Winter Miracles & Waiting Hare

Like noted previously, it is so COOL that the winter has finally come to Finland! I have enjoyed so much about the freezing weather and the frosty sights! Today morning it felt like I had a small hangover, maybe because of the too much coffee and the many hours stayed awake during the weekend. On Friday I called one land owner in our hunting club, and he said it was okay to come to his ranch and hunt some hares. There are only a couple of horses living at the ranch, which are put in the stable during evenings. When I went to the ranch for the first time, I saw many footprints of hares in the snow. The feed seemed to be the attractive thing why there were so many marks. Unfortunately, during the weekend I noticed there was possibly only one regular hare visiting the ranch, even though I wished there would be more.

Anyhow, I took my warm clothes, sleeping back, some white textiles, thermos and shotgun with me, and I spent three evenings/nights at the ranch. During Friday I heard one hare coming closer behind, but I couldn’t turn around and shoot it. I just watched over my shoulder and I saw the hare running away. During the Saturday evening, almost at the same time, I again heard a hare coming towards me. It was behind the bushes and it came quickly really close. So close that I wasn’t able to saw it and raise my gun before it noticed me and ran away again. So, I didn’t catch anything during the weekend, but the nocturnal sights and sounds were mesmerizing and worth of experiencing! Everything was so white while the haunting full moon shed its light on the cold landscape. Once a fox barked in the forest and a pygmy owl whistled somewhere. The nearby lake banged aloud when the ice grew over its frames, and I saw the clear sky and its bright stars once again. Finally, the ice crystals, floating in the air, made the beautiful pillars of light over the horizon. This phenomenon is called halo, or icebow. Here are some photos from the weekend. In the end there are daytime pictures taken elsewhere. Enjoy the sights!

“Well hello there Mr. Bond. Could you kick the hare’s ass so that we don’t have to share the same dinner table anymore?”

“Yes Mr. Emo Horse, I will do my best!”
“Thanks a lot and good luck Mr. Bond!”

Look at those halos! Wow! I saw those pillars of light coming from the street and other artificial lights when I was walking to my waiting spot. I really needed to stop for a while and take a couple of photos. They were so beautiful, you don’t see those kinds of halos quite often!

It is amazing what the small ice crystals in the air can do! Miracles of winter, when it is about -20 degrees of Celsius or more outside. 🙂

With my best gear and by keeping my lower body in the sleeping back, I was able to sit still about five hours. If I contracted my muscles, I was able to generate more heat without moving much.

Here I’m sitting on a small rock with my shotgun.

Sometimes I had some leftover coffee, chilled during the trips. At home I added some milk and vanillin sugar and made ice coffee as a breakfast for the next morning. 🙂

The next a couple of photos are taken during daytime, not during the hare hunting in the city 😀 Like usual, these “artistic” photos can be found in the Photographing Gallery.

Can you see the little halo above the left side of the horizon?

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