Aug 10, Aug 17 and Aug 24
Day 1: Arrival. Arrival at Kajaani airport where you’ll meet your local guide. Transfer (approx. 2 hours) to Martinselkonen Wilds Centre for dinner and accommodation.
Day 2 Martinselkonen Wilds Centre - Arola 16 km. After a hearty breakfast we begin the tour by hiking through the Martinselkonen nature reserve towards Arola farm where we will be welcomed by friendly hosts. The nature reserve has been set up to protect Finnish wilderness, especially swamp areas. This area is important for many birds and insects as the normal Finnish forest industry does not reach these nature reserve areas. Martinselkonen has watery mires and small lakes, old growth forests and spruce trees draped in beard lichen. A special dinner made of local ingredients will be enjoyed after sauna.
Day 3: Arola – Kovajärvi 19 km. Today we head northwards along the Russian border. The close proximity of the Russian border adds something rather mysterious and exotic to the atmosphere of the area. The border guard towers, the border zone, and the view over the Russian side is an experience in itself. We stop for a picnic at one of the wilderness huts operated by the Finnish Forest and Park Service. An open fire will be made, and hot coffee brewed. Accommodation is in tents on the shore of Lake Kovajärvi.
Day 4: Kovajärvi – Hossa 24 km. Today's wild landscape is home to a healthy wolverine population, and although these secretive predators are seldom seen, we may come across their tracks. Swans and cranes can be spotted on the lakes and mires we pass by. There are many swamp areas, but they are easily crossed by using wooden planks. The surrounding forest has an abundance of vegetation such as blueberries, lingonberries and mushrooms. The blueberry season is at its best in August and can provide fresh snacks for hikers. Accommodation in Hotel Hossan Lomakeskus in twin rooms.
Day 5: Hossa 13 km. After the longest hiking day we take it easy and have a wake-up call later than usual. The trek continues along the paths of the Hossa recreational area. Hossa is known for its crystal-clear lakes and handsome pine heathland. It is also known locally as a "fisherman's paradise". We will stop for the lunch at the visitor center and have a look at the exhibition which tells about the nature and history of the surrounding area. Accommodation for the remaining three nights is at Tolosenvirta cabin where the lakeside sauna will be heated every night.
Day 6: Canoeing. For a change we make a canoeing trip on the lakes and rivers near by our accommodation. We will use open Indian canoes and all necessary equipment, such as paddles and life vests will be provided. The tour will be on still water on a couple of lakes linked by small rivers. Reindeer are a common sight in Hossa and occasionally elks can also be seen. For those ones who prefer to stay on land there are plenty of well marked hiking trails to explore in the area.
Day 7: Julma-Ölkky canyon lake. On the last day of our tour we will visit Julma-Ölkky canyon lake, including a 30 minute boat trip to look at the cliffs. From there it is a 4 km hike to the “Color Rock” with rock paintings dating back 4,000 years. After picnic lunch a final hike of between 4-14 km. Sauna and farewell dinner at the Tolosenvirta cabin.
Day 8: Return. After breakfast transfer to Kuusamo airport (100 km).
Note: Price valid on guaranteed departures. Group prices on request.
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