Olympic Station – 132 Southeast False Creek Preconstruction Strata Condos

Olympic Station is the Western Gateway to Olympic Village, which is located at Southeast False Creek. Olympic Station by Aurmon Development is a 12-story LEED gold concrete building offering132 studio to 3-bedroom luxury condo homes. The location is a fine example of new urban living, where shopping and services are available steps away. Just a short stroll along Cambie Street takes you to Save On Foods and Whole Foods, the Royal Bank and Vancity Credit Union, London Drugs, Best Buy, Canadian Tire, and Home Depot. Or, you can hop on the Canada Line, located two blocks away, and get there in mere minutes.

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Winter Fun in Ruka

Skiing, ice climbing, hiking on Finland’s most popular backpacking trail, floating in an ice cold river, a Sauna made from ice and the most delicious food – this is what you can experience & taste in Ruka!

Staring off into the distance//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Disclaimer: I was invited to Ruka as part of the 2017 Nordic Blogger Experience. Thanks to NBE Finland and Ruka-Kuusamo with their partners who made this trip possible.

Skiing in the Dark

Have you ever skied after sunset? And I don’t mean alpine starts skinning up a mountain, but skiing after the sun has set and darkness has fallen across the land? Not? Then welcome to skiing in Finland in the depth of winter!

Up//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

With the sun and it’s light being rare guests between December and February up here in the North you will very likely be skiing at night when you’re visiting. But in case that sounds scary á la “Skiing without seeing anything” you can be assured that you’ll see plenty when you’re hitting the slopes in Ruka in January. The slopes are lit and even if you leave the slope to enjoy a wee bit of powder between the trees you will still see everything. The whole Rukatunturi hill is illuminated as along as the lifts run, and skiing in the light while the world around you is covered in a blanket of black darkness is amazing. David, Nathaniel and me stood several times at the top of the slopes and just being speechless about this experience.

Dropping in!//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Fire//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
David & Nathaniel pondering this night skiing thing//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
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Floating on an ice-cold river

It’s -10°C and we’re putting on dry suits, all over our winter clothes. Everything except our faces are covered in an orange suit and neoprene. Then it’s a short ride to the river and a walk up to the lake, where the stream starts.

Floating//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Our Guide from Ruka Palvelu gives us some last explanations of what to consider when we’re soon walking into the current which will carry us gently but swiftly down the river. Everything is covered in snow along the shore, and an elk which was drinking from the open river looks full of wonder upon our small group of floating humans. Too quickly we reach the small bay where we need to get out of the river – but happily we have a second float before us! We hike once more up to the lake, walking in till the chest and then just let the buoyancy of the suit carry us down the stream.

Ice River floating//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Ready for ice river floating!//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Ice-climbing

I love ice climbing and hence was psyched that this activity was on our programme. We went ice climbing with Outdoor Passion who operate and maintain the Kuru ice wall which is located a ten minutes walk up the slopes from Ruka village. The routes were in good conditions and ranged from beginner to advanced and I had a blast whacking my ice tools into the fine ice, enjoying the good views from further up and of course also seeing that my group enjoyed this activity a lot!

Iceclimbing in Ruka//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Views from the top//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
"Summit Selfie"//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Winter-hiking on the Karhunkierros

I have hiked several times and in every season on the Karhunkierros, but experiencing it in winter is always special.

Tara crossing the river//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

This was a short hike to Myllykoski which lays along the Karhunkierros and is one of the most popular (Instagram) places along the trail. The rapids next to the all mill with the hanging bridge across the rapids is impressive, and even in the depth of winter you most likely won’t need snowshoes as there’s a wide trail through the forest to Myllykoski. Once you’re there you could light up a fire and enjoy some coffee and marshmallows by the fire, or continue exploring the area.

Myllykoski//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Myllykoski Bridge//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
The Mill//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

The Food

Ruka has variety of Restaurants which means you can try something new each evening during your stay. From cozy slope side Cafés to fine-dining experiences, there’s something for every taste.

Dinner in a Kota? Yes please!//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

We ate at various places while up in the North and instead of me telling you where to go I’d encourage you to go and explore yourself (OK, we had a fantastic lunch at Hotel Cumulus Resort Rukahovi, another tasty lunch Buffet was enjoyed at Restaurant Rukan Kuksa, we drunk local beers at Hanki Baari and had a Chef cook for us in the Kota above).

Mushroom Soup at Hotel Cumulus Resort Rukahovi//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Main//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Dessert//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Maku Brewing Beer at Hanki Baari//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
BEER//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

(Ice) Sauna (Yoga)

How do you end a day of adventure in Finland in winter? Right, by relaxing & warming up in a Sauna.

