'Meanwhile in Finland': Man Shows How to Make Boat From Ice in Viral Video

An ice builder in Finland has awed the internet with a video demonstrating how he made a functioning boat from ice.

The architect, Aleksi Ylläsjärvi, told Newsweek that he works in Lapland Hotels SnowVillage as an ice and snow builder. Lapland is the northernmost region of Finland, where the ground is covered with snow and ice for about six months of the year.

Ylläsjärvi shared TikTok videos of himself making the ice boat together with two partners. The first video, viewed over 200,000 times in one day, showed them carving out the shape of a boat with large chainsaws in a frozen river. They proceeded to dig out the hollowed center beneath its horizontal seats. Once the shape was complete, they cut the boat free and it started floating.

By the end of the video, Ylläsjärvi and his partners could row the boat through a melted section of ice and even fish from the icy vessel. The whole process took six to eight hours, he said.

In a second video, Ylläsjärvi showed a hole they had carved into the boat seat, where a tractor was able to hook and lift the structure out of the water. It was finally driven to a massive freezer and safely stowed away.

Man Makes Boat From Ice
Aleksi is a professional ice, snow and house builder in Ylläsjärvi, a village in Lapland, the northernmost region of Finland. Here, a view of Aittajarvi in Lappland. JONATHAN NACKSTRAND / Contributor/AFP

"Our plan is to wait until the river is clear of ice, and try to lift the boat back then," he told Newsweek. "Hopefully it will still float and we can go boating. Let's hope that we can use it for at least a couple hours."

His viewers were delighted by the perfectly executed feat.

"Hard work pays off," wrote one admirer. "Great job guys."

Another comment quipped, "Men have [a] weird ability to make this type of thing happen, but socks stay on the floor forever."

"Meanwhile in Finland," joked yet another viewer.

The Lapland province of Finland is known for its snow and ice architecture, including the SnowCastle in Kemi, the world's largest snow fort that has been rebuilt with new architecture every year since 1996. SantaPark, a Christmas-themed park in Rovaniemi, contains a gallery of ice sculptures. Many hotels in the region offer customers the opportunity to sleep in an igloo.

In southern Finland, architect-designer Pasi Widgren uses a snow shovel to draw a large animal on a frozen lake every year, according to the Associated Press. In December 2021, he visited Lake Pitkajarvi, near Helsinki, to draw a fox measuring 295 feet. He has drawn animals on local lakes since 2016, although each one has vanished into further snowfall or melting ice.

During World War II, the British concocted a plan to make aircraft carriers from giant icebergs to combat German U-boats, according to the Royal Naval Museum Library. "Project Habakkuk" was approved by Prime Minister Winston Churchill himself and a prototype was created and tested on Patricia Lake in Alberta, Canada, although the project was ultimately shelved.

Update 04/15/2022, 9:53 a.m. ET: This story has been updated with comments from architect Aleksi Ylläsjärvi.

Updated 04/15/2022, 12:08 p.m. ET: This story has been updated with a verified video of the incident.