A few kilometres along