God Morgon Sweden!, After driving into Sweden across the bridge from Copenhagen we found a nice little camping spot on the grounds of an old monastery turned castle. Being winter it was all pretty neglected with only the owners flickering candles to be seen through the window. We were the only ones in the car park and the only ones staying the night, I think in summer it would have been a different story. It was a beautiful location and we woke up excited to see what Sweden had to offer.
We headed west towards Gothenberg but bypassed to city as we wanted to explore more of the coast of Sweden. We found a beautiful spot at the northern most point of the south western coast in an area called stromstad. In the summer it would have been a tiny little fishing area with a lovely campsite however as the night before, we turned up and there was not a soul in sight, we had the small beach to ourselves so we whipped out the camera and decided to do our best at capturing some astrophotography of the beautiful night sky above us. We then headed inside for a lovely bowl of chicken super noodles.
The next morning we woke up, the night was cold, our first below zero and there was a thick frost on the ground and the sea had began to freeze close to the beach, but we warmed ourselves up with a hearty breakfast and went on our way.
We made it to our next camping spot further up Sweden a couple of hours later. The most remote spot so far, about 2 inches of snow on the ground and not a single bar of phone signal, however it was a great place to stay the night, free firewood to use on the camp fires, a pump tap from a spring for free drinking water and compost toilets for when nature calls. Speaking of nature there was plenty in the area, signs warning of bears, wolves and lynx. We had to keep an eye out for a surprise attack! I gathered some wood, used a trusty bow saw to cut it into smaller chunks for our tiny log burner and got the fire going. The night was bliss, cold and quite outside with the cracking of our fire and its warmth to keep us cosy inside.
The next morning we woke up and decided to explore. As we was in a nature reserve with a lake a small walk away we took the drone with us to capture some shots of the area and it was beautiful, snow covered trees surrounding a beautiful lake with not a soul around other than us, I decided to get on one knee and asked Lauren if she would be willing to put up with me for the rest of our lives and she said yes, so that was good and I gave her a ring.
I then gathered some more wood dug the van out of a sticky situation and we were off to find out next location.
We had been doing a lot of driving, We were scheduled to get to our work away family on the 14th December so we had to get a move on. Our next stop was a town called Mora, we had visited Mora a couple of years back and we wanted to head back to the Dala horse factory just out of town and do a bit of shopping whilst we were there. After getting stuck in the snow a couple of times we found a nice spot to camp, just down a small road near a lake where it wasn't too busy, It was our coldest night so far, temperatures plummeted to -13 and things in the van began to freeze over as the stove did its best to keep us warm and it didn't let us down.
From Mora we had a long drive ahead of us, we drove north to Östersund and was blown away by the frozen beauty of Sweden, the thermometer at a town we trundled through read -22 and as we got out to have a look around at the scenery we could feel our noses and lips freezing in the crisp air. The trees were weighted down by the heavy snow and any piece of moisture in the air immediately turned to ice.
When we finally arrived at Östersund we checked ourselves into a nice campsite, we wanted to have a shower and clean the van and generally make ourselves look respectable before we headed north to our work away family. As the night drew in temperatures stayed below -20, We had the wood burner roaring and stayed nice and warm whilst enjoying the campsites wifi. The next morning we woke up refreshed and headed west to Undersaker to meet Han's and Karin, the amazing people we would be spending the next two weeks with.