Winter Trails

14.7.2021
During a forest fire warning (ilmatieteenlaitos.fi), fire is only allowed at covered campfire sites that have a flue or in fireplaces at huts, but only with extreme caution. The one who lights the fire is always responsible for its safety. Making a fire at campfire sites can be banned locally.

The winter trails in the Koli National Park invite you to a wide range of winter sports. The national park and its vicinity boast more than 80 km of maintained cross-country ski trails. The Koli peaks also attract snowshoers, in particular, however you can also walk along the trodden paths, summer trails and the maintenance tracks. Please note, that there is no general winter maintenance on the trails. You can even go downhill skiing on the Ukko-Koli ski slopes. The snowmobile route near the village of Koli passes by the national park. There is updated information on the state of the campfire sites, winter trails and maintenance routes on the What is New page

A panoramic image of wintry forest seen from Mäkrävaara hill on a sunny day.

Starting Points for Trails

  • Railcar: The railcar between the parking area (P1) and Nature Centre Ukko's Upper Yard operates normally in winter as well. When the railcar is closed, walk from the parking area to the Upper Yard along the road's edge. The stairs leading to the Upper Yard are not maintained in the winter, so they may be extremely icy. Their use in the winter is not recommended. 
  • Parking: Parking areas P1 and P2 at Nature Centre Ukko's Upper Yard are used normally in winter. Only visitor pick-up or drop-off (max. 15 minutes) and accessible parking are permitted in the Upper Yard. The parking area in the Koli Harbour can also be used. In winter, there are lay-bys (and not actual parking spaces) on the Rantatie and Kotaniementie roads, where you can park your car at your own risk for the length of your hike. The parking area for the Ukko-Koli ski slopes is located along Rantatie Road by the Rinnetupa hut.
  • Road network: In winter, the Rantatie Road at Koli may be in a poor condition particularly at the stretch Sikoniemi - Vesivaara. Alternative routes are recommended.
  • You can walk, ski or snowshoe along the maintenance routes. They have been made for Metsähallitus' maintenance personnel, so they are not otherwise maintained. There is more information on the maintenance routes on the What is New page.
  • The following campfire sites are maintained in winter: the Vaaralanaho, Ikolanaho. The "Prime Minister" campfire site does not keep firewood. You may bring your own firewood or purchase some at the Nature Centre or hotel.

Four hikers grilling sausages at a fireplace in winter.

Walking Routes

 

Ukko-Koli, back-and-forth trail, length 0.8 km

Walking symbol.  Access to the nature center symbol. WC at the nature center symbol. Parking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Hotel symbol. Restaurant symbol. Café symbol. Campfire place symbol. Program service cabin symbol.

Travel time 0.5h.

Ukko-Koli provides visitors with a view of Finland's most famous national landscape, which is spectacular also in the winter time.

A view of wintry forests and frozen lake Pielinen seen from Ukko-Koli.

Starting Point
Address: Koli Nature Centre Ukko Upper Yard, Ylä-Kolintie 39, Koli

Coordinates: WGS84 - lat: 63° 05.5292' lon: 29° 47.9326', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6998935 I: 641290

Services
Koli Nature Centre Ukko and other Upper Yard services.

Hiking Structures
The "Prime Minister" campfire site does not keep firewood. You may bring your own firewood or purchase some at the Nature Centre or hotel. 

Sights
Ukko-Koli offers a magnificent view of Finland's national landscape. In the winter, visitors to the summit can admire the forest landscape adorned with sparkling crown snow formations.

Route Description

A winter trail to the peak of Ukko-Koli Hill starts from crossroad no. 11 by the radio mast. The trail loosely follows the summer trail. The trail rises gently up the spruce-covered slope. From crossroad no. 12 and 13, carry on to the left. Some parts of the trail are also used by snowshoers. Follow the same route back. The stairs leading up Ukko-Koli Hill are not maintained in the winter, so they may be extremely icy. Their use in the winter is not recommended. 

