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A new watery world: Espoonjoki

May 20, 2016

We acquired a canoe a few weeks ago and we didn’t hesitate to put it in the water. After having lived in Espoo for nearly 14 years, it’s a real pleasure to have had the chance to explore the waters of the lower part of Espoonjoki.

We took the opportunity to explore on two different days. The timing was good because the water level has been dropping (with the end of winter and the recent lack of rain) and the grasses and shrubs have been filling in water space rather quickly in recent days!

A good starting point is the old cathedral near Espoon Keskus because there is a parking lot right beside the river. We decided to go up river first and that was intriguing because normally you can’t actually see much of the waterway once you cross under Turunväylä near IKEA (the motorway between Helsinki and Turku). Seeing it from a canoe was neat! We also met a man in a kayak and he said it was really nice to see other people out exploring. We went as far as we could without having to get out. Our barrier was a foot bridge that makes up a part of the “kuntorata” that winds its way through Espoo. The water was deep enough on this section of the river and we didn’t have to worry about rocks or sunken logs. The current was strong, but we were still able to make our way up without any significant effort.

A week later we headed downstream to Espoonlahti. It was a good thing I went and scouted things out ahead of time (by bike). It is pretty rocky through Kaukalahti and the water is moving fast enough that you have to pay attention to what you’re doing. Our canoe is sporting a few new scratches, but we made it through no problem. After we paddled through Lasilaakso we saw a few people fishing along the banks of the river.

Our next exploration challenge is the river right next door, Mankkijoki – now is the time because the weather is good!

If you want to know more about Espoonjoki take a look at Petri and Niklas Suominen’s (father and son) five-part series (in Finnish) on Espoonjoki, which was made in 2015. You can see it on YouTube.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 23, 2016 10:24 am

    Ooh, that looks lovely! I haven’t seen much if Espoo yet, but now I have a bike and hope to come over and explore a bit. Being out on a boat is so much fun…

  2. May 24, 2016 10:06 am

    Glad to see you enjoying your freedom to roam. Over here the canoeists are mounting a campaign for recognition of their rights to water.

    • May 24, 2016 10:14 am

      I can’t imagine not being able to wander in different places. Finnish people don’t realize how lucky they are!

  3. June 21, 2016 9:40 pm

    Cool! Excited to have found your blog. I’m a [novice] paddler myself but haven’t gotten a chance since moving here just two months ago.
    You’ve been at this blog for quite some time, I look forward to reading through the archive. I’m at if you’re bored on a rainy day. Cheers!

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