First snow in northwest Finland no surprise to reindeer herders

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The first snow of the season fell in northwestern Finland, Wednesday morning. (iStock)
The first snow of the season fell in Finland’s northwestern arm on Wednesday morning, from the village of Karesuvanto in Enontekiö to the nearby fells, where reindeer herder Per-Antti Labba was looking after his livestock.

“It’s snowed a few centimetres. It’s foggy, cloudy and cold,” he told Yle.

For local herders, the date of the first snowfall came as no surprise.

“It often snows for the first time exactly during this week of September in the northwestern fells. The snow will still melt many times before the real winter arrives, though,” says Labba.

Earlier than last year

Last year the first snow was recorded on 25 September in the village of Kilpisjärvi, about 100 km further north, where the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) has a weather station. There are no official weather stations in the surrounding fells.

Yle meteorologists say that local snow and sleet flurries are predicted for northern Finnish Lapland over the next few days, but that accumulations are expected to be negligible.

Karesuvanto is known in the indigenous Sámi language as Gárasavvon, while the twin village on the other side of the river that divides Finland and Sweden is called Karesuando. Finland’s highest peak, Halti (1324 m) is further north in the municipality of Enontekiö, on the Norwegian border.

Related stories from around the North:

Canada: Bizarre winter weather in South caused by changes in atmosphere, not sea-ice loss: study, CBC News

Finland: Warmer, drier summer than usual in most of Finland, Yle News

Greenland: Greenlanders stay chill as the world reacts to its heatwave, CBC News

Russia: A hot summer across the Arctic, Russian meteorological institute says, The Independent Barents Observer

Sweden: Swedish farmers cautiously optimistic about harvest after last year’s drought, Radio Sweden

United States: Heat stress that caused Alaska salmon deaths a sign of things to come, scientist warns, CBC News

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