Instructions on Exploring Hammastunturi Wilderness Area

  • Hiking, skiing and temporary camping are allowed everywhere in the wilderness area according to the Everyman's rights (www.environment.fi).
  • Metsähallitus has decided to grant general permission to light fires in the terrain in Lapland. Dry branches, twigs and small stumps can be used as kindling. In places where there is a maintained campfire site within 500 metres, all fires must be lit at the campfire site. In nature reserves for which a maintenance and utilisation plan or regulations have been issued, you must comply with the items outlined in these documents when lighting fires.
  • To take and use fallen trees of little value from the ground, you need a permit which can be obtained from Ivalo Customer Service or Saariselkä Customer Service Kiehinen.
  • Please note that lighting campfires is forbidden also at the constructed campfire places if the forest fire warning is in effect. However, it is allowed to use a camping cooker.
    • Making open fires is always prohibited at both marked campfire sites and when fires are permitted by the land owner if a forest fire warning has been issued for the area (ilmatieteenlaitos.fi). 
    • This prohibition does not apply to cooking shelters or other fireplaces with a flue.
  • Hook and line fishing and ice fishing are allowed under everyman's rights, except where specific restrictions apply.
  • Angling with a single rod is permitted, except in the restricted waters. Persons aged 18-64 years must pay the fisheries management fee. Angling permits for restricted areas are available from Metsähallitus' online shop (www.eraluvat.fi)
  • Fishers need to check the restrictions on fishing sites at kalastusrajoitus.fi (In Finnish).

Near River Tolosjoki. Photo: Matti Mela.

Preparations

Equipment

  • Take into account the different seasons when packing equipment and food.
  • The most important equipment when hiking are a knife, matches, a map and compass. They should be taken along even on the shortest day trips in addition to food and drink. Further information on equipment and hiking can be obtained from camping books.
  • Make sure you pack a first-aid kit.
  • Take with you pots and pans for making food and your own cutlery.
  • Take with you a V9 battery for the fire alarm, because moisture and the cold weaken the functioning of the battery or someone may have removed the battery.
  • The wilderness area's huts have a stove or fireplace. There is firewood in the woodshed.
  • The lean-to shelters, Lapp Pole Tents and huts have a saw and an axe. Especially winter campers should take with them their own equipment, mentioned above. Spare blades for the saw can be found on the woodshed's wall.
  • The huts usually have a water bucket and scoop, a waste bucket, guest book, fire alarm. The hut's folder contains e.g. instructions on how to use equipment and how to behave in the hut.

Safety

  • Before setting out on a trek explain your exact route to someone reliable. If your route changes tell your contact as soon as possible. Remember to also tell them when you have returned from your trek. You can leave your route information at your place of lodging, Fell Centre Kiilopää or any of the parks Visitor Centres. Mark down your visits in the huts' and tepees' guest books. In emergencies the markings serve as aids to helpers. The area's rescue service has been organised according to statutes and it can be reached through the emergency exchange. Remember to give notice of your arrival so that the searchers are not called out unnecessarily. The rescue service will charge for unnecessary searches. Remember to call the emergency number 112 first in an emergency situation.

  • If you face an emergency on your hike, e.g. get lost, get injured or observe wildfire, call 112 and report an emergency.  More information on how to act in an emergency.

  • Make sure you pack a first-aid kit.
  • The weather may change rapidly on the fells. A quickly forming fog or blizzard may cause dangerous situations.
  • In winter, trekking is very demanding. Harsh weather and poor light in the middle of winter cause difficulties. The temperature can drop to -40° and during the darkest part of winter there is sunlight for only a couple of hours. The cold is increased significantly by wind chill.
  • Orienteering skills are essential. Be prepared for emergencies such as having to camp out in the forest.
  • Avoid hiking alone. In emergencies a hiking partner is immeasurably valuable.
  • Early spring is a popular time for trekking, but even then proper gear is needed.If you have normal cross-country skis, you should stay on maintained trails.
  • When following snowmobile tracks be cautious. Getting lost is especially dangerous during winter. Winter trekking is best suited for those with experience.
  • Avalanches may occur in gorges.
  • Hiking in Finland:

Mobile Phone Coverage

  • Although Finland has a broad network for mobile phones, there are some areas in the Hammastunturi Wilderness Area without signal. There may also be some smaller spots where there is interference. If this happens try to climb to a higher place or go into an open area. It may be worth removing the SIM card from your phone and then trying again to make emergency call. Different phones also differ in their coverage.
  • We recommend that you keep your mobile phone warm at all times and take along food and drink. Certain phone models do not work when the temperature falls below zero. You should therefore let someone know your planned route. To keep your mobile phone charged, bring along a spare power source, a spare battery or an old phone with a working battery.

Emergency number 112

In case of an emergency along the way, for example if you get lost or injured or see a forest fire, dial 112. Detailed instructions.