Greetings from snowy Åre!

I caught a flight up to Åre early this afternoon to join Stina and some of her friends for a weekend of skiing. Stina's friend Magnus flew in this morning from Göteborg, and had already been skiing a bit when he met me at the cabin where we're staying. Affer I dropped off my bags, I walked down to the ski rental shop, located just 50 m from our door, to rent equipment. I opted for the "advanced" ski package and got what look like brand-new skis and boots. Shiny!

We hit the slopes around 15.30, just as the majority of the lifts on the mountain were being closed for the day. The only lift left running was the VM 8 lift. There's a single ski slope down from the top of that lift that is brightly illuminated all night long (24-hours per day actually). So we stuck to this slope, sking until almost 17.00.

The snow was probably great this morning, but by the time we go to it, it had been cut up pretty badly. There were patches of hard icy snow and thick clumps of heavy wet snow. Inconsistent snow makes for challenging skiing, and I fell a couple of times. These skis are really amazing. They're sharp and hold contact with the ground very well. This actually caught me by surprise one time, leading to one of the falls of the day. I caught a bit of air jumping over a clump of chunky snow, and landed on a flat icy patch. My uphill ski caught the packed snow and came off in an instant. I might tighten the bindings a bit tomorrow.

The sun set around the time we began skiing, and was followed by at least an hour of dusk. The thin reddish-orange cresent of the moon was silhouetted against a deep azure sky. A light veil of low clouds was switfly passing overhead. Eventually, the clouds became thicker, and as we finished skiing for the day, the moon and sky had become completely obscured from view.

Around 17.00, we dropped off our skis and we changed into regular boots so we could comfortably walk into town to do some shopping. First we picked up some wine & glögg at System Bolaget, because they close at 18.00. Next we bought dinner and breafast fixings at ICA. We're gonna have tacos tonight, preparing dinner just in time for the arrival Stina and the rest of the gang. They are driving up from Stockholm.

I brought my camera with me, but I haven't taken any photos yet. I didn't dare to bring it with me on the mountain today. I will have to get very comfortable with my equipment and the snow conditions before I'll dare to bring my expensive little toy up with me. I might bring it up on the mountain tomoorrow, but I kinda doubt it. Maybe if the sun comes out and it's a really lovely day.

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