Kontiolahti and its biathlon stadium on a hill above Lake Höytiäinen can be found 15 km north of the university city of Joensuu in eastern Finland’s Karelia region. The area, dotted with large lakes, rivers and tall pine forests is an outdoor recreation Mecca. Winter means trekking and cross-country skiing on well-groomed on quiet trails though the forest, while summer brings fishing, hiking, berry and mushroom picking in this area of almost unspoiled natural beauty. The Kontiolahti stadium, although completely modern with is also a step back in time. Its distinctive red wooden clapboard timing which building anchors the stadium, harkens back to a time when this was just a small local ski club hidden in the Finnish forest.

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