After Ama Dablam

I have fragments of memories from the summit night.
It was very dark and cold.
For most of the time, we were alone, together in the steep terrain.
The beginning and end was the best. Going out of the tent just before midnight to start the climb is beyond excitement. A few hours later I was exerted beyond what I had been in a long time. My body carried a illness and my mind carried thoughts of surrender. When you push your body to the limit, interesting things happen in your mind. I remember leaning my forehead towards the mountain, sensing the smell of snow and ice. With eyes closed I forgot where I was for a moment, and I was back on Everest, just a few kilometers north. I needed to stay until daybreak. Everything gets easier when the light comes. I generally love the summit push at night. Life is simple when all you see is in the light of the headlamp. All you have to do is climb and breathe. I found both hard as my breathing failed.

I’m grateful to know how my body works in high altitude. I know that when it feels like there’s no more energy, I have plenty more. I tried the thought of giving up in my mind and realised it’s not something I can do. As long as I know I have enough energy to get down, I’ll continue.

Ama Dablam is tough. It’s definitely one of the toughest mountains I have met. Partly because I had some weakness in my body, but also because it’s steep. I loved the steep climbing, but not the fact that many didn’t seem prepared for it. I have never before waited in line to climb on a mountain. On Ama Dablam we had to wait for several teams ahead who didn’t seem to have used the jumar before. Learning at 6000m is difficult. In that way Ama Dablam has it’s share of greedy organisations who tells people ‘sure, come to Ama Dablam, you can do it’. They charge them a hefty fee just to see them, give up early or become rescued by a helicopter a few days later. The helicopters and pilots are amazing. We saw then several times every day when there was summit weather. Ama Dablam saw many rescues of unprepared and unexperienced climbers. (If you are interested in climbing Ama Dablam I would say it’s good to do at least another 6000m trekking peak and learn alpine climbing techniques before you head to Ama Dablam. You also need plenty of training before to be in good shape. I would definetly recommend you to climb with Sherpas – it’s half of the fun of climbing in Nepal. They are amazing people. I always climb with one o my best friends Chhiring Dorje Sherpa when he can make it).

The steep rock and ice was my favourite part of the mountain; between camp 1 and 2, yellow tower, grey tower and up over mushroom rock. Then followed the endless steep snowslopes to summit. I mumbled a buddhist prayer Chhiring had taught me. Even as I saw the summit, I thought there would be another slope on the other side. The summit was a relief as much as it was happiness. The first thing I saw apart from the end of the mountain was of course; mount Everest. I’ll forever have a special relationship to Everest summit. It made me cry. Again.

We spent about 20 minutes on the top. I would never have made it without the support of my friends Chhiring, Björn and Mingma.
The way down was very long. It was important to focus. 80% of the accidents happen on the way down.
I slept well in camp 2 even though Chhiring was snoring.
We started at first light and descended to camp 1, then basecamp.
At that point my terrible cough was a fact and I could barely exhale, let alone laugh without tearing my airways apart.  On the other hand, my injured left knee and left shoulder wasn’t complaining at all.

I had a fixation with the fact that Ama Dablam had been ‘calling’ me. I just knew I had to go there, but not why. The search for the ‘why am I here’ obviously wasn’t going to jump out on me. All you have to do is listen without ‘wanting’ something. I got one answer while climbing a steep snow slope. A small voice said ‘I need this in my life’; climbing steep snow slopes that is. I haven’t been any ‘real’ mountains for a long time, trying to reduce my travelling C02 footprint. I need more adventures. Was it that simple a reminder?  On the way down I was also kindly reminded of my helicopter pilot dreams… To be continued.

Framgångspodden II

Jag hade äran att få gästa framgångspodden en andra gång! Här är länk till avsnittet:
https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/322-annelie-pompe-h%C3%B6gsta-bergen-och-djupaste-haven/id985517492?i=1000455461444

I have already done the most difficult part of the expedition; Leaving Doglas. I have left him before, but not for this long and not this far away. Only another dog person can understand the emptiness of not hearing the sound of paws next to you. Still, you’ll have to be able to leave every now and then. I pre-cried and cried everytime I thought of him. Fortunately I found a great place and person for him to be with.

Then there was a few days of feeling weirdly at home in Kathmandu. The city has a smell of fumes, incense and very old history mixed with adventure. The city it has a way of making you feel welcome. The locals doesn’t stare or harass you which makes you feel like you fit in.  My friends Chhiring Sherpa and Mingma Sherpa met me at the airport. Even though it was two years ago since we saw each other, it feels like yesterday.

We stay in the same hotel we always stay. The rooms are full om memories and big enough for the expedition standard of un-packing, re-packing, and then some more packing. Last day early morning we go so see a Lama who has agreed to make a special cleansing amd good luck ceremony for us. Having climbed many times with my Sherpa friend I have aquired some of the superstition when it comes to the mountiain gods, and I always see a buddhist Lama for a blessing before a climb. At 2.30 in the morning the next day we travel by bus for for five hours, small airplane for 30 minutes, and then we are in the mountains. We are very honoured to have the same buddhist lama travel and wander with us for two days. He looks a bit like the Dalai Lama and has the same kind of relaxed happiness and wisdom.

it’s the first time in 8 years I’m here without guiding a group of people. It feels different to only be responsible for myself, and I realise it takes a lot of energy to focus on a big group. Having hiked for two days I feel strong and focused. We are now in Namche Bazar, the Sherpa capital village at 3500m where we will stay for two nights to acclimatize to the altitude. Then there is about 4-5 days more of hiking before arriving to Ama Dablam basecamp.

