Instructions and Rules along Herajärvi Trail
Instructions on Exploring Herajärvi Trail
- Running mainly on private land, the Herajärvi Trail is governed by everyman's right (ym.fi). The Koli National Park area is governed by the park's rules.
- Please familiarise yourself with everyman's right and the Koli National Park rules before setting off on an excursion.
- The Herajärvi Trail is available when the ground is unfrozen. The amount of snow varies from year to year, but the trail is usually open from May until November. If you are planning a hike early in the spring or late in the autumn, you should check the snow situation at the Koli Nature Centre Ukko before setting off.
- As a rule, a permit issued by Metsähallitus is required for activities other than those included in everyman's rights, which may include research and organised events. Further information on required permits: research and access permits (metsa.fi) and permits and notifications related to events (metsa.fi).
- Lighting campfires is forbidden if a forest fire warning or the grass fire warning is in effect. Check the current warnings (en.ilmatieteenlaitos.fi).
- This prohibition does not apply to cooking shelters or other fireplaces with a flue and a roof.
- It may not be possible to cross the River Herajoki during the spring and autumn floods, and the wading cable is unavailable in that situation. You can get round the wading cable section by using Herajoentie, the bridge and Vaaralahdentie. If you skip the wading cable and climbing onto Hirvivaara Hill and, after Vesivaara Hill, go along Herajoentie to the Rekilammentie crossroads, the length of the section to walk along the road is 3 km, and the hike is shortened by roughly one kilometre.
Mobile Phone Coverage
- Although Finland has a broad network for mobile phones, there are some areas in the trail without signal. There may also be some smaller spots where there is interference. If this happens try to climb to a higher place or go into an open area. It may be worth removing the SIM card from your phone and then trying again to make emergency call. Different phones also differ in their coverage.
- We recommend that you keep your mobile phone warm at all times and take along food and drink. Certain phone models do not work when the temperature falls below zero. You should therefore let someone know your planned route. To keep your mobile phone charged, bring along a spare power source, a spare battery or an old phone with a working battery.
Equipment and Safety
- Although the trail is well marked, you should take a map and a compass with you. The distance to the nearest houses and roads from anywhere on the trail is five kilometres at the most.
- The trail is challenging due to the cliffs, so hiking will take more time than usual.
- If you face an emergency on your hike, e.g. get lost, get injured or observe wildfire, call 112 and report an emergency. More information on how to act in an emergency.
- Make sure you pack a first-aid kit.
- Drinking water along the Herajärven kierros Trail:
- We recommend taking bottles of tap water with you before setting off. Tap water suitable for drinking without boiling is available at Koli Nature Centre Ukko, Break Sokos Hotel Koli (sokoshotels.fi) and Herajärven Retkeilykeskus in Kiviniemi (kiviniementila.fi, in Finnish).
- Water in the wells and springs along the trail should be boiled before using as drinking water. Also the surface water from lakes, rivers and brooks must be boiled before drinking.
- Places to get water along the northern Herajärven kierros Trail:
Koli Nature Centre Ukko or Break Sokos Hotel Koli (tap water), (Ikolanaho spring not suitable for drinking even after boiling at the moment!), Myllypuro stream, Pitkälampi pond and a couple of small streams between Ryläys and Kiviniemi, Herajärven Retkeilykeskus in Kiviniemi (tap water), Seppälä well and Pitkälampi pond near Ylä-Murhi rental hut. Please note, that Pitkälampi pond is the last place to get water before arriving back to Nature Centre Ukko.
- Places to get water along the southern Herajärven kierros Trail:
Herajärven Retkeilykeskus in Kiviniemi (tap water), Ahvenlampi pond, Kuikkipuro stream near Eteläpää lean-to shelter, a well near Suopelto, Herajoki river, Putrakonlähde spring soon after crossing the Herajoki river and Seppälä well.
- Water quality in Mörkölampi spring, Ikolanaho well and Ikolanaho spring is poor and not suitable for drinking even after boiling.
- Look at the tips for outdoors drinking water in Hiking in Finland -pages.
- Rocky sections and the bridges, stairs, duckboards and other structures that make the trail easier to walk may be slippery in wet weather.
- When using the Herajoki wading cable and the Sikosalmi rope-pulley ferry, you must be careful and follow the instructions.
- Hiking in Finland:
- The Herajärvi Trail is available when the ground is unfrozen. Crossing the River Herajoki with the wading cable and the Sikosalmi inlet with the rope-pulley ferry can only be done when the water is unfrozen. If you are planning a hike early in the spring or late in the autumn, you should check the availability of the wading cable and rope-pulley ferry at the Koli Nature Centre Ukko before setting off.
- Snow usually melts at Koli in early May. The northern slopes keep their snow cover longer than the southern slopes.
- Demanding due to the differences in altitude, the trail is harder to walk in hot summer weather.
- The autumn colours at Koli are at their best from late September to early October.
- The Herajärvi Trail is a popular hiking trail that is visited by some 5,000 people between 1st May and 30th October.
Check for Warnings
When forest and grass fire warnings (en.ilmatieteenlaitos.fi) 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.
112 Emergency Number
If you have an emergency during your trip, such as getting lost, injured or finding a wildfire, call 112. Read more detailed emergency instructions.
Download the 112 Finland application (112.fi) to your phone. When an emergency call is made through the 112 Finland application, the emergency center attendant is automatically informed of the caller's location.
It is recommended to keep the mobile phone warm and to bring extra food and water with you. There are many excursion locations with no mobile coverage and some mobile phones does not work in sub-zero temperatures, that is why it is always a good idea to let someone know about your itinerary and timetable.