In November me and C joined Christoffer and E from Skogsmulle and went on a short overnighter in a lean-to shelter close to home. We hadn’t been out together since our canoe camping trip in July, and me and C hadn’t been out since our trip to Skåne in September.
Christoffer had checked out a lean-to shelter that was just a 15 min drive from home. It was somewhat secluded and near a lake, but across the lake was one of the major roads into the city and we would hear traffic constantly.
We arrived a bit earlier than Christoffer and E, and explored the area. C had brought her fishing rod, and we also brought a Halloween light string. Christoffer and E arrived and they put up another light string.
There were two shelters and a fire ring. We took the nicest one and started a fire. The girls were fishing, but didn’t catch anything.
We had brought our own firewood, but gathered large pieces of firewood from the forest and made a star fire that would burn most of the evening and night.
The kids did some wood carving, and so did Christoffer and I. For most of the evening the kids played while Christoffer and I carved spoons. It was kind of like meditation, just sitting by the fire in the shelter and carve the spoon out. We didn’t have spoon knifes so we used burning coals to burn out the inside of the spoons.
We had brought a couple of beers that were really tasty to drink by the fire. The kids went to bed, and this time I didn’t tell any ghost stories before bedtime.
C slept well most of the night, and I slept decently too. By morning we started to fire again and made some coffee. Christoffer made breakfast for us.
It was a nice short trip with good friends. I do prefer tents to lean-to shelters, but I can’t deny that the shelters are very comfortable.
It’s been a while since C and I where on more than an overnighter together. Last time was our hike in Fulufjället more than a year ago. I’d been wanting to do more than just overnighers for a long time, and to go back to Skåne where we’d been a couple of times before.
I got off from work a bit earlier on Friday afternoon and picked up C from school. The bags where already packed so we just made the final preparations at home before going. We left home around 15.00, and had a two hour drive ahead of us. The weather report had shown rain for most of the week, but the closer we got to the weekend, the better the weather report looked.
There was just one other car in the parking lot when we arrived, and as the last two times we where going to hike mostly off trail and didn’t expect to meet anyone. We hiked the first part on Skåneleden, and there we actually met three people. It’s hard to say whether they just started hiking, or had been on the trail for a while.
But we soon left the trail and headed up to the ridge. The nature was stunning, with old beech forests and a deep canyon. C wanted to put up the tent right away, but I wanted to get up to get some nice views before we set up camp. C loves camp life. The hiking part of a hiking trip is not her favorite.
Once up on the ridge, we found a nice spot, with a good view. A bit too close to the edge of the reserve for my taste, since we still could see houses, cars and tractors in the distant, but C got to call the shots for this trip.
We set up camp, and C got to set up the tent, with me giving a helping hand. She really enjoyed setting it up. I’ve done most of it before, but I thought it was time for her to learn it more hands on. The tunnel tent is a lot easier to set up than a mid or tipi too.
Once we had our camp up I started to make dinner. I had brought ingredients to make reindeer stew with mashed potatoes. I used fresh cream and frozen reindeer meat, so it made sense to do the heavy food in the beginning of the trip.
The reindeer stew was delicious, and it was really nice to sit and enjoy a good meal with such nice views.
C wanted to spend a lot of time inside the tent so we did that. The tent was really comfortable and I think I’ll like this one. I really like the straight walls and the dual entrances.
The next morning we saw a herd of fallow deers close to our tent. It’s becoming somewhat of a tradition now, and they are abundant here.
We had breakfast before we packed up our camp, and then we hiked along the ridge. While it’s up above the canyon there’s still a lot of ups and downs. It didnt take too long until C wanted us to put up camp again. And since she got to call most of the shots this trip we did.
We found a beautiful spot where we put up the camp. The rest of the day we mostly hung out in and around camp.
I made West African rice stew for lunch. I really liked it, but it wasn’t C’s favourite, and I made far too much.
We went on and explored the surroundings. We found a sea of boulders, and for a couple of hours we played “floor is lava” and jumped around on the rocks.
We needed to fill up on water, and had to get down into the canyon. Doing so is an adventure on its own (and so is getting back up), but with a slow and steady pace we managed to get down. Down at the stream my Sawyer Mini filter wouldn’t work though. I pressed as hard as I could, but could only get a few drops through. I hadn’t used it in a couple of years, and cursed myself for not trying it before the trip. But we filled up with unfiltered water instead, and had to boil it before drinking.
By evening we started to carve wood. C had gotten a Mora Scout as a present, and was eager to try it. We sat for two hours carving, and she didn’t want to stop. I had to drag her into the tent.
I had planned to do a lot of cooking on this trip, but we ended up not being that hungry. So for dinner that night we just had snacks and popcorn.
We’d had gorgeous weather the first two days, but the last morning we woke up to rain.
