Description of Ruunaa Trails

Easy Trails

The Accessible Neitikoski Trail, 600 m/Each Way

A demanding wheelchair route symbol. Hiking symbol. Fishing symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Campfire place symbol. Cooking shelter symbol. Toilet for the disabled symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

When there is no snow on the ground, travel time 1h
Category: an easy trail , a demanding wheelchair trail 

See the Neitikoski Rapids up close! Easy access on foot and for wheelchairs, prams or pushchairs.

Starting Point

Neitikoski parking area (Pdf 4,9 Mb, julkaisut.metsa.fi)

Coordinates: Euref-Fin (~ WGS84) lat: 63° 23.2830' lon: 30° 27.5521' ETRS-TM35FIN: N: 7033492 E: 672825

Hiking Structures

Two campfire sites, two viewing platforms, fishing possibilities even for wheelchair users, and a roofed campfire site, an accessible dry toilet and a recycling point by the parking area. Please bring your own toilet paper.

Sights

The old log floating dam made of stone and the stopper wave at the Neitikoski rapids. 

Route Description

Route markings: yellow paint

Närelenkki Trail, 2 km Circle Trail

Access to nature trail symbol. Campfire place symbol. Cooking shelter symbol. Toilet for the disabled symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

When there is no snow on the ground, travel time 1h
Category Easy trail 

Bring the whole family to explore nature at Ruunaa, along the Verkkopuro river. 

A creek flows through a dense, mossy forest.

Starting Point

Neitikoski parking area (Pdf 4,9 Mb, julkaisut.metsa.fi)

Coordinates: Euref-Fin (~ WGS84) lat: 63° 23.2830' lon: 30° 27.5521' ETRS-TM35FIN: N: 7033492 E: 672825

Hiking Structures

A campfire site, dry toilet and recycling point by the Neitikoski parking area. The diverse services of the Ruunaa Hiking Centre (ruunaa.fi).

Route Description

Route markings: blue paint
Recommended direction of travel: clockwise

Närelenkki Trail, 2 km, covers the quite easy terrain of Verkkopuro and Miikkulankangas. On this trail you can learn about the traditions of log floating.

Connecting Routes

It is connected to Koskikierros Trail and Karhunpolku Trail.

Intermediate Trails

The Short Trails of Siikakoski, 3 km and 5 km Circle Trails

Hiking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Fishing symbol. Campfire place symbol. Lean-to shelter symbol. Dry toilet symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

When there is no snow on the ground, travel time Siika - Murrookoski (5 km) 2h and Siikakoski (3 km)1h
Category: Intermediate trail 

Tour of one or two rapids along the banks of the Lieksanjoki river. Along the way, you can admire the flowing waters, for instance from the Siikakoski suspension bridge.

Two fishermen wading by the shore of a rapid. A mist is hovering over the rapid and there is a summer forest by the shore.

Starting Point

Trails start from Siikakoski parking area (Pdf 4,9 Mb, julkaisut.metsa.fi).

Coordinates: Euref-Fin (~ WGS84) lat: 63° 20.3045' lon: 30° 27.4282' ETRS-TM35FIN: N: 7027961 E: 673020

Hiking Structures

Siikakoski lean-to shelter 1 km from the starting point and Uittopato campfire site 0,3 km from the lean-to shelter (both trails). Murrookoski lean-to shelter 0,8 km from Uittopato campfire site and Niskalahti campfire site 0,8 km from Murrookoski lean-to shelter (only along the longer trail). There is a campfire site, a dry toilet and a recycling point at the parking area of Siikakoski.Please bring your own toilet paper.

Sights

Siikakoski suspension bridge near the trail about 0,8 km from the starting point. Murrookoski Rapids (only along the longer trail) about 1,3 km from the starting point.

