#ArcticEVRoadTrip Day 5 Review: Umea, Sweden to Lapland, Finland

Reindeer on road

Yesterday, on Day 5 of our journey, we embarked on a new adventure. Leaving Umea, we ventured eastward, crossing over into the untouched wilderness of Finnish Lapland.

We reached the Arctic Circle, ensuring that our trip lives up to its name – and saw plenty of wildlife roaming freely in the countryside, including on the road in front of us.

Car charge and usage data

On this fifth day of the adventure we charged our car twice during the journey, including a second stop which was recommended quite soon after the first one, presumably because we were about to head away from the main European E-route network and there were fewer, if any, Tesla Superchargers ahead of us. (The car’s satnav only knows about Tesla and a few other stations.)

We also got fully charged up at the start of our journey and also boosted our battery at a small AC charger at our destination. This was our first AC charge, which you’ll see as extra sections in the stats image below.

With all the stop-start, slow down/speed up driving needed for this part of the trip, it’s no wonder that our efficiency dropped slightly compared to the previous day – but surprisingly only slightly, with 3.7 miles per kWh achieved.

Driving statistics

Story of the day

The blackout curtains in the hotel were pretty good but they still let a bit of light in around the edges. Thank goodness for sleep masks. We woke up tired but at looking out onto a stunning view with the sun already high in the sky. We went straight down for breakfast which was similar to day 4’s meal. Only this time, there were more pancakes involved. Our early morning walk was down by the river in the centre of Umeå. Sunday mornings are very quiet here but there were a few joggers and cyclists around.

The first Supercharger was about four minutes away from our hotel. We decided to go there so that we would have enough charge for the first bit of driving that day. Our driver found some e-scooters and decided to do a few laps of the not-yet-open fast food diner while the car was still charging.

Then was an actual long drive. It was around two hours long and up a narrow road, one lane per direction of traffic. Well, lane is a strong word. There was a part of the road where there were absolutely no lanes or barriers or anything. It was just a wide space of tarmac – enough to be a runway for small planes. There was also a point where it was really gravelly; the car did not seem to happy driving along this part of the road. This rough surface was a temporary “road” to get around construction work that was going on.

After the two hours of driving, we stopped at our second charging station. There were several caravans in the petrol station part of it that were driving really carefully so as not to scrape their vehicle on the corner of the petrol pump. This was also the place where we stopped for our lunch. We got the buffet option which consisted of meat, potatoes and lots of salad.

We drove for a short while longer before the car recommended we make another quick stop to charge the car. This is because there would have been nowhere else to charge for around three hours and the battery needed topping up so we could make it to the hotel. So we stopped to charge again and decided to get ice creams from the petrol station shop. The team decided to get the mango Magnum ice cream. Weather apps were checked: it was warmer and much sunnier than at home.

Then began the long, winding drive up to our hotel. From where we were it was over three hours. This was a long time but we survived. Along the way, we drove through the Arctic Circle and stopped at the sign. It was now an official #ArcticEVRoadTrip. There were lots of photo opportunities and many were taken as well as some videos for our daily highlights reel.

After being there for quite a while, we decided to get back on the road again. We were closely approaching Finland after some time and it was starting to get colder as we went further north. When we got across the border, marking a time zone change too, there was so much beautiful nature. And not just trees. We saw some actual deer! They were very beautiful and also just roaming around on the road, free from any sort of captivity.

Eventually, we made it to the hotel and the room was absolutely enormous. As with previous days it was chosen mainly for its location instead of its luxury. Nevertheless, it had its own kitchen, two bedrooms and even an en suite sauna. We ended up trying it for about two minutes and it was far too hot. This was after dinner though. New thing learned by one of our team: cloudberries are absolutely incredible.

Then to bed, at 11pm, with the sun still shining and not yet set.