Current issue: 54(3)
Walking in forests, hiking, is considered to be necessary for healt in many countries. In United States national parks cover 1.8% of total forest area. In addition, 25% of the forests are so called national forests, which have paths, campsites, wells, beaches, cottages etc. for hikers. In Finland, 20% of the population lives in towns and cities. Also in Finland the people living in cities and towns would need areas that resemble national forests of United states for recreation.
The PDF includes a summary in German.
The area of Koilliskaira, situated in the eastern part of Finnish Lapland, is a popular venue for hikers. The present work examines the change of vegetation around 35 refuge huts in the area. The indigenous vegetation was found to conform to the various heath forest types common to forests in Lapland and continental subalpine mountain birch forest types, principally dry or fairly dry heath forest.
According to the study, the change in vegetation showed a clear positive correlation with the number of summer visitors. The dwarf shrubs and lichens were the most susceptible to trampling, and the grasses the least so. Both resilient and susceptible species were to be found among the mosses. The incoming hemerophilous flora was seen to consist principally of species known to accompany Lappish settlement in the area, and only occasional cases of alien species were noted.
The PDF includes a summary in English.