Kaihunharju is a sharp-featured esker ridge surrounded by waters. It was deposited in a subglacial tunnel stream and crack between ice masses around 11,400-11,300 years ago. The Mikkeli area emerged from underneath the ice around 11,300 years ago – at that time, the area was dominated by the Yoldia Sea shore, which reached almost 110msl. The summit plains of the esker delta to the southern area of Kaihunharju which formed at around the same time is nowadays around 106msl. As the ice sheet receded from the area, the earth’s crust began to undergo uplift, and approximately 10,700 years ago Saimaa underwent isolation in the Mikkeli area and formed an independent lake from its predecessor, the Ancylus lake. The Kaihunharju area is situated in a built-up area and is home to the Urpola nature centre and a marked network of paths called the Kaihu trail which reach Kaihunharju itself and also Pursiala pothole.

Contents of the big sign on the Kaihu trail: https://saimaageopark.fi/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/kaihu_1903_web.pdf

Contents of the small signs on the Kaihu trail: https://saimaageopark.fi/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/kaihu_a3_1906_web.pdf

Route description of the Kaihu trail and instructions for arrival: https://ekarjala-retkeily.fi/en/routes-and-destinations/destination/?id=39429181

You can also find more information on the South Karelian Foundation for Recreation Areas’ webpages.


Coordinates: x=514889,900 y=6837833,599 (ETRS-TM35FIN)

The above coordinates are working in GPS-devices and karttapaikka.fi services.

The below coordinates are working in Google maps services.

Coordinates: 61.673435676, 27.281276254 (ETRS89 maantieteelliset(~WGS84))


Image: Hannu Rönty


  • Privy
  • Suitable for children
  • Parking
  • Beach