Instructions and Rules in Kevo Strict Nature Reserve
Kevo Nature Reserve has been established especially for the purposes of nature protection and research. There are two hiking trails in the nature reserve, Kevo Canyon and Kuivi. The area of the Kevo Nature Reserve is also a reindeer herding area which is a part of the Paistunturi reindeer herding cooperative.
Outdoor activities in the Kevo Strict Nature Reserve are guided by the Kevo regulations and the management plan, among other things.
When getting around in nature, let’s show respect for it. Take a look at the Outdoor Etiquette.
Please don’t share any such contents on the Internet that break the rules of the strict nature reserve.
In snow-free season, moving around Kevo Stirct Nature Reserve is only allowed on marked trails. The nature reserve is divided into the fell area and the Kevo Canyon area with separate guidelines on movement. See the zonedivision on the maps-page and from the Excursionmap.fi.
Kevo Canyon Area
- Hiking the Kevo Canyon area on foot is allowed on marked trails between 15 June and 15 October, and
- By ski between 16 October and 31 March.
- Hiking is allowed in the fell area on the marked Kuivi trail between 1 May and 15 October
- By ski between 16 October and 30 April.
Riding a bicycle is not permitted.
Camping in the Kevo Nature Reserve is only allowed in the rest sites built for this purpose and in hut yards, including in the winter. You can find the rest and camping sites on Retkikartta.fi and as a list on the Kevo Canyon and Kuivi excursion pages. Please notice, that the on following camping sites are not anymore allowed to overnight: (from south to north) Geavvogeašláttu, Gamajotnjálmmeluoppal and Gaskkamuš Njaggaljávri - althoug they still are marked such on hikingmaps.
Lighting an open fire in Kevo Strict Nature Reserve is only allowed in campfire sites of huts, camping sites and lean-to shelters built for this purpose, using only firewood brought in for that specific purpose. The person who lights the campfire is always responsible for the fire. The use of a portable camping stove is allowed in areas where hiking is allowed.
- Lighting an open fire is prohibited everywhere, including marked campfire sites, if there is a local forest fire warning in effect (ilmatieteenlaitos.fi).
- During the forest and grass fire warning, the use of hobo stoves is not allowed, as sparks may be created.
In 2023, Kevo Nature Reserve will start enabling litter-free excursions and there will no longer be rubbish bins at campfire sites. The closest waste sorting points are at the trail starting points, Sulaoja, and Kenesjärvi.
- Small amounts of clean paper and cardboard may be used as kindling at a campfire site or a fireplace at a wilderness hut. Other waste, such as packages that contain aluminium foil or plastic, may not be burned in a fireplace, as they may form non-biodegradable waste and toxic gases.
- You can put leftovers and other biowaste in a dry toilet.
Littering is prohibited. Read more about Hiking without littering.
Kevo is a strict nature reserve so anyone moving around the area must take care to not damage or harm the flora and other nature. Following items are forbidden:
- Moving in the canyon area 1.4. - 14.6. Kuivi trail can not hike as a circle trail before 15 of June.
- Picking berries and mushrooms.
- Fishing and hunting.
- Killing, catching or disturbing wild vertebrates, or damaging their nests or catching or collecting invertebrates.
- Damaging soil or rock, and extraction of earth material or minerals.
- Taking or damaging mushrooms, trees, bushes, other plants or their parts.
- Leaving waste in the area, or activities that disturb other people.
- Pets running at large.
- Damaging structures, buildings, fences and ruins in the nature reserve.
- Driving motor vehicles or bicycles and aircraft landing are prohibited in the area.
- Riding horses and dog sledding.
There are special regulations regarding reindeer herding, picking berries and mushrooms, fishing and hunting, which apply only to local residents in the strict nature reserve.
Hiking the Kevo Trail takes about 3 - 4 days. "Ruska" means the beautiful autumn colours, which can be seen for two or three weeks. This is the most popular time to visit the strict nature reserve, and well as the late summer. "In Kevo Strict Nature Reserve, the ‘ruska' begins on the 10th of September at 2 pm ± 5 days." This was the definition by Paavo Kallio, the late professor of botany in the University of Turku, and the founder of the subarctic research station in Kevo.
Kevo Strict Nature Reserve is a reindeer herding area. There are fences around the boundaries of the reindeer herding co-operatives. They are difficult to get across and hikers should use gates and bridges built for that purpose. Gates and bridges have been built along the trail. It is important that hikers remember to close gates after having passed through them. If a herder and his herd come your way it is best to stay out of the way and not disturb them. Either move out of sight or stay still where you are.
- The Kevo Canyon is a demanding hiking destination, so you need adequate equipment. Because of the fell area we strongly recommend that you have sturdy footwear and warm, windproof clothing with you. A tent is necessary, because there are only two open wilderness huts inside the strict nature reserve.
- Along the trail, you will have to wade across the River Kevojoki three times and across the River Fiellujoki once. Light rubber sole shoes are good wading shoes, because that way you can get a firm hold on the bottom of the river. Also if your rucksack has a belt which goes around your waist, open the belt. This way you can remove your rucksack quickly and get out of the water faster if need be.
- Bring your own tent for hiking in Kevo. There are maintained camp sites along the trail. In the Kevo nature Reserve, you will find the Kuivi wilderness hut and along the loop trail, the Ruktajärvi and Njavgoaivi wilderness huts.
- Mosquitoes usually start appearing around midsummer. The wind on the open fells usually keeps blood-sucking insects at bay so in these areas, visitors can usually hike in peace. The mass occurrence of blood-sucking insects is over at the end of August. Especially on warm autumn nights the smallest pests - midges - might show up in dense swarms to bother hikers enjoying their evening campfire.
- Make sure you pack a first-aid kit and insect repellent.
- 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.
- Hiking in Finland:
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 centre 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.