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The hanging bridge of Lapinsalmi has been removed

Repovesi is a breathtaking nature attraction which you can enjoy many ways.

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Recommendations for visiting the National Park before the reopening of the suspension bridge

At the moment  the manually-operated Ketunlossi cable ferry that crosses Määkijänsalmi at Lapinsalmi is operating normally. Cable ferry can be used around the clock.

Note! The hanging bridge of Lapinsalmi is out of use. The parking area of Lapinsalmi and the road leading to it (Riippusillantie) are closed for winter period 3.12.2018 -29.4.2019. The Fox ferry is not in use during this time. You can enter the National Park at Tervajärvi and Saarijärvi entrances. See alternative hiking routes

Water taxis also operate in Repovesi. Visitors can enjoy the tranquillity of a wooden boat smelling of tar or travel more quickly by rubber dinghy or Buster boat. Popular places to stop and stretch the legs include Karhulahti, Mustavuori, Kuutinkanava and Määkijä. Water taxis also take passengers from the national park and deliver them for example to Hillosensalmi or the Lapinsalmi entrance. Water taxi services are provided by: Kuutin kolo, tel. +358 400 551 530 and Seikkailuviikari Oy, tel. +358 500 862 862. When ordering a water taxi, it is worth checking at what times they are available, and you can also order one in advance.

It is interesting to see the park from the water, for example in a canoe on a Golden Trail cruise. The Tuuletar II water bus sales regularly from Orilampi Cottage between 10 June and 20 August 2018. Departures are every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 2.30 pm.

There are also services from Kouvola Travel Centre from 9 June until 30 September and on the autumn holiday weekend of 27-28 October 2018 Repovesi Bus. The Repovesi Bus takes visitors to the Verla World Heritage Site and to the entrance to Repovesi at Lapinsalmi.  Along the bus route are also Vuohijärvi Nature and Culture House and Orilampi Cottage, among other sights.

You can also conveniently take shared taxi from Kouvola Travel Centre to the different entrances to Repovesi National Park. Kymenlaakso Taksi offers lifts, which can be booked from the number +358 100 87 227. In Kouvola, Avis, Hertz and Scandiarent provide rental cars.

National park guidelines for the safety of hikers and nature

Metsähallitus has given extensive guidance to hikers, for example, to comply with the principles of litter-free hiking, to follow forest fire warnings and to bear in mind that some areas of the park maybe outside mobile phone reception. Visitors to the park are recommended to download the 112 mobile application. A map of the national park can also be downloaded onto mobile phones in advance or a printed A3 size Repovesi map  can be taken along. Printed maps can be picked up from the VisitKouvola information point at Vuohijärvi Nature and Culture House and the Repotassu Cafeteria at the Lapinsalmi entrance. VisitKouvola is also happy to post tear-off maps of Repovesi (orders matkailu@kinno.fi). There are also map signboards at the entrances to the national park.

Metsähallitus investigating the reasons for the near miss

The popular Lapinsalmi Suspension Bridge at the entrance to Repovesi National Park is prohibited from use until further notice. On Sunday, 1 July 2018, Metsähallitus, which is responsible for the upkeep of the national park, announced that it had received notice in the morning from the rescue authorities that the connecting anchor for one of the bridge’s supporting wires had broken. The wires did not break but the bridge sagged. Nobody was injured but a near-miss was recorded. The bridge has now been supported and closed to the public, and the popular Ketunlenkki trail can still be negotiated using the manually-operated cable ferry.

Visitor safety is an important matter for Metsähallitus. The reasons for the failure of the connecting anchor at Lapinsalmi are being thoroughly investigated. Lapinsalmi Bridge was built in 1987. It is about 50 m long and 10 m high.

“We are very sorry that hikers felt moments of fear instead of a pleasant hiking experience. In this unfortunate situation, what is most important is that nothing worse happened to anyone,” says Auvo Sapattinen, Field Manager for Metsähallitus.

According to Mr Sapattinen, a preliminary assessment is that the bridge incident was not a result of excessive weight. There was a crack in the bridge anchor approximately 10 cm inside the concrete casting.