Route Description

Route markings: yellow circles
Recommended direction of travel: anticlockwise

The short 3 km and 5 km trails at Siikakoski are both easy for most of the way. The trails are suitable for family outings regardless of the small differences in altitude and short rocky sections where tree roots cover the path. In the beginning, the trails follow the bank of Lieksanjoki River near Siikakoski Rapids, and then they go into pine forests and open mires. The mire sections have duckboards.

Connecting Routes

These trails are connected to Koskikierros Trail and Karhunpolku Trail.

Demanding Trails

Vastuuniemen Kierros Trail, 9 km Circle Trail

Hiking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Fishing symbol. Campfire place symbol. Lean-to shelter symbol. Dry toilet symbol. Suspension bridge symbol. Crossing boat symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

When there is no snow on the ground. Hiking this trail takes 3 - 5 hours, depending on the choice of route, and the walking pace and fitness of the hiker.
Category: Demanding trail

This challenging trail on both banks of the Lieksanjoki river in the southern part of the hiking area will improve your fitness.

Starting Point

Siikakoski parking area (Pdf 4,9 Mb, julkaisut.metsa.fi).

Coordinates: Euref-Fin (~ WGS84) lat: 63° 20.3045' lon: 30° 27.4282' ETRS-TM35FIN: N: 7027961 E: 673020

Hiking Structures

There are 5 lean-to shelters and 5 campfire sites. Their locations are marked on the map. There is a recycling point and a dry toilet at Siikakoski parking area. There is a dry toilet close to all lean-to-shelters and campfire sites. Please bring your own toilet paper.

Sights

Siikakoski suspension bridge near the trail about 0,8 km from the starting point. Murrookoski Rapids about 1,3 km from the starting point.

A summery esker landscape. Lichen is growing on the ground.Route Description

Route markings: yellow circles
Recommended direction of travel: anticlockwise

Vastuuniemen kierros Trail, 9 km, mostly covers quite easy terrain. The mire sections have duckboards.

Please Note

The trail crosses the Lieksanjoki river along a suspension bridge by the Siikakoski rapids and by rowing boat at the north end of Lake Murroojärvi.

Connecting Routes

These trails are connected to Koskikierros Trail and Karhunpolku Trail.

Neitijärven Kierros Trail, 22 km

Hiking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Fishing symbol. Observation tower symbol. Campfire place symbol. Lean-to shelter symbol. Toilet for the disabled symbol. Dry toilet  Suspension bridge symbol. Crossing boat symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

When there is no snow on the ground. It will take all day to hike this trail.
Category: Demanding trail

Conquer the highest point of the hiking area by climbing to the top of Huuhkajanvaara hill, and enjoy the view over the lands and waters!

An autumn landscape photographed from a tall viewing point. There is a forest in autumn colours in the foreground and a calm lake can be seen behind the forest.

Starting Point

Trail starts clockwise from the gravel road which turns off just before Neitikoski parking area (Pdf 4,9 Mb, julkaisut.metsa.fi).

Coordinates: Euref-Fin (~ WGS84) lat: 63° 23.2830' lon: 30° 27.5521' ETRS-TM35FIN: N: 7033492 E: 672825

Hiking Structures

There are 4 lean-to shelters and 5 campfire sites. Their locations are marked on the map. Fishing at Haapavitja Rapids. Recycling points by the parking areas of Neitikoski and Haapavitja, and dry toilets by all lean-to-shelters, campfire sites and parking areas. Please bring your own toilet paper. The diverse services of the Ruunaa Hiking Centre (ruunaa.fi).

Sights

The suspension bridge over Haapavitja, the great scenery from the lookout tower of Huuhkajanvaara Hill, and Neitikoski Rapids.

A wooden suspension bridge crossing a rapid. The shores of the rapid are covered by a lush forest. The sky is clear.

Route Description

Route markings: yellow circles
Recommended direction of travel: clockwise

Neitijärven kierros Trail, 22 km, mostly covers quite easy terrain. The steep slopes of Huuhkajanvaara hill make short sections of the trail very challenging and will slow you down. Dry pine forests, shady spruce bogs and open mires alternate in the landscape. The mire sections have duckboards.