Yesterday I had a fantastic hour of playing with a puppy, definetly a highlight of the expedition so far.

 

Att vara fadder till något man älskar känns meningsfullt och viktigt. Det är ett fint sätt att bidra med fadderskap om man inte kan göra något praktiskt för att rädda det man är rädd om, som till exempel havet, som är så stort och behöver mycket hjälp. Jag har varit marinfadder och månadsgivare till WWF i 7 år, sedan man kunde vara det. Så fint att få vara fadder till havet! Vad vi än gör välgörenhetsmässigt är också ett fint sätt att inspirera andra till att vara med och rädda världen litegrann. Det finns många olika sätt att göra skillnad.

Runt hela planeten dör djur och växter i en rasande fart. Läget är akut. På mindre än 50 år har populationerna av vilda ryggradsdjur minskat med 60 % i genomsnitt*. Ofattbara 1 miljon arter är hotade**. När den biologiska mångfalden minskar rubbas balansen i ekosystemen. Utan fungerande natur kollapsar vår matförsörjning och ekonomi. Vi riskerar så grundläggande saker som ren luft att andas och vatten att dricka. Vi förstör något vi är helt beroende av – men tillsammans kan vi lösa problemen. Naturen och ekosystemen kan återhämta sig och planetens balans bli återställd.

Jag kämpar för att stoppa utrotningen av världens vilda djur i initiativet #världshjältar @wwfvarldshjaltar

Hjälp till du med!

* Visar undersökningar av 16 704 populationer av 4 005 arter vilda ryggradsdjur, mellan 1970 och 2014. Källa: Living Planet Report 2018
**Källa: IPBES Global Assessment on biodiversity and ecosystem service, 2019

 

I have been an ambassador for Olympus cameras since I started diving 20 years ago. Their cameras and underwater housings was the best and most affordable way to take great photos underwater. When I decided to take on mount Everest, the 7 summits and deeper freediving I partnered with Olympus as it’s the only camera than can follow me on my adventures.

I have used a variation of the ‘tough’ cameras which are compact and small, and very tough. I have managed to break only one (10 meter fall from a rock). Another one sadly dissapeared into the depth during a freediving incident. I love the toguh cameras as they are small enough to always bring. Yes, you can always bring your phone and take photos, but I don’t like to have my phone with me all the time, and it can’t handle rain, freezing temperatures, a 2 meter drop, 15 meter depth or 100 kg of pressure.

The tough cameras also has a few changeable lenses. In my opinion the best chance to get good photos underwater is to use a wideangle lens. That way you can get closer to your object and not get all the particles in the way. The TG-6 has a few new underwater modes which are great! It can shoot in RAW format, and the screen has got better viewing performance. The lens is stronger in low light and it can shoot 4K and 120 fps full HD video.

I have had the camera for a few weeks and tried it out in various adventures. Here’s a few samples:

Our neighbour country Norway is one of the most beautiful countries I have seen. Every time I’m in Norway I wonder why I’m not there more often. Especially since its easy accessible by train. From Gothenburg it’s about 4 hours easy comfy ride to Oslo. In Oslo Sentral I changed to the Bergen line which soon climbed into Hardangervidda and beautiful views. This leg of the trip was full of Chineese tourists, which is obviously Norways next money making machine next after the oil industry (which is more enivronmentally friendly??) My train neighbour spent most of the time on one of his three mobile phones. :-0

I took a bus another 20 minutes to arrive almost next to our base camp for the photoshoot for Bergans with the now familiar dream team of photographer Hans-kristian Krogh-Hansen and guide/model Sigurd Felde with the addition of Remi Keiseraas on video. We had amazing plans for many mountains that eventually came down to Breiskrednosi, a beautiful hike with everything typical Norweigan; fjords and steep cliffs. We had a steep start through a jungle-like environment before we climbed above the treeline. It gave way to a steep valley clad with waterfalls along the walls, sprinklef with spots of new snow on top. We left the summer heat and moist air of the forest below and hiked into a cold wind. Exactly at the pass with the view of a lake where we decided to stop for lunch, it started snowing on top of the cold wind.

The snow gave way to a blue sky and sunshine. We hiked around a few corners and suddenly found ourselves above the fjord with breathtaking views. All of the hiking of course gets mixed with Hans-Christian taking photos with various backgrounds and outfits of the coming Slingsby series from Bergans. It’s a collection focused on the more tough parts of outdoor life like climbing, scrambling and back country skiing.

As we had great weather we were quite efficient and ‘only’ spent 12 hours on the mountain. We had a train of goats stopping from getting to dinner, and then falling into a deep sleep. We woke up to have some time for fishing salmon (!) I have never tried fishing as I dont eat fish and love to see them alive. But I do like the idea of fishing, of standing by the river, hoping not to catch a fish. My friends practise catch and release, but anyway. Did you know the terrible condition of farmed salmon? It’s brought up to grow large quickly in round nets. They’re fed with antibiotics and often different environmentally dangerous substances are used to keep illnesses away. If/when they escape (in thousands) up rivers they contaminate the more extinct wild salmon. The fishing of wild salmon is thereby extremely regulated. And few. We didn’t get any catch this time.







I’m halfway on a 12 hour trainride to Norway and Naerødalen. I have saved up work especially for this trip. 20 answered e-mails later and halfway through a book I find I finally have time to write a new blogpost.

I haven’t had much time to write as I have been busy working or sorting out my houseboat and my transportation. As I still don’t have a drivers licence (and will probably keep putting it off) I mostly travel by bus or bike. I have had a fantastic electric 3-wheel cargo moped  (‘flakmoped’ in Swedish) that I din’t know what was wrong with (until a kind soul told me to check the supposably well working batteries). I had to transport heavy and bulky things and a dog, so I thought of buying another used electric cargo moped. Or should I buy a new one? What is more sustainable? A used one that will last a couple of years, or a new one that will last longer, but add to consumerism?

