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Scandinavia/Lapland in November?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi

It’s my 40th this November and was thinking about organising a group trip for friends and family to Scandinavia/Lapland. I like the look of Pyha (Finland) but unsure what it will be like the last week of Nov, first week of Dec.

Anyone got any reports or reviews?

Happy to explore other Scandi resorts if anyone can recommend any?

Is it better to stick to high Alpine/Glacier resorts for that time of year?

Does it even get light?

The group would be mixed skiers and boarders

Mixed ability from complete novices to experts.

Like the idea of a small resort with some of the alternate actives offered in Pyha such as snowsurfing and fat biking. Like the idea of nice friendly slopes to play on but still options for some off piste adventures for those that want it.

Cheers
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
When I was living in Sweden in the 1980s snow before Christmas was always a bit hit and miss. In the far north though there might be snow it gets dark very very early which could be a bit restrictive. At that time of year I think the Alpine options are probably better
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I'm sure someone will correct me, but I dont think they open all the slopes that early in the season. In fact I think they dont all open until February. Just looking at the Yllas page now and quite a few slopes/lifts are currently closed.
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Was in Yllas for the Christmas week, and the slopes were open from 10:00 to 19:00, although this was only because it was Christmas week normally it's 10:00 to 17:00. Having a quick look at the Pyha website they look pretty similar opening times. They had plenty of snow, but not at the beginning of November (checked on the webcams) I think they had a dump about 15th Nov. The sun didn't rise at all while we were there and the daylight was from about 10:30 to 14:00ish. I think it might be worse in November. Most slopes were open, although I think this was because it was Christmas week again, in November it didn't look like much was open at all. Some of the slopes were flood lit, and some were open without lighting, so a good head torch is a must just in case.

Just a word of warning, It can get really cold, we had minus 28 at one point in resort.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Have to say, that sounds pretty miserable!! Dark, cold, probably little snow and not much open. There's a reason they drink so much in winter.... wink
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If you're looking at ski resorts. you might want to try Riksgransen in Sweden's arctic circle, not sure whether its open in November, but you should be guaranteed snow, it has a lot of off piste skiing and cheap heli skiing, as well as on piste skiing. plus snowmobiles and other snow related adventures.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
here's an article about the resort

http://www.snowmagazine.com/ski-resort-guide/1024-sweden/riksgraensen
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Ah, it only opens from end Feb so scrub that
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Agree with the above - you probably can find some skiing in Scandinavia (e.g., googling and found Gaustablikk Skisenter opens in November) but I wouldn’t expect it to be great. The Nordics are much better for late season skiing - as @Sack the Juggler pointed out, the northern Lapland season runs from February through May.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@0xley, Late November & early December is quite early in the season. This year, Pyhä opened on 16 November and I suspect a lot of the snow was man-made. (Apparently they're making snow on 2 out of 14 slopes.) Will it get light? Well, during that time it's going to be dusk for a couple of hours a day. Otherwise, it's pitch black.

How much snow you have depends on the season. Nov/Dec is by no means a safe bet these years.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Thanks sounds like I best come up with alternate plans and Lapland can get added to the list of places to visit in March/April or even May
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
not sure how true this is but

http://www.europe-mountains.com/en/skiing/november/?cid=3
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
http://www.skiresort.info/ski-resort/hintertux-glacier-hintertuxer-gletscher/
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
We skied in Pyha over the New Year this year 2017/18.

Although not extensive, the ski runs on offer are quality cruises through a magical landscape of snow laden trees with some quite interesting natural contours. I've skied in the Alps & Pyrenees many times (maybe as many as 20 times) and was very happy with the skiing on offer at Pyha. The express chair lift opens up the whole hill, so never too much time spent on the lifts. However there are some long drag lifts (including those on the really nice cruisy 'Northern slopes' on the back of the hill - it may be worth researching whether these would be open in November?).

Temperatures in Lapland will already be averaging nearly -10 degrees by late November, so expect perfect snow (however the amount will be down to the snow gods), there are snow cannons on the key runs, so some skiing is guaranteed whatever. Bear in mind that most years snow starts falling in early October, with permanent snow cover taking hold by November.

The darkness of the short day is no problem IMHO as it adds to the Arctic experience and all (I mean all) of the slopes are flood lit, so no problem there (it actually allows a longer skiing day than in the Alps). 'Miserable' it is definitely not! It's effin' snow heaven. Pyha is north of the Arctic circle, you do know that don't you? The weather at that time of year will bring snow and it will not melt at all until May (of course there are always extreme exceptions, but any milder weather will be rare and brief). To illustrate this, below is the official weather recorded in the nearest 'large' town (Sodankyla) in late November 2016 and 2017 courtesy of tutiempo.net (sorry, but I'm a closet meteorologist) and I think both years were considered ‘mild’:

November 2016
Date Max Min Day with Snow falling (all of them!)
23 -0.8 -7.7 o
24 -4.2 -10.4 o
25 -4.2 -11.4 o
26 -6 -11.4 o
27 -5.9 -12 o
28 -6.2 -24 o
29 -5.2 -24.7 o
30 -2.2 -5.9 o

November 2017
Date Max Min Day with Snow falling (again all of them!)
23 -7 -22.3 o
24 -0.2 -9.5 o
25 0.8 -2 o
26 0.1 -2.2 o
27 -0.9 -2.3 o
28 -0.8 -15.6 o
29 -4.5 -16.6 o
30 -4.9 -7.5 o

It was light between 11.00 am and 2.30 pm in late December and the day will be longer in late November. Plus there are other Arctic activities on offer (snowmobiling, Huskies etc) from the local 'Pyha safaris' (in the centre of the village). It might be worth finding out if these have started by then too. There is also the chance of catching the Northern lights at any time. All in all a very special experience and quite a bit different from a normal skiing experience.

I'd recommend booking a log cabin direct through the rental agency in the village centre (Pyhahippu) like we did. Beautiful authentic log cabins all fitted with saunas and open log fires regardless of size and the rates were good too! Finnish people are very warm and friendly and English is spoken widely. Good luck whatever you decide. Just don't rule out Pyha quite yet. Very Happy
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