Please Note

The ascent to Huuhkajanvaara Hill to the scenic lookout tower is steep and rocky. At Haapavitja, Lieksanjoki River is crossed on a small suspension bridge, and at Airovirta by a row boat.

From the parking area of Neitikoski, there is a 600-metres-long plank trail which is accessible by baby pram and wheelchair and takes you to the edge of Neitikoski. There is a dry toilet suitable for the disabled at the parking area.

Connecting Routes

These trails areconnected to Koskikierros Trail and Karhunpolku Trail

Koskikierros Circle Trail, 31 km

Hiking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Fishing symbol. Observation tower symbol. Campfire place symbol. Lean-to shelter symbol. Toilet for the disabled symbol. Dry toilet symbol. Suspension bridge symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

When there is no snow on the ground. You should reserve at least one whole day, preferably two, to hike Koskikierros Trail.
Category: Demanding trail 

Explore Ruunaa on this circular tour of the hiking area, featuring two bridges. See and experience the varied natural surroundings in Ruunaa.

Starting Points

Trails starting point is at Neitikoski parking area (Pdf 4,9 Mb, julkaisut.metsa.fi). Other good places to get onto the trail are the parking areas at Siikakoskentie road, Lake Neitijärvi and on the east and west sides of Haapavitja Rapids.

Coordinates of the Neitikoski parking area : Euref-Fin (~ WGS84) lat: 63° 23.2830' lon: 30° 27.5521' ETRS-TM35FIN: N: 7033492 E: 672825

Coordinates of the Siikakoski parking area : Euref-Fin (~ WGS84) lat: 63° 20.3045' lon: 30° 27.4282' ETRS-TM35FIN: N: 7027961 E: 673020

Hiking Structures

There are 8 lean-to shelters and 7 campfire sites along the trail. Their locations can be found on the area's map. Fishing is possible at the following rapids: Haapavitja, Neitikoski, Murrookoski and Siikakoski. Ruunaa Hiking Area recycling points are located at the Haapavitja (eastern side of the river), Neitikoski and Siikakoski parking areas, and dry toilets by all lean-to-shelters, campfire sites and parking areas. Please bring your own toilet paper. The diverse services of the Ruunaa Hiking Centre (ruunaa.fi) at Neitikoski.

Sights

The hanging bridge which crosses Haapavitja Rapids, Huuhkajavaara nature observation tower, Murrookoski and Siikakoski Rapids, the hanging bridge which crosses Siikakoski Rapids, Neitikoski Rapids. Fishing in the area's rapids is a unique experience.

Route Description

Route markings: yellow circles

Koskikierros Circle Trail, 31 km, leads hikers past roaring rapids. The trail leads through easy to cross terrain. There are duckboards on the mire portions of the trail.

Please Note

There are bridges across streams along the trail. There are hanging bridges across Haapavitja and Siikakoski Rapids. The ascent to the Huukajavaara nature observation tower is steep and rocky. The length of the trail can be cut in half, if you have the possibility of crossing the river by boat at Kattilaniemi or Vastuuniemi.

Connecting Routes

From this trail you can get onto Karhunpolku Trail (vaellus.info, in Finnish) which leads to Patvinsuo National Park.

Hiking Trails

Karhunpolku Trail, 133 km

The Town of Lieksa (lieksa.fi, in Finnish) is responsible for managing the trail, except in the Ruunaa Hiking Area, Ruunaa Nature Reserve and Patvinsuo National Park, which are run by Metsähallitus.

Route markings: yellow circles.

The regional 133 km hiking trail Karhunpolku (vaellus.info), runs through the Ruunaa Hiking Area and the western part of the Ruunaa Nature Reserve (21 km) from the border of Lieksa and Kuhmo to the Patvinsuo National Park.

Maps

Maps of Karjalan Kierros can be obtained, for example, from Visit Karelia Tourist Service (visitkarelia.fi).

