Skiing the Planet

"Mongolia is kind of close, right?" Story about an attempt to ski everywhere in the world where there's snow. And in some places where there isn't. On and off-piste skiing on all continents, skiing into craters of live volcanoes, climbing, photography, and travel.

The blog about skiing around the world. The most recent blog articles can be found here:

Click here for the main site. There is also a full list, an off-piste guide, services "approved by the Planetskier", and a map.

The fourth part of the list of all blog articles is below. The list began in part 1, part 2, and part 3.

Fire and Ice
On New Year's Eve the celebrations usually involve fireworks. It seems appropriate to post a video about fire, pyrotechnics, and, of course, skiing. And sacrificial pagan rituals, naturally.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

December 2012
House Arkko, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing

Seasons in Kauniainen
My local hill may soon be opening, as they predicted over a foot of snow today. It has not yet arrived, but lets hope it will. Anyone want to join for a pre-season ski run this evening? Bring your old skis... could be grassy or even rocky.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

November 2012
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing; Skiing (Outdoor,Grass)

USA vs. Finland
I am on my way to Stone Summit, America's largest indoor climbing wall. My mission is to see how it compares to my local climbing hall, Toyota Kiipeilyareena back in Finland.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

November 2012
Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Kiipeilyareena, Helsinki, Finland


Climbing (Wall)

Finland vs. USA on Big Wall Climbing from The Planetskier on Vimeo.


A Night in the Cockpit of a 747
We lost all the instruments. The engines are not responding. I shout mayday to the radio, but the radio is silent. I curse my decision to ever enter the cockpit of this rusty 747-200. This night is going to end badly. Desperate times call for desperate measures, so I decide that it is time to exit the cockpit, run down the stairs, and ... order a drink from the steward.
Full story
October 2012
Arlanda, Sweden


Flying

A night in the cockpit of a 747 from The Planetskier on Vimeo.


Carrying Skis to 17,000 ft
I don't know where to start. Skiing at 17,000 ft? Ice climbing? A night in a tent at 5 kilometers? No acclimatization? The close call with tragedy?
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

May 2012
Tarija Peak, Cordillera Real, Bolivia


Climbing (Mountain,Ice); Skiing

Skiing at 17,000 ft in Bolivia from The Planetskier on Vimeo.


Zoetermeer
Amsterdam. Such a nice place to go skiing.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

September 2012
Amsterdam, Netherlands


Skiing (Indoor,Snow)

Amsterdam, what a nice place to go skiing! from The Planetskier on Vimeo.


Ski Trip to London
I'm on a ski trip to London. To the site of the 2012 winter Olympics. To the shades of the Tower of London, the highest peak in the country. To the powder fields of Paddington and the couloirs off the Big Ben... Dream on. But I am on a ski trip to London.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

September 2012
Hernel Hempstead, London, United Kingdom


Skiing (Indoor,Snow)

Mud Skiing
What a difference a day makes. Yesterday was a sunny, powder-filled day, touring the backcountry of Cerro Catedral (2405 m). And evening in the famous Bariloche after-ski scene. In five different bars, all the way to 4AM. But today I'm not feeling so good. A headache. Breakfast that wants to return. I must have caught some illness. And did I mention the powder? It is raining and the powder is gone. There's only mud in the ground.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

August 2012
Cerro Catedral, Bariloche, Argentina


Skiing (Outdoor,Snow,Mud); Afterski

Volcan Copahue
So close, yet so far. I wanted so much to ski down from Volcán Copahue (2953 meters), but despite trying very hard it was not going to happen.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

August 2012
Caviahue, Argentina


Skiing; Climbing; Urban-exploration (Ruins,Buildings); Swimming

Boots on a Plane
I am on my way to Argentina and Patagonia for twelve days of snow fun. Well, six days of snow fun and six days of travel.
Full story

August 2012
Barajas Airport, Madrid, Spain


Travel

Plastic Ice
This ski area is so hot that it melts your skis. Water would help, and also make the skiing faster. But their sprinkler system is being replaced, and this also happens to be the only day on our vacation when it does not rain.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

