LOCATED IN REINDEER HERDING LAND
Ylläs-Levi MTB Route is an already well-known single-track and forest road connection between the two holiday centers and the two major ski resorts of the Lapland area. The route crosses the southern part of the Pallas-Yllästunturi National Park in an old-growth forest on partly easy, partly more demanding single track on the fell sides, before getting on easier terrain toward Levi. The route can be ridden as a longish day ride on a mountain bike, but it's its best as an overnighter, taking the advantage of some of the historical or newer wilderness shelters on the way.
The Ylläs-Levi MTB Route started finding its form in 2014 and 2015 as a venue for a mountain biking event connecting the two major tourist villages of the area. During the years, the route has been improved from a bushy and swampy wilderness crossing into a rideable and mostly pleasant connection on the single track, quad service tracks, and back roads. The first half of it, coming from Ylläs is mostly single track and double track of easy or moderate difficulty, which requires a mountain bike to be ridden comfortably, but then the second half to Levi is mostly rideable with nearly any bike with a minimum of 40mm tires.
For 2022 it’s a little standalone overnighter or a long mountain bike day ride, but for 2023 it will likely function as a route variation on a longer Western Lapland tour.
REINDEER HERDING & ROUTE OPENING TIME
Late June - First snow (late September to early October)
There are no limitations to the bikepacking season requested by the local reindeer herding community. As a rule of thumb, mtb rules are dry enough to ride from early July, and the season continues till the first snow, if not affected by the local reindeer herding work. Though most of the single track of the Pallas-Ylläs should be dry enough to tackle already late June.
More about the annual rhythm of reindeer herding work here and general guidelines for, cycling, trekking, and camping in the reindeer herding area, check here.
Photos: Taneli Roininen
Crossing the old-growth forests of the southernmost part of the Pallas-Yllästunturi National Park between the high fells of the Fjell Lapland area.
Partly flowy, party technical single tracks at the Ylläs area, balanced by traffic-free forest roads and smooth quad tracks on the Levi side of the route.
Night at one of the wilderness shelters, either in the Ylläs-Pallastunturi National Park or further down along the route.
A wide spectrum of arctic nature, from fells to swamps, from taiga to treeless fell top boulder gardens, and from forest spring to clear-water Lake of Pyhäjärvi.
High-quality services with multiple lodging options, restaurants, bike services, pubs, and cafés on both ends of the route.
Northern lights can be seen multiple times a week in autumn, if the sky is clear at night.