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  1. #1
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    Riding in Finland

    I'm thinking about grad school in Jyväskylä, Finland. Besides the super cold winters, I'm definitely worried about the mtb scene. Good trails to ride or an almost non-existent scene? How easy is it to get a person and bike to more mountainous areas of Europe?

  2. #2
    local trails rider
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    There's no mountains in Finland

    The woods are full of trails though

    If you can live with smaller ups and downs, you'll have a plenty of riding. Jyväskylä isn't completely flat, so you can find a little bit of elevation there too. I don't know much about the MTB (maastopyöräily) scene in Jyväskylä, except there must be one.

    Just about "everybody" talks about riding, bikes, and rides at Fillari-lehden foorumi

    If you can manage to register, there's people there who can answer your questions in English.

    Unless you want to strike out blind and go exploring, you'll need someone local to show you some routes. Mostly, there's nothing official about trails and they are not marked in any way.

    To get to more mountainous areas, you fly to Germany, France, Italy, etc. or go to Åre in Sweden or maybe somewhere in Norway.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  3. #3
    local trails rider
    Reputation: perttime's Avatar
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    Found some recent "Enduro" race footage from the Laajavuori ski slope just outside town. The clip seems to run a bit smoother with HD off:

    MTB Enduro #4 2011, Laajavuori from Tommi Ranta on Vimeo.



    A few more clips from the area:
    http://vimeo.com/search/videos/searc...A4/st/95644ef6

    Topo map
    Most routes marked on the map are probably too wide and smooth to be interesting.

    Gallery for a recent Marathon race in Jyväskylä:
    http://jyps.kuvat.fi/kuvat/MTB+Marat...ri+11.6.2011+/

    Email for what seems to be the biggest bike club in Jyväskylä: jyps (at) jyps.info

    How the trails stay open in winter depends a lot on luck with snowfall. If trails are not open, people are probably skiing XC or at the slope.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the info and links. What are the summers like up there? Like how many months of good riding do you usually get? Of course if I do end up moving there I'm definitely going to have to get into xc skiing or something.

  5. #5
    local trails rider
    Reputation: perttime's Avatar
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    Most of the time, the riding season - or riding days - depends on what kind of conditions you LIKE to ride in: not what conditions you CAN ride in.

    This summer, the temps stayed between 20 and 25 Celsius, with high humidity, for pretty long. Here, 25 C is where old people start dying of the heat We get rainy days in Spring, Summer, and Fall. I rarely ride in wet weather but that is just because I don't care for the cleanup and the rocks and roots get too slimy for my taste when wet.

    Winter doesn't necessarily stop you from riding either but the days get short, so you need a good light unless you have time to ride in the middle of the day.

    Here's a winter clip someone posted from my area, a couple of hours from Jyväskylä:


    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  6. #6
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    Although I don't have any real MTB experience from Jyväskylä region I would bet that there are many kilometers of good trails in there.

    In Finland we have a law that enables all the people to use the forests quite freely (walking & cycling) even if they are someone's "private property". So you can imagine that this generates a lot of very good trails for MTB usage.

    For example I live in a really small town (15 000 people) about 150 km south of Jyväskylä and even in here we have a solid 40 km of good trails ranging from rocky & rooty technical stuff to very smooth single tracks.

    But as said by perttime the height differences a quite low and almost all the trails are not mapped so you'll have to have some local guides to show you around.

  7. #7
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    This thread was pretty old, but if you are still in the region....there is a very strong mountain biking scene in Estonia (2 hour boat ride south of Helsinki). You can find information at Elion Estonian Cup - Eesti Rattamaratonide Sari or KALENDER - SPORTINFO

  8. #8
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    Any fatbikes showing up in Finland? With the condition descriptions that you guys are mentioning, it would seem only natural?

    I'm wondering what events/races might be up that way - we have all the fatbike races ( http://twenty2cycles.com/events ) popping up here so it got me thinking.

  9. #9
    local trails rider
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    I know there's some fat bikes around. I have yet to see one in my town (Tampere).

    I recall some guys in coastal areas, at least, have fat bikes: loose sand is more common there. Also somebody has been doing multi-day trips on one, up in Lapland, Again, loose sand and pieces of wetland are pretty common along the routes there. I think there's a thread from a Lapland trip in the Fat Bikes section.

    In winter conditions near towns, the snow often gets packed so well on trails that "normal" tires work well.... or you have so much fluffy snow that nothing will float on it. Sometimes those 4" tires would certainly be more forgiving.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

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