The Victoria Trail: between Sweden and Finland
Crown Princess Victoria inaugurated the Victoria Trail
It was with great verve that Crown Princess Victoria inaugurated the Victoria Trail. Accompanied by applauds, the Crown Princess cut the ribbon at Treriksröset – then she drove herself back to Kilpisjärvi.
It started as it usually does, with delays. The kids that had travelled from the Kuttainen School patiently had to wait, wait and wait. The same conditions went for the large group of media; where of most of them were from Norway and Finland, who eagerly stood ready with their telephoto lenses.
At last the Crown Princess arrived, and she was warmly received with waving flags and cheering. The Crown Princess had earlier flown to Tromsö, from where she had been escorted by Norwegian police, the Chairman of the City Council, Thore Klippmark, and Jan Unga, from the municipality’s development division.
- It’s fantastic how she takes this on with such joy, said Jan Unga.
- This attention gives a kick to the Arctic Trail and the whole scooter tourism.
And it was the means of transportation, the scooter, and the Crown Princess of course, that were in the focus. The object of the inauguration was the joint Nordic scooter trail – the Victoria Trail, a trail that stretches from Muonio to Treriksröset and which total length is 220 kilometres. The trail runs on both Swedish and Finnish sides of Muonio-Könkämä river valley and is a part of Arctic Trail, a network of trails that stretches though out the north parts of the countries.
The inauguration ritual took place at Treriksröset. Curious people had transported themselves there, by skies or scooter, to get a glimpse of the heir to the throne. And despite a rusty pair of scissors, the Crown Princess managed to cut the blue-yellow and blue-white (the flag colours of Sweden and Finland) ribbon.
- It’s a great joy and honour to open the Victoria Trail in this way. It’s fantastic to be here, said the Crown Princess, and pointed out that “the pair of scissors has to be as old as the mountain”.
The County Governor of Norrbotten, Per-Ola Ericsson, dressed in a scooter suit/overall like everyone else, expressed great joy of the fact that the Victoria Trail could finally be inaugurated.
- It’s a fantastic day for us in the north. We are one people, but divided in three countries.
After mingling and jojk (sami/lapp type of singing), it was time to leave the mountain world and return to Kilpisjärvi. But this time the Crown Princess didn’t settle with riding behind Härje Fors from the National Board of Forestry. No, she placed herself behind the handlebar and took the lead in a furious pace.
The whole celebrations didn’t last more than a few hours, but all involved parties seemed nothing but satisfied and happy when the royal circus was over.