Patched and dirty, but still nice!

Posted by Jackson Bulman on

Bitte bought her Expedition Down Jacket over 30 years ago for special occasions. Today, it is patched, dirty and smells of smoke, but remains her go-to jacket for keeping warm during the reindeer separation season.

Every year, at the start of December, Bitte Päiviö Nygård takes on the role of record keeper during reindeer separation for her family’s business in Suorva, Lapland, Sweden.



Record keeping is not an especially active task, so Bitte relies on an Expedition Down Jacket to keep her warm.

“As the record keeper, I mostly stand still in very cold conditions. The jacket is invaluable at such times.”

In fact, Bitte’s Expedition Down Jacket has been keeping her warm for over 30 years. Albeit, in very different circumstances at the start. She bought it at Sport-Anders in Jokkmokk for special occasions, like the yearly market.



“Down jackets were the height of fashion back then, so that was what I wanted. An Expedition Down Jacket and beak shoes were all the rage. It was expensive back then, but I treated it like an investment.

Nowadays, it is my work jacket. It is patched and sewn together, and dirty and smells of smoke. But, still nice!”

Regardless of its current state, Bitte’s Expedition Down Jacket proves its worth every year when the reindeer are moved. This is done based on the seasons. They have a winter grazing area in the Luleå archipelago, and in April they are fed every day until they are moved to the Padjelanta mountains. Not necessarily because they need to be fed every day, but to keep them together. It is there that they spend the late winter and summer.



The conditions on the way to the mountains can be intense. Bitte recalls one time when her investment proved invaluable:

“As the record keeper, I mostly stand still in very cold conditions. The jacket is invaluable at such times.”


“I remember once, a long time ago, when we were hauling firewood to the mountains. On the way home, the weather turned bad. We were supposed to pass a ravine on the way down, but we did not dare continue until visibility cleared. We stopped the snowmobiles, set up the sleds as protection from the wind and waited it out. I was wearing the jacket and I was definitely not cold.”

Despite how long she has owned her jacket, and the paces she has put it through, Bitte remains impressed by its performance:

“Considering the level of wear and tear it is incredible that it has aged so well.”

Read more Expedition Down Jacket stories on the Foxtrail. Like My Falk’s entertaining account of losing and finding hers. Not once. Or twice. But three times.

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