Suddenly the perfect option showed up, a not too old, but still used one! I quickly went to get it and have been riding it in silence since then. As I got time to fix my old one I now have two working electric bikes! I’m selling my old beautiful blue one on ‘blocket’.

Next project is to put solar panel on the cargo space of the moped.

The money from the old one will go towards another fantastic buy; a old sailboat!
I did sail some 15 years ago and forgot how wonderful it was. Until mom and me did a sailing course. As I left I felt I needed more time on the ocean with the wind in the sails. Me and 4 more (!) people teamed up on buying a boat together. There’s no need to own a boat you’ll use seldom by yourself. Unfortunately the wind have been howling and we haven’t been able to use the boat just yet.

As I’m on the way to Norway it will have to wait another few days. I’m going to do a photoshoot for Bergans in what the photographer says is a feel-good photoshoot. Photoshooting with Hans-Kristian Krogh-Hanssen and Bergans always means beautiful locations (most of Norway apart from the cities) so I always take a lot of photos too! This time I only brought my Olympus OM-D EM1 with a fixed 17mm lens which will be a fun challenge. I guess I’ll have time to write a blogpost about Naerøydalen with photos on the way back.

Mästarnas mästare upplevelsen

Mitt egentliga mästarnas mästare – äventyr tog slut i september förra året. Nu vet alla som följt programmet hur det gått! Igår kväll visades hur tävlingen avgjordes och jag är glad att Anders vann. Han hade både fysiken, fokus och trevlighet. Han nämnde att han var glad över att ha varit med så länge för att han fick göra alla roliga tävlingar. Det önskar jag också att jag fått göra, men är ändå glad över medverkan. Jag är oerhört tacksam att jag blev tillfrågad att vara med i programmet och glad att jag till slut tackade ja. Jag gillar inte att bli igenkänd (!) men inser att få visa upp fridykningen och den mentala biten kan ge en insikt ‘inåt’ som kan vara nyttig och spännande.

Jag insåg också ganska snabbt att jag hade en annan inställning är de andra tävlande :) Jag tog inte programmet på lika stort allvar som några av de andra. Mer om det i en egen krönika. Jag tävlade inte så mycket mot dem som mot de olika grenarna som dök upp. Gör man bara sitt bästa i varje gren så spelar det inte så stor roll vad de andra gör, tänkte jag. I efterhand kunde jag varit lite mer taktisk i några grenar, men det skulle ändå inte förhindrat att jag kom ner till grekland med en begynnande förkylning som gjorde mig febrig och hostig. Det hade såklart varit jättekul att vara kvar längre. Att göra små utmaningar och äventyr varje dag passade mig väldigt bra! Framför allt kommer jag minnas hela upplevelsen som väldigt trevlig. De andra deltagarna var roliga och trevliga att umgås med och filmarna var också mer avslappnade än andra filminspelningar jag varit med på. Vad många kanske inte vet är att det var ett 70-tal människor på plats för att klara av inspelningarna!

För er som missade avsnittet med ‘min’ story finns det att se här:
https://www.svtplay.se/video/21613914/mastarnas-mastare/mastarnas-mastare-sasong-11-avsnitt-4

Där dramatiserades min ‘shallow water blackout’ i vanlig ordning. Lyssna bara på musiken! :-0 Jag förstår att det ser otäckt ut om man inte är fridykare. När programmet ‘landgång’ lyckades att helt missförstå och hitta på en egen tolkning blev det desto värre. Man är inte nära-döden. Man är inte medvetslös eller behöver HLR. Att svimma av syrebrist kommer troligen inträffa förr eller senare när man är nära sin gräns i djupdykning eller andhållning. Därför tränar vi upp toleransen mot låga syrenivåer. Anledningen att jag svimmade på rekordförsök-dyket till 102m var att jag fick en s.k lungsqueeze. Lungorna trycks ihop så att blodplasma tränger igenom lungväggen och man får inte tillräckligt syre på vägen upp när lungorna expanderar. Vill du läsa mer om SWB kan du läsa här: http://www.shallowwaterblackoutprevention.org/

Nattduellen är dramatiserad. Eller så var jag för lugn. Det var rätt trevligt och mysigt att stå i den ljumma sommarnatten och höra syrsorna. Jag hade redan då feber och ont i huvudet men trodde att jag skulle ha en chans mot Henrik. Han var oerhört snabb och förtjänade verkligen att vinna duellen! Många har frågat hur länge man står där. Det var nog mellan 7 och 20 minuter.

Jag fick åka vidare till ett annat hus och tillbringa natten där innan jag träffade Pernilla Wiberg på morgonen. Hon är lite av en idol sedan jag åkt mycket skidor sedan barnsben så det var kul att träffa henne! Mästarduellen var inte lika rolig som de andra tävlingarna. Jag mådde riktigt dåligt och fick vila inomhus när det inte var tävling. Så var det slut efter mjölksyretävlingen mot Staffan. Det gjorde inte så mycket – det är ju bara en TV-tävling :)

Vill du se extramaterial, prat och tävling från mina mästarkval finns de här:
https://www.svtplay.se/video/21716826/mastarkvalet/mastarkvalet-sasong-1-avsnitt-5?start=auto&tab=2019
https://www.svtplay.se/video/21792562/mastarkvalet/mastarkvalet-sasong-1-avsnitt-6?start=auto&tab=2019

Officiella foton är tagna av Janne Danielsson, SVT.

