My name is Jaakko “Korpi-Jaakko” Heikka. I am a professional wilderness guide and a diehard outdoor enthusiast from Finland.
I’ve always been passionate about the outdoors and for the last few years I’ve spent annually close to 100 nights in the outdoors from overnight trips in the backwoods to one-month expedition across the Greenland icecap.
I have a wide and deep interest to most things outdoors. But I can name two topics I’m interested above others:
1) human powered travel in remote wilderness areas, and
2) living from natural resources in a sustainable way with a healthy connection to the nature
The topics are still stupidly broad but I can’t help it. To make things little more tangible I could say, I’m into:
- (lightweight) backpacking (, especially off-trail)
- ski expeditions
- outdoor photography
- and the related gear and skills
- and teaching and guiding these activities.
I do most of my guiding for Ankarat Avotunturit ski expedition project but I also guide other stuff like packrafting courses and tours. I used to blog here. But now you can follow me on Instagram.
I hope you’ll find what you are looking for from here and enjoy your time both reading and in the outdoors!
On paper – and out there
– Luonto ja eräopas (Nature and wilderness guide*), 2012, Niittylahden opisto
– Bachelor of Science, 2011 Lappeenranta University of Technology
Certificates (all valid at least until 2020, unless marked X = expired)
– W.G.A Level 3 Guide (Polar/Arctic and Subalpine), Level 2 (Boreal/Nemoral), since 2014
– Wilderness First Responder, Wilderness Medical Associates
– White Water Rescue Technicia (Pro), Rescue3 Europe
– Ice Field Safety, Rescue3 Europe
– EA1 ja EA2 (First Aid 1 and 2), Finnish Red Cross (X)
– Köysitoiminnan ohjaaja (Ropework supervisor), SKIL (X)
– Melontaohjaaja (Paddling Instructor, canoe & kayak), Suomen Melontakouluttajat ry
– Koskenlaskuveneen kuljettaja (Whitewater rafting guide), Suomen melonta- ja koskenlaskuyrittäjät ry
– Hygieniapassi (Hygiene Passport; Finnish food hygiene proficiency), Evira
– Metsästyskortti (Finnish hunting lisence), Suomen Riistakeskus
– Loads of short courses and training on varying outdoor topics
Native Finnish, excellent English, some Swedish and little Russian
Selected periods in the wild
– Spitsbergen, Svalbard; 19 days; ski expedition, climbed Newtontoppen (1713m) and Perriertoppen (1712m); April 2019; guiding
– Vatnajökull, Iceland; 11 days; crossing Vatnajökull glacier; May 2019; guiding
– Spitsbergen, Svalbard; 19 days; ski expedition, climbed Newtontoppen (1713m) and Perriertoppen (1712m); March-April 2018; guiding
– Vatnajökull, Iceland; 11 days; crossing Vatnajökull glacier; May 2017; guiding
– Spitsbergen, Svalbard; 19 days; ski expedition, climbed Perriertoppen (1712m); April 2017; guiding
– Greenland; 27 days; crossing the Greenland icecap from Point 660 to Tasiilaq; April-May 2016; guiding
– Spitsbergen, Svalbard; 18 days; ski expedition, climbed Newtontoppen (1713m) and Perriertoppen (1712m); March-April 2016; guiding
– Vatnajökull, Iceland; 11 days; crossing Vatnajökull glacier; May 2015; guiding
– Spitsbergen, Svalbard; 21 days; ski expedition, climbed Newtontoppen (1713m) and Perriertoppen (1712m); April 2015; guiding
– Nordenskiöldland, Svalbard; 11 days; packrafting; July 2015; expedition leader
– Greenland; 29 days; crossing the Greenland icecap from Point 660 to Isortoq; April-May 2014; expedition leader
– Vatnajökull, Iceland; 11 days; crossing Vatnajökull glacier; May 2013; guiding
– Muotkatunturi and Paistunturi wilderness areas, Lapland; 12 days; hiking (mostly) off trail; June 2012
– Vatnajökull, Iceland; 16 days; crossing Vatnajökull glacier, climbed Hvannadalshnjukur (2117m); March-April 2012; expedition leader
– Käsivarsi wilderness area, Finland; 8 days; packrafting Valtijoki-Poroeno-Lätäseno river continuum; July 2011
– Spitsbergen, Svalbard; 21 days; ski expedition, climbed Perriertoppen (1712m); April 2011
– Guiding husky tours up to one-week in duration in Northern Finland during winters 2012-2014
– Over ten one-week or longer trips to Sarek National Park, Sweden between 2010-2020
– Many, many more around one-week-long trips in Lapland (Finland, Sweden, Norway) between 2001-2020
– Close to 100 nights out every year during the last decade
* Many of the translations are my own and unofficial with the aim to be as clear as possible. For example the official recommendations for the Nature and wilderness guide degree would be “Further Qualification in Hiking and Nature Guide Services”.
Collaboration and projects
My blog is mostly a personal blog with no commercial ambitions but if interests meet, I’m open for suggestions also involving my blog.
Rather than posting banners and links in my blog I’m interested in long-term product development and testing projects and actually “being out there doing things”. For example I could put products into serious real-life use and then share the story about it with words and photos. In the past I have done this for example for Finnsvala, Ursuk and Guahoo.
At the moment I am:
– working in close collaboration with Finnish outdoor clothing company Sasta
– and also collaborating with the Melomo.
And the Ankarat avotunturit program I was founding is also involved in gear development projects and my business partner runs a specialized webshop and though I don’t make any money via the webshop, I think it’s fair to mention my affiliation.
To contact me…
…related to the blog and general topics…
– e-mail to email@example.com
– or contact me on Instagram (@jaakkoheikka)
– or leave a comment to the blog!
…or for topics related to ski expedition guiding
– e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Footnote: After starting this blog I learned that Korpijaakko is also a (relatively rare) family name in Finland. I’m not related to the Korpijaakkos and I’m sorry for any possible misunderstandings. In order to minimize the risk of misunderstanding I’ll try to use the form Korpi-Jaakko in the future as the nickname is originally derived from my first name Jaakko with “korpi” meaning roughly “wilderness” or “backwoods” in Finnish.
(Updated on 27.1.2021)