Utsjoki, Finland (14 km)
Route description: This picturesque route takes the trekker through downy birch forests and up to the breathtaking sceneries of the Utsjoki fjelds (mountains). The route starts at the foot of Annagurra hill. It goes over Johtalanvaara hill to the top of Vuolleseavttetvarri fjeld, along the side of Härkävaara down to the church, and onwards to Nammajavvri campsite in the Paistunturi wilderness area.
There are 15 info posters spread around the route. They provide the natural history story of the universe staring from today and ending in the ancient past. In addition, they provide insights into local sami mythology and culture.
The offroad path is easy for a person of average fittness, although the rocky path has both uphill and downhill portions. At roughly 9 km mark there is a river crossing (ford) that is easily navigated by taking use of pre-prepared wires. There are also other wet parts along the route, so remember to use proper waterproof trekking shoes!
The Arctic Time Trek is easily paused on three different campfire sites along the way. The route can also be easily divided into two shorter parts: the first part takes you from the sami high school to the church (ca. 8 km), and the second part from the church to the Nammajavrri campsite (5 km). Note that you need to return from Nammajavrri back to Utsjoentie. Alternatively, you can continue onwards to the Paistunturi wilderness area and go through the entire 34 km Kuoppilasjärvi trekking route.
Guided treks: Guided treks by experts are available for booking on this route. A thorough guided tour takes the whole day. Inquire about time tables and book your Arctic Time Trek now!
Arrival: The route starts at the alkaa Utsjoki high school ca. 1.8 km from the municipality centre (map: Karttapaikka, GoogleMaps), takes a turn near the church (Karttapaikka, GoogleMaps) and ends at the Námmájavvrit in the Paistunturi wilderness area (Karttapaikka, GoogleMaps). Utsjoki can be reached by regular bus lines from e.g., Rovaniemi (see Matkahuolto pages for time tables). Remember to organise local transport for yourself to the school and to/from the church, if needed.
Accessibility: Only the starting information signs next to the schoolyard are accessible. The rest of the route requires walking in uneven and partly stony ground.
Partners: Produced in cooperation with the the astronomical association Ochejoga Utsjoen Ursa, Lapland Parks & Wildlife Finland of Metsähallitus (Finnishforestry administration), Kevo subarctic research institute of the University of Turku, and the schools in Utsjoki. The Summer High School association is a partner in practical teaching activities along the route.
Trekker comments and pictures:
- Apr 24th 2020: Studio Borga (Facebook)
- Oct 9th 2019: Arktinen Aikavaellus – Utsjoelle valmistuva luontopolku (YouTube)