottle (unless it’s completely over frozen – to keep it open, we need to daily take away the ice). You can also fill up the water bottle inside the log cabin.
Toilet, shower and sauna
A modern and comfortable incineration toilet makes it feel somewhat luxurious even though the camp has no electricity. The toilet uses propane and solar energy to take care of the waste. The toilet room is located in a separate building in the camp but close to the lavvu rooms and a small heater keeps the toilet room warm and there’s a basin for handwash with cold water and soap.
We also have a traditional outhouse which can be used with even less climate impact. We also have a urinal place located in the outskirts of the camp. We provide wet wipes in each room.
A wood heated sauna can be rented for a really nice and relaxing sauna/wash. The sauna is heated with a wood stove and gets really warm, no matter the outside temperature. In places like this – with no electricity/sewage – this is how all the locals take a shower when there are no proper showers… The stove heats up hot, really hot water that you mix with cold, fresh water from the river in a big bowl to get the right temperature on the water. This is then used to wash your whole body.
You stand inside the sauna and do the washing, so it’s nice and warm. The wash water will just go out through the floor.
It takes about 1,5 – 2 hours to get the sauna ready for use and you are more than welcome to help out with this. We will provide a towel. And we will give you all the information you need to enjoy this relaxing way of Arctic lifestyle
Log cabin in the camp
We have a log cabin in the camp that is served as the main building/reception/dining room. This is where your Sami host will sleep during your stay at the camp and the door into the cabin is always open for you. You can sit here and read a book, talk to you Sami host and/or help out in preparation of the food. Inside the cabin is where we will eat most of our meals.
Preliminary times for the meals are but they can be changed if necessary: breakfast 08.00, lunch 12.00 and dinner 18.00.
If you would like a cup of tea/coffee – this is where you can come and we will help you. You can also fill up the water bottle from the room here. And get new batteries to the lamps. And so on.
If you need to dry any clothes or shoes, we encourage you to do it inside the log cabin instead of in your room. The number of melted gloves that I have seen through the years when guests have put things around the heaters in the rooms… It might be a good idea to store your electrical equipment inside the log cabin too.
We are always focused on keeping you safe. In the planning of the camp, we have done our outmost in keeping safety in focus. But the most important part in keeping safe and comfortable is the cooperation with our guests. We all need to respect the fact that Sápmi Nature Camp is located out in nature, far away from closest hospital/ER.
We will go through safety when you arrive and talk about what’s important for you to know and we encourage our guests to pay attention to the advises. Keeping the fire burning in the stove in your room is essential and makes it really nice and cosy. But the stove and fire is also the biggest hazard so it needs to be used in a respectful way.
We have safety equipment in each room – fire blanket, fire extinguisher and a smoke detector. And we also decided to only have battery lamps in the rooms, therefore we also provide head lamps for you that works fine when you want to read a book or go outside in darkness.
Being outside is really the true Sami lifestyle. So of course, we will focus on being out. In the snow, around the open fire down at the river, on the ice. And we will try to share the Sami knowledge on life close to nature. Guests needs to respect our advises regarding being outside in nature – not at least on the ice of the frozen river.
Dry your clothes and shoes in the log cabin. Borrow extra socks/shoes if you need to dry the pair that you have used.
Your Sami hosts will never drink alcohol during your stay – if evacuation is needed we will always have a driver.