July 2012
Midlothian Snowsports Centre, Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom


Skiing (Outdoor,Plastic)

Climbing Volcanoes
We are trying hard to reach the summit in time. But we are late. 350 million years late, to be exact. This volcano stopped breathing before the dinosaurs came to life.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

July 2012
Arthur's Seat, Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom; Mt. Pinatubo, Philippines; Etna, Italy; Stromboli, Sicily, Italy


Climbing

Moguls in Manchester
I like skiing, and my youngest son likes to visit aviation museums. When I booked a family trip to UK, both two randomly selected cities that we are staying at turned out to have an indoor ski hall and a museum with Concorde. What are the odds?
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

July 2012
Chill Factore, Manchester, United Kingdom


Skiing (Indoor,Snow)

Palm Trees and Ski Bags
To boldly go where no skier has gone before: Spain. And the really tough guys dress in ski clothes on the plane bound to Barcelona (not me).
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

February 2012
La Molina, Catalonia, Spain


Skiing

Midnight Sun at Riksgransen
Many of my friends are regulars at Riksgränsen. But I had never been to this place that calls itself "Sweden's most legendary ski area". The legends are true. It is an amazing place. For starters, we were there in midsummer, skiing at midnight. In bright sunshine! The ski area is far above the arctic circle, and for about two months in the summer the sun does not set.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

June 2012
Riksgränsen, Sweden


Skiing; Afterski; Sauna; Urban-exploration (Buildings)

Venice. Fail.
It is the first time this has happened to me, honestly. I am embarrassed. I failed to find skiing on a trip.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

June 2012
Venice, Italy


Travel

Ice Climbing in Espoo. In June.
It is Sunday, +10 degrees, raining heavily, and it is the middle of summer in southern Finland. What should I do? Go ice climbing in Espoo, obviously.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

June 2012
Mankkaan lumenkaatopaikka, Mankkaa, Espoo, Finland


Climbing (Ice)

Two Feet High
We went to Matinkylä, southern Espoo today. One of the largest shopping malls in Finland, Iso Omena ("Big Apple") is located in Matinkylä. But they are also known as the site of M2, a mountain with icy slopes even in the middle of the summer. The steep slopes of M2 rise a whopping two feet above the surrounding landscape, scaring skiers and mountaineers alike. Indeed, very few climbers have climbed it.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

June 2012
Matinkyla, Finland


Skiing (Outdoor,Imported-snow)

Last Descent
Something terrible happened last week. On Friday we learned that a friend lost his life skiing down from Mt. McKinley. I do not want to talk about the accident, writing this text alone is hard enough. But I thought I'd return to a few happy memories with Ilkka.
Full story

May 2012
Oulu, Finland


People

Glacier du Kauniainen
Global warming is real. I can tell it by the speed that Glacier du Kauniainen is melting. Luckily the glacier always grows back in December for some reason. Maybe some temporary ice age that always hits us at that time.
Full story

May 2012
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing (Outdoor,Snow,Grass)

Grani Still Going Strong
May 20, and we are still skiing in Kauniainen. Or Grani, as it is affectionately called. My local ski hill is a treasure that just keeps on giving. I have lost count how many times I have written about the last ski run of the season on this hill, just this year. And there is still snow!
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

May 2012
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing

Bolivia Is Kind of Close
I have finished my meeting in Washington DC and more work awaits me next week in California. But first things first. There's a weekend in between, and what better way to spend the weekend than to fly 16,000 kilometers to Bolivia?
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

May 2012
Tarija Peak, Cordillera Real, Bolivia


Skiing; Climbing (Mountain,Ice)

Snowless in Oulu
I am amazed how bad the snow situation is. I am in Oulu, 600 kilometers north from home, but there is much less snow here than on my local hill. But I have to try to find skiing, given that I dragged my skis along for this trip.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

