Do you know what ice fishing is? It's when you set out across a frozen lake in your winter boots, drill a hole through the ice, sit next to it on a camp stool, and wait for hours on end in total silence with an ice rod in your hand. You might catch something or then again, you might not. It's all about ambience and vibes.
Although there are other ways to fish in summer, some people are really hooked on ice fishing. That's why a real 'summer ice fishing' competition will be held at Rautujärvi this summer.
As almost none of us can walk on water, well, with one famous exception that is... authentic ice fishing surroundings are recreated at Rautujärvi on floating pontoon rafts. Three metres long and 1.5 metres wide, the rafts are tied together at two-metre intervals, towed out by boat into the middle of the lake and then anchored in place. Fishing is only allowed through holes in the deck, not from the raft's edges.
The competition is planned for 14-15 July. If it is exotic enough for you, just come and watch or better still, join in! The entry fee is 25 euros and you can register by e-mail at email@example.com. All those entered take part in a lottery to win a bike, and the main prize is an outboard motor worth 2600 euros. That'd be something worth taking home!
The rules are complex, but basically you'll need your own fishing gear and you should be at least 10 years old (or younger if accompanied by parents). The competition will last two hours, a life jacket is compulsory, and you'll need a stool or cushion to sit on. Alcohol is not permitted, all other bait is allowed except fish, and the organisers may suspend the competition in adverse weather conditions.
From Ylläs, it's only a 20-minute drive to Rautujärvi along the road to Kolari. If you have a car, you'll find some useful driving instructions on Google Maps. Or alternatively, come by taxi.