My overwhelming impression of the seasons in Finland is that of rapid change. There is a large contrast between the summer months and winter months.
In summer time I have experienced 28 degrees lovely sunshine which made for idyllic days sitting by the lake. The most noticeable thing about summer for me is that it doesn’t really get dark! Around Juhannus (Midsummer) the sun never goes fully below the horizon – it is a magical experience.
The change from this state is then rapid. The days get noticeably shorter day by day. Once we get to autumn it is probably some of the bleakest times in Finland. It is beginning to get darker fast, which coupled with the lack of snow, by the end of autumn makes for some very dark dingy days.
When we move into winter, the big freeze approaches, the temperatures plummet, the snow falls. For me winter is an amazing time in Finland – walking on the frozen lakes, keeping warm with fires, making ice holes and dipping in from the sauna. I have had many enjoyable times in the winter. The flip side is that it is very dark, only a few hours of daylight and sometimes it feels like it is barely getting properly light. The days are dingy, however, with all the snow everywhere it seems to lighten up the place. I have also noticed that it feels like the moon is very bright, brighter than elsewhere and this helps to illuminate the snowy landscapes.
Finally spring comes and brings with it the big melt. Days are getting longer, we see the sun more, the cold still remains but much less harsh. Eventually the big melt takes hold fully and all the snow rapidly melts away. The ice disappears and the lakes return back to liquid rippling in the breeze.
All in all, the Finnish seasons are a pretty spectacular thing and I feel lucky to have experienced all of the seasons as well as witnessed some of the rapid change that occurs constantly in this beautiful country.
– Jonny Solomons