Almost 30 years ago I took the train for 23 hours up to Abisko to walk on The King’s Trail (Kungsleden). This is Sweden’s most famous hiking trail, approximately 440 kilometres (270 mi) long, between Abisko in the north and Hemavan in the south. It passes through, near the southern end, the Vindelfjällen Nature Reserve, one of the largest protected areas in Europe. In the winter Kungsleden is a ski trail with approximately the same route.
Arriving at the same station as I did 30 years ago, memories come alive. I was 31 and I had lost my much loved grandmother the year before. I needed to think and to be alone – with only myself.
The view from my window is just the same…Abiskojåkka river joining Torne Träsk lake.
I hit the trail instantly, almost at arrival…eager to know if I recognized it…because here I hiked when I was young, alone with my dog, Amanda, and a huge packing (16 kg is a heavy weight for my size) because of her food.
At home now everything is brown or yellow, dry, burned down. Hot. Here the lush green and a temperature about half the heat – 18 instead of 36 C – made life easier again. Meet Lingonberries on their way!
Carl von Linné and his own flower came alive during this hike as well.
The fragrance of the tiny Linnea is stunning, when walking you hardly notice her, but along this path, you could not help loving her. She was everywhere. And I – I was happy.