May 2012
Köykkyrin hiihtokeskus, Oulu, Finland


Skiing

Grani Summer Ski
I am at the summer ski center in Kauniainen. It is +15 degrees Celcius in hot sunshine and a gentle, warm wind. It is a perfect day to go skiing, in my swimsuit. Today is First of May, a national holiday in Finland. Most people party hard or gather in crowds in the city center to do silly things. I've chosen to do my silly things here on my local ski hill.
Full story

May 2012
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing; Sauna

Hero or Bonehead?
While the opinions were split among the spectators that came to talk to me afterwards ("are you the guy who skied that?"), I think the answer is definitely "bonehead". This was just too dangerous. I need to go back to skiing safer slopes.
Full story

April 2012
Kitzsteinhorn, Kaprun, Austria


Skiing; Climbing; Sauna

Sukset paskana
Both of my skis went to the repair shop today, in anticipation of the shop closing after this week. I need my skis in good shape as - obviously - the season continues. The guys at the shop gave their expert opinion about my skis: they are in shit condition. Or "paskana" in Finnish. Oh well, maybe they are fixable.
Full story

April 2012
Kaprun, Austria


Skiing; Equipment

Planetskier, The Next Generation
My 9-year old son was the first to ski the local hill at Kauniainen this winter. And now he announced that he wants to be the last one as well.
Full story

April 2012
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing

Two Countries in Eight Hours

Full story
The primary challenge with my trip was time. I could only burn one day on this and I had only one choice of flights in and out. But there was quite a bit of driving, not a lot of room for making navigation errors, and frankly too little time for the actual skiing. But in the end I was able to ski for one hour in the first place and a bit more than an hour in the second.
April 2012
Kakisklans, Latvia; Kuutsemae, Estonia


Skiing

Spring in Chamonix
Chamonix is arguably one of the best ski destinations in the world. If not the best. But can you ski in there in early April, when the rest of France sports sunshine and temperatures nearing +20 degrees?
Full story

April 2012
Chamonix, France


Skiing

Velo avec des Skis
Bike to train station with skis on your back, take the TGV, go skiing. That's what I did in Paris.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

March 2012
Snowhall, Amneville, France


Skiing (Indoor,Snow); Biking

Paris
I hate my job. Now I have to go to Paris. In spring. What a dreadful city! Seriously though, I love Paris and the meetings are super interesting. But how to get to the ski slopes?
Full story

March 2012
Paris, France


Travel; Biking

The Eight Hour Challenge
I booked flights that give me 8 hours on site, with 4 hour drive from arrival airport (Riga) to departure airport (Tartu), and two countries and two ski areas in between. Doable?
Full story

March 2012
Kakisklans, Latvia; Kuutsemae, Estonia


Skiing (Indoor,Outdoor,Snow)

Estonia
I'm thinking of making an excursion to Estonia on Sunday to see what kind of ski hills they have. Anyone want to join?
Full story

March 2012
Kuutsemae, Estonia


Skiing

Six Pictures
Everyone has probably seen the Facebook meme on six pictures for what your friends think you do, what you think you, and what you really do. I wanted to make one for skiing.
Full story

March 2012
Val Thorens, France; Vallnord, Andorra


Skiing

Cisco's
For all my good friends at Cisco, the networking company: did you know that Cisco's is the best after ski bar in Andorra?
Full story

February 2012
Vallnord, Andorra


Skiing; Afterski

Two More Countries
I'm heading out today for a two day trip to collect Spain and Andorra. But many countries left. It still feels like the planet has an unending supply of unexplored ski destinations.
Full story

February 2012
La Molina, Catalonia, Spain; Vallnord, Andorra


Skiing

Peuramaa II
I've written about Peuramaa and its playground before. But I noticed something new. What strikes me about these visits is the darkness.
Full story

February 2012
Peuramaa, Kirkkonummi, Finland


Skiing

Hirvensalo
Abo Hors Piste! Off-piste skiing in Turku, in the small but wonderful Hirvensalo ski area.
Full story

February 2012
Hirvensalo, Turku, Finland


Skiing

Moominworld Cliffs
If I have to spend eight days per year in Moominland, it is clear that I need to come up with something interesting to do there. How about skiing down the President's Cliff? Fifteen meters of near vertical rock. Too bad I forgot my ice axes, because the return was even tricker.
Full story

