Route 2000 (Reitti 2000) – mountain biking route
Route descriptionRoute 2000 is the longest marked hiking and biking route in Helsinki metropolitan area. The length of the route is 110 km and it can be hiked in around five days. On the bike the route can be completed in just one day. However, riding 110 km in one day requires good fitness level and biking skills. Route 2000 is a loop route, which begins and ends at the same point. However, certain sections (Helsinki-Luukki) will have to be walked/ridden in both directions.
Route 2000 passes through the areas of Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa and Vihti. The starting point of the route is at the Laakso’s stables (Auroranportti 4, Helsinki). If you are arriving by car, there is only a parking for 4 hours at a time here. The closest 24 hour parking is in front of the Laakso Hospital at Lääkärinkatu 8 (places are limited though).
Route 2000 is marked with blue and white markers and signs. Markings are pretty good, especially if the route is ridden anti-clockwise. However, there are a few slightly confusing places on the route, so the map or GPS-track are good to have!
A first leg of the Route 2000 passes through Helsinki Central Park towards Pitkäkoski and from there to Luukki via Petikko. The first leg of the route follows gravel walking paths. This is a technically easy section, and is suitable for riding even with hybrid bikes. If necessary, it is possible to fill up water and food reserves at the gas station shortly before Luukki (explanation of the location is in the video).
An easy gravel path continues through Luukki recreation area towards Lakisto. Luukki outdoor recreation area offers the first lake scenery. Haukjärvi Lake is an excellent place to stop for a break or overnight. In Lakisto you can fill up your water reserves or eat (for example, at Fishtail Bar and Restaurant, shown in video).
The best section of the route starts from Lakisto: it is a five kilometer long singletrack towards Ruskela. It offers a great forest singletrack with some root and rock-gardens. Here even experienced mountain bikers will find some challenge. The path is technically rather demanding. Thus, for beginner mountain bikers it is a good idea to reserve more time for clearing this section. The sinlgetrack runs on the bank of small lakes (Majalampi, Vähä-Majalampi, Saaren Musta). Saaren Musta is one of the most spectacular resting areas on the whole route. If you do not want to ride any technical terrain (e.g. using a cyclocross or a touring bike), it is easy to detour this singletrack section (ride Lakistontie-Vihdintie-Kuikunläänintie).
After this technical section the route continues mainly along the gravel and forest roads towards Salmi recreation area. This section is technically easy. At Salmi’s campsite you will find a café and a water point. Salmi is a popular recreation area with many small lakes, well-equipped resting areas, fireplaces and camping possibilities. Of these, perhaps the best resting places (along Route 2000) can be found on the banks of Iso-Parikas and Vähä-Parikas Lakes. Both offer fireplaces for barbecue, tables and camping places.
After Salmi Route 2000 continues to Nuuksio National Park. It runs towards Kattilantie Road, where the biking and hiking routes separate. It is a few kilometer long section towards Haukkalampi, where biking is forbidden. Bikers will have to follow Kattilantie Road towards Haltia Nature Center. Despite of this, bikers can also visit Haukkalampi, but only following a gravel road. More information about this is in the video.
Next, the route continues via Haltia Nature Center to Solvala. Kattilantie – Solvala route section runs on the gravel and asphalt roads. This section has some car traffic as well, so be cautious. Haltia Nature Center is an excellent place to have a break. Here you can learn more about different Finnish National Parks and see some interesting wildlife exhibitions. You can also fill up your water and energy (food) reserves in Haltia Café. In Solvala Route 2000 continues on gravel paths (used for skiing in winter). There are a lot of steep climbs and descents here. These will definitely test your fitness and riding skills. Before Pirttimäki you can have a break at well equipped resting areas of Hynkänlampi or Sulalampi Lakes. In Pirttimäki you will find a café and a shelter with a fireplace.
From Pirttimäki the route continues towards Sorvalampi. You will ride some singletrack and forest roads here. Just before Sorvalampi you will pass a well, where you can fill up your water bottles. At Sorvalampi the route runs on the bank of Häkläjärvi Lake, where you can also have a rest. On both sides of Häkläjärvi Lake Route 2000 runs along a technically challenging singletrack. However, this section is only about a kilometer long.
Next, the route leads back to Luukki recreational area. You will ride some gravel and forest roads here. Just near the Luukinjärvi Lake you will find a café and a sheltered fireplace. In Luukki recreational area the loop of Route 2000 closes, and from now onwards you will return by the already familiar Lukki-Helsinki – section.
In general, Route 2000 is ideal for mountain biking. Two or three day mountain biking experience in a safe environment of Finnish nature will be unforgettable for every beginner mountain biker! For more experienced riders I recommend riding Route 2000 in one long day (110 km in total). This will definitely provide some challenge! However, I wish that Route 2000 had more singletrack sections, as there are too many forest and gravel roads for a demanding tastes of experienced mountain bikers.