We packed up and discussed which way to go back to the car. Retracing our steps or go in the other side of the canyon?
We decided to go on the other side of the canyon and found a deer trail that led down in the canyon. We passed a meadow and hiked for a while in the canyon before getting up on the other side. The foliage on the uphill was so thick that the rain barely reached us.
We paused for a couple of times to watch the view before we got back to the car.
The trip had been absolutely great. C had really loved it and said it was the best weekend ever. We are definitely going back here together again.
(As I’m writing this I’m here again on a solo trip. I’ve started this trip report a long time ago, but I never got around to finishing it until now. Hopefully the trip report from this trip won’t take 6 month to finish)
When I first started this website and my Instagram I had a goal to spend at least one night a month, and 10% of the nights of the year in a tent. I never actually made it to 10%, but the point is I was out hiking, camping and canoeing a lot more than I’ve done the past couple of years.
I can’t really point out any specific reason to it. I still love it, but I guess short overnighters on the same spot time and again just didn’t do it for me anymore. I guess I want more. Longer hikes and paddles, multiday trips and trips further into the wilderness and mountains. I really miss the mountains, and my heart aches when I look at my old pictures from Sarek and Jotunheimen.
I also missed solo trips. I love going on trips with C, but for years my solo camps was my go-to way of winding down, getting rid of stress and recharging my batteries.
Since it’s been so long since I’ve been out on a solo trip, and I’ve just been out on two camping trips in total this year, I was looking forward to going on a solo trips this weekend. It would just be a short overnighter, but I was looking forward to the solitude, and most of all the silence. I had visited my planned location before on a day hike, and there wasn’t any man made sounds there. Living somewhat central in the city means it’s almost always sounds of neighbors, traffic, sirens etc. Just disconnecting from all those sounds is a great way relax.
I quit work a bit earlier on Friday afternoon and packed my bag for the overnighter. I was going to Lunden nature reserve, about 20-30 minutes drive from home. It’s a relatively new nature reserve, and the northern section has a lot of oak meadows and pastures, while the southern part consists of mires and pine forests. I have camped in the northern section with C before, but this time I would camp in the southern parts, where I had a lot of different camp sites checked out from my previous day hike.
On my way out I stopped at a supermarket to buy ingredients for my dinner, as I had planned to make Pasta Carbonara,.and also stopped at Systembolaget to buy a couple of beers. I ended up buying two locally produced ales, that where brewed just 14 km from my campsite.
I got to the parking lot, and my car was the only one there. I started hiking north, and in the beginning there was an abundance of blueberry- and lingonberry bushes. They where completely full of berries and I picked blueberries while I hiked.
I came to an intersection where the left turn would mean I’d follow the circle trail around the northern mire, and the right turn would lead across with mires on both sides.
I choose the right path, as that was the quickest way to my planned camp site, and I wanted to get my camp up right away.
I passed a few possible campsite until I finally choose one. I had wet lands on both sides, and camped on the somewhat narrow stretch of dry land.
After I’d put up my tent I put up the hammock. I had hesitated whether to bring it or not, but I was glad I did. I almost fell asleep laying there, but wanted to stay up so I wouldn’t have trouble sleeping at night instead. It was really relaxing, but the down side was all the black flies and moose flies. There where a lot of them. And I do mean a lot. If I hadn’t brought my mosquito net I would have gone insane.
With the mosquito net on it was easy to just ignore the flies. I forgot I had the net on a few times though, and tried to put cheese in my mouth through the net.
After chillin’ in the hammock for a while I made dinner. They only had pre chopped pancetta at the store, so it was really easy to make. I mixed the egg yokes with the pecorino romano and fried the pancetta. Then I cooked the pasta and mixed everything together and added some of the starchy pasta water. It was delicious. I choose to bring my full Trangia 27HA set. It weighs around 1kg with the chopping board, spice box, spork and dish brush. But I just love using it. I think it’s really fun to cook on it, and on shorter trips where I do more than just boil water for freeze dried food I think it’s well worth the weight. If I could only have one stove set for the rest of my life I’d choose the Trangia 27HA that I have now.
After dinner I got back into a horizontal position in the hammock, and tried the local beers that I bought. They where really tasty, and I preferred the lighter one, Småland Haze.
The sun disappeared and I thought it was time to get into the tent. It was quite warm and sticky, and I really wouldn’t need the quilt until later in the night. I had planned to read, but my ebook reader had died (and unfortunately I would not be able to get it back to life again). I watched half an episode of Westworld and then I just laid in the tent and listened to the birds nearby.
I slept somewhat ok, but while I’ve had worse pillows, my stuff sack pillow isn’t the most comfortable. I’m a side sleeper and woke up with neck pain every now and then.
