The European icesailing season was traditionally opened in Finnish Lapland Week46, 18-20 November. This time the best ice area was found at lake Onkamo in Salla, very close to the Russian border. The lake is big and the ice was stable and free of snow. This was the highest altitude ever sailed in Finland, 320 meters above the sea level. 23 sailors representing Finland, Germany and Poland gathered at the landing site, where we could utilize the spacious lodge of the local hunting club as a race office.
The landscape is absolutely stunning, offering awesome scenery with the fjells in the horizon. The sunny days are short in daylight this time of year and the sunsets offered spectacular colors with northern lights during the nights. Unfortunately the high pressure kept the wind away and thus the Johnny Köhler Cup could not be sailed, despite of the optimistic efforts made. On Saturday it was time for the All Saints Regatta and we were lucky: 5 races were sailed in demanding conditions. After the race, very delicious reindeer soup was offered at the landing site lodge, supplied by a local reindeer herder. The second day, Sunday started very cold and the races for that day were cancelled for a good reason.