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On our 2nd day in Ruka we went for the Sauna Tour. It started off with a very nice Sauna Yoga Session. The Sauna was only 50°C warm and we learned simple Yoga poses which helped to release tension from the day.

Iisakin Sauna//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

After that we went for a short ride to the Ice Sauna which was truly unique and had a very nice löyly (steam). Sitting inside of a building that’s made from ice blocks and having a hot stove warm it up is something to be experienced, and I highly recommend trying it out if you’re in Ruka. After the ice sauna we went into the traditional Smoke Sauna and had a peat mask, again a truly uniquely Finnish experience which is well worth trying. After these Sauna experiences we went for a swim in the ice hole in Lake Salonkijärvi, and had light snacks and plenty of water to stay hydrated.

Ice Sauna Outside//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Ice Sauna//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
The ice hole//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Getting & Staying There

Finnair flies from Helsinki to Kuusamo from where you can take the bus to Ruka. Before heading to Ruka we stayed for a night at the Isokenkäisten Klubi, a very nice Hotel which was almost in the middle of nowhere close to the Russian Border. They have a fantastic Smoke Sauna which we enjoyed and great food, so are well worth a visit. There’s also lots of XC skiing and ice fishing around the Hotel, so if you look a more calm stay consider the Isokenkäisten Klubi (it’s not a Club, despite the name =).

Going home with Finnair//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
Morning//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

In Ruka our group stayed at the Ruka Ski-Inn and we had a nice room, though I found the breakfast left more to be desired. We checked out the Cumulus Resort Rukahovi next door and that looked pretty neat – no idea on the breakfast, though we had a very tasty lunch there! There’s six more Hotels in Ruka and you also can rent a cottage or an apartment in the village.

Ruka Village Centre//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

The Bottomline is that a winter vacation in Ruka can be as relaxing or adventurous as you’d like it to be. There’s great accommodation options, delicious food, good local beers and a host of activities of every flavour to make your time in Ruka special. While all we did was a wee bit much in just two days if you spread this out over a week with more skiing – because with over 30 slopes and 20 lifts there’s plenty of skiing for all levels to be enjoyed in Ruka!

See more Photos on Flickr and read David, Tara and Marcos experiences of the same trip =)

If you enjoyed this article why not support me with a coffee or two? I work Full-Time on Hiking in Finland to bring you inspiring trip reports, in-depth gear reviews and the latest news from the outdoors. You also could subscribe to the rarer-than-ever Newsletter and follow along on Instagram, Twitter and Youtube for more outdoorsy updates!

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1070 Barclay Street Iconic Twin Towers Downtown Vancouver

Iconic Twin Towers at 1070 Barclay Street in Downtown Vancouver were designed by the world-renowned German architect firm, Büro Ole Scheeren.  An architecturally stunning redevelopment proposal in downtown Vancouver aims to provide the city with its first major twin towers and add to the skyline. These two residential towers of same height, but varying number of floors, will offer 680 residential units with 30% as 2-bedroom units and 20% as 3-bedroom units.

 

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Oakridge Centre by Westbank

Oakridge Centre by Westbank is a mixed-use redevelopment site located at 41st and Cambie. This is a transit-oriented neighbourhood hub that offers retail, office, residential and community spaces. This project is part of the Oakridge and 41st Canada Line Station. It will have 14 towers, approximately 9-44 stores and will offer 2914 units. The redeveloped Oakridge Centre will offer a new community centre, daycare, library, outdoor running loop, rooftop gardens, over 1 million square feet of retail and so much more.

 

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The Windsor at Norquay Village

The Windsor by Imani is a new 12-story mixed-use development at Norquay Village along Kingsway, located on one of the highest points in the city along the East Van Ridge. The Windsor is offering 126 1-3 bedroom homes with stunning, unobstructed and endless views of the downtown skyline, North Shore Mountains, and beyond. Shops, services, and community are nearby.

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The Week in Review 275

Red and ripe/ A white hat/ Gone with Autumn.

Rowan under Snow//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

If you enjoy The Week in Review & other articles why not support me with a coffee or two? I work Full-Time on Hiking in Finland to bring you inspiring trip reports, in-depth gear reviews and the latest news from the outdoors. You also could subscribe to the rarer-than-ever Newsletter and follow along on Instagram, Twitter and Youtube for more outdoorsy updates!

