Tips for hiking in the spring season

(Updated 11th of April 2023)

  • Familiarize yourself with The Outdoor Guide to Finland’s National Parks. You can find basic information, gear lists, safety tips, and destination suggestions for winter hikes. Read Outdoor Etiquette and also check the Instructions and rules in the Petkeljärvi National Park before heading out on your hike.
  • There is no winter maintenance on the trails in Petkeljärvi National Park. At spring, the best time for hiking on the clean snow with snowshoes or cross-country skis is in the morning and early afternoon when the snow is firmest after the overnight frost. The snow crust usually softens during the day. Check the weather and snow conditions ( Also, get to know our partner's equipment rental options.
  • For winter and spring hikers, the most important thing is to stay warm and have enough energy. Layered clothing in sufficiently loose garments is a good start. Warm food and drinks help hikers stay warm. Be prepared for the hike with enough drinking water and energy-rich snacks.
  • Ensure the safety of your hike. Always check the warnings in advance ( The National Park may have some areas where the phone connection can be bad. Download the 112 Finland application ( 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.
  • Remember the snow and ice safety in the spring. Moving on ice and in the terrain is always the hiker's responsibility. Ice claws are basic safety equipment for those moving on ice. Danger spots include narrow parts of lakes, rivers, river and stream estuaries, shorelines with steep drops into the water, areas with underwater springs in the lake, and the vicinity of underwater rocks. Flowing water weakens the ice. In particular, at the ends and intervals of islands, there may be places of water flow, and the ice may be weaker in places. The load-bearing capacity of the ice also weakens at crack sites, and the reeds make the ice porous and fragile.
  • Check which parking areas are available in winter. The road to Petkeljärvi Center is maintained and the yard can be used as a start of the excursion. Note that there may be delays in plowing, and in the spring during the melting season, unpaved roads can be very challenging to drive and travel on. Winter and spring hikers should have good studded tires. You can also pack snow chains, a shovel, and a small bag of grit to your car, for icy or snow-covered roads.

News from Petkeljärvi

Check for Warnings

When forest and grass fire warnings ( 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.

Tips for Outdoors

Two people are looking at the map by the table.
Outdoor Guide: Safety