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Könkäiden Polku trail

  • At the beginning of the trail, Vikaköngäs is crossed safely on a hanging bridge. Photo: AT

    At the beginning of the trail, Vikaköngäs is crossed safely on a hanging bridge. Photo: AT

  • At first, the trail runs in young forest. Photo: AT

    At first, the trail runs in young forest. Photo: AT

  • The Kaltio lean-to is situated at the beginning of the trail. Photo: AT

    The Kaltio lean-to is situated at the beginning of the trail. Photo: AT

  • There is a spring near the Kaltio lean-to. The water quality is not monitored. Photo: AT

    There is a spring near the Kaltio lean-to. The water quality is not monitored. Photo: AT

  • You can admire old forest along the trail. Photo: AT

    You can admire old forest along the trail. Photo: AT

  • There are large boulders along the trail. Photo: AT

    There are large boulders along the trail. Photo: AT

  • A table and benches are provided next to the observation tower at the top of Vaattunkivaara Hill. Photo: AT

    A table and benches are provided next to the observation tower at the top of Vaattunkivaara Hill. Photo: AT

  • There is a covered observation tower at the top of Vaattunkivaara Hill. Photo: AT

    There is a covered observation tower at the top of Vaattunkivaara Hill. Photo: AT

  • The Vaattunkivaara observation tower offers great views over the area’s water systems, bogs and hills. Photo: AT

    The Vaattunkivaara observation tower offers great views over the area’s water systems, bogs and hills. Photo: AT

  • Vaattunkivaara hill-top forest Photo: AT

    Vaattunkivaara hill-top forest Photo: AT

  • You can see old traces of forest fire along the trail. Photo: AT

    You can see old traces of forest fire along the trail. Photo: AT

  • The trail crosses over a stream flowing to the Vaattunkilampi Pond. Photo: AT

    The trail crosses over a stream flowing to the Vaattunkilampi Pond. Photo: AT

  • There are a couple of rest benches on the open bog for hikers. Photo: AT

    There are a couple of rest benches on the open bog for hikers. Photo: AT

  • A dragonfly on duckboards Photo: AT

    A dragonfly on duckboards Photo: AT

  • Könkäiden Polku trail Photo: AT

    Könkäiden Polku trail Photo: AT

Könkäiden Polku trail

The Könkäiden Trail is located in Vikajärvi, 24.7 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 rugged hills, open string bogs, and Raudanjoki with its spectacular rapids and lush shoreline forest. The hiking area’s trail network is diverse and has several resting places, offering visitors of all ages a variety of hiking destinations. It is easy to access at all times of the year.

The Könkäiden Trail is well-equipped, and it connects two of the most impressive rapids of Raudanjoki – Vikaköngäs and Vaattunkiköngäs. When you start at Vikaköngäs, the trail passes on top of Vaattunkivaara, or Vaattunki Hill, then follows the southern riverside of Raudanjoki and leads you through the exotic Vianaapa Bog to the gorgeous Könkäänsaaret Islands with especially diverse and lush nature.

The trail is mostly duckboarded, so hiking is easy. The most demanding section is the climb to the Vaattunkivaara. The difference in altitude totals 80 m, so you do need to be somewhat physically fit to make it to the top. In addition, the trail is rocky in places on the hill and can be slippery when it rains. When the snow melts in the spring, Raudanjoki may flood the Könkäiden Trail at Vaattunkilampi.

Besides hiking, the trail is suitable for cross-country skiing (no maintained ski trails) and snowshoeing in the winter. Beautiful sights along the trail include: rapids, Vaattunkivaara, the Vaattunkilampi pond, Vianaapa bog, and the Könkäänsaaret islands. The one-way length of the linear main trail is 10.4 km, and the round trip of the path from the main trail to the Ukkoharri lean-to is 390 m. The difficulty level is medium.

There are several resting places along the Könkäiden Trail: Vaattunkivaara features the Kaltio lean-to, a campfire site, an outhouse, and a spring. At the end of the Kivalonaapa Meadow Culture trail, you will find a day-trip cabin, a campfire site, a woodshed and outhouse. There are also lean-tos, campfire sites, woodsheds and outhouses on the shore of the Vaattunkilampi, in Karhukumpu, and on the Könkäänsaaret Island.

Directions: drive 25.6 km out of Rovaniemi along Sodankyläntie to Vikajärvi; turn right into the Vikaköngäs parking area (200 m); cross the suspension bridge, following the Könkäiden Trail signposts. The Arctic Circle Hiking Area is also accessible by bus along Sodankyläntie. The Vaattunkiköngäs parking area is about 2.1 km from Sodankyläntie along Vaattunkikönkääntie. The Vikaköngäs parking area is close to Sodankyläntie.

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Information

  • Length: 9.66 km
  • Difficulty level: Intermediate trail Intermediate trail
  • Time: 5 h
  • Viewed: 6353
  • Latitude: 66.6188466096864
  • Longitude: 26.1838164613206

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