I woke up at around 06.00 and laid there for a while before I mustered enough energy to get up. I planned to lay in the tent and make coffee in the vestibule with the door open, but the black flies stormed through the entrance right away. I thought it was better to get up instead of having the whole tent invaded by them.
I got out, got the Trangia up and boiled water for coffee. But when I was going to get the coffee I just couldn’t find it. I searched everywhere, but realized that I had forgotten it at home. Disaster, but I would have to endure. Fortunately I had brought a bunch of chanterelles that I had picked the other day so I had something to comfort myself with. I chopped the chanterelles and finely chopped half a red onion. Then I fried it in butter, before adding salt, pepper and cream. I let the cream boil in to a stew. Then I fried a slice of bread in butter and added the chanterelle stew. The stew would probably have been even better with a few drops of brandy in it, but it was still a really tasty breakfast.
After breakfast I packed up camp and left. I took the longer way back to the car, and picked a few blueberries here and there on the way. I saw the feathers of a bird, probably taken by a fox, and later I say a dead mouse on the trail.
I got back to the car and drove back home. I was back at 09.30. It was a short trip. Too short really, to actually wind me down. But it was still nice to get out again, since it’s been so long. Next time I’ll probably try to make it a full weekend and two nights, to really get a chance to disconnect.
For a few years now I’ve had a tradition of going camping in the first week of the year. This year though all of the family got Covid by new years eve. But on 14th of January C and I got away on a trip to Stocksmyr-Brännan nature reserve.
Stocksmyr-Brännan is the largest nature reserve in Kronoberg, with its 2313ha. It has trails between 80 meter to 16,2 km long. There are two different shelters, one of them next to a lake in the northern parts. There has been a forest fire here, so there are signs all over the place to be wary of falling trees and the stems where still black. The fires can burn off the roots, and the trees can fall without warning.
C and I wanted to use a tent, and it had been a long time since the last time we camped together. But since I’d never been in the reserve I wanted to check out the shelters first, to have a backup plan.
I used Google maps to find the way, but it took us out on a tractor trail, and it was almost too rough for my car to handle. But eventually we found our way through and parked at the shelter near the lake, on the northern part of the reserve. There was a flat area that could house our tent, but since it was pretty close to the parking lot I wanted to check out the other shelter before we decided where to camp.
I drove to the center of the reserve, and we started hiking on a trail south, to reach the southernmost shelter. The trail was really nice, with old pine and spruce forest and mossy grounds. C hiked with a good pace, but did long for the tent. Hiking is ok, but camp life is her favourite.
After a while we came to the southern parking lot, where we turned east back into the forest. After a while we spotted the southern shelter, on top of a small hill. The hill was just large enough to house the newly built shelter. I thought it was really nice, and wanted to stay there, but C was dead set on sleeping in the tent. There was no room what so ever, even for a 1 person tent, so setting up our Ultamid 4 was impossible. We hike back in a circle to the car and drove back to the northern shelter.
When we came there it was already starting to get dark. I set up the tent, got all of our sleeping gear out and C snuggled back in the inner tent with a movie. I sat in the vestibule and started to make dinner. Spaghetti Carbonara. It was delicious, but C didn’t eat too much of it.
After dinner I got into the inner tent with C. The trees creaked a bit ominous, and while I had checked for burned trees nearby I got anxious that I had missed one, and the forecast had predicted quite strong gusts during the night. In the end I realized that it was better to be safe than sorry. I would never forgive myself if a tree fell on the tent and hurt C.
I managed to persuade her to move to the shelter instead. So we moved all of our gear over to the shelter and lit a fire and played “Go fish” together for the rest of the evening. I haven’t been too fond of shelters before, and prefer a tent. But it was really cozy with the fire, and comfortable to spread out our gear all over the shelter. It was Cs first time in a shelter, and while she prefers the tent she still liked it. C fell asleep, but I stayed up a bit longer, before I dozed off to the dying fire. ‘
I slept fairly good that night, and the next morning I forced myself out of my comfortable sleeping bag and started a fire. After the fire got going I got back into the sleeping bag and made breakfast.
When we finally mustered enough energy to get up we packed up the gear and got back to the car. On the way back I checked out the site for our tent, and there where no dead trees nearby, so we could have stayed there safely. But as said, better safe than sorry.
Stocksmyr-Brännan was a nice nature reserve, and I want to explore more of it. I’d love to try the southern shelter too one day, but it might take some persuasion to get C to agree on that.
There’s a Facebook group called Outdoor Life Växjö where we share tips and tricks about gear and sweet spots nearby. The group has meetups every now and then. Since a lot of the members in the group has kids I thought it would be fun to have a meetup with the kids.
In mid September a bunch of us met up on Skälsnäs on the northern side of Helgasjön. Christoffer and E from Friluftsfrämjandet Skogsknytte also joined, and Christoffer also brought E:s little brother. A couple of the guys who came with their kids only stayed for the evening but four of us camped with our kids.