Please Note
The trail is compacted in the winter, but is not otherwise maintained - please be careful! Slopes can be extremely slippery. We recommend using, for example, trekking poles, studded shoes or snowshoes. 

  

Cross-country Skiing Trails

The national park and its vicinity boast more than 80 km of maintained cross-country ski trails. Printing ski track maps showing the location, skill level and length of different tracks as well as the location of cafés and campfire sites may be purchased from most businesses in the Koli area. Tracks are maintained by Kolin Latupooli. For additional information on Koli ski tracks (koli.fi)  or follow the maintenance of the track network in real-time at koli.fluentprogress.fi (In Finnish). You can enquire about the condition of tracks directly from Koli Tourist Information (koli.fi). Track feedback can be submitted to Koli Tourist Information (info(at)koli.fi) and Koli Nature Centre Ukko (ukko(at)koli).

Please Note
For safety reasons, skiers are requested to keep to the maintained ski trails particularly in the area of the Koli peaks.

    

The Hillyskiing trails of the Koli National Park, 3 and 7 km Circle Trails

Ski cross-country on maintained trails symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Campfire place symbol. Ikolanaho rental hut symbol. Parking symbol.

The ski trails are unlit.
The 3-km ski trail is not demanding and suited mainly for classical cross-country skiing. The 7-km ski trail is demanding because of the steep ascents and descents. 

The hillyskiing trails of the National Park offer tranquil forest landscapes and exhilarating speed to beginners as well as more experienced skiers. 

A skiing trail in a wintry deciduous forest.

Starting Point
Ukko-Koli at the number 2 parking area (P2)

Coordinates: WGS84 - lat: 63° 05.6697' lon: 29° 48.2411', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6999207 I: 64153

Service
Koli Nature Centre Ukko and other Upper Yard services are located at Nature Centre Ukko's Upper Yard, i.e., just a railcar ride away from the parking area. 

Hiking Structures
It is possible to light a campfire at the Ikolanaho campfire site. At Ikolanaho, the Ikolanaho Rental Hut is also in winter use. The hut can be reserved online (verkkokauppa.eraluvat.fi) or from Koli Nature Centre Ukko

Sights
Both ski trails run by the Mäkränaho clearing, resting in the wintry silence, and the snowy boulder fields of Paimenenvaara Hill. On the 7-km ski trail, you can admire the views opening out from Mäkrävaara Hill and the idyllic red hut of Ikolanaho. 

Route Description
The ski direction is marked on the ski map. 

The 3-km ski trail loosely follows, until Mäkränaho, the corresponding summer trail and returns to P2 by the side of Paimenenvaara Hill, passing Paimenenlampi. This 7-km ski trail branches off from the 3-km ski trail at Mäkränaho, where it then ascends to Mäkrävaara Hill. Returning via Ikolanaho, the 7-km ski trail joins the 3-km ski trail again by the side of Paimenenvaara Hill.

Connection
From the hill ski trail, there is a connecting ski trail to the lit Loma-Koli - Kopravaara ski trail.

The Loma-Koli - Kopravaara, a lit ski trail, 22 km

Ski cross-country on maintained trails symbol.

Trail is lit and suited for both classical and free-style cross-country skiing. The trail can be skied in both directions.
The trail has demanding and semi demanding parts.

The lit ski trail of Koli is one of the longest lit trails in Finland. Whatever style you prefer, here you can enjoy skiing from the first snowfall until late winter!

Two skiers on a skiing trail.

Starting Points
Kopravaara, Jero, Leppäsärkkä (Ylä-Kolintie Road 16), the village of Koli and Loma-Koli.

Coordinates of the Kopravaara: WGS84 - lat: 63° 02.4184' lon: 29° 42.7460, ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6992975 I: 637172

Coordinates of the Jero: WGS84 - lat: 63° 05.8783' lon: 29° 47.2288' , ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6999557 I: 640670

Coordinates of the Leppäsärkkä: WGS84 - lat: 63° 06.1161' lon: 29° 47.0303', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6999991 I: 640484

Coordinates of the village of Koli: WGS84 - lat: 63° 06.8180' lon: 29° 46.7406', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 7001283 I: 640184

Coordinates of the Loma-Koli: WGS84 - lat: 63° 08.8582' lon: 29° 49.7380', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 7005179 I: 642536

Services
Services available at Koli Freetime (kolifreetime.fi) at Kopravaara, Kolikeskus (kolikeskus.fi) at Loma-Koli and Koli village. From the lit ski trail, there is a connecting ski trail to the services of Koli Nature Centre Ukko and other Upper Yard services.

