Next summer, Kajaani will be filled with participants in the Kainuu Orienteering Week - record-breaking numbers of participants are expected in the events organized by the Kainuu Orienteering Week

Published: 01.03.2024

Photo: At Sotkamo's Tipasoja in 2019 was previous Kainuu Orienteering Week with over 4000 participants when a total of 4379 orienteers raced across the Tipasoja's terrain.


The second registration step for the 56th Kainuu Orienteering Week, to be held next summer at Joutenlampi in Kajaani 30th June to 5th July, ended yesterday with record numbers in the event's history.

– The upcoming summer event will most likely be one of the largest in Kainuu Orienteering Week history, exclaims chief of competition Jarmo Kämäräinen.

"A total of 1608 orienteers have already registered for the competition classes, which is a record number for this registration step since the Kainuu Orienteering Week held in conjunction with the Vuokatti World Orienteering Championships in 2013," continues Kämäräinen.

During the orienteering World Championships held in Vuokatti, there was a buzz at the Kainuu Orienteering Week competition center (PHOTO: Kainuu Orienteering Week)

– When anticipating the total number of participants for the entire event, the number of participants in the competition classes has a significant impact on the overall attendance, says Jukka Liuha, the secretary general of the Kainuu Orienteering Week with over 14 years of experience.

Recreational orienteers in open courses register only in the very last registration steps at the end of May, and the majority register on-site during the event. However, the number of participants in the competition categories has significantly correlated with the overall number of recreational participants in the event, Liuha explains.

"Based on the current registration numbers, it is estimated that the upcoming summer week will host around 4500 orienteers, which means that approximately 6500 people, including spectators and support staff, will come to Joutenlampi in Kajaani to spend a week of orienteering and leisure," Liuha happily reports.

These anticipated figures mean that the Kainuu Orienteering Week will become one of Finland's largest sports tourism events in 2024, bringing tourism revenue of over two million euros to Kainuu and the surrounding area of Kajaani. It remains to be seen if the upcoming summer Orienteering Week will become the second-largest orienteering week after the World Championships, currently held by the 2007 Kainuu Orienteering Week in Sotkamo with 4885 orienteers.

At Kajaani's Joutenlampi, there were plenty of event participants the last time in 2012 when KRV (Kainuu Orienteering Week) had 4408 orienteers (PHOTO: Kainuu Orienteering Week)

In addition to the competition categories, a record number of 288 individuals have registered for the recreational orienteering courses of the Kainuu Orienteering Week, according to Minna Rönkkö from the competition office. The previous record was set in 2019 with 177 recreational orienteers in this phase, so this has been surpassed significantly. The leap year's additional day may have influenced some participants to register at this stage, taking advantage of the lower price, as this February registration phase normally ends on the 28th, Rönkkö speculates.

The first two races of the Kainuu MTBO Week will be held at Kajaani's Vimpelinvaara, and the last two at Joutenlampi competition centre (PHOTO: Kainuu Orienteering Week)

Also, a record number of 132 individuals have registered for the Kainuu MTBO Week from June 30th to July 5th.

– In this second registration step, participation has been confirmed by 132 individuals, surpassing the previous record from 2022 in Puolanka with 114 participants," says race director Mika Häkkinen. "It looks quite promising, and I believe we will achieve our goal of 250-300 mountain bike orienteers, especially with the Finnish Championships mass start race on Sunday, June 30th, in the magnificent terrains of Vimpelinvaara, attracting later registrations from Finnish Championships competitors and also enticing newcomers to the recreational orienteering side," anticipates Häkkinen.

In the Kainuu Trail event, participants get to enjoy the breathtaking landscapes of Hossa National Park (PHOTO: Kainuu Trail / Mikko Turunen)

Furthermore, the Kainuu Trail trail running event starting the Kainuu Orienteering Week on June 29th is currently breaking records with 260 registered trail runners, anticipating a rush of 500-600 runners in the scenic trails and landscapes of Hossa National Park.

"This is a fantastic development for both Kainuu and Kajaani, as well as for us event organizers, finally returning to the tourist numbers we had in Sotkamo 2019 just before the COVID-19 pandemic," Liuha concludes with relief.

More information:

Chief of competition, Jarmo Kämäräinen +358 40 7268 983,

Secretary general, Jukka Liuha, +358 44 7679 533,

Competition and accommodation office: Minna Rönkkö, +358 44 512 3517,

Kainuu MTBO Week, Mika Häkkinen, +358 40 7459 032,


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