Fridykning är en fantastisk upplevelse! Man lär sig mycket om sig själv, kroppen, andning och havet. Det är många förfrågningar kring kurser i fridykning så vi har satt kursdatum redan nu. Vi kommer hålla 4 olika kurser i sommar längs vår vackra västkust och en specialare med säl-expedition på utklippan. På kursen kommer du lära dig enkla tekniker för att andas bättre, vara lugnare i havet, snorkla tryggare, fridyka djupare eller stanna längre under ytan.

Fridykning är ett sätt att känna sig som hemma i havet. I den här intro-kursen kommer du lära dig teori, säkerhet, mental träning, andning och lär känna din kropp och dina tankar på ett nytt sätt. Det är dessutom ett vackert och enkelt sätt att utforska den fina världen under ytan. Du kommer också lära dig mer om havsmiljön och hur vi kan ta bättre hand om havet.

Kurserna är olika utformade, men vanligtvis startar vi fredag kväll med fridykningsteori och workshop i andning. På lördagen eller söndagen gör vi några morgonövningar innan vi åker ut med båt och gör två dyksessioner i natursköna omgivningar. Förhoppningsvis möter vi sälar under det andra dyket! Vi tar max 8 elever/kurs. Klarar du teoretiskt prov och alla övningar kan du bli certifierad.

Vi kommer även göra rena utflykter till fina fridykningsplatser för dig som redan kan grunderna i fridykning. Vi har dock inte satt datum för utfärder än. Nedan är bristfällig info kring datum och anmälningsinfo för er som vill förboka och knipa en plats snabbt.

Datum:
– 30 maj – 2 Juni Fridykningsexpedition med säl och träning Utklippan, Karlskrona
En unik och fantastisk expedition till sveriges södra utpost och fyr ‘Utklippan’. Här finns en sälkoloni på flera tusen gråsälar som vi såklart ska fridyka och lära oss av. Vi kommer hålla träningspass för fridykning, yoga, andningsövningar mm för att kunna stanna längre med sälarna. I samarbete med Unique dive and travel Karlskrona Kontakta unique.dive.travel@hotmail.com för förbokning. Pris: oklart.

– 8-9 Juni Fira ‘Havets dag’ med Marint kunskapscenter i Malmö
Kommer bli en föreläsning med fridykningsteori och andningsträning samt inspiration och havsmiljö. Eventuellt i samband med strandstädning. Mer info senare via: www.smkc.se

– 19-21 Juli. Hönö med Havskatten – FULLBOKAT
2 kurser på 1 1/2 dag vardera. 8 elever per grupp. Gemensam teori och andningsträning fredag. Dykning lördag ELLER söndag. Vi utgår och jobbar ifrån Havskatten på Hönö där det finns fantastiskt boende nära havet om man vill/behöver sova över. Boka boende (fr 400/pers) via dem snabbt för de är mycket populära. Där ingår även frukost lördag/söndag morgon innan båtutfärd. Boka kursen genom att maila fridykningskurser (a) gmail.com så mailar vi mer info. Kan ta lite tid om/när vi är på resande fot.
Pris: 3700.- inkluderar frukost, fika och båtutflykt

– 16-18 Aug. Marstrand med Marstrands Marina dyk och skeppshandel – FULLBOKAT
2 kurser på 1 1/2 dag vardera. 8 elever per grupp. Gemensam teori och andningsträning fredag. Dykning lördag ELLER söndag. Både träning och sälexpedition! Förboka kursen genom att maila butik (at) marstrandsmarina.se
Pris: oklart än så länge

Ingår inte i priset (Sverige):
– Fridykningsutrustning. Vi kan hjälpa dig att reda ut utrustning med ett närliggande dykcenter, inga problem! Du får låna blyvikter hos oss. Du behöver våtdräkt, flexibelt gummi-viktbälte, cyklop, snorkel och fenor. Boende får du ordna på egen hand men vi kan hjälpa till med tips.

 

It’s been 4 years since I did a deep freedive. What’s ‘deep’ is of course a relative experience. It’s different for everyone at different of times of your life. 4 years ago ‘deep’ was anything below 90m. Today I think 50m is pretty deep, and it’s probably my comfort zone at the moment. I miss depth. I miss the pressure, silence and focus. But most of all I miss the person I have to be to do a deep dive. I have to be calm, happy and focused. I like what I have to do to be able to dive deep again; yoga, focused training, healthy diet. I become a better person when I have depth in mind.

Since being in ‘mästarnas mästare’ (a Swedish TV-show challenging athletes in different sports to compete against each other) I realised I wanted to go back to deep diving. My first possible slot was two weeks ago. I went back (home) to Dahab. I have spent 4-5 years in total in Dahab and it feels like one of my second homes. Dahab is a special place. Even people who say they don’t believe in atmosphere and energy would sense Dahab is different. I have some very dear friends there who I’d missed terribly. Meeting everyone again, catching up over smoothie bowls and coffee, was the best part of Dahab. Cirrie, Helena, Jin, Shaun, Nanna, Ali, Muhammed, Olga, Julia, Gaiane, Linda, Lotta, Miguel, Stephane, Gaspard, Raphael. It was amazing seeing you all again!

Apart from socialising, I arrived without goals or expectations, just to observe the body and mind in the ocean. Free diving in the blue hole was like getting a hug from an old friend. My whole face and body was smiling in recognition. It’s the same, but different. A different approach might take me deeper. We’ll see! First and foremost is a Swedish summer of adventures and fun jobs, and a mountain in Nepal in the fall.

