Sompiojärvi - Terävä-Nattanen Campfire Site, 6 km

When starting your hike from Lake Sompiojärvi, the first section of the trail is very rocky in places. Consequently, it is advisable to wear hiking boots, and rubber boots in early summer and during rainy periods. The first section of the trail passes through an old-growth forest at the foot of Nattastunturit Fells. The terrain is rocky. There are scree stone fields particularly in the ravine between Seinätunturi Fell and Terävä-Nattanen Fell, and in early summer there is often snow in the ravine, too.

Terävä-Nattanen. Photo: Kimmo Kuure

In addition to the wooden poles, there are also several heaps of stones marking the first 6 km that were gathered in former times to function as trail markings. The old stony trail markings must remain untouched (the Antiquities Act). The rocky trail leads you to the first target of the hike, the Terävä-Nattanen campfire site. When arriving at the campfire site, you will have crossed the small brook of Kulmakko-oja, where you can get water for your coffee pot.

Terävä-Nattanen Campfire Site - the Summit of Terävä-Nattanen, about 1 km

The rocky journey continues when ascending from the campfire site onto the summit of Terävä-Nattanen Fell. The ascent onto Terävä-Nattanen is the only major climb on the Ruijanpolku Trail. The trail onto the summit ascends to a height of 544 m, and the whole 1-km journey to the felltop is very rocky. There are only scree stone fields on top of Terävä-Nattanen. However, the splendid views opening up from the summit will reward your efforts many times over!

From the summit the scenery opens up in all directions. The other five Nattaset Fells are located nearby; i.e., Pyhä-Nattanen, Seinätunturi, Serrikainen, Lupukainen and Suku-Nattanen. The broad fell area of the Urho Kekkonen National Park looms further away to the north, northeast and east. In the south you can see the legendary Lake Sompiojärvi and further back, the Lokka Reservoir. Further to the southwest glistens the Porttipahta Reservoir. The fell areas are lined by thick forests of candle-shaped spruces. When looking from the summit, the aapa mire areas in the north appear as strings wriggling through the fells and the forests. When peering into the distance, you may be surprised to suddenly see a ptarmigan (Lagopus muta) almost at your feet. It thrives in the treeless, open fell areas. Descend from the summit along the same trail to the campfire site.

A old kind of trailmark. Photo: Kimmo Kuure

Terävä-Nattanen Campfire Site - Kaptukaislampi Campfire Site, 9 km

The large spruces with long branches and the thick moss create a special atmosphere in the vicinity of the northern border of the Sompio Strict Nature Reserve. Cross Nattushaara via a bridge. There may be flood at this point of the trail in spring.

When hiking on Ruijanpolku, allow yourself a good night's sleep by a campfire site. You may stay overnight in a tent on the Kaptukaislampi campfire site roughly midway through the trail. The campfire site (on the Urho Kekkonen National Park side) is located on the shores of the small, wilderness-like Kaptukaislammet Ponds. You can get drinking water from the Kaptukaisoja brook, which is located a couple of hundred metres south of the campfire site. The trail runs across the brook along a bridge.

Kaptukaislampi Campfire Site - Kiilopääntie Road, 13 km

From the Kaptukaislampi campfire site, the journey continues through a dry, pleasant forest terrain. You will cross the road track leading to Lake Kopsusjärvi at a distance of about five kilometres from the Kaptukaislammet Ponds. There is a lean-to shelter along Kopsusjärventie Road about 600 m west of the Ruijanpolku Trail. You can take a break or stay there overnight. The remaining section passes through easy-to-walk terrain. The mountain birches and the pine heaths lead you to Kiilopääntie Road. In this section, observant hikers may notice marks carved in old pines that functioned as trail markings a long time ago.

Kiilopääntie Road - Laanila, 6 km

From Kiilopääntie Road, the hike continues to Laanila through a pine terrain. The Kiilopää Fells frame the scenery on the eastern side. There is a connection from Laanila to the Saariselkä-Kiilopää area's marked trails.