Kammiovuori is a beautiful place of peace and quiet. The mountain enchants visitors with its pristine nature and stunning views over forests and lakes.
When you get to the top of Kammiovuori, you are standing in the second highest spot in Southern Finland. In addition to the beautiful views, the site has a seven-metre high boulder known as Linta, and the Cave of Hiskias where, according to local folklore, a hermit lived in the early 1900s. The majestic red pines and the glimmering lake create an unforgettable experience.
After your ascent and a trek through scenic forest trails, you can have a well-deserved break at the new laavu hut and enjoy a picnic with your companions by a campfire.
Surrounded by Lake Päijänne and over 160 lakelets, Sysmä is a treasure trove of local heritage and summer events. The landscape is home to manor houses dating from the 19th century. At one point the area had over thirty manors; ten of them still survive today. Three manors, which are still occupied by families, regularly open their doors to tourists and private parties.
In addition to its manors, Sysmä is known as a book village - uniquely in the whole of Finland. Named after the Finnish author Kaarlo Sarkia, the early 20th century Villa Sarkia hosts artists including young authors and poets.
The route has some difficult terrain and steep rises and falls. It is also rocky and covered in tree roots in places. Hikers should take extra care in wet weather, as tree roots, stones and leaves can make the path slippery.
Take care when walking along the cliff edge, as there is a risk of falling. Rocks, tree roots and steep slopes make for slow progress, but the views are definitely worth the effort! Despite its challenging terrain, Kammiovuori is also a popular day trip destination for families. The route is accessible during the non-snowy months.
Hikers are advised to bring fire-making equipment and a woodcarving knife. Firewood and an earth closet are available at the laavu. You should also bring water and snacks, as the nearest shops are in Sysmä 27 kilometres away.
The route is demanding and very hilly and rocky in places, and sturdy footwear is recommended. Waterproof footwear is recommended in wet weather, as there can be puddles.
Kammiovuori has always been considered a mystical place. In July 1916, a local newspaper ran an article on a study of the mountain carried out by a doctoral candidate called Ticcander from Åbo Akademi. According to Ticcander, Kammiovuori has at least twelve large caves, and if you throw a stone inside some of the caves, you can hear it falling down a set of steps. Some of the caves appear to have water in the bottom, since they release steam in summer. In winter, the hot steam keeps the vicinity of the caves clear of snow. In February 1786, there were reports of a mild earthquake felt in Sysmä and Hartola with suggestions of volcanic activity at Kammiovuori.
Three kilometres from Kammiovuori, the village of Vintturi has a summer restaurant called Yhden lehmän navetan pubi - "the Single-Cow Shed Pub" - which enjoys cult status and is said to be "in the middle of nowhere". The curious name is matched by the curious size of the pub. The pub is located in an old stone-walled cow shed which used to have space for a single cow. On the terrace, the only noise comes from birds singing in the trees. The cow shed used to belong to the teacher of the adjacent school whose employment benefits included a single dairy cow. The school was eventually closed and the building became a boarding house, and in 1995 someone had the idea to turn the cow shed into a pub.
The village of Vintturi has a guest pier for visitors arriving by boat. Jazz fans who visit in early August are in for a treat with the VintturiJazz festival, which is held at the Nuorisoseurantalo village hall.
Hikers can walk from Kammiovuori to Purnuvuori in Hartola, but please note that the route is not signposted. A cycle route from Helsinki to Jyväskylä takes in Sysmä - if you're passing, why not make a trip to Kammiovuori?
The Kirjakyläpäivät event in July sees the Sysmä market square turn into a trading place for old books. Also in July, the local manors, cowsheds, churches and concert halls host the Sysmän Suvisoitto festival of classical and popular music.
On the last Saturday of July each year, the Uotinpäivä market brings some 300 traders to Sysmä from around the country. Uotinpäivä - Uoti's Day - is a celebration of Norwegian Viking king Olaf after whom the beautiful St Olaf's Church (Pyhän Olavin kirkko) in Sysmä has been named. Uoti is a local dialect version of the name Olaf.
The starting point can be reached by car. From Sysmä, take road no. 612 and drive for 24 km towards Luhanka, take a right onto Vintturintie and drive a further 2 km. Take a left onto Nutturintie and drive for another kilometre to the Kammiovuori car park.
The car park at Kammiovuori is in close vicinity of the starting point.