Connecting Routes

Karhunpolku Trail is part of Karjalan Kierros (vaellus.info, in Finnish) hiking trail network.

Cross-country Skiing Trails, 30 km

Ski cross-country on maintained trails symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Campfire place symbol. Lean-to shelter symbol. Dry toilet symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

Ruunaan Matkailu maintains about 30 km of skiing trails in Siikakoski - Murrookoski area. Ruunaan Matkailu and Pielisen Latu organise a skiing trip in February - March along different skiing trails which follow Lieksanjoki River.

The hiking area offers a pleasant setting for skiing trips, for example, along Lieksanjoki River.

Skiers on the lake ice. The sun is shining and the sky is clear.

Starting Points

Ruunaan Matkailu (julkaisut.metsa.fi) in Munkinvaara

A wintry landscape on a cold day by the shore of a rapid. The rapid is partly ice-free and there are snow-covered trees at the shore. Mist is hovering above the water.

Please Note

Parts of the trails go on the ice. Skiers should bear in mind that flowing water makes the ice more fragile, and that currents can move to different places in the winter. On the snowmobile track on Koskireitti Trail, skiing is not allowed for safety reasons.

Canoeing Routes

Canoeing symbol. Campfire place symbol. Lean-to shelter symbol. Dry toilet symbol. Recycling symbol. Parking symbol.

Lieksanjoki River is an excellent destination for rapids shooting as well as flat water paddling. The rapids belong to class II - III according to Finnish Canoe Federation.

Different sections of the river, rapids and lakes provide alternative routes for canoeists with different levels of experience. The services along each route can be seen on the map of the Hiking Area.

For those interested in rapids shooting, especially Neitikoski with its steep drop is an ideal place for practice and competitions. Various canoeing events are organised at Neitikoski every year.

It is also possible to explore the area by boat. Boats and canoes can be rented from local enterprises. Guided canoeing trips are also organised in the area. More information from Koli Nature Centre Ukko, or from Visit Karelia Tourist Service (visitkarelia.fi).

Snowmobile Tracks, 30 km

Snowmobiling symbol. Campfire place symbol. Lean-to shelter symbol. Dry toilet symbol.  

A snowmobile route maintained by the North Karelia Association for Recreational Trails circles  the Ruunaa Hiking Area (retkikartta.fi).

Two snowmobilers on a snowmobile trail. The terrain next to the trail is untouched and covered in a thick layer of snow.

The route crosses the Lieksanjoki river along the Siikakoski and Haapavitja suspension bridges and connects to the national route passing through the southern part of the hiking area via the Siikakoski suspension bridge. Snowmobiling on the routes is subject to the permission of the North Karelia Association for Recreational Trails. More information from the local snowmobiling association "Pohjois-Karjalan virkistysreitistö ry" (pohjoiskarjalankelkkaurat.fi, in Finnish), from Koli Nature Centre Ukko, or from Visit Karelia Tourist Service (visitkarelia.fi).

Customer Service

ukko(at)metsa.fi
 
Tel +358 13 533170, +358 40 579 5684
info(at)ruunaa.fi

Parking Areas

Neitikoski

  • Neitikoskentie (parking area at the end of the road), Lieksa

The western side of Haapavitja

  • Paasikoskentie (by the road, about 2.4 km from the Neitikoski parking area), Lieksa

Siikakoski

  • Siikakoskentie (parking area at the end of the road), Lieksa

Neitijärvi

  • Neitijärventie (parking area at the end of the road), Lieksa​

The eastern side of Haapavitja

  • Haapavitjantie (parking area at the end of the road), Lieksa

More precise parking area addresses are not available. Parking area addresses are in Finnish to be used in navigators.

The Neitikoski and Siikakoski parking areas are available in winter, but there may be delays in snow clearance.

A hand holding a mobile phone showing Excursionmap.fi. Open the map of Ruunaa in Excursionmap.fi.