Activities in Hepoköngäs Nature Reserve

Sights and Scenery

Hepoköngäs is one of the Finland's highest natural waterfalls and a popular sight. The waterfall is 24 metres high. It is at its most magnificent during the spring and early summer, when melt waters cause the river to swell. The waterfall's rumbling can at that time be heard a couple hundreds metres away.

There are lookout platforms at the waterfall, which are accessible also by wheelchair. From the parking area it is 300 metres to the top lookout platform and 640 metres to the lower one. During winter the road leading to Hepoköngäs Waterfall is kept clear of snow up to the parking area.

A person is standing on a platform and photographing a snowy and icy waterfall.


In the area there is a good trail (600 metres) leading to the waterfall. This trail connects to the UKK Hiking Trail, which portion in the municipality of Puolanka is called Tonkohuikonen

The theme of the Hepoköngäs nature trail is geology and other natural wonders in the area. The geological nature trail breaks off the trail leading to the waterfall.

An information board titled “Hepoköngäs” tells about the bedrock and soil of the area.

Wilderness Trekking

The marked trails on the area are part of the 60 kilometres long UKK Hiking Trail, which portion in the municipality of Puolanka is called Tonkohuikonen. Along the trail there is a lean-to shelter.

Also Köngäskierros Circle Trail (57 km), which leads from Paljakka ski centre to Ukkohalla ( and back, leads via the south side of the area. There is a connecting trail measuring 9,5 km from the UKK Hiking trail to this circle trail.


The Hepoköngäs waterfall is a popular place for photographing all year around.

A photographer with his camera is squatting by the snowy and icy riverbank and taking picture of the waterfall.

Other activities

  • Fishing: It is possible to fish in the River Heinijoki, which flows through the area. A section of the river flows through privately owned lands. Lure fishing is permitted in Metsähallitus owned waters if you have paid the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry national fishing management fee ( and the Metsähallitus recreational fishing licence (www.erä Permits can be bought from Metsähallitus netstore (www.erä
    • Fishers need to check the restrictions on fishing sites at (In Finnish).
    • Fishing permits for privately owned waters, as also the Metsähallitus national lure fishing permits, are sold by Aution Rauta ( store in Puolanka.
    • The Metsähallitus maintained Saarijärvi outdoor and recreational fishing area is located 35 km from Hepoköngäs.
    • Fishing in Kiiminkijoki River area, please, check the pages
  • Hunting: Hepoköngäs is part of a small game hunting area (5608). Permits can be bought from Metsähallitus netstore (www.erä Local residents have the right to hunt in the area.
  • Berry and Mushroom Picking: Picking berries and mushrooms are allowed in the area as Everyman's rights.