Harakka Island – Chapter 6

It’s time for the next chapter in Ice Swimmer’s series Harakka – an Island. Our guide will take it from here. Thanks, Ice Swimmer.


Chapter 6 – Top of the Island


1. Odd Spruce, Rocks and open sea, ©Ice Swimmer, all rights reserved

This view is from the top of the island, towards southeast. I wonder what has happened to the spruce.


2. Drought on the rocks, ©Ice Swimmer, all rights reserved

I think this is towards south or a bit southwest from the top. It hadn’t rained much since spring and the weather had been hot for quite some time.


3. Odd Spruce, ©Ice Swimmer, all rights reserved

A closer look at the bifurcated spruce.


4. Here Be Dinosaurs, ©Ice Swimmer, all rights reserved

It was evening and gulls were getting ready to rest for the night. However, it would be a few hours before it would be dark.


5. Rocks and also Rocks, ©Ice Swimmer, all rights reserved

The southern part of Harakka is quite rocky as are the islands in the horizon.


6. Suomenlinna, ©Ice Swimmer, all rights reserved

Suomenlinna is on the big islands (Susisaaret, Wolf Islands) to the left. The wavebreaker is for the marina in Särkkä, which is between Harakka and Suomenlinna.

Next, we’re going back to the front yard of the Artists’ Building.

(link to previous post, Harakka an Island: Chapter 5)


  1. kestrel says

    What a beautiful place. In your photos it looks so peaceful. However during a storm it must be very different, maybe even scary. Seems to me it would still be amazing and gorgeous, even if it was scary.

    I love the rocky parts with the trees coming up here and there. What is the main rock, do you know? If I ever go there I will definitely seek out this part!

  2. rq says

    Very beautuful, though it looks harsh. Hardy plants and bare rocks. I love the colours, it looks very warm.

  3. Nightjar says

    Oh, these are gorgeous! I think my favourite chapter so far, love the composition in #4 (and the dinosaurs!) and the rocks in #5. What I think kestrel is asking, and I’m curious as well, is what kind of rock is the island mainly composed of (limestone, granite, etc).

  4. Ice Swimmer says

    I don’t know what kind of rock is Harakka, but in general, gneiss, slate and granite intrusions in either, the mixed rock being called migmatite, are the main types of rocks in Helsinki and the neighbouring islands of Harakka as well as the nearby rocks in mainland are migmatites. The bedrock is about 1.8 to 1.9 thousand million years old.

    Limestone is improbable, but not impossible as there are limestone strata in Eastern Helsinki, but there have been no limestone quarries in Harakka, they shipped lime/limestone to Suomenlinna (at the time called Sveaborg) when it was built in the 18th century from the quarries in what’s now Eastern Helsinki, much longer distance from Suomenlinna than Harakka is.

  5. Ice Swimmer says

    A few further notes about the rocks in Harakka: The rounded shapes (best visible in 4) are due to the Ice Age, the bottom of the glacier ground the rocks to rounded shapes. Boulders, gravel and sand stuck in the bottom of the ice were like grit in sandpaper or abrasive paste and they scoured the surface beneath the glacier, leaving rounded shapes and scratches going the same direction the ice was moving.

    The gray colour is most likely a kind of patina/deposit on the surface of the bare rocks.

  6. Nightjar says

    Thank you, Ice Swimmer, for the interesting information. FWIW the rocks in the pictures don’t look like limestone to me, it was just the first type of rock that came to my mind, probably because I live next to a limestone formation.

  7. kestrel says

    Thank you, Ice Swimmer! Yes, Nightjar is correct, I was trying to understand what I would also call the “country rock” or just the rock that makes up what you are walking on. I suppose I was trying to say, the main rock of the area, the main component that makes up the island. Such information adds to the appreciation of the area, at least in my mind.

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