February 2012
Moominworld, Naantali, Finland


Skiing

Out of Bounds in Les Arcs
I was more worried about falling on that vertical wall than the police catching me, but both were real concerns. And then I caused an avalanche. This is a story about my four day trip to Les Arcs, France.
Full story

February 2012
Les Arcs, France


Skiing; Climbing

Desperately Seeking After-Ski
I was depressed, alone and ready to hit the bed, walking towards my hotel when I saw the Ambiente Cafe.
Full story

February 2012
Les Arcs, France


Skiing; Sauna

Snails for Speed Skiers
Escargots de Bourgogne dans un cafe de piste de ski ... j'approuve
Full story

February 2012
Les Arcs, France


Skiing; Food

Russian Ski Stars
I climbed a mountain, and found a ski movie actress from Russia on the top!
Full story

January 2012
Courchevel, France


Skiing; Climbing

Magnifique Apres-Ski!
The best after-ski in the world? Could be. Who would have thought we'd find this in France?
Full story

January 2012
Val Thorens, France


Skiing; Afterski

Fun in the Alps
A few pictures from Les 3 Vallees, and a link to a great (not!) video from Mikko Alatalo on the topic of fun in the alps
Full story

January 2012
Les Menuires, France


Skiing; Music

Seasons Pass!
At 3.5 Euros, "Cafe Alpenhutte's Goulash index competes well with most western ski areas. Zillertal may boast a 1600m vertical against 50m in Kauniainen, but hey, their soup still costs 1 Euro more. Add pinaattilätyt and you know this is the destination for the gourmet skier
Full story

January 2012
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing

Fortress Islands
Saturday evening's exercise.
Full story

January 2012
Suomenlinna, Helsinki, Finland


Skiing; Urban-exploration (Castles)

Skiing the Garbage Hill
The top of Helsinki is not that impressive, but we skied it anyway
Full story

December 2011
Malminkartano, Helsinki, Finland


Skiing

Chasing Bears and Powder in Alaska
From my perspective, Alaska is close by if I'm already stopping in California. But as I was sitting for sixth hour in the Alaska Airlines plane bound for Anchorage it started to dawn on my that Alaska is far away.
Full story

November 2011
Alyeska, Alaska, USA


Skiing

Bono, Have You Been to Africa?
"And there won't be any snow in Africa this Christmas time" Dude, there is no snow in Africa because you have the wrong time of the year. And its a damn warm place anyway.
Full story

December 2011
Afriski, Lesotho


Skiing

Frost is Enough
First and Last and Always is not just an album from Sisters of Mercy, but also my approach to skiing on the local hill. In May, I was the last person to ski there. Now I am about to be the first one to ski it this winter.
Full story

December 2011
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing

Snow Machine
Skiing in Karuizawa, Japan on artificially made snow
Full story

November 2011
Karuizawa, Japan


Skiing

Snowtube
This is not a word play on youtube. The snow in this ski area came from a tube. Video blog from Japan.
Full story

November 2011
Karuizawa, Japan


Skiing

Slope Infinity
Skiing in Hong Kong? An infinitely long ski slope? Skis that melt? Ski challenges indoors?
Full story

November 2011
Slope Infinity, Hong Kong, Hong Kong


Skiing (Indoor,Plastic)

Opening Tour
Plans for skiing on the opening day in Alaska and Japan, and at an infinitely long slope in Hong Kong. Oh, and a few meetings along the way, too.
Full story

November 2011
Slope Infinity, Hong Kong, Hong Kong; Karuizawa, Japan; Alyeska, Alaska, USA


Skiing

38,000 Kilometers for Nothing
I am about to embark on a 38,000 km trip, for nothing. Although there is a tempting option to ski in Alts Bandai, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan.
Full story

October 2011
Slope Infinity, Hong Kong, Hong Kong; Karuizawa, Japan; Alyeska, Alaska, USA


