Although the route near the top of Kukastunturi is marked as black (difficult), it is worth a visit if you are an more experienced skier. The suggested route is to go to Kotamaja ski hut first (and have a coffee break) and then reach the top from there. The first part of the route down can get pretty fast and has a challenging curve at the track after about 600 m from the top.
The other fell top is Iso Totovaara fell, the point called Haavepalo. It offers a view to the same fells as Kukastunturi, this time to their eastern side. Haavepalo is located a bit farther away from the villages of Ylläsjärvi and Äkäslompolo, the easiest way to reach the track of 22 kilometers is to drive to the parking place near Lainio River. From the villages the route can get to about 40 kilometers long.
Along the route there are two ski huts with outside fire places and shelter for breaks.
There is almost all time some wind at fell tops, the conditions can be very different what they are down at the village. That means also that signs of tracks might be swept away, so at least some orienteering skills might be needed if the area is not familiar. Both routes can be reached by skating style skis also.
Get your printed ski map from local stores and check the maintenance of tracks before going. Both fell tops are among the most special places in Ylläs area by x-country skis. The maintained ski tracks to fell tops are a luxury, thanks to those who keep them available and in good condition.
At the end of March I visited Syöte national park area in the northern Finland. One of the best skiing routes I skied there was the route around Romevaara hill. At the early evening skiing trip I spotted only a couple of other skiers – the major flock of Easter holiday tourists had not yet arrived, and Syöte area seemed to be more popular among down hill skiers.
Plenty of snow at the top of the hill.
A view from the hill to Iso-Syöte fell.
Near the top the trees were still covered with lots of snow.
Suddenly in the second week of February a lot of new snow arrived in southern Finland. To practice my skills with Altai skis I decided to go to Kaitalampi area in Espoo which offers nice hills of different heights. Kaitalampi is close to the Nuuksio national park.
The forest was very beautiful, one can not imagine being so close to the coast.
Going up the hill with Altai skis is almost as easy as with snowshoes.
Kaitalampi area around the lake is indeed quite hilly. This hill was beyond my skills.
Pine tree branches reach to the ground and offer temporary shelter for those small enough.
Crossing the lake. It keeps snowing. There are three fire sites on the shores of this small lake.
It was a peaceful Saturday, met or spotted only a few snowshoeists, skiers or walkers. Usually this “under a kilometer from the closest road” -place is quite popular.
In March you can visit Nuuksio national park in southern Finland by walking, skiing or snowshoeing. There are no maintained ski tracks but you can ski on lakes if the ice is thick enough. On the marked trails there are usually paths opened by park visitors.
At the end of February the weather was just perfect for skiing. The sun was shining, it had snowed a little in the previous night and it was just -4C. This time I went to Luukki recreation area, just 20 kilometers north of Helsinki. A nice forest ski track follows the 8,5 km long nature trail, leaving from north of Vihti road, going counterclockwise and coming back past small lakes of Halkolampi and Kaitalampi.
Half of the ski track is one way and not maintained a lot. There are no room for skate style skiers so it is perfect for enjoying the nature, the forest and old style skiing. There are a lot of hills and skiing up and down, trees are close to tracks and speed can get quite fast going down so you must have some basic or moderate skiing technique to enjoy the route.
Along the route there are four fire sites, all of them on the western side of the route; lake Väärälampi, two on lake Halkolampi and on lake Kaitalampi.
There are also two other ski tracks in the area, 3 km field track and 3 km track on the golf course which are two way tracks and well maintained. At the weekend there were a lot of people in the area but most of them seemed to be on the maintained tracks since I spotted only a few people on the forest track.