Hiking Structures
The campfire sites: Napakallio and Sutka lean-to shelter and Ursa ‘kota' hut. 

Connection
There are several connecting ski trails, which can be found on the ski map (koli.fluentprogress.fi, in Finnish).

A child on a skiing trail.

Cross-country skiing Events

At Koli, there are two major cross-country skiing events: Maisemahiihto and the Wolverine Skiing Event, for which additional ski trails are opened. After these events, some of the extra ski trails are used until the end of the ski season. 

Snowshoeing Trails

On snowshoe, you can access the places in the national park which would otherwise be difficult or challenging to reach. Independent snowshoe excursions to the Tarhapuro Waterfall, Lakkala, Mäkrävaara Hill or Vesivaara Hill are wonderfully inspiring. There is up-to-date information on the snowshoeing trails on the What is New page.

Snowshoeing trail on the Koli peaks, 1.5 km Circle Trail

Snowshoeing symbol.  Access to the nature center symbol. WC at the nature center symbol. Parking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Hotel symbol. Restaurant symbol. Café symbol. Campfire place symobl. Recycling symbol. Program service cabin symbol.

Take in the most fantastic Koli landscapes, and admire the icy vastness of Lake Pielinen below or the snowy trees glowing in the sunset.

Four snowshoers on the Huippujen kierros trail, with wintry forest in the background.

Starting Point
Address: Koli Nature Centre Ukko Upper Yard, crossroad no. 11 behind the Nature Centre, Ylä-Kolintie 39, Koli

Coordinates: WGS84 - lat: 63° 05.5292' lon: 29° 47.9326', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6998935 I: 641290

Services
Koli Nature Centre Ukko and other Upper Yard services.

Sights
The national landscape and the Ukko-Koli, Akka-Koli and Paha-Koli Hills.

A view of wintry forests seen from Akka-Koli on a sunny day.

Route Description
Route markings: orange

The trail has been marked in the terrain with orange ribbons. The circular trail descends to the western hill slope and ascends to Akka-Koli Hill and from there it continues towards Mäkränaho and turns towards Lake Pielinen before the end of the summit area. The trail passes by Paha-Koli Hill and returns, via the peaks of Ukko-Koli, to crossroad no. 11. The trail may only be walked on snowshoes. 

Click here to view the Snowshoeing Trail of the Tops brochure (julkaisut.metsa.fi).

The Koli peaks - the village of Koli, 3 km in one direction

Snowshoeing symbol.  Access to the nature center symbol. WC at the nature center symbol. Parking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Hotel symbol. Restaurant symbol. Café symbol. Campfire place symbol. Recycling symbol. Program service cabin symbol.

Get a sense of the history of Koli during a hike from the Koli summit through old courtyards to the Koli village.

A skiing trail at Vaaralanaho.

Starting Points
The village of Koli and Koli Nature Centre Ukko Upper Yard

Coordinates of the village of Koli: WGS84 - lat: 63° 06.8180' lon: 29° 46.7406', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 7001283 I: 640184

Coordinates of the Koli Nature Centre Ukko Upper Yard: WGS84 - lat: 63° 05.5292' lon: 29° 47.9326', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6998935 I: 641290

Services
Koli Nature Centre Ukko and other Upper Yard services and Koli village services.

Hiking Structures
There is a campfire site on the trail at Vaaralanaho (1.2 km from Ukko's Upper Yard), which is also maintained in winter. 

Sights
The old farmyards of Turula and Ollila fascinate in all seasons. The restored Mattila is manor-like, which is rare in the area. Learn more about Koli sights

Route Description
Koli Peaks village, a 3 km snowshoeing trail runs through Vaaralanaho and Mattila to Koli village.

