Spring water

I had settled in Sulaoja, the entrance of the Kevo trail. This is quite a renowned path that winds its way along a canyon, but the status of the area, a “strict nature reserve”, comes with some limitations. One is not allowed to leave paths when they are visible (i.e. when snow doesn’t cover them), and in spring, until mid-June, the canyon is completely close to preserve the nature.

I had no ambition to walk the Kevo trail (that’s 65 km in complete autonomy oO), but because it was closed when I visited, the car park, and as a consequence my camp site, would be rather quiet. I liked the idea.

In the grove that bordered the car park ran a deep stream. The water was incredibly transparent; I discovered the day after that it came from the largest spring in Finland. Water originally flows as a river, from which it seeps under ground, where it’s filtered, and then it comes up, cold and clear. There’s a nature path circling the area, with explanatory signs. They are only in Finnish and Sami, but I understood the most important words: largest spring in Finland. That’s a start, I guess.

The water and the trees attracted lots of birds. I already mentioned the Common snipes (Gallinago gallinago) in my previous article: they kept displaying all day long, flying wide arcs accross the sky. Closer to me, a pair (and maybe two) of Wood sandpipers (Tringa glareola) fed in the vegetation that lined the river. They were not very shy and came close-by.

Wood sandpiper (Tringa glareola)
Wood sandpiper
Wood sandpiper

My greatest find was a group of Western yellow wagtails (Motacilla flava) of subspecies thundbergi. If you remember, I mentioned this bird when I was in Hungary last Spring. I said I would look for it in Lapland, and there it was. I think there were at least 5 or 6 different individuals, but they never used the perches I wanted them to use. Instead, they offered me cluttered backgrounds and distant views. I was happy anyway.

Western yellow wagtail (Motacilla flava), ssp. thundbergi, male
Western yellow wagtail, female

I said the wagtail was my greatest find… that was true until I realized there were Bluethroats (Luscinia svecica) singing in the woods. Then, both species harshly competed for my attention!

Bluethroat (Luscinia svecica)
Wood sandpiper
Wood sandpiper

I stayed in Sulaoja 2 “nights”, a necessary time to rest before continuing on my trip.


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4 thoughts on “Spring water

  1. Hey Samuel!
    Coup de coeur pour ton bluethroat alone on a branch.
    It’s not the first time I hear you mention the Samis or the Sami language and I finally looked this up. I read things like: “Finland has denied any aboriginal rights or land rights to the Sami people; in Finland, non-Sami can herd reindeer”, that leave me puzzled. Would you, some day, tell us a little more about the ethnics?
    On your mention: “They are only in Finnish and Sami, but I understood the most important words: largest spring in Finland. ” Pardon my asking, but I was under the impression that you spoke Finnish. Do you only speak English and is it enough to go by in Finland?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Francis, thank you for your interesting comment 😉
      Like many aboriginal people, the Sami have suffered from discriminations (in Finland but also in Sweden, Norway and Russia), but I believe things are getting better with time; for instance, they have their own parliament, even if its power is limited.
      I won’t promise any article on this topic, but maybe, one day… 😉
      Regarding my Finnish… you’ll be disappointed, but I can only speak basic Finnish. Almost everyone here speaks excellent English, so I haven’t spent much time on learning Finnish :/

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Eliza, it’s a beauty indeed 😉 It’s maybe the star of the trip, for there was one singing along every creek in the tundra, and it sings well and loud… and it looks glorious of course 😀
      There will be at least one more Bluethroat picture here, but a few weeks from now only 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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