View Full Version : Artic Circle Tour April - July 2010 (75 Days)

03-19-2010, 10:24 AM
APRIL - JULY 2010 (75 DAYS)



It doesn’t seem like 2 years has passed by since we first thought about this trip, and as the departure date draws ever closer we are now hopefully nearly ready for this adventure!

Having said that we thought about other people who had ‘gone before’ so the plan, hopefully, was to see something of the countries we travel through in Scandinavia and not ‘git there and back in 3 weeks by the quickest route’, consequently the last 6 months have been spent in some ‘fine tuning’ and research of ‘places to visit and things to see en route’!

Currently we are on Version 23 of our Arctic Circle Tour Plan, so hopefully we got it right or more specifically ME as we will only get ‘One Shot’ at this!

As well as getting up to the Arctic Circle and seeing something of Denmark, Sweden, Finland & Norway, our other goal is to get to the farthest point North by navigable road in Scandinavia, which happens to be: Slettnes Lighthouse at 71°3'50.91"N 28°15'54.27"E.


Below are 3 Pictures of the Route we will be following on this tour of the Arctic Circle. It will take us through the following countries France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland & Norway to get to the objective of Slettnes Lighthouse with another mixture of that lot coming back home again!

We expect to cover over 8,000 Miles which is around 11,500 Kms in the 75 Nights.

I have had to put the AutoRoute Map in 3 Parts as the darn program firstly found it to much to work the whole lot out and then could not get over the Lappi – Finnmark Border at a place called Utsjoki! Of course as AutoRoute is now obsolete as far as Microsoft is concerned they did not want to know about any problems.

Insert Map Picture ‘Outward Route’


Insert Map Picture ‘Middle Route’


Insert Map Picture ‘Homeward’


The ‘BLOG’ for the trip will hopefully be updated as we go along providing I can get some decent and not expensive Internet connections so if you would like to follow our progress then here is the link:


If you visit the Blog then I hope you enjoy the tour, but please Note we do not actually set off on this until the last week of April but the water crossings both under and over have been booked so come hell or high water we are going!

03-19-2010, 08:16 PM
I'll be riding in the proverbial "third seat"! And I promise not to ask, "Are we there yet?!!"

03-19-2010, 10:47 PM
I'll be riding in the proverbial "third seat"! And I promise not to ask, "Are we there yet?!!"

You certainly know how to get my Chuckle Muscle going, Thank you!

You are more than welcome, but when we get going you will have to promise to stay awake and look out for the Reindeer as I would hate to knock over any of Santa's Guys especially after such a hard winter for them! [thumbup]

04-09-2010, 12:30 PM
As requested by 'mrslomo' here is a picture of the GREAT "Swedish Tug & the Aluminium Box with Windows of the plastic variety" sometimes in the UK we call it a Caravan. [thumbup]


We have just returned from a 200 mile round trip with the caravan on the tow hitch as a 'pre-trip shakedown' just to make sure that all is OK before before we leave shortly.

Couple of 'problems' appeared but thankfully not with the car, that is growling nicely at the moment, especially when going uphill in a lower gear!

04-30-2010, 11:16 AM
The Arctic Circle Tour is now underway.

Having reached Denmark, we will take this country to be the 'Start' of the Scandinavian Explorer or Arctic Circle Tour covering Denmark, Sweden, Finland & Norway, so I hope you enjoy reading the Blog as the tour takes place.

So far the XC70 has not missed a beat and is sure proving a pleasure to drive on long runs. [thumbup]

Here again is the Blog Link:


The picture below was taken in Denmark.

Best wishes & I hope you enjoy.


05-31-2010, 09:31 AM
Now just on halfway through the tour in terms of time spent away from home and 3500 Miles covered without so far any mechanical problems with the 'Swedish Tug' and except for 2 small problems with the caravan it is also going well.

For those of you who are having a look at the Blog I hope you are enjoying it and the pictures.

05-31-2010, 10:56 PM
Here is a taste of the trip, the rest is on the 'Blog'

Part 4.5 Tana Bru – Mehamm Part 1 of 3
27th May. Tana Bru to Mehamm (117 Miles)

Tana Bru to our next stop which is Mehamm
Below are no words, just sit back and enjoy the photos as we make our way from Tana Bru to Mehamm.
Try possibly at the same time try listening to the piece of music if you have it called “In The Hall Of The Mountain King”!




























