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Skiing at Saariselkä
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Saariselkä - Ski Resort and Snow Summary
Skiing in Saariselkä
Saariselkä - Finnish Ski Resort
Saariselkä is a popular year-round holiday village which offers a unique selection of activities to visitors. These include canoeing trips on the Ivalojoki river which was famous for gold-panning in the past - and you can still give it a try yourselves. Santa Claus' village is not far and the Northern Lights are often visible. There's also more gold - this time mining for it and the Igloo Village at nearby Kakslauttanen. Trips are organised up to see the Arctic Ocean and to the nearby igloo village at Kakslauttanen (10km / 6 miles away). Part of the Urho Kekkonen National Park, named after Finland's former president. A free bus service links the resort to the lifts. Saariselkä is the northernmost winter sports centre in Finland, 250 km (approx. 160 miles) above the Arctic Circle. Excursions are organised to the Arctic Ocean
Saariselkä Ski Facts
|230km||Cross Country Pistes|
The Finnish ski resort of Saariselkä has direct access to 11 individual pistes, served by 6 ski lifts.
Snow cover is generally reliable due to the Scandinavian climate..
Snowmaking :- Saariselkä is able to augment natural snow, on 10km of ski runs, with 5 Snow Cannons.
Ski Lift Capacity :- The 6 Ski Lifts of Saariselkä are able to uplift 6,500 skiers / snowboarders per hour.
Skiing in Saariselkä
Saariselkä has a small downhill ski area which is best suited to beginners and early intermediates. It is a five minute (one kilometre) bus ride from the resort centre and unusual the bus can drop you at the base or the top of the slopes, 180 vertical metres apart.
There are six slow lifts, five are T bars, one a double chairlift serving a dozen runs, five of them floodlit for the short winter days. These are divided in to two separate areas, on each side of the road at the lower end which you will need to remove your skis to cross, further up the road ends but there's a flat area to pole or walk across.
The ski runs total 10km (six miles), the longest 1.3km (a mile) long. Few provide any real challenge although there is a black and some powder between the runs, which tends to stay in good shape for long periods due to the low temperatures often slowing crust formation. There can also be good tree skiing if you have a guide. Most of the runs begin gently on the flattish tops of the two fells, Kaunispaa and Iisakipää then fall away more quickly a third of the way down. There is an excellent terrain park, reputed to be Finland's largest.
If you get cold you'll find a welcoming bar at the base of the lifts and a good panoramic restaurant at the top. The ski hire facility is also very good and conveniently located right by he lifts.
Cross country skiing is a major activity at Saariselkä which has a network of 220km of trails, 30km of which are floodlit for night skiing. A regular free ski bus links key points on the trails and local villages making one way excursions easy to organise.
Snowboarding in Saariselkä
Boarders will have fun on the excellent terrain park, which claims to be Finland's largest and features an impressive half pipes and lots of jumps. The chairlift makes it easier to get up if you're not keen on boarding up on the T Bar.
Saariselkä's laid back atmosphere and rocking night spots also appeals to most boarders.
Saariselkä Aprés Ski
Apres can be lively in Saariselkä with partying guests typically picking one of the large hotel bar/nightclub complexes and spending the evening there.
The Gold Panner Bar, Guksui pub in the Holiday Club and Panimo are amongst the most popular.
There are three late night clubs including one in the Holiday Club. The Tunturi hotel has live music and dancing every night of the week and also offers billiards, roulette and blackjack. The Lutto pub has a good selection of beer and cider and is a good place to drop by and enjoy some rock music. There's karaoke Sunday to Tuesday evenings and billiards tables. The Kieppi has live music twice a week from a local band and a Sami evening once a week.
Saariselkä Snow Reports by e-mail
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Saariselkä in brief
Saariselkä Ski Resort is:
Ok for Expert Skiers.
Ok for Intermediate Skiers.
Very good for Beginners.
Good for Snowboarding.
Opened : November 5, 2012
Closed : May 2, 2013
Opening Subject To Snow Conditions.
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