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Nuuksio National Park


Conifers & Lakes


Nuuksio logo The landscape of Nuuksio National Park is classically Finnish: numerous lakes dot the landscape, all of which are completely engulfed by conifer forests (Division: Pinophyta). These forests, which top the gentle glacier-carved hills, are cool and damp and are mostly made up of evergreen spruce (Picea sp.) and pine (Pinus sp.), both of which are well-adapted to the cold climate--they are more resistant to freezing than most trees, and their conical shape also helps them shed snow. The dominant tree however, is Norway spruce (Picea abies), the cones of which you will find scattered around the park. The adorable Siberian Flying Squirrel (Pteromys volans), which can be seen on the official park emblem, can also be found here; but the fact that it is nocturnal, makes it a very difficult creature to spot.

When it comes to the lakes, Mustalampi is definitely one of the highlights. The turf floats (that can be seen in the first half of the video above) initially detached several decades ago when the water level of the lake rose after the dam was built. They are now not only a unique sight, but also home to nesting gulls (Larus canus). The gulls flit around the lake amidst a cacophony of squeals and squeaks, whilst common cranes (Grus grus) silently fly across the lake higher above. This lake is one of the most popular lakes in Nuuksio as it is easily accessible, and was where I started the two looped trails--Korpinkierros and Haukankierros.

The turf floats of Lake Mustalampi

Getting There

The easiest way to get to Nuuksio National Park using public transport is to take one of the commuter trains (S, U, E or L) to Espoo Station from the Central Railway Station in Helsinki. From Espoo Station, you can catch bus number 85, 85A, or 245 for the journey of half an hour or so. You can either disembark at Haukkalammentie and join the trail to head west, or stop at the Solvalla Sports Institute and hike up the access trail for approximately two kilometres to get to the trailhead. You can also stop at Nuuksionpää and walk south to the trailhead from there. Here are two detailed maps that should help you to find your way: Map 1 & Map 2.

Getting to Nuuksio National Park from the Espoo station

Useful Numbers
Nuuksio Customer Service +358 401 63 6200

National Parks +358 205 64 4790

Solvalla Sports Institute +358 986 78 430

Greenwindow +358 985 52 559

The Lakes of Nuuksio

(hovering your cursor over the image below will reveal the names of the lakes)

The trail head is located on the left side of the road opposite the Nuuksio Reindeer park. The trail makes its way into the forest and on to wooden planks that cross waterlogged terrain. Following the orange and black trail markers will bring you to a stairwell that descends to the shore of the 'Nuuksion Pitkäjärvi' lake, before swinging northwards. The trail then meets the Haukkalammentie road which eventually ends up at a carpark and the Tourist Information Centre. If you are driving, this road can be accessed from a turn-off at the Nuuksiontie main road.

Nuuksio's reindeers

Nuuksio's reindeers (Rangifer tarandus)


Facilities


Nuuksio National Park has a total of twelve free camp sites. These camp sites come fully equipped with dry toilets, fire pits for cooking, campfire areas, as well as shelters that contain both firewood and axes to split them. I decided to spend my first night at the Mustalampi campsite, which had a fairly large campground and wide open swaths of space amongst the rocks. The campsite also had great views of both the lake and its turf floats.

Nuuksio signeage

Clear signage; one of the many dry toilets

Nuuksio Conifers

Nuuksio's Conifers

Next : Nuuksio (Part 2): Korpinkierros Trail