Travel

Speed Skiing in Germany
How to ski in Germany and getting a speeding ticket for a souvenir.
Full story

October 2011
Jever Fun Skihalle, Neuss, Germany


Skiing (Indoor,Snow)

Forbidden Drive
No skiing. Made a mistake. A big mistake. But I did a very nice bike tour in Philadelphia!
Full story

October 2011
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA


Biking

Peer Review
Skiing in Peer, Belgium
Full story

September 2011
Snowworld, Peer, Belgium


Skiing (Indoor,Snow)

Indoors in Beijing
Opening of the 2011-2012 season
Full story

September 2011
Qiaobo, Beijing, China


Skiing (Indoor,Snow)

Aliens vs. Lions
Hiking through the 960 km2 park. Alone. And now we have run into two lions, on their freshly killed buffalo. We are in their territory. A tense moment that might end badly. But the tension clears: we decide not to eat the lions, as we had already had breakfast. You can see that the lions are relieved...
Full story

August 2011
Hluhluwe-Umfolozi national park, South Africa


Hiking

Skiing the Highest Pass in South Africa
Falling in the no-fall zone and other interesting stories. Summary of my 156 000 kilometer ski year.
Full story

August 2011
Sani Pass, South Africa


Skiing

Africa. Snow. AK-47s.
I'm glad to be back home in Finland. It was so damn cold in Africa!
Full story

August 2011
Afriski, Lesotho


Skiing; Urban-exploration (Ruins)

One More Continent
I am armed with skis, ice axes, cameras, and plenty of memory cards. And I'm on a British Airways flight, on my way to South Africa in search of snow.
Full story

August 2011
Afriski, Lesotho


Skiing

Biking Across the Sea Summer is for biking, not for skiing! Well, not really, but this week I had no other alternative.
Full story

July 2011
Tallinn, Estonia


Biking

Good Choice to Avoid Iceland
I almost booked my IETF flights via Iceland so that I could test the summer skiing on that glacier. Good thing I didn't, because the volcano underneath started erupting yesterday. Close call!
Full story

July 2011
Stromboli, Sicily, Italy


Climbing

Skiing in the Rain
You know that old story about pots of gold at the end of a rainbow? Well, I only found some wet sheep.
Full story

June 2011
Galdhøpiggen, Norway


Skiing

Half a Stryn of Skiing
Midsummer. Skiing. Norway.
Full story

June 2011
Stryn, Norway


Skiing

Horseback Skiing in the Himalayas
No problem. I had never ridden a horse before, so practicing riding on steep, rocky paths at 3 to 4 kms while carrying ski gear and taking photos sounded like a fun thing to do.
Full story

June 2011
Rohtang Pass, Himachal Pradesh, India


Skiing; Riding; Climbing; Travel

Priorities
Landed in Delhi for some customer meetings. But first things first, Himalaya is kind of close. Sharing a taxi with my skis for the next 600 kilometers. Lets see if I'll find snow.
Full story

June 2011
Delhi, India


Travel

Dog Finds Slovenia's Last Snow
Dogs that climb. Dragging skis to top of mountains on our backs. Skiing Slovenia's last traces of snow. Meeting with the guy who skied down from the seven summits.
Full story

May 2011
Ceska Koca hut, Kamnik-Savinja Alps, Slovenia


Skiing; Climbing

90 Minute Ski Trip to Haarlem
This was supposed to be a two helmet ski trip, where I could do both skiing and biking. Instead, it is quickly turning into a dreaded zero helmet ski trip.
Full story

May 2011
Snowplanet, Haarlem, Netherlands


Skiing (Indoor,Snow)

Skiing Kauniainen at 3AM
May 2011. Its 3AM and I'm about to ski on the local hill in Kauniainen.
Full story

May 2011
Kauniainen ski hill, Kauniainen, Finland


Skiing

Invasion of the Golfers
This is the end. Snow is melting, snowmaking is over, the cliffs are no longer covered by snow -- not that it prevented me from skiing them -- and the bar has run out of Pepsi Max. And the golfers are invading Peuramaa.
Full story