Being in the ocean is more about love and play, than it is performance. I love taking photos underwater as as way of sharing the beauty of the underwater world. Here’s a taste of my dahab photography from this time, both over and underwater. Most photos are taken with Olympus Em-1 mark ll. The rest with iphone.

The last days of freediving preparations in the Maldives has been like hugging an old friend. The ocean has given me a warm welcome and my body remembers the drills. Freediving is a very simple yet complex sport. All you have to do is to hold your breath and dive as deep as possible or as deep as you want. It sounds easy but it’s not. Our daily life will affect every part of freediving; how you eat and drink, what you focus as/think about, what you wear, the status of the ocean, if you trust your freediving partner and of course – how you train and what you train.

In preparation to teach a freediving course I like to try new approaches. We’re following a schedule during the courses, but the focus can change a session. Taking in consideration how a ‘normal’ life is in Sweden, it’s far from perfect for freediving. Most people practise being stressed in their daily life. Freediving is the opposite. The more calm you are, the better you’ll dive. We don’t often think about how all our daily habits shape our lives. It’s a simple principle of training: The more we do something the better we get at it. For instance, if you spend a lot of time trying to multitask, your focus will be shattered. If you complain a lot, you’ll get good at complaining. If you watch a lot of tv series, you’ll get good at escaping from your life. If you spend time with negative people, you’ll get good at focusing on the negative. What do you want to be good at? What kind of person do you want to be? How do you want to practise?

As  the students arrive they’ll be tired from a long flight. We’ll take the opportunity to spend the first day practising relaxation. The more relaxed you are, the more oxygen you save and you’ll be able to stay longer underneath the surface. If the body is relaxed, the mind will usually follow :) Of course, we’ll not only freedive deep, but use the skills to spend time with fish and animals.

 

Norway is one of the most beautiful countries I’ve been to. It’s sometimes hard to believe it’s our neighbour as the landscape is so different. Norway got all the good stuff; beautiful steep mountains and a ocean full of life. Outdoor life in Norway seems to come natural with their type of natural surroundings. Maybe that’s why they have some of the best outdoor gear in the world. I’m honoured and happy to work with one of those Norweigan brands as my main partner for outdoor wear. I believe in choosing quality before fashion. I’ve had my first Bergans jacket for 7 years and it’s still keeping up with my adventures.

One of my favourite jobs of working with Bergans is of course the photoshoots. We’ve visited some of the most inspiring places in Norway to inspire people to get out into nature. The photographer Hans Kristian Krogh-Hanssen is one of my photographer idols and we’re either climbing, hiking or skiing toghether with Norgesguidene male model and mountain guides Sverre Hjelmeland or Sigurd Felde.

We spend last week around Sunnmørsalpane and Hjørrungsfjorden which is Sverre’s backyard. Here’s some behind-the-scenes-photos:

 

I can’t pretend that I like Stockholm. The stressful pace, buildings, roads, shops and cars everywhere are the opposite of what I enjoy. It makes me feel like a fish out of water. When I have a job in the city I come and go as quickly as possible, always by train. It takes a lot of energy to be in the city and it gives nothing back but headache and tiredness. Fortunately I love my job and find it energizing enough to balance the hardships of citylife. I wrote this blog for any other outdoor person who need to find some green or blue while in Stockholm. If you are there for a longer trip I can recommend my publisher Calazo guidebooks into nature for both hiking, mountainbiking and kayaking.

Last week I did something I promised myself not to do. 5 talks in 4 days – in Stockholm. I did it because the company I gave talks for seemed inspiring and challenging. And because I could bring Doglas with me to Stockholm. There were many hours in the day that I was not working and could go outdoors and play/explore with Doglas. Having a dog is like being with a small part of nature, and having him with me even made the Stockholm days more fun. The last days he’s experienced more city life than his entire lifetime of travelling through Gothenburg…

Wanting to leave him as short periods as possible in a hotel we had to stay in the very city center. Fortunately there’s a outdoorsy hotel called ‘Downtown Camper’ which has the feel of a cabin in the mountains – in the middle of the city. I generally don’t like big hotels, but this one is more than ok. It’s got a great hold on sustainability and health. And dogs are welcome! Basically, it’s a good base camp.

The search for nature started immediately. The ‘Lifestyle concierge’ recommended ‘kungsträdgården’ and ‘humlegården’ as the most nearby green areas. We visited both in an hour. They were more brown than green and ‘parks’ aren’t close to real nature. I found myself thinking that Doglas is probably as sceptical to this as I. But he happily picked up a stick in his mouth and played in the dirt. It’s too easy to push your own feelings onto animals. We tried to make the parks last longer by zig zacking through them. The next day we made a longer expedition to the south of Stockholm. Some 30 minutes away by public transport is ‘Nacka naturreservat’ which seemed promising. After some searching we found very badly marked routes through the forest and by a lake. Luckily I like to be lost! Finally there was a real forest. As Doglas never runs away I let him off the leash and we both felt more free. It was a big contrast to breathe fresh air again. The best route from Hellasgården was the blue one, which was more of tiny trails than a walking path. Anywhere we walked we could still hear the traffic in the distance wherever we walked. Next time we’ll take the bus further.

My friend Cirrie took Doglas on a private adventure while I did one talk out in ‘Rissne’. Thank you Cirrie!

Close by the city center is also ‘djurgården’ which is mostly paved walks but some nice trails into small forest parts, and good water views. There we met a new friend who showed us around! We also tried ‘Hagaparken’ which was crowded, dirty and noisy, but maybe we didn’t go to the good places or at the right time of year..