Skälsnäs is a good place for car camping trips. There’s a shelter, privys, a sandy beach, several fire pits and lots of room for tents.
I had brought the Tentipi with the HeatPal. Since it was a car camping trip I wanted as much comfort as possible. I had also brought a lot of good food, with a couple of beers and tasty cheeses and sausages. But despite having the carriying frame I wouldn’t want to carry this setup any longer distances. It really is heavy.
We had a fire next to the shelter and hung out there most of the evening. The kids where playing, but C was a bit shy until Christoffer and E came. C was very happy that E came and they played together for the rest of the evening. When it was getting darker they went inside the tent with snacks and an iPad to watch a movie. The kids had been soaked from playing near (in) the water and I hung up the clothes to dry and fired up the HeatPal.
The adult stayed by the fire, chatting and eating. It was really nice and relaxing. By midnight it was time to go to bed. Dario, who started the Facebook group, and his daughter and friend used the shelter, while the rest of us used tents.
Next morning Christoffer and I had to leave pretty early, since we where going to Skogsknytte with the kids. It was more important for Christoffer since he is one of the leaders om Skogsknytte.
It was a fun trip, and nice to be out with the kids and meet other patents. I’d love to do it again, but next time I would like to do a hiking- or paddling trip instead of a car camping trip.
C has been going to Frilufsfrämjandet Skogsknytte for 1,5 years. Some of us have talked about going camping with the kids, and in the middle of May we got out on a camp with E and her father Christoffer.
We had scouted suitable areas, and I had found a nice looking oak meadow, just south of a nature reserve close to Växjö. Camping is prohibited within the reserve, but allowed outside through “Allemansrätten”. To be fair, the oak meadow was more beautiful than lots of the reserve. There are pastures around here, so one isn’t allowed to camp here if there are any animals there.
C and I arrived first, and found a nice spot for two tents. After a while we heard E and Christoffer coming through the meadow. We set up our tents, and it started raining. We’d had sun and great weather all week, but once we got out we had rain. And it rained a lot. A litteral downpour all evening and all night. Having a Mid with a full inner provided some difficulties in a never endimg downpour, as it kept raining in everytime we entered or exited the tent.
We made dinner, and on the meny this time was tortilla pizza. I liked them, but they weren’t C:s favourite. Perhaps because she just wanted to play with E instead of eating.
The kids played with My Little Ponies in the Ultamid at first, but later in the evening they retreated to E and Christoffers tent, where they watched movies until late in the evening. Christoffer and I stayed outside, eating snacks and having a couple of cold beers. When it was time to put the kids to sleep we asked ourselfs why we had stayed out in the rain instead of just sitting in the tent.
C was super tired when we got back to our tent, and she fell asleep right away. I didn’t though, because I had found out that the tent was leaking. Water seeped through somewhere, and dropped down on the inner, and through the mesh onto the gear. I got pretty upset with it. The tent costs a fortune, and all the reviews holds it up to be some kind of super shelter, and I had water dropping down. I’ve had the Ultamid 2 before and didn’t have this issue. I mailed Hyperlite Mountain Gear right away, and later got a roll of DCF-tape sent, and a description on where the trouble spots usually are. (The story unfortunately will continue in my next post)
The next morning I had to wake C up. It felt like she could’ve slept forever. I made french toast for breakfast and we explored the area around the meadow before packing up.
It was fun to camp with E and Christoffer, and the first time to camp on that place. The rain was unfortunate though, but we’ll definitely come back here again. Christoffer and I talked about bringing canoes the next time.
I just received my stove system from Storminstove. Storminstove is a small UK based business, and the closest resemblance would be the Caldera Cone.
I bought a set with a cone, that serves as both a wind shield and a pot holder, a ground reflector and a stove. Everything together weighs 70g.
The cones are made to order and you can give the dimensions of your pot on the webshop, but he already has templates for a lot of different pots.
I have the Toaks 700ml UL pot with thinner titanium. I didn’t have to state any measurements, but he already had a template for my pot. The communication was great, and he answered all my questions in a very short time, even during the weekend.
The cone is made of two parts, that you put together using rivets on the lower part. The pot fits tightly in the cone. The stove has a capacity for 30ml of fuel, and the system is estimated to boil 450ml of water on 15ml of fuel. With three boils per day you only have to use 45ml per day. On my average two-night trip I have five boils, which means a fuel weight of 75g. The lightest gas canister weighs 198g full. I also like that alcohol stoves are quiet.
Everything nests in the pot and my complete system with the Storminstove-set, pot, spoon, fire steel and mini bic weighs 225g.
I’ll write a review as soon as I’ve used it enough.