The Snowshoeing trail from Ukko-Koli Hill onto the Shores of Lake Pielinen, approx. 2 km / in one direction

Snowshoeing symbol.  Access to the nature center symbol. WC at the nature center symbol. Parking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Hotel symbol. Restaurant symbol. Café symbol. Campfire place symbol. Recycling symbol. Program service cabin symbol.

Travel through the light birch groves and dark spruce thickets of the Ipatti Hill to the shores of the ice-covered Lake Pielinen.

Frozen lake Pielinen seen from the Koli harbor with forest in the background.

Starting Point
Address: Koli Nature Centre Ukko Upper Yard, crossroad no. 11 behind the Nature Centre, Ylä-Kolintie 39, Koli

Coordinates: WGS84 - lat: 63° 05.5292' lon: 29° 47.9326', ETRS-TM35FIN - P: 6998935 I: 641290

Services
Koli Nature Centre Ukko and other Upper Yard services. Services available at Koli Harbour (koliactive.com) and Rinnetupa (koliski.fi)

Hiking Structures
The Vaaralanaho, Koli Harbour and Rinnetupa campfire sites.

Sights
Old-growth forest, Vaaralanaho and Lake Pielinen.

Route Description
The trail follows the summer trail through Vaaralanaho to the Koli Harbour. Most of the first part of the trail is bright birch forest. The Vaaralanho campfire site (1.2 km) may also be used in the winter. From Vaaralanaho, the trail enters an old-growth spruce forest, passing by the ruins at Alamaja on the way to the harbour. If the ice conditions permit, you may snowshoe from the harbour along the shoreline up to Rinnetupa, from which you can take a ski lift (fee charged) back to Ukko-Koli. A single-ride lift pass can be purchased at Rinnetupa (koliski.fi). Here, the distance to be walked by snowshoe is approximately 4 km (half of which is walked on ice); return by ski lift - 0.7 km. 

Downhill Skiing

Downhill skiing symbol.  Access to the nature center symbol. WC at the nature center symbol. Parking symbol. Sightseeing symbol. Hotel symbol. Restaurant symbol. Café symbol. Campfire place symbol. Recycling symbol. Program service cabin symbol.

The Ukko-Koli ski slopes (koli.fi) are located in Koli National Park in the vicinity of the Koli peaks.

A snowboarder on a slope on a sunny day.

Starting Point
The downhill ski resort parking area, equipment rental and ticket sales are located at Rinnetupa (koliski.fi) just off Kolin Rantatie. 

Please Note
For safety reasons, downhill skiing is prohibited outside the Ukko-Koli slope areas on the Koli peaks. 

Services
Services available at Koli Nature Centre Ukko and other services found at the Upper Yard and Rinnetupa (koliski.fi)

Hiking Structures
Rinnetupa campfire sites.

Riding Trails

Riding symbol.

You can visit the national park's cultural landscape on horseback in winter as well. Further information is available at the Paimentupa farmhouse (en.paimentupa.fi).

A group of horseback riders in the snow with leafless birch trees in the background.

Snowmobile Routes

Snowmobiling symbol.

In Koli National Park, snowmobiling is prohibited, including the islands. The snowmobile route runs outside Koli National Park from Ahmovaara (via the village of Koli) onto Lake Pielinen, passing by Koli Harbour and Hiekkasaaret Islands. By Koli Harbour and the Rinnetupa hut, snowmobiles can be parked on the ice. From Koli, the snowmobile route further continues to Juuka and Nurmes, Lieksa and finally to Eno and Joensuu.

Parking Areas

Ukko-Koli P1 and P2

  • Ylä-Kolintie 31, Lieksa

Other parking areas

Trail Brochures of Koli National Park - winter


Snowshoeing Trail on the Koli Peaks (pdf, 810 Kb, julkaisut.metsa.fi)

A hand holding a mobile phone showing Excursionmap.fi. Open the map of Koli National Park in Excursionmap.fi.