The Herajärvi trail
If you want to spend several days hiking, take the Lake Herajärvi Trail. It is a trail of 30 – 61 kilometres, traversing the National Park and the Lake Herajärvi valley. The trail runs through diverse terrain, from groves replete with the rippling of brooks to barren rocky lookout points and wooded hills.
The Lake Herajärvi Trail is a journey into the Koli national landscape. The trail runs over wooded hills via the best lookout points. The diverse nature of Koli and all North Karelia is present at every step. The Lake Herajärvi Trail goes round Lake Herajärvi and through the Koli National Park. It consists of two circular trails, giving you a choice of a 61-kilometre, 35-kilometre, or 30-kilometre trail to journey. It is open to hikers during the snow-free season.
This trail offers an unforgettable experience for the seasoned hiker as well as the culture-hungry visitor and the nature lover. The rocky hilltops, shady groves, and cultural landscapes add interest and variety to the trail. Hikers can stop at old farmyards, open fields, or burn-beaten birch forests for a taste of local history. Due to the great differences in altitude, the trail is rather demanding, but if it’s not challenging enough for you, just go faster!
Along the full 61-kilometre option of the Lake Herajärvi Trail, 300 metres away from the Rykiniemi camp-fire spot, there is a wading cable to enable you to cross the 15-metre-wide Herajoki River. By means of the cable, crossing the river goes easily in times of low water. Just be brave, take off your shoes, roll up your trouser legs, and cool off your toes in the river! Choose a wading rope that is the right length for you and calmly wade over to the other side; it pays to walk carefully, for there are rocks at the bottom that may be slippery. Only one person at a time is allowed to use the wading cable. Before crossing, remember to open the hip belt and the chest strap of your backpack so as to avoid a hazard in case you stumble. After the crossing, the group leader must return some of the wading ropes to the other side to ensure that there are enough ropes on both sides of the river.