Here’s something from the gazetteer again. For those of you who don’t know the real-world geography on which the fictional geography is based, Åre lies on the Swedish-Norwegian border. The mountains in real life aren’t that high and actually you’d probably not call them mountains either. But, mountains are cool so I made the mountains bigger.
The Last Inn
Fifteen miles from the village of Åre in Jämtland lies the Last Inn. It’s situated among the foothills of the Scandian mountains, and lies along the path that leads into the High Pass of Giantbreak. A bit further to the north lies the Low Pass of Giantbreak, but it is behind a deep and dark lake and some impassable wilderness. In general it is considered that the High Pass is a harder climb, but safer during bad weather. Travelling via the Low Pass in wintertime is more or less suicide. Both passes join on the other side of the Scandian mountains in the Giantbreak valley which is considered a good campsite. The paths out from the valley lead to the nearby rivers and fjords and as far as Scandian mountain travel goes, this is probably the safest route to Hålogaland.
The Last Inn is kept by an old elf called Haladara and her human wife, Sigrid. The Inn itself is a fairly sizable house with two wings, one of which consists of a large common room. In the summer, the loft of the house is open to travellers too. During wintertime, everyone sleeps in the common room apart from the innkeepers. The front door is barred after nightfall but there’s a bell cord that late arrivals can use to gain entry. Haladara and Sigrid tend to expect a few pennies more in case they have to get up from bed to let you in. They serve three meals a day as is common in the region, but if you’re a late arrival, you’ll have to make do with mead and bread and cheese. Food is on the good side.
Haladara is known for being a good bowyer and a decent blacksmith. Sigrid is an experienced wilderness guide and herbalist. They expect to get paid in coin, unless you’re a friend, in which case you can bring a gift of some sort and pay for your meals that way. Fresh meat, fresh wild vegetables, mushrooms and pelts are always appreciated, along with clothes and small luxury items from Hålogaland.
In the high summer, the Inn sees a lot of business as merchants from both Sweden and Hålogaland cross the mountains, along with any adventurers and travellers. The spring and autumn see way less travellers, because the passes are treacherous and a sudden snowfall has been the death of many travellers. In the winter, very few people cross the mountains and more than a few never make it across. Because of this Haladara and Sigrid don’t see many guests in the winter. They do take care of lost travellers without coin because they’re decent folks, and quite a few friendships have begun this way.