Category Archives: biking

Trailbiking around Melkuttimet

Clear waters

The Melkuttimet area in southern Finland is known by trail bikers as a nice place for a day ride, about an hour drive from Helsinki. It is a small area of clear waters of Lake Iso-Melkutin and beautiful pine forests close to the aviation center of Räyskälä. There is a connecting road to Poronpolku Trail which can be combined to your trip.

Around Melkuttimet

The trails of Melkuttimet are connected to larger Ilvesreitti Trail network offering total 200km of trails.

Up that hill

The trails are fairly easy and nice, some more technical paths are on the southern shore of lake Iso-Melkutin.

Some of the best parts of Iso Melkutin

Maybe the most popular photo shoot place is located on the ridge of Tokholmannokka.

Towing glider airplanes

The take-off of glider planes from nearby Räyskälä aviation center brings a touch of urban feeling with some occasional noise also.

Across the stream between Vähä-Melkutin and Iso-Melkutin

Crossing the small stream between lakes Vähä-Melkutin and Iso-Melkutin.

Nice forest roads near Saarijärvi

Easey and nice forest roads near lake Saarijärvi.

Northern shore of Iso-Melkutin

Northern shore of lake Iso-Melkutin offers a nice path close to the lake, passing a popular place for divers to enjoy clear waters of Iso-Melkutin.

Wider trails on the northern shore

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Mountain biking in Syöte trails

End of July is excellent time for mountain biking in Finland. We did
two day tours in Syöte trails. First on Syötteen kierros (Syöte
circular trail) around fell Iso-Syöte followed by Pitämävaaran lenkki
(Pitämävaara trail) around fell Pikku-Syöte. The trails are clearly
marked with pink color and additional sign posts at crossroads.

We recommend starting the Syöte trail at Syöte Visitor Centre and
cycling direction counterclockwise. The trail is 17 km long and
suitable for bikers with some mountain biking experience – most of the
trail is smooth single trail with only a few rocky spots, steep
descends/ascends and duckboards across wetland areas. Start of the
route and end of the route is gravel hiking trail. Select this route
should you only have one day to spend biking.

Flowing single trail on Syöte trail

Flowing single trail on Syöte trail

Scenic views from Pytkynharju ridge at sunset

Scenic views from Pytkynharju ridge at sunset

Duckboards along the route

Duckboards along the route

We recommend starting the Pitämävaara trail at Iso-Syöte Booking
Centre near Safari house and definitely cycling the route clockwise.
Pay attention where the trail starts towards Pikku-Syöte. Be advised
that route requires moderate mountain biking skills due to more
difficult terrain and longer climbs. The start of the route might not
be that gratifying but it gets substantially better near Lake
Kovalampi. After that it’s mostly single trail with extended climb to
top of the fell Pitämävaara. This year the wetland areas were really
wet but mostly covered with duckboards. Your feet might get wet
anyway.

Routes were clearly marked with signposts

Routes were clearly marked with signposts

Broader trail before fell Pitämävaara

Broader trail before fell Pitämävaara

Winding trail to top

Winding trail to top

Without duckboards you would be in trouble

Without duckboards you would be in trouble

Biking is well supported in local hotel with guided tours and bike
rentals (even fat bikes).

Guest post by Team ankle, https://twitter.com/_ankle

Trail cycling in Kylmäluoma hiking area

Kylmäluoma hiking area in the northeastern Finland has very interesting trails for cyclists. You can either follow single tracks along lakes and ponds or take an easier path on snowmobile tracks. There is a longer marked route for cyclists between Kylmäluoma center and Taivalkoski but you can reach great trails starting from Kylmäluoma camping ground.

Kylmäluoma has got about 90 lakes and ponds and is very popular among fishermen. Kylmäluoma camping ground has got good facilities in the middle of pine wood forest and ridges. It’s a good starting point for day rides. The area is full of fire sites by the lakes and ponds.

Kylmäluoma pine ridge

Along the trails there are occasional bog areas. In the autumn the colors are spectacular.

Bog area

If you ride during blueberry time, you can get delicious supplements for your ride snack.

Blueberries by the trail

Single tracks along the lakes are sometimes this easy, followed by rockier parts and lots of tree roots on the trail.

Trail by the Lake Kylmäluoma

If you go further from the camping ground more peaceful places are to be found. This one by lake Kylmäluoma with no other visitors.

Fireplace by the lake Kylmäluoma

It is a reindeer area so you will see a few reindeer by the trails. They usually yield after a moment of curiosity and staring.

Reindeer area

There are trails to nearby areas, used by snowmobiles in winter time. The trails go even to Hossa hiking area, about 55 kilometers away, which is another area for trail biking.

Trails to nearby areas

Near Kylmäluoma camping ground, there are a lot of ponds for fishermen with kilometers of duckboards.

