Väliväylä is known as an old log floating route connecting Lake Saimaa and Kymijoki River. Route is characterized by narrow lakes and rivers following each other and displaying a variety of beautiful views on the way. It is the southernmost watercourse of Finnish Lakeland with a colorful history of log floating and Finnish industrialization. Here you can experience one of the cleanest watercourses in Southern Finland with several rest spots and services along the route.
- Duration: about 4-8 days
- Suitability: Suitable also for beginners and families. There are a few easy rapids along the route.
PARTS OF THE ROUTE
1. Myllysaari – Tervankeittoniemi 8 km
2. Tervankeittoniemi – Saisaari 6 km
3. Saisaari – Kähö 12 km
4. Kähö – UiriNniemi 9 km
5. Uirinniemi – Kotkatsaarensuo 12 km
6. Kotkatsaarensuo – Parkunlahti 8 km
7. Lemi – Iso Rapasalo 14 km
8. Parkunlahti – Parkkisaari 8 km
9. Parkkisaari – Huopaisenvirta 8 km
10. Huopaisenvirta – Ämmänniemi 6,5 km
11. Ämmänniemi – Tuohiainen 11,5 km
12. Tuohiainen – Kannuskoski 10,5 km
13. Kannuskoski – Pyötsiä 9 km
14. Pyötsiä – Tirvanjärvi 9 km
15. Tirvanjärvi – Miettula 12 km
16. Miettula – Lappalanjärvi 14 km
17. Lappalanjärvi – Kuusaanlampi 12 km
The section between Lake Saimaa and Kannuskoski consists of beautiful lakes and short slow moving rivers. From Kannuskoski to Kouvola the route is dominated by river with few smaller lakes. After Kannuskoski the current is getting faster with some rapids on the way.
FROM LAKE SAIMAA TO KANNUSKOSKI:
First kilometers of the route goes along Lake Saimaa with several route options to choose from. This sections is characterized by several rocky island and summer cottages by the lake. Open waters of Saimaa end at cape Orjainniemi, where the route turns left and continues towards a narrow Kähönsalmi strait. After passing under road 13 from Lappeenranta to Mikkeli route continues towards a narrow and dark watered Lake Jängynjärvi. Next bigger open water area is at Lake Kivijärvi where route continues westward along nice beach at cape Sarviniemi to Hartunsalmi bridge. From here it is only a short distance to reach the services in Jurvala and Luumäki. Route continues westward to Lake Ala-Kivijärvi and Lake Kelkjärvi, where you can spot old log floating constructions. Lake Tuohtiainen is the last lake before reaching Kannuskoski village.
FROM KANNUSKOSKI TO KOUVOLA
Kannuskoski village offers good opportunity to refill food supplies since the village is only a short walking distance from the route. From Kannuskoski there is Lake Ruokojärvi before more remote areas and faster moving water of Kyykoski and Sulunkoski rapids. Route continues in forest landscape past Vääntäjän tila, offering accommodation and equipment rentals. Ahead is Lake Immasenjärvi before Pajukoski rapid and Lake Tirvajärvi. Kuirinvirta River takes you from Lake Tirvajärvi to Lake Kepsunjärvi, where is a beautiful rest area at cape Jaakonniemi, offering a good place for a break before crossing Lake Rapojärvi. At Rapojärvi the route continues south towards beautiful Jyräänkoski Rapids flowing in nice forest landscape to Lake Käyrälampi known from its beautiful sandy beaches and Camping area. This is the alternative ending spot for the route. Option is to continue through Jokelanjoki River, Lake Lappalanjärvi and Harjunjoki River before reaching Kymijoki River and Kuusaanlampi lean-to shelter. Kymijoki is a big river and the current can be strong at times, even though there are no actual rapids on this section of Kymijoki River.
Good to know
At Kannuskoski there is a Tolpankangas Nature trail close to the route. The trail introduces the effects of the Ice Age in this area.
The beginning of the route is mainly on lakes with two places where one has to carry a canoe over a short distance between lakes. Thus the beginning is easy as long as you consider the wind conditions in the open water areas. From Kannuskoski to Kuusaanlampi there are several easy rapids and four places where one has to carry a canoe over a dam. The rapids are quite stony requiring a durable equipment during low water levels.
To start the route
Myllysaari kayak shed
N61 04.128 E28 12.012
Kärenlaavu lean-to shelter
N61 01.960 E28 00.022
Kannuskoski landing spot
N60 57.886 E27 14.581