As for food I made good use of the page ‘tamedhunden.se‘ where you can find a map that marks cafe’s and restaurants where you can bring your dog. I did quite a few takeaways so I could eat with Doglas, or even better – eat outdoors.

I’ll never do what I did this week again. If I do more than one day in Stockholm we’ll need to stay more close to nature. Nevertheless its good to be flexible in your lifestyle and open enough to see how others live to be able to better understand the world.

It was difficult to take good photos. Here are a few ok ones from our small adventures:




Why did they set the table for only one?

Doglas clothes rack

My clothes rack (like a Bergans showrack)

 

Having my job and my passion I simply cannot stop travelling and exploring. I have a deep restlessness and need to move. It’s somewhat kept in check thanks to yoga, running and meditation, but I still love to travel. Never the less I have promised myself to fly less, not as far and not for as long as I have before. Fortunately there are other ways to travel! As I still don’t have a drivers licence or a car (!) I’m left to travelling by busses, trains and boats.

A newfound friend (found through our dogs becoming friends!) inspired me to start cross country skiiing again. It’s good training, being in nature – and being able to bring the dog! We quickly found a few places most nearby that you could reach by trains and busses. Our choice landed on ‘Säfsen’ where there was very cute little cabins that allowed pets both in-house and in the tracks.

The first attempt failed. Sweden had what it’s called ‘snow-chaos’ which cancelled a critical train ride. I had just about walked to the bus stop when I got the news in my phone. My dog Doglas was very surprised at the gear I carried just to walk to the bus stop and back…

We made our next attempt the morning after, having chosen a even earlier train with a somewhat different route. By now there was less chaotic weather and we made a successful trip out of Gothenburg. Halfway we had a 1 hour stopover which meant dog-walking to a nearby eco-park chasing sticks in deep snow. Carrying 2 backpacks and a set of skis as well as Doglas on a leach was a good workout.

It helps having a very cute and well behaved dog. Not many people mind the little nose in the back of the knees or the hazelnut eyes looking at you. Since Doglas has been on various trains, busses and boats since he was a puppy he quickly goes to rest as soon as we’re on a new vehicle. We’re very fortunate in Sweden to have such a good public service transport system. It’s almost always in time :)

The trip was fantastic. It was so great I decided to do it all again a week later! As Säfsen was fully booked we found another place called ‘Långberget’ (long-mountain?) with a slightly longer train/bus ride. The biggest hustle was having 3 different bags. I minimized my big backpack contents to be able to fit my smaller computer/ski pack into the big one. I can hold the skis in one hand or attach them to the big bag.

For the first trip I used my Exped thunder 70L and Exped skyline 15L. I only brought dog-stuff, a minimal amount of clothes and hygiene equipment, small Olympus camera TG-5 and laptop/ipad mini for work/reading. There was a supermarket 3 km by foot away from the cabin which was a nice hike.

A few weeks later we made our next train-bus-expedition to Långberget which was slightly longer. The packing was a bare minimum which made our trasitions much easier. Doglas is used to the hustle of travelling and is calm as a old dog while staying on the vehicles. I make sure he’s had a nice walk in the morning and then he’ll rest happily on the floor.

We’re already looking forward to some hiking-travels in the spring/summer!
For finding cafe´s by railway stops in Sweden I used the site ‘TaMedHunden’ which posts places where the dog is allowed.

Bokrelease och inre lugn

Nu är det en vecka kvar till bokreleasen för min nya bok! Den blev så fin och jag tycker verkligen om den. Den är ‘djupare’ än min förra bok och kanske viktigare. Den innehåller det jag kom fram till har hjälpt mig mest i äventyr, vardagsliv och livsglädje; superkraften inre lugn. Boken är egentligen mer en guide mer än en bok. Jag vet nämligen att man inte kan läsa sig till inre lugn, men att man kan träna sig till det. Därför innehåller boken många bra övningar inom kapitlen; stanna, blunda, andas och lev mer autentiskt.  Man behöver stanna upp för att se vart man är på väg, få viktiga insikter och sakta ner. Det finns risker med att stanna upp. Man kan bli rastlös. Därför finns även kapitlet ‘blunda’ som handlar om mental träning och fokus. Andningen kommer hjälpa dig bli bättre på att stanna upp, blunda och även leva mer autentiskt genom att leva efter det som är viktigt på riktigt, med hållbarhet för dig själv och världen.

Boken kom mestadels till tack vare min fantastiska förläggare Alexandra. Hon hittade mig när hon jobbade på Bonnier och gjorde min första riktiga bok tillsammans. Sedan dess kan jag inte tänka mig att jobba med någon annan. Så jag följde henne såklart genom ett förlag till hennes nybildade ‘The Book Affair’. Tack Alexandra för motivation, hejarop och stöd! Det är fantastiskt hur en bok kan mejslas fram ur alla ideér :-)

Jag missade helt att ha bok-release förra gången, så nu testar jag det! Först på mitt favorit-fik och inrednings-café på min favorit-ö på hälsö. Den bokades full på några timmar så vi gör en till senare på kvällen. Vegetarisk ekologisk mat och valfritt inträde skänks till att rädda havet.
27/11. Evas på Hälsö. sittning 1- 18:00, sittning 2- 20:00 Länk.
28/11 på Naturkompaniet på Sveavägen i Sthlm med mina partners Exped och Devold. Länk (Fullbokat)

Och boksignering i Göteborg lagom till julklapp
19/12 Upper house SPA 18:00-19:00
22/12 Akademibokhandeln på järntorget 14:00-16:00

Boken kan även förbeställas via Bokus och denna länk.