Fishing ponds in Kylmäluoma

A short bicycle ride and Finnish summer weather

The online map of Kansalaisen Karttapaikka is a fine place to study new bike routes while visiting areas not so familiar. I went for a early evening xc biking ride in the deep Eastern Finland. The trail chosen seemed to follow the lake past fields and looked like a trail farmers use when moving from one field to another.

The start looked very nice. Wide, forest road along the pine forest, nice.

The start of the trail

Soon the trail turned to a path following the field, beautiful harebells on the trail.

By the field

Turned into a quite wide weed-covered path following the lake.

Country side trail

The terrain looked just like a perfect place to find… Yes, a cyclist can not resist the call of the chanterelles.

Cyclist gone after chanterelles

The route took back along a very typical gravel road in the Finnish country side.

Gravel road

Of course it would not be a perfect Finnish summer day without a few drops of sudden rain. Meaning it was pouring rain which did not stop until next morning.

Pouring rain

My personal favourites of outdoor photos in 2011

I went through my outdoor pictures taken in 2011 and selected my favourites. There are two pictures that are also on the list of the most viewed of my 2011 flickr pictures (Skiing on sea in Helsinki and Kayaker in Lauttasaari). I selected these purely by my own feelings of the moment the picture was taken and ones that look the best to my eye. Which one is your favourite?

Skiing on sea in Helsinki, January 2011

This was taken near the shore of Lauttasaari in Helsinki at 4pm. Two skiers were just starting their ski trip to the sea. I had a few moments to get the picture while skiers were at the right place to the evening sun.

Skiing on sea in Helsinki

Twilight biking – underpass in Helsinki, November 2011

Unusually warm autumn and biking was still comfortable. I had my camera attached to my bike and when I noticed the blue color of twilight and the yellow light of underpass I just took some picture while cycling through.

Into the twilight - biker's underpass in Helsinki

Helsinki in twilight, November 2011

I was biking at dusk in Helsinki when there were these rare colors of blue and purple on the sea behind bare trees near the shore. I steadied the camera to the handlebar of my bike and took the picture.

Helsinki in November

A view from the ski cafe in Ylläsjärvi, Lapland. December 2011

This is a recent picture from the last days of 2011, taken on my holiday trip to Lapland. The blue colors of kaamos time brings out the peacefulness of the most darkest time of the north.

A view from Ylläsjärvi ski hut in December

Kayaking in Linnansaari national park, July 2011

I spend some time in summer in the lake area. I was kayaking past two small islands on lake Haukivesi. It was a perfect summer day, no wind at all. Sunshine was at the back so I turned and took a picture of the back of my kayak and of those tiny islands.

Linnansaari national park near Vehkaset islands

Kayaker in Lauttasaari, Helsinki. April 2011

As soon the ice melts from the sea the first kayakers are to be found paddling. As a kayaker myself it is always a happy sight as it is a sure sign of approaching spring.

Kayaker near Lauttasaari, Helsinki in April

Snorkeling on lake Keitele, July 2011

This was taken on the summer holiday in the central Finland. It was a fun day of water sports and swimming. I like the way water is formed in the front.

Snorkeling on lake Keitele

Just hop over it step by step, February 2011

I liked those big ice boulders on the shore of Helsinki on a sunny winter day. I asked my friend to pose on the cliff opposite the boulders to give some perspective.

Just hop over step by step

Skating on the sea in Helsinki, February 2011

This was taken at 6:30pm in late February. The light was disappearing fast. There was a sense of approaching spring in the air already though it was still possible to go skating on the sea.

Tour skating, Helsinki

Open water in Helsinki, March 2011

In early March the ice was melting fast. At the moment I took this picture towards the sun there were some people still walking on ice to the right corner of the picture.

Open water by Helsinki shore

Biking to Karhusaari island in Espoo

Karhusaari is just a small piece of land near Länsiväylä, the western way out of Helsinki to Espoo. Though squeezed near the highway there is a fine beach, an old Sinebrychoff mansion and a few paths. The Sinebrychoff mansion is part of the interesting history of family Sinebrychoff, other of two buildings left of their past.

In November 2011 the weather was quite warm, no sign of snow yet. Biking was great.

Strange clouds seen on the way to Karhusaari
Vertical growth
Woodpecker's workplace

A view to the sea
Beach
Beach houses and "Ladder" by David Nash from Wales

Underpass from Karhusaari to Keilaniemi
Diminishing light on the way back

Twilight biking in Helsinki

I did a short biking trip in late October on the shores of Helsinki in Lauttasaari. I was going to take pictures of sunset mainly and not really to bike a long way. The sun was setting quickly. Island of Lauttasaari offers different views to the sea and great spots to shoot the sunset.

Shores of Lauttasaari
Splash
Ships to Tallinn
Sun is setting at 5:30 pm
Churn on the western shore of Lauttasaari
This year's young swans
At 6 pm

Not from Africa but Helsinki