Reitti 2000 by bike
I finally managed to complete Reitti 2000
(Route 2000), a 110 km track intended primarily for hiking, but which
is also suitable for offroad biking. This was my fourth attempt, the
first and second (in 2003 and 2004) where interrupted because I just
wasn't fit enough. And the third attempt, a week ago, failed because
the rear transmission control wire snapped after 10 kilometers.
There are a few locations where I would suggest temporarily
deviations from the official route, if travelling by bike. The square
numbers refer to the 2005 edition of the Outdoor map of Helsinki Metropolitan area, in which the Route 2000 is quite prominently marked (larger map on the backside).
- Square 35 vertical / 94 horizontal. In Lakisto, after the golf
club building, there's a golf practicing area on the left followed by
one golf course. After that, just before the bigger road, take the
parallel bicycle road to the left and after a few hundred meters, take
the underpass to the right. Follow this road to lake Majalampi (square
34/93) and along the road on it's eastern shore. After the lake there's
a Reitti 2000 signpost pointing to the right (I believe this is not the
current route, but a leftover from an older version). Follow the
markings and when you get to a road, go right. You'll join the route
again in the crossroads at square 32/93. This will avoid several
kilometers of forest path, very difficult to bicycle and save an hour.
- Square 36/84: after Pirttimäki there will be many forest paths in
which it's very hard to bicycle. It will be easier to take the road
going east from the route. However, should I go again, I wouldn't avert
The route is very manageable even with my 24-gear hybrid bicycle, not meant for hardcore cross-country, although I've installed a bit wider and more patterned tyres than those that came with it. Mostly the route is gravel road, which is quite light to travel, although there are lots of very steep hills between Solvalla and Pirttimäki (this area is known as "legendary" amongst offroad bikers).
The trip took 9 hours (including pauses totalling 45 minutes) and the total travelled distance was 117 kilometers. The average speed was 14 km/h. I ate a few smallish rye bread slices, two müsli bars and two chocolate bars. I had 1,5 liters of water which was way too little (I intended to get more water at a camping area along the route, but that was unfortunately closed so I was quite thirsty when I got home - I had dehydrated 2,5 kg).
The nature and scenery along the route is impressive and very diverse (however after 70 kilometers the exhaustion eradicated it's allurement). The route is well planned and marked (however a map is obligatory), courtesy of City of Helsinki Sports Department.