April 2011
Peuramaa, Kirkkonummi, Finland


Skiing

Poland Is Melting Away
Fail. Noon, Saturday, somewhere in Poland mountains. Despite a 6am wakeup the weekend is quickly turning into a disaster.
Full story

April 2011
Zakopane, Poland; Strbske Pleso, Slovakia


Skiing

The 48 hour challenge, take two
A couple of weeks ago it was northeast United States, now its eastern Europe. I have from Friday evening to Sunday evening and a car. Where could I go?
Full story

March 2011
Zakopane, Poland; Strbske Pleso, Slovakia


Skiing

Skiing the Horny Donkey
Yesterday I skied at the Horny Donkey ski area. Well, Horni Domky. This is a small ski area in northeast Czech Republic near the border towards Poland. I was surprised that a wet, steep grass hill sticks to your skis and slows you down quite a bit. Steep is better in grass skiing then, too.
Full story

March 2011
Horni Domky, Czech Republic


Skiing

Family and Off-Piste Skiing in Are
As far as I can tell, Are is the best family ski resort on the planet.
Full story

March 2011
Are, Sweden


Skiing; Sauna; Swimming

Off-Piste Skiing in the Peuramaa Alps
Peuramaa is a full service ski area: there's a parking lot, ticket sales booth, a couple of ski lifts, and even a bar. Seriously though, they have the playground.
Full story

March 2011
Peuramaa, Kirkkonummi, Finland


Skiing; Afterski

Mad About Mad River Glen
I had heard the stories about Mad River Glen, but seeing is believing. Their slogan is "Ski it if you can". The 700 meters of vertical on the icy bumps of the "Chute" crushed my belief in my skiing abilities and sent me skiing blue runs.
Full story

March 2011
Mad River Glen, Vermont, USA


Skiing

State of the Mission
Cullen asked me how many countries I have skied in. I now have an answer. I have skied in 5 continents, 17 countries, 29 countries or states and been to about 80 different ski areas. This season I have been to 14 different countries or states.
Full story

March 2011
House Arkko, Kauniainen, Finland; Alpincenter Bottrop, Germany; Mall of Emirates, Dubai, United Arab Emirates


Skiing

Five States in 48 Hours
The 48 hour challenge: to ski in as many states as possible during 48 hours. My tour covered five states: Sundown (CT), Mad River Glen (VT), Bretton Woods (NH), Sunday River (ME), and Nashoba Valley (MA). I found some truly incredible skiing along the way. Mad River Glen: Just wow. And Nashoba Valley...
Full story

March 2011
Sundown, Connecticut, USA; Mad River Glen, Vermont, USA; Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, USA; Sunday River, Maine, USA; Nashoba Valley, Massachusetts, USA


Skiing

Zillertal on the Cheap
I had forgotten how good ski destination Austria is. While the highest altitudes in Austrian resorts are generally moderate, 1600 meters of vertical is nothing to be sneezed at. In fact, that tops any ski area in Northern America. And you can ski it top to the bottom on one, consistently steep run.
Full story

February 2011
Zillertal, Austria


Skiing; Afterski

The 48 hour challenge
How many states can you ski in during 48 hours? I'm about to find out...
Full story

February 2011
Mt. Ashland, Oregon, USA; Mount Shasta, California, USA


Skiing; Climbing

I am on a Mission
The mission is to ski in as many places in the world as you can. All countries where there's natural or man-made snow. In every major ski destination in the world. In at least some of the smaller places. On mountains, on hills, indoor, in winter and summer, on piste and off piste, on powder, slush, crust, and, occasionally - frequently, as my ski repair shop would say - on rocks. Going up by ski lift, on foot, on skins,crampons, cats, cars, or helicopters.
Full story
(Suomenkielinen versio)

January 2011
Puijo, Kuopio, Finland; Treblecone, New Zealand; Whakapapa, Mt. Ruapehu, New Zealand; Valle Nevado, Chile


Skiing

Go back to part 1, part 2, or part 3.