Winter hiking in Petkeljärvi

(Published January 5 2024)

The trails of Petkeljärvi National Park are not maintained in winter. You can enjoy your hike with snowshoes, skis with skins, or forest skis. Check the weather and snow conditions before heading out on your trip (

Verify which parking areas are available during winter.

Note that there may be snowplow delays on smaller roads. It's advisable to carry a shovel and gravel bag in your car for slippery and challenging spots.

Familiarize yourself with The Outdoor Guide to Finland’s National Parks. You can find basic information, gear lists, safety tips, and destination suggestions for hikes. Read Outdoor Etiquette and also check the Instructions and rules in the Petkeljärvi National Park before heading out on your hike.

Ensure the safety of your hike.

  • Flowing water weakens ice. Traveling on ice and in the terrain is always at the hiker's own risk. There may be areas in the national park where phone signals are not reliable. Remember to download the 112 Finland app on your phone. Always check warnings in advance as well (
  • Are you a novice winter hiker? Explore winter hiking in the Hiking ABC knowledge base, where you can find basic information, equipment lists, safety tips, and destination recommendations for winter trips.
  • Prepare for your hike with an adequate supply of drinking water and suitable snacks. Warm foods and drinks help hikers stay warm.
  • Daylight is limited during winter. Even for a day trip, it's good to be prepared with a headlamp or flashlight in case dusk catches you off guard. Check not only the weather but also the length of the day before your hike (
  • For winter hikers, staying warm is crucial. Layering in loose-fitting clothing is a good starting point

In National Parks and other state conservation areas, own firewood must be used in tent saunas

(Updated on July 27, 2023)

Metsähallitus Luontopalvelut (the Finnish Forest Administration's Parks & Wildlife Services) maintains fire pits in Finnish national parks and other state conservation areas, as well as fireplaces in hiking structures and huts, with firewood provided on-site. Metsähallitus reminds visitors that in tent saunas and fireplaces in personal accommodations, visitors are required to bring their own firewood. This is to ensure that there's sufficient firewood available for the use of all hikers at the designated fireplaces.

News from Petkeljärvi

Check for Warnings

When forest and grass fire warnings ( are in effect, fire is only allowed at covered campfire sites that have a flue. A fire can be also lit in fireplaces at wilderness and other huts. Always use extreme caution when handling fire. The one who lights a fire is always responsible for its safe use. Please note, that making fire at these campfire sites can be banned locally. 

Gathering at the campfire sites increases the risk of coronavirus infection. Guidelines concerning coronavirus COVID-19

Tips for Outdoors

Knife and firewood.
Outdoor Guide: Making a fire