It’s been a good day in the mountains when you descend in darkness at 11 pm in the light of a headlamp. We stood up at 5 am the same day to spend a full day on the rocks, snow and ice. Photoshooting for Bergans is not about being in a studio – we’re out there for real having a great adventure as well as making great photos. That’s why the climb took about twice the time. The fantastic photographer Hans-Kristian Krogh-Hanssen keeps finding magic spots where we just have to stay for a while. As a photographer I sneaked in a few photos as well :) We we’re in last summers dream team (from Lofoten) with Sigurd Felde, a superguide and nice person. I was in awe of the amazing views and sceneries of Norway, almost wishing I was Norweigan :)

This time we were in Hurrungane hoping to climb Storen (The Big One), Norway’s 3’rd highest mountain towering beautifully over the valley. As we came up to the first ridge there were winds looking like 10-12 m/s on the ridge. It would be a crazy cold climb and not great photos. I guess I should have been dissapointed, but there’s just no way to be dissapointed when you are in such amazing surroundings with great people. We just chose the mountain ‘next door’ which was covered in sunshine and offered a nice ridge and traverse climb. Then the sun went away and it got cooold! It was my first august-snow and my Everest-frost-bitten fingers quickly reminded me of that summer is over. The trick is to not stand still for too long – which was no problem! And of course, we had the best clothes in the world to keep us warm ;)

We got a few wonderful days with sunshine, rain, snow and ice. Here are a few photos of what it can look like in front of and behind the scenes. I’m so grateful for the job I have!

Houseboat details

I’ve made some massive work om my houseboat this year. Most of it has been the kind of work that is necessary, but not visible. I have been inside each compartment of the pontoons refurbishing and rust-proofing. I have polished the hull and am a test-person for a new toxic-free anti-fouling colour. So far so good!

When a dream project turns into mostly hard and dirty work and no enjoyment, it’s better to give it a break. I’ll have more to do next year and it’s ok. On the outside I’m hoping for a great collaboration in solar panels by the fall.
Indoors I have recently finished a camping gaz powered hot water shower! Such a luxury. There is also a cold shower on deck to use after all those salty swims, and to wash the four dirty paws of my puppy :)

I have also made some fun time in the interior details. During the years I have gotten some nice gifts and collected a few items from around the world that finally found it’s places inside the boat. The boat finally got it’s name. I always wanted to call it ‘free spirit’ but a friend said it’s not a good name as the boat mostly lies still. I don’t care. This boat is about a free spirited life.

The signs are from Skyltmax where you can design your own signposts or stickers!


My favourite birdMy favourite dog

It’s not just an adventure or a dream-come-true, it’s a different life. The tapping of fluffy, soft paws is always there, or at least for the next 15 years or so. I have never made such a long time commitment before.

I have always loved dogs even though I’m allergic to most animals with fur. I met a portugese waterdog and then found it’s spanish cousin and fell in love. They are less allergenic as they don’t shed any fur, they are fluffy and cute and It’s said they can freedive to 10 meters. A dream-dog-come-true!

Most people will make up and look for obstacles when it comes to dogs. ‘How about travelling?’, ‘you can’t take him everywhere’ and so on. The pro’s weigh up the con’s and all the love is worth the little extra organising and different choices you’ll have to make. My biggest fear/knowledge is that he will die one day, and I will die a little too with sadness. But it’s already worth it. Now Doglas has been with me for almost two months! I have gotten to know him and he’s gotten to know me and lots of adventures already. He’s kayaked, paddle boarded and surfed with me. He’s been a great support during yoga, mini-hikes and of course everything food related. It’s great to see the world through his puppy eyes!

I have read a bunch of books on dogs and learning and am hoping to make him happily obedient so that I can take him with me (almost) everywhere, and get into some dog-sport too. Maybe agility or nosework as he seems to enjoy both.

Jag är stolt ambassadör för Håll Sverige Rents kampanj #leavenothingbutfootprints. Om du är på väg ut i till havet, skogen, fjällen, sjöarna eller de öppna vidderna i sommar, ber vi dig snällt att göra naturen en tjänst. Ta med dig allt. Lämna ingenting. Utom möjligen dina egna fotavtryck. Vi ses ute i naturen!

Fakta om skräp 

  • Upp till 13 miljoner ton skräp hamnar i våra hav varje år, det är lika mycket som 85 000 blåvalar väger tillsammans.
  • Skräp motsvarande fem fulla badkar spolas i land på Bohuskusten varje timme.
  • Ungefär 80 % av allt skräp i havet kommer från land
  • 70 % av skräpet i Östersjön är av plast
  • Vanligaste skräpet i naturen är Mat- och dryckesförpackningar följt av plastpåsar och annan plast.

Hämta en gratis skräpsamlarpåse på Naturkompaniet!

Påsen är återanvändsbar och extra borstad för att inte släppa ut mikroplaster då den tvättas. Det är fjällräven som har producerat den med högsta tanke på hållbarhet. Påsen hämtas gratis på Naturkompaniet runt om i landet. Det är lite först till kvarn som gäller för beställningstiden är längre än vad kampanjen är lång.

Tävling

Under hela sommaren pågår en tävling där du som taggar dina bilder med #Ileavenothingbutfootprints har möjlighet att vinna fina priser. 

1a pris: Ett presentkort på 2500 kr hos naturkompaniet.
2a pris: Otroligt högt och extremt djup, signerad och författad av Annelie Pompe
3a pris: Vandra, signerad och författad av Angeliqa Mejstedt

Håll Sverige Rent är en ideell organisation helt utan vinstintresse och vårt främsta uppdrag är att minska nedskräpningen, främja återvinningen och främja individers och organisationers miljövårdsansvar.

