Another hot weekend at the cabin!

The temperature last Friday was 30 degrees C and and after working out in the heat all day, when we arrived at the cabin, both myself and Emma headed straight to the lake to cool off.

swimming in lake-1

Initially the water was cold, but after a couple of minutes it was warm and relaxing to be in the lake

swimming in lake-2

I spent most of the weekend working on the cabin.  This time I was fixing tongue and groove boards around the living room walls, one metre high.

wall panel in cabin

We will then have wall paper on the walls above the boards

wall panel in cabin-2

Emma was bored, so I asked here to draw a picture on the wall where the boards were going, and she also wrote about our family, so that in future years when the boards are removed, someone can read about who was living there before.

emma with wall painting

I put up a hammock as a chair on the veranda and Emma spent quite  bit of time sitting there birdwatching.

emma birdwatching from hammock

We have a pair of White Wagtails nesting under the cabin roof and they spent a lot of time catching insects.

white wagtail (Large)

There were also Black Grouse displaying nearby in the evening.

black grouse

We will be spending three days at the cabin this coming weekend.

A hot weekend at the cabin

Two weeks ago when staying at the cabin I took this wintry picture.

snowfall in may (Medium)

Last weekend we were at the cabin and after two weeks of exceptionally warm weather (which is still continuing now) with temperature up to 29 degrees in the shade, the same view now looks like this.

after two weeks (Small)

I spent most of last weekend dragging trees to the cabin, cutting them up and splitting them.

carrying logs (Small)

Wood from two years ago in our outside wood store

woods store-1 (Small)

had to be moved to our inside wood store to be used over the next year

wood store-2 (Large)

and then the new wood had to be stacked outside.

I spent quite a bit of time fishing but caught nothing.  So on Saturday night I put out my fish-trap in the lake and when I checked it next morning, there were fish in there.

perch in trap (Small)

There were sixteen Perch in total

a nights catch (Medium)

Most of them I put back in the lake because we did not need them, but the larger ones I kept.

5 days at my cabin – day 5

I had left my Little Acorn camera out overnight at the cabin to see if any animals came to visit.  I was surprised next morning to see that a Reindeer had been to visit in the middle of the night.little acorn camera reindeer

Myself and Erik walked in the forest.  We eventually decided to stop and make fire,

fire in the forest (Small)

and cook coffee and some lunch.

lunch in the forest (Small)

Close to where we made fire, we found a couple of really nice Birch burs.

birch bur (Small)

Later during our walk, we found a site where a fox had killed a Capercaillie.

fox kill (Medium)

I could not understand why there was a lot of mouse droppings in one are, but then realised that this was actually the crop contents and that this bird had recently been eating Birch leaf buds.

capercaillie crop contents (Medium)

We spent the afternoon fishing but again did not catch anything.

At 6pm we loaded our kit in the valp and Erik gave me a lift to my car.  As we drove along the track I had walked to the cabin on, I spotted fresh bear tracks.

brown bear tracks

The tracks were from the previous day and it was not a particularly large bear that had made them, so if we had travelled in the opposite direction the previous evening we might of seen it.

brown bear tracks-2 (Small)

5 days at my cabin – day 4

I spent the morning gathering wood and splitting logs.  Late morning I heard a vehicle and eventually my friend and neighbour Erik appeared.  He had been ploughing the road to our cabins with his military valp and it was nice to see that I would have some company.

military valp

He drove up to his cabin and made fire to get the cabin warm and then came to join me for coffee at my cabin.  Later in the afternoon we decided to try and walk across the marshes to another large lake.

kevin warrington lapland

There was still a layer of ice under the water so I wasn’t too difficult to get across to the lake.

frozen lake-2 (Large) frozen lake-1 (Large)

As we walked back across the marsh there were quite a few Wood Sandpipers, Spotted Redshanks and Greenshanks feeding there.  This Green shank sat up in a tree watching us.

greenshank lapland

We spent the evening fishing, but did not catch anything.

out fishing (Large)

Later in the evening we drove around in the forest (the Valp will go just about anywhere!!) looking for birds, Moose or bear but we only saw a Capercaillie.

laplander valp (Small)

New bird species for the year were a pair of Smew on the cabin lake, a Dunnock and a Rustic Bunting singing at the cabin.

