Joutenhovi Perho outdoor recreation centre - Lake Sysilampi - Lake Salamajärvi - Lake Lehtosenjärvi - Valkeinen camping ground - Lake Kuivajärvi - Petäjämäki outdoor recreation centre 77 km

Joutenhovi Perho outdoor recreation centre - Lake Sysilampi 10 km

The starting point for the main trail is on the grounds of Joutenhovi, the Perho nature tourism centre. At first the trail leads to Salmelanharhu Ridge, which is the area's most significant ridge formation. A grand old pine forest grows along the ridge. From Salmelanharju Ridge the trail continues to Lake Pikku-Syrjä, where there is a lean-to shelter on the shore. Lake Pikku-Syrjä is located at approximately the halfway point of this section. From Lake Pikku-Syrjä to Lake Sysilampi the route leads along roads for the most part.

Rapa-Valkeinen. Photo: Reijo Kuosmanen

Lake Sysilampi - Lake Salamajärvi 10 km

It is a 700m walk from Sysilampi parking area to Sysilampi open wilderness hut and Sysilampi rental hut. The part of the building which functions as a open wilderness hut is always unlocked. The rental hut sleeps 2 persons. On the shore of Lake Sysilampi there is also a reservable sauna and campfire site. There is a well, a campfire site and a camping site on the grounds.

Two separate nature trails have their starting points at Sysilampi wilderness hut. Children's Nature Tail (Lasten luontopolku) in Sysilampi is 1.5 km long and leads to Lake Hepolampi and back again. Pakosuo Nature Trail is 4.5 km long and has starting points Sysilampi parking area and at Lake Sysilampi. Pakosuo Nature Trail is an interesting route, which features typical native nature of the Suomusselkä region.

From Lake Sysilampi the trail leads to Lake Salamajärvi. If you travel quite cautiously you may to be able to see a Wild Forest Reindeer (Rangifer tarandus fennicus) or a moose (Alces alces). The route crosses the River Matopuro, which floods during springtime so that its water covers the duckboards there. Rubber boots are the best footwear for this time of year. Jyrkkäniemi lookout point is located on the shore of Lake Salmijärvi. There is a campfire site at the lookout point. About 1 km from Jyrkkäniemi there is a large tar pit by the trail. On the shore of Lake Salamajärvi at Pitkälahti bay there is a camping site, a reservable wilderness hut and a campfire site. From Pitkälahti it is 2 km hike to the parking area by Perho Kinnula road where this section of the trail ends.

Lake Salamajärvi - Lake Lehtosenjärvi 17 km

3.3 km north of the parking area on the shore of Lake Ahvenlampi there is a lean-to shelter with a campfire site. 3.5 km on from there is Valvatti open wilderness hut, which is an old forest ranger cabin. The wilderness hut sleeps 4 persons. On the grounds visitors will find a sauna and a well.

About 1 km from the open wilderness hut is Iso-Valvatti, an old lake which has now been dried during 1927 - 1930 so that the vegetation there could be cleared. At the edge of the reeds left there, there is a bird watching tower from which visitors can observe the European Wigeon (Anas penelope), the Slavonian Grebe (Podiceps auritus) and the Northern Shoveller (Anas clypeata) without disturbing them. 2.8 kilometres from there on the shore of Lake Vähä-Valvatti there is a campfire site. The trail leading to the shore is lined on both sides with mounds of rocks probably dating back to the Bronze Age.

From Vähä-Valvatti it is a 4.2 km hike to the crossroad for a rental cabin called Karhunpiilo and a 6.6 km hike to the Lake Lehtosenjärvi campfire shelter. Soon after passing the campfire shelter Hirvaan kierros Trail turns off the main trail and heads south towards Koirasalmi Sound. The main trail continues north towards Lake Jatkonjärvi.

Lake Lehtosenjärvi - Valkeinen camping ground 12 km

Please note! The trail is under construction and is not recommended for hiking at this moment (08/2018).

This section begins at the crossroads where the main trail and Hirvaan kierros Trail turn in separate directions. After 5.4 km the route reaches the Lake Jatkonjärvi campfire site. From there it is a further 5.3 km to the shore of Lake Valkeinen. From the crossroads hikers may also take a smaller 350 m long trail to stop over at Pökkelöniemi lean-to shelter or continue straight to the Valkeinen camping ground (1.6 km). Metsäpeuranmaa information centre, which is open by reservation, is located next to Valkeinen camping ground.

Metsäpeuranmaa Information Centre. Photo: Peetu Luodes

Valkeinen camping ground - Lake Kuivajärvi 15 km

Please note! The trail is in poor condition and is not recommended for hiking at this moment (08/2018).

After passing the Valkeinen camping ground the trail leads along a forest road. Ruutanalampi shelter is situated on this portion of the trail and is a pleasant place for hikers to rest. An alternative resting spot on this section is a campfire site on the shore of Lake Iso-Vänttäläinen, situated 9.5 km from the Valkeinen camping ground. From the campfire site the trail continues along a road to Lake Lummelampi located in the centre of a grand pine forest. From Lake Lummelampi the trail leads through old-growth forests in Etelä-Sydänmaa Nature Reserve.

4.3 km on from Lake Iso-Vänttäläinen the trail reaches the Raatejärvi crossroads. From there if they wish to do so hikers can turn off the main trail and head west along a 700 m trail to Raatejärvi open wilderness hut. The open wilderness hut also has a sauna. Soon after passing the Raatejärvi crossroads another small trail turns off the main trail, which hikers can take to Koukkunen campfire shelter (300 m). The end point for this section is at Kuivajärvi parking area 1 km further down the trail. Kuivajärvi campfire shelter is situated near Kuivajärvi parking area.

Lake Kuivajärvi - Petäjämäki outdoor recreation centre 13 km

Please note! The trail is in poor condition and is not recommended for hiking at this moment (08/2018).

The landscape on the section of the trail leading between Lake Kuivajärvi and Lake Saarijärvi is diverse, the trail leading in turn through mires, forests and along lake shores. On leaving Lake Kuivajärvi the trail follows the lake's shoreline for 1.3 km to an old smoke cabin, where Kirves-Heikki campfire site is also located. The Kirves-Heikki Canal which is located near-by was originally dug with shovels into the terrain. After passing the smoke cabin the trail continues for 2.9 km to Ahveroinen lean-to shelter, from where it is a further 900 m to Saarijärvi open wilderness hut and sauna. Hikers can rest at a meditation cabin situated halfway between Kirves-Heikki and Ahveroinen.

The final campfire site on this section is at the northwest corner of Lake Mustanjärvi 3 km from Saarijärvi open wilderness hut. From Musta it is a 5 km hike to the main trail's end point at Petäjämäki outdoor recreation centre.

More information on destinations along the main trail at Reisjärvi (, in Finnish).