Vi jobbar mycket med att påverka människors attityder och beteende till nedskräpning – att helt enkelt få människor att låta bli att skräpa ned. Det gör vi genom kampanjer som ”Please, leave nothing but footprints”. Ett annat exempel är kampanjen ”Vi Håller Rent” då hela 676 000 personer var med och plockade skräp under första veckan i maj.

Att samla kunskap och fakta om nedskräpning och samtidigt stötta kommuner och andra aktörer är en annan viktig del i vår verksamhet. Vi är partners i flera EU-projekt om skräpet i havet. Kanske den absolut viktigaste delen av vår verksamhet är att vi utbildar barn och ungdomar i hållbarhet och miljökunskap genom vårt skolnätverk grön flagg som är Sveriges största skolnätverk för hållbar utveckling.

How do you justify a lifestyle that is bad for the planet? Maybe that question goes for most lifestyles nowadays. Simply being alive means we’ll have a more or less bad effect on the climate as soon as we eat, buy stuff and move around. We’d have to live very differently to not make our planet worse. For someone who loves both travelling and nature this is a dilemma.

There’s a new word for a feeling of ‘climate-anxiety’. We’re bombarded with variations of news of a upcoming natural disaster. Those news might come on top of a demanding and stressful life with too many ‘should’s’. A unhappy and stressed person couldn’t care less about the climate. That is why personal sustainability is important. One needs to find a balance in taking care of oneself to be able to care for the planet. Or do a little of both at the same time.

I think it’s better to have a motivation for living more sustainably with ‘love-for-nature’ and meaningfulness rather than, ‘if-you-dont-we’ll-all-die’.

The more people who love nature, the more we’ll want to save our nature. It’s better if many does something small to help, rather than a few bending over backwards. I think sustainability can be done without judgment and pressure. Threats and shame is simply not the best motivation. Awareness is a better one.

Awareness on the climate changes will tell you that travelling and fossil fuel is one of the heaviest loads on the planet. For someone who loves travelling and have built a adventurous career with travelling and guiding (far away), this is a tough dilemma. I believe travelling is good in the way it gives you energy and motivation to keep doing good. I don’t think we need to stop travelling. I have met many who grew a interest for the ocean environment after having snorkelled abroad with both fish and plastic. Increasing awareness and thinking about how we travel is a good start. Since last year I have thought of how I can change my travel habits, and this is what I came up with;
– I can travel less, and not always so far.
– When I’m away I stay longer.
– I can buy compensation rights and chose bio-fuel.
– I can do all short travels by train/bicycle.
– I’m not doing long trips for just a meeting I can do over skype.
– I can choose the theme of my trips.

I am proud of my last trip to Maldives which went to a local island who ran a environmentally aware hotel and dive center. Ecotourism emphasises conservation, education, traveler responsibility and is a way to explore our world without stressing its resources. If you need to fly you can use something called ‘carbon offsetting’, it is used to balance out these emissions by helping to pay for emission savings in other parts of the world. I bought a so called ‘climate compensation’ for flying to Maldives via Tricorona (CDM projects). I ran a freediving course which is one of my jobs. Freediving leaves next to no footprint (if you wear coral-reef friendly sunscreen). We ran beach-clean ups and worked with a whaleshark conservation research programme. The secret plan with freediving is to help more people fall in love with the ocean so that they also want to help saving it :-)

I try to balance my travelling by having a more sustainable life while at home. Here are some of my habits and ideas:

FOOD – Being a vegetarian/vegan reduces a lot of pressure on the climate. I love animals and hate the way the meat-business is run. Also, agriculture has a lot of run-off into the ocean. Being a vegetarian I don’t eat fish. There’s not enough fish in the sea because of overfishing. Are you willing to try a few days a week without meat? ‘According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the livestock sector is “one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global”. The FAO estimates that livestock production is responsible for 14.5 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, while other organisations have estimated it could be as much as 51 per cent. – https://www.meatfreemondays.com/about/
CARRY ON – Don’t buy plastic bottles. I always carry a klean kanteen with tap water.
TRAVEL – I don’t have a car or even a drivers licence. I travel mostly by bicycle, my electric bike, bus or train.
APPERANCE – I don’t buy fashion and avoid to wash polyester clothing more than necessary. (They loose microfibers/plastic that go into the ocean/lakes at some point). When I wash clothes I do a full machine with eco-wash detergent. I try to mostly use sustainable fashion. The clothing brands I work with have a strong engagement in sustainable development (Bergans, Devold).  Karun sunglasses are great! I buy beauty products that are not tested on animals and doesn’t have microplastics in them.
ACCOMODATION – My houseboat runs mostly on solar cells while in the sea. After this summer I hope it will be self-sustainable with power from more solar cells. I use alkylatbensin for the engine until I have turned it into a electrical engine. Am getting rid of most plastic items and replacing them with sustainable materials such as bamboo. All cleaning liquids, soaps and so on are biodegradable. Fav toothbrush link.
HOBBIES –  I don’t buy stuff unless necessary. Avoiding consumerism. No fancy machines or furnitures. Almost all my hobbies are outdoor-sports or reading-books related.
ENVIRONMENT – I engange in beach clean ups, both organised and spontaneous.
WORK – I try to use my speaking assignments and social channels to inspire to a more sustainable life and love-for-nature :-) I support and work with WWF, The Perfect World Foundation and Håll Sverige Rent. I sometimes teach freediving with I am Water foundation, and I support Naturskyddsföreningen
DREAMS – I put my helicopter-pilot dream on ice for now.

Here is a great list and blog (in Swedish) of small everyday things you can do to live a more sustainable life.