5 days at my cabin – day 3

I decided to start my day off with a good breakfast.  Curry and cheese bannock bread, with fried sausage!

bannock bread breakfast (Large)

Most of the day was taken up finishing off the new ceiling.

celing completed (Large)

Over the fireplace, where rain water had leaked in before I bought the cabin a 2,4m long ceiling bearer was completely rotten.  I needed to replace it before the ceiling could be completed, but did not have anything long enough, so using my saw and axe

working with axe (Large)

I made a housing joint to connect two shorter pieces together.

beam joint (Large)

There were over 100 Bramblings feeding on seed I had put out and so a took a break mid-morning to take some photographs of them.

brambling-1

brambling-2

Because the walls and roof of the cabin (like most older properties here) is insulated with saw-dust, you get a continual fall of saw-dust when you are working.   To reduce the amount of saw-dust falling from the ceiling I have placed newspaper in all the gaps and open spaces.

paper around ceiling (Large)

Saw-dust falling all the time also meant that I got very dirty. So each evening after I had finished working,  I filled my solar shower with warm water and hung up out side the cabin so that I could shower and get clean.

outside shower (Medium)

The only new bird species today were a pair of Goosander.

Paper rockets

On Friday evening we travelled to the cabin.  It wasn’t easy driving the snowmobile, because in some places there was no now, and in others there was deep snow, which the snowmobile sunk into.  I had to make two trips in to the cabin; one with Emma on the back of the snowmobile and then with Teres.

By the time we had made fire, got the cabin warm inside and cooked food, it was getting late so we went to bed.

Saturday was cold, with heavy showers of rain, sleet, hale and snow.

snowing-1 (Medium)

I spent the early part of the morning cutting up two Birch that had come down over winter.  When I started, the snow was hard enough to walk on and I used the snowmobile to drag large lengths of timber, but then both I and the snowmobile began sinking into the snow.  So I resorted to cutting smaller pieces and transporting them by dragging with the pulka.

wood on pulka (Medium)

Emma was bored in the cabin, so we made some paper rockets (many tutorials on YouTube)

papper rockets-1 (Large)

which were made to fit over a piece of plastic tube.  When you blow hard into the tube

papper rockets-2 (Medium)

the rockets fly across the room (the yellow streak you see in the picture below)

papper rockets-3 (Large)

we made different designs to see which flew the best.  Teres even made some paper birds for Emma to shoot down with the rockets

papper rocket target (Large)

In between snow showers

snowing-2 (Small)

we tested them outside and they flew surprisingly high.

I was a bit concerned as to how we would get back to the car, because the snow was now wet and soft.  Fortunately the sky cleared during the evening and at 4am when the temperature was -5 degrees and the snow nice and hard, I woke Teres and Emma, and we packed to leave.  I was reluctant to make two trips again so we put Emma in the pulka and drove out without any problems!

leaving cabin-1 (Medium)

emma in pulka

A cold weekend at the cabin

Spring is going to be late this year.  A cold north wind has been blowing for three weeks now and although the sun lifts day time temperatures just above freezing, at night temperatures can still go down as low as -30 degrees.

I arrived at the cabin Friday evening and made fire in both the kitchen stove and in the fireplace.  After a couple of hours the cabin was warm and with a night time temperature of -20 degrees I kept the fires going all night.

Early on Saturday morning I cooked breakfast; potatoes, sausage, eggs and onions.

breakfast at cabin

I spent some time ice fishing, but it was very cold and I caught no fish, so I decided to do some photography.

There were several different birds coming to the bird feeder and I particularly wanted to photograph Siberian Tit and Siberian Jay.  Siberian Jay’s were not so difficult to photograph.  After standing for 15 minutes they came to feed.

siberian jay

siberian jay-2 (Medium)

To get VERY close to the Siberian Tit’s, I put a reindeer skin on the snow, and some food just in front of me and laid there and waited for them to come down.  It proved more difficult than expected to get photo’s of them because they kept flying down and sitting on my head!!  Eventually they came for the food.

siberian tit

siberian tit-2 (Large)

On Sunday, while out in the forest with my snowmobile I came across some very strange tracks.

capercaillie spore-1

I called my friend and neighbour at the cabin Erik, and explained what I had found and he drove out immediately to take a look.  Eventually we deduced that the spore was that of a displaying male Capercaillie.

capercaillie tracks in snow

We followed the tracks on our snowmobiles and found this fine print where the bird had originally landed (from the right you see where the tail touched the snow, then where the body impacted and finally the imprints of the wings, then he walks away displaying).

capercaillie landing

This is what the display looks and sounds like.