Hiking Surkansuo

Surkansuo is a mire area in the very beautiful Patvinsuo Nationalpark of Eastern Finland. There are three major circular hikes in the area of Patvinsuo Nationalpark, all of them are highly recommended to be seen! Coming to the park I recommend to spend the night in a tent in the visitors area (see other blog post of mine) and split the three hikes over two days. But back to Surkansuo. It is a few kilometers away from the visitor center. At the trail head you will find a parking area and a very wellmade information plate. Have a look at it and take a picture so you have an overview of the hike while you walk.


The map shows you the circular hiking trail. Most of it is leading over wooden duckboards. Olet tässä, the small marker on the left bottom, locates your position standing in front of the information board. It is the trail head.


Luontopolku means nature trail in Finnish. We follow the sign.


As written, much of the trail is covered with wooden duckboards. If you wonder why, just have a look at the following photo.


Most of the area is mire, that means walking off the trail makes you sink. Also of course the nature has to be protected. Finland has a harsh climate as moderate temperatures at which plants can grow are only a short periode each year. Distroyed nature needs much longer to recover compared to warm climate. So people have to take much care to preserve this very beautiful place.


Duckboards seem to reach into infinity.


But at some places they are reaching islands in the mire. Here trees can grow.


In the mire they often struggle and at the end they die forming these monuments of wood given into decay.


The islands are often formed of rocks that were deposite here from glaciers during the iceage. There is so much in the Finnish nature made or shaped by the glaciers in the iceage. It is phantastic.


From the dry islands you will see areas that are something inbetween lake and mire.


In Patvinsuo Nationalpark you are only visitor, but it is home to many animals. The big ones are bears. They hide very well and will notice you much longer before you will notice them and keep distance to you. It is very unlikely to see one, but it is not impossible. I kept my food in the car while sleeping in the tent for security reasons cause I dont trust into that example of anti-bear action…


It is hard to fid an area in Finland not covered by these delicious berries. Also here you will find them. Taste them!


This is the nordic moss. It is very beautiful and grows in many places. Just dont step on it. Like I wrote before, nature is very fragile!



A night in Patvinsuo National Park

Patvinsuo National Park in the far East of Finland offers very beautiful nature scenery on different hiking routes. In the area of the nature center there is a defined enclosed area in which visitors are allowed to pitch their tent. This avoids the destruction of the very sensitive nature and still gives the visitor the feeling of being out in the wild. During my stay it was only me and a Finnish couple staying here. It was fun to stay at the fire and also to do some stargazing.

You can not bring your car to the tents, it is about 200 meters from the parking. Recommendation from me is to leave food and anything smelling like food in the car. In Patvinsuo National Park there can be bears, even though in Finland there are very little amount of bears, I had a better sleep like that. There are these trollies to bring your camping gear to the camping site.


My tent inbetween the trees and dense ground vegetation.

There is a lake not far from the campsite and close to its shore there is a huge picnic area which is part of the campsite. There you will find the fireplace with firewood and several tables with benches.


The weather was great and with the lake there were beautiful reflections.


Sun was setting and time for a nice campfire came…