Finally our view of “Mehamm” from the rear window!


06-13-2010, 10:18 AM

this has been awesome to follow! each evening, one of the first things i do is to check for new posts by you here and on the blog. this is something i've wanted to do for a few years and am now doing vicariously through you..... hope you don't mind.

cheers, mate! hope you post all the way home. [thumbup]


06-16-2010, 06:52 AM

this has been awesome to follow! each evening, one of the first things i do is to check for new posts by you here and on the blog. this is something i've wanted to do for a few years and am now doing vicariously through you..... hope you don't mind.

cheers, mate! hope you post all the way home. [thumbup]


Happy to have you 'onboard'.
I am sorry I could not put the full Blog on the Volvo site as I had undertaken to post it on '365' but I am glad you have been able to read it and I will be keeping it going till we get back to the UK.
I now have another 35 Pictures to upload with 2 days of travel, while sat in the car with the Laptop on my knees!
Enjoy & best wishes.

07-06-2010, 09:50 AM
Part 11 “Last Leg” Ypres to Home

6th July. Ypres to South Wales (244 Miles)

We have finally come to the end of a trip that I can only describe as being truly the ‘Trip of a lifetime’ and I am so grateful in that I have a very understanding Good Lady (‘Jan’) who allowed me to do all the research on the Internet for such a long time so that our ‘1 shot’ came right, and I know she enjoyed the trip as much as I did, in fact our little group of 6 have had a great time!
So now it is in some ways quite sad as we make our way home on the last part of this journey via the “Chunnel” and the 11:00 ‘Choo Choo’!

We have seen some fabulous places met some truly wonderful people with some fantastic experiences leaving us with everlasting memories, and loads of photographs to look back on.
The objectives we set out to achieve came together, and there was never really a dull day.

I do however have to take my hat off to our Octogenarian Friends, ‘Cyril & Alice’ who we affectionately called ‘Laid Back’ & ‘Chatterbox’ as nothing fazed Cyril and Alice, well I leave you to work that one out! (Secretly I think she liked the ‘title’) But what a Fabulous Couple they are and our ‘Congratulations’ to them as they celebrate 61 years of Married Life just 2 days after getting back home.
They were truly amazing in their stamina for this trip and I only hope that if & when we get to their age we can still ‘go’ like they do!
I also offer our thanks to Roger & Val of the 4 Tonne Motorhome for all their help and support during the trip.

To everyone else who has been in the ‘Other Passenger Seat’ for this trip ‘Thank you’ for sharing our experience with us and we hope that it has been as rewarding for you as it was for us.
We really hope you enjoyed the ride, and reading about our experiences as we went along.

If however you find that you have run out of Money when you get to Ypres, then Jan found this rather charming house in the city on our last day here, that you could in days gone by with a certain stamped paper get a financial hand out!

A final picture taken as we left Ypres showing what happens if you leave the tap running!

One final multi-picture of our Arctic Circle Tour 24th April – 6th July 2010

Now for a few facts:
We travelled 7065 Miles door to door. (11304 Km)
We spent 82% of a £4750 Budget for Everything!
Our ‘Swedish Tug’ (XC70-D5) never missed a beat, and took us over some quite rough roads whilst hauling a 1500kg caravan, and the caravan did OK as well![thumbup][thumbup]

We came back with half a box of Jan’s ‘Wheaties’, & around 750g of my Porridge Oats with about 5 spoons of Honey for the Porridge!

08-13-2010, 04:41 PM
Welcome back! You truly were on a grand drive! I must admit being quite jealous. Your beautiful scenery and "kitschy" photos are what makes your trip special. The 3rd Seat was quite comfortable. Thanks for the ride.

03-24-2011, 09:30 AM
How much does the trailer weigh and what type of hitch set-up are you using? Any anti sway bars or electric brakes?


03-28-2011, 05:10 AM
How much does the trailer weigh and what type of hitch set-up are you using? Any anti sway bars or electric brakes?


Hi Doug,

The 'Tin Tent' (Caravan) weighs in at around 1500Kg (3,300lbs).

Hitch set up is just a standard 50mm Ball hitch with Mini sized Disc Pads in the ball coupling to stop any swaying, but I have never had any 'sway' problems while pulling a Hobby Caravan with a Volvo.

Brakes are standard activated by the hitch and cables to each brake drum on the caravan.

Best wishes