The Ounastunturi part of Pallas-Yllästunturi National Park is generally considered lesser known to the public. Nevertheless, the towering Pyhäkero is what starts the whole hike when going from Hetta to Pallas.
For us it was the first taste of the open fells. In early June we were impressed by the steep uphill after the Pyhäkero wilderness hut, not to mention the landscape and the breathtaking view. After ascending Pyhäkero, we felt like we’ve already seen it all.
On our volunteer period we had spare time during the evenings, so after a sort of hike halfway up the hill on Tuesday, we took another shot at it on Wednesday when we scaled the whole thing.
The terrain was wet and frankly flooding from the excessive downpour that had pained the area for the past few days. But it’s always sunny atop Pyhäkero.
You should remember to look back every now and then when hiking in the fells. Half of the view is always behind you.
Pyhäkero has two peaks and you can see all the way to Hetta atop the northern one. Between the two there’s Pyhäjärvi lake, which is what you see in the photos all glittery and blue. Our volunteer period took place just before the Fall Colors, so the scenery might look a bit Summery.
Even though it’s only an eight kilometer hike from the wilderness hut to the peak, we still grabbed some food with us. A sandwich in the valley between the peaks and some chocolate on top.
Our doggie was a good sport and didn’t ask to be picked up at any point, especially after seeing a reindeer cross the path! Sure he was tethered the whole time but it made us laugh how his ears were in a completely different position before and after this unfamiliar sighting.
The only time we strayed from the path was when we saw this silly looking tree. We also noticed that someone had pitched a tent there which, correct me if I’m wrong, is not allowed. At least is says so in the National Park manual.
In the evening we made some tea and crawled into our tent which was set up next to the café building. Our next night would be spent on the ridge behind the outhouse, still in the tent though.