Olkkajärvi hiking trail

The Olkkajärvi Hiking Trail is in Vikajärvi, 20.9 km from Rovaniemi toward Sodankylä. It is part of the Arctic Circle hiking area, a wilderness destination ideal for year-round outdoor recreation. The landscape's signature features are the rugged hills, open water-logged string bogs and Raudanjoki with its spectacular rapids and lush shoreline forest. The hiking area has a diverse network of trails with resting places.

The beginning of the trail is easy, partially covered with duckboards. Follow the signposts of the Wetland Trail, from which the Olkkajärvi Hiking Trail branches off around 200 m east of the bird-watching tower. The rest of the trail is almost 9 km long, and there are no duckboards even at wet spots.

After separating from the Wetland Trail, the Olkkajärvi Hiking Trail climbs up the low-gradient hillside of Rantakivalo. At times, the terrain is wet, wooded mire, and the upward climb follows the edge of a hillside bog. The trail continues along a rocky ridge toward the top of the hill Rantakivalo and then turns down toward Korvanaapa.

Close to Korvanaapa, the trail continues for around 1 km in a strip of forest at the edge of a bog and crosses a snowmobile trail. Near the crossing, there is a spring next to the bog. The trail crosses the Korvanaapa bog, which is watery at points, via a patch of forest. Then it climbs a steep hill to the top of Korvavaara and descends on the side of Olkkajärvi along a spruce-growing gorge where the trail continues along a cart path toward the northern end of the pond Korvalampi, crossing a small stream on the way. The end of the trail crosses bogs and dry coniferous forests to the lean-to on the shore of Olkkajärvi. The trail is only recommended for hiking in the summer. The one-way length of this difficult trail is 10.4 km.

There are lean-tos equipped with campfire sites, woodsheds and outhouses in Karhukumpu near the starting point of the hiking trail, at Säynäjäoja along the Wetland Trail, and at the end of the trail by Olkkajärvi.

Directions: drive 22.1 km out of Rovaniemi along Sodankyläntie; turn right on Vaattunkikönkääntie; drive 2.1 km to the parking area at the end of the road. In the beginning, the Olkkajärvi Hiking Trail follows the Könkäiden Trail, then separates after 1.6 km to the right, following the Wetland Trail. Then it separates from the Wetland Trail 200 m to the east of the bird-watching tower. There is no clear trail in terrain, but you can keep course by following the orange paint markings. The Arctic Circle hiking area is also accessible by bus along Sodankyläntie, 2.1 km from the Vaattunkiköngäs parking area along Vaattunkikönkääntie. The Vikaköngäs parking area is located in the vicinity of Sodankyläntie.

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