A New Forest Protected in South Karelia

Kaikkallio, a forest of over 17 hectares, became our property just before Christmas in 2013. It is located in the southern part of Imatra, a few kilometres from the state border. It was the heirs of a man named Juho Rossi who decided to sell us this fascinating forest.

Two thirds of the forest is approximately hundred years old.

This grove-like forest, which stands almost in its natural state, provides a variety of trees: spruces, birches, pines, and aspens. The forest has remained untouched for many decades, and it seems completely intact on many places.

The forest is dominated by the Kaikkallio rock, which covers the area almost entirely with its cliffs and clefts. There are some tall and mighty trees watching over the rocky landscape. The oldest forest is, in fact, located on the rocky surface and its immediate surroundings. In the western and southern parts, there are also younger areas dominated by deciduous trees. The place also offers a well-known travel destination for hikers: Kaikkallion hiidenkirkko, a naturally developed rock formation also known as “the devil’s church.”

The area contains a lot of decayed wood, including the areas where the tree stand is a little younger. Close to the southern and southeastern side of the forest, there is a small, meandering river lined by deciduous trees.

Kaikkallio is the 45th conservation area of the foundation and the third one in the South Karelia region, where only a half per cent of the forests have been placed under protection.

Photo: Anneli Jussila.

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