Hiidenportti National Park Trails 

Hiking Trails

There are almost 30 km of marked and duckboard covered trails in Hiidenportti National Park. The trais are best suited for hiking. Mountain biking is not forbidden, but the rocky terrain sets high demands for biking.

Hiidenportti can be reached also during winter time, but please note, that snowshoes, glide shoes or skis are essential for moving around the national park due to the thick layer of snow. In winter, there is no maintenance on the trails. Unbroken snow awaits for you to go skiing, snowshoeing or walking in snow. 

Two hikers carrying backpacks in front of some signs. One of the hikers is in the foreground, the other in the background.

Starting Points for Trails

The area's most popular starting point is Palolampi information point, which has an adjacent campfire site, a cooking shelter and a well, and a rental cabin for day use.

The road Hiidenportintie leading to Palolampi parking place is ploughed in winter. However, you should be aware of sudden snowfalls.

There is a forest road named "Perävaarantie" leading to Urpovaara parking place from the road Kuhmo-Valtimo (no 5284). This road is not ploughed in winter. 

The Käärmesärkkä starting point is situated along the road Kuhmo-Valtimo (no 5284). The parking place is not ploughed in winter.

Circle Trails

Hiidenkierros Trail, 3 - 5 km / Circle Trail

Available when the ground is unfrozen. In winter with snow shoes. The road Hiidenportintie to the Palolampi parking place is ploughed in winter.
Travel time 2-4 h.
Category:  intermediate  demanding

The Hiidenkierros Trail leads you to the majestic Hiidenportti Gorge. The trail descends to the bottom of the gorge and ascends via steps to the other side of the cliffs.

A group of hikers are grilling sausages at a campgire site surrounded by benches. In a background there is a table and two buildings.

Starting Point
Palolampi parking area.

Hiking Structures
Information point at Palolampi. There is campfire site, a cooking shelter and a well at the information point. In halfway of the route there is a lean-to shelter at Lake Porttilampi. In the grounds of Kovasinvaara there is an information board about the life in the remote wilderness farm. 

Hiidenportti Gorge and Kovasinvaara. Marks of the human activities can also be seen along the trail, such as a base of a tar-burning pit. You can explore the cultural history of the area also with the help of the "Hiidenportti through the ages" -brochure.

A photographer sits on a cliff atop a gorge, taking pictures of a summer valley. In the background you can see the other edge of the gorge, which is covered in mosses and trees.

Trail Description  
Marked with purple paint.

From Hiidenportti the trail continues towards the Porttilampi lean-to shelter. This section runs along the edge of the cliff for almost a kilometre. It is the most demanding section of both the trails, but also offers the most rewarding views.

From Porttilampi lean-to shelter you go back 1 km to Hiidenportti and turn towards the Kovasinvaara hill. There are no buildings left on the hill, but the meadow, birch forests and heaps of stones give you a glimpse of times gone by. The last section of the trail runs back to Palolampi. This section is somewhat demanding as the descent to Palolampi is rather steep.

Please Note
There are no significant altitude differences along the Hiidenkierros Trail, but the forest path is lumpy and also stony in places.

Please note that the stairs down to the valley are in some parts in bad condition.

Kitulankierros Trail, 10.5 km / Circle Trail

Available when the ground is unfrozen. Travel time 5-7 h.
Category:   intermediate  demanding

Hikers walking along a trail, down a hill in a summer forest. The last hiker has a dog on a leash.

Starting Point
Palolampi parking area.

Hiking Structures 
Palolampi information point, lean-to shelters by Lake Porttilampi and Lake Kitulanlampi.

Hiidenportti Gorge, Kovasinvaara and other sights of cultural-historical interest in the area.

