Bike

NIGHT LIGHTS

“YOU GET ENERGIZED BY THE SUN. YOU’RE LIKE A BATTERY SOAKING UP THE SUN.”

THE MIDDAY LIGHT STREAMED in the window of Låktatjåkko Fjällstation, a small mountain hut tucked into the Scandes mountain range on the remote tip of northern Sweden. A barely there curtain covering the hut’s window allowed the sun’s bright rays to fill my small sleeping quarters, preventing any semblance of sleep, which seemed to be the norm in the summer months high above the Arctic Circle.

Although my circadian rhythm thought otherwise, it wasn’t actually midday light that was keeping me awake. Even though the glowing orb was already high in the sky, the clock read 3:30 a.m.

This was late July in northern Sweden, the land of Midnight Sun, otherwise known as “100 days without night,” or midnattssolen, when it’s light for some 21 hours a day. Even when the sun ‘sets,’ around midnight it never actually gets dark; it’s more like dusk for a couple hours, before the sun rises again.

As such, light dictates life in this remote part of Scandinavia, known as Swedish Lapland, an expansive and sparsely populated recreational wonderland just east of the Norway border.

“You get energized by the sun,” Patrik Strömsten, proprietor of Niekhu Mountain Villa, a boutique hotel and restaurant at the nearby ski resort of Riksgränsen, says of midnattssolen. “You’re like a battery soaking up the sun.”

This summer phenomenon, and all the hours of riding it would presumably indulge, set the stage for an attempt to follow the dirt of a forgotten pre-World War II supply-road-turned-trekking route on two wheels.

To get here, I’d flown into Kiruna, the northernmost town in Sweden, home to 17,000 people, almost

Estás leyendo una vista previa, regístrate para leer más.

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