Sunday, 20 June 2010

Kilpisjärvi, Finland

I love receiving postcards from Finland. It's always good to hear about people in my native country, and it's great to read (and write, too) cards in Finnish. I find Lapland particularly fascinating, even if I've never been there myself. The following card is an official I received a few days ago, and I find it quite interesting.


Kilpisjärvi is one of the more remote places in Finland. Located 450 kilometres north of Rovaniemi (and this is where the maps on postcrossing fail - the map on the sender's profile points to Rovaniemi!). Kilpisjärvi is located in Enontekiö municipality in northwestern Finland. It is on the border of Sweden and Norway high above the Arctic Circle. Distance to the Arctic Ocean is less than 50 kilometers. The village is almost 500 meters above the sea level. The word Kilpisjärvi is both the name of the lake and the village.

Although Kilpisjärvi is one of the largest villages in Enontekiö, it is still quite small. In 2000 its population was recorded as 114. It does have a very informative website, however. Below is some info I got from there:

- Europe's cleanest air
- 40 over 1000 meter high peaks
- Only 50 kilometres to the shore of Arctic Ocean
- Sun is above horizon from May to August
- Rare plants and birds
- Three Border Point
- Paradise for a photographer
- Favourite activities: skiing, hiking, snowmobiling, photography, fishing, husky rides, plane rides, paragliding, heli-skiing, trips to Norway and Sweden
- GPS-Location: 69°02'N - 20°47'E

- The longest winter and thickest snow in Finland
- The longest ski-season: from September 'till Midsummer Day
- More Northern Lights than anywhere else in Finland
- Average temperature: in January -13,6°C, in July +10,9°C
- Average temperature all year round -2,3°C

- Biggest recorded snowfall in one day: 48 cm (29.1.1981)
- Thickest average snow: 190 cm (19.4.1997)

The sender, Ari, tells me that there are around 5000 people there ice fishing on Sundays! They still have snow there, too, and the lake hasn't defrosted yet. Ugh, I wouldn't want to live there...

I love the special cancellation with the reindeer! :) The stamp is from a set of 5 stamps called "Jumping for joy", issued earlier this year.

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