News

Not only the Trump Administration likes to show that it is corrupt and doesn’t care about the outdoors, also the Bavarian CSU Government shows that it’s a corrupt bunch and yesterday weakend a 45 year old law which protected the Alps from over-development. Read the take of the DAV on this issue and then head over to Robert’s article Alpenplan vs. German Angst. [German]

Nine-Year old Lulu fixes the Urban Car Bicycle Dilemma.

Peak Design is on Kickstarter with the Capture v3 which is lighter, smaller and thinner – but hurry, the campaign ends tonight!

The North Face’s parent company, VF Corporation, bought Icebreaker.

Gadd’s Truth: Why I Hate Hammocks.

A last refuge for Europe’s Orcas.

Instagram is loving Nature to Death.

I’m sick of the slew of crappy “Chrismas Gifts for Outdoor People” articles which hit the blogs and websites this time of the year, but I really do like Paulina’s Six Gifts for the Outdoor Advocate in Your Life article. And yes, here’s my widly popular Gift Guide.

The changing Faces of the Outdoors.

4 Bikepacking Trends for 2018.

Planning to climb in California? Take a look at these Planning Sites for California Alpine & Mountaineering Climbs.

Klymit launched a puncture-resistant sleeping pad, the Armored V.

Rei wants you to #OptOutside again this Black Friday and helps you pick an outside adventure.

Take 20% Off One Full-Price Item at Backcountry.com!

Stay warm in winter – wear Merino wool!

Trip Reports

Man, woman, mountain.

Read about Jotaro’s JMT Section Hike. [Japanese]

Grand Canyon of the Elwha.

Avon is calling David.

Peter’s Bushcraft Adventure is a great read and shows that you don’t need much when going outside.

Amateur Mountaineer.

Rhythm.

Nuuksio//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Gear Reviews

Is a DIY Packraft a real alternative to a bought one? [German]

A visit at Bedrock Bags in Durango.

Kurtka Montane Women’s Minimus Jacket Review. [Polish]

Drew reviews the Salming Trail 5.

Do you clip your gates in or gates out?

Andrew Skurka shows how to protect Down Insulation from Moisture.

11 Tips to get into Winter Mountaineering.

Disclaimer: There are affiliate links in this article to help finance the website. Read the Transparency Disclaimer for more information on affiliate links & blogger transparency.

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The Week in Review 274

Fast it flows/ steady it stands/ pebbles they become.

Fast & Slow//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

If you enjoy The Week in Review & other articles why not support me with a coffee or two? I work Full-Time on Hiking in Finland to bring you inspiring trip reports, in-depth gear reviews and the latest news from the outdoors. You also could subscribe to the rarer-than-ever Newsletter and follow along on Instagram, Twitter and Youtube for more outdoorsy updates!

News

Check out PHANTOM, the new Permanent Base Glide Treatment for Skis & Snowboards which eliminates your need for Wax.

Climbing Legend Fred Beckey Dies.

Jens found the perfect grave for outdoor enthusiasts. [German]

Watch the Leave It Better – Packing it Out Video.

And read Jessie’s tips on how to reduce your garbage on trips. [German]

Have you seen TripTarp already? Looks like a smart way to enure you got all your gear along on your next trip!

Want Hyperlite Mountain Gear kit but don’t want to pay import duties? outdoorline.sk sells HMG backpacks, shelters and stuff sacks for good prices!

Shop and Save Up 30-50% OFF Past Season’s Product with Patagonia Web Specials + FREE shipping over $75!

Everyone needs socks! Save 20% on Socks for Every Adventure at Backcountry.com.

Trip Reports

Chasing AdVANture with Chris Benchetler.

I thru-hiked the Öreälvsleden Trail in Sweden.

Threshold Shift.

The SF Peninsula Traverse.

Check out #MyTrangoTower Story of the Nordskottstraversen in Norway.

Adam explores Winter Walter’s Wiggles.

Hiking up to the Piz Martegnas. [German]

Life Coach.

Hiking around the Sierra Negra Volcano on the Galapagos.

Making Friends in the Balkans.

When to Call it Quits on the Pacific Crest Trail.

Gavin is changing plans in the Caucasus.

David explores Lake Ozenuma in late autumn.

A Family Bikepacking Adventure in New Mexico.

View across the river//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Gear Reviews

Matthias reviews in much detail the Big Sky International Mirage 1P. [German]

As Tucas Sestrals Pants Review. [Danish]

Ambronite Supermeal Snack Portions Review.

Dura Case Review.

Derek takes a look at the Superior Insulated Hammock.

Check out this 2017-2018 UL ski-hiking equipment list. [Japanese]

Disclaimer: There are affiliate links in this article to help finance the website. Read the Transparency Disclaimer for more information on affiliate links & blogger transparency.

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