Trail Description 
Marked with yellow paint

The Kitulankierros Trail starts from Palolampi and continues through Hiidenportti to Porttilampi. It then continues through mires towards the impressive spruce forests of the Urpovaara hill. At Kitulanlampi you slip from the forest atmosphere to the scenery of cliffs and lakes. There is also a lean-to shelter at the tip of a long cape. From there the trail returns to the old-growth forest. The flora and fauna of the old-growth forest is still alive and well here.

When the trail meets the path going towards Allaslahti, you are treading on a path used by the ancient inhabitants of Kovasinvaara. The trail continues to the Hiidenportti Gorge and returns through Kovasinvaara to Palolampi.

Please Note 
The Kitulankierros Trail is demanding in places.

Two hikers carrying backpacks while following a trail that goes along a riverbank.

Other Trails

Other trails in Hiidenportti National Park are marked with orange paintings.

The main hiking trail leading through the National Park, 11,5 km

Symbol for Parking. Symbol for Fireplace. Symbol for Leant-to shelter. Symbol for Disposal toilet. Symbol for Hiking. Symbol for Hiking. Symbol for Snowshoeing. Symbol for Skiing. Symbol for sights and scenery. Symbol for Bird watching. Symbol for Pick berries and mushrooms.

Available when the ground is unfrozen. Travel time 5-7 h.
Category:  intermediate demanding

A man stands in the rain at the end of a wooden footpath leading to the edge of a pond. There is forest on the other side of the pond.

Starting Point
Palolampi information point and Käärmesärkkä parking area.

Hiking Structures 
There are lean-to shelters and campfire sites along the trail. Services depend on chosen route. 

Depending on your route Hiidenportti Gorge, Kovasinvaara or both.

Trail Description 

Marked with orange paint.

The trail follows the River Porttijoki bank to the southern boundary of the park and then on to Käärmesärkkä and to Peurajärvi recreational fishing area southeast of the National Park. The length of the trail from Hiidenportti Gorge to Käärmesärkkä is  about 10 km.

The hiking trail beginning from the Urpovaara parking area, length depends on the route choice

Available when the ground is unfrozen. Travel time 3-7 h.
Category:  easy -   demanding

Two hikers on a path surrounded by summer forest.

Starting Point
Urpovaara parking area. The forest road Perävaarantie is not ploughed in winter.

Hiking Structures 
Services depend on which route visitors choose.

Spruce forests. Depending on your route Hiidenportti Gorge, Kovasinvaara or both.

Trail markings
Marked with orange paint

Trail Description 
Trail leads through old spruce forests on the slopes of Urpovaara Hill. The distance from Urpovaara to Hiidenportti Gorge is 4,3 km.

The trail leading from Hiidenportti Gorge to Allaslahti Bay, 6.7 km

Available when the ground is unfrozen. In winter on skis or snow shoes. Travel time 3-7 h.
Category:  easy -  demanding

Starting Point: The signed trail begins from the Kitulankierros Trail about 1,6 km from the Hiidenportti Gorge.

Hiking Structures 
Allaslahti lean-to shelter. Other services depend on which route visitors choose.

Hiidenportti Gorge

Trail markings
Marked with orange paint

Trail Description 
Trail is in the south part of the National Park leads through terrain typical of the National Park; mires and dry forests. At Allaslahti Bay the trail connects with Talonpojan Taival, which is part of the Karelian Circuit (vaellus.info, in Finnish).

Connecting Trails

Parking Areas

Hiidenportintie 86, 88600 Sotkamo

  • From Sotkamo to Palolampi is about 45 km. Drive along the signposted road to the Palolampi information point from the Sotkamo–Kuhmo Road (no. 76) or from Kuhmo–Valtimo Road (no. 5284).
    No public transportation to the parking area.

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. 

Drawing of a fireplace. The drawing shows the roof, the flue and off the ground.

Gathering at the campfire sites increases the risk of coronavirus infection. Guidelines concerning coronavirus COVID-19

Hiidenportti Brochure

Pdf 2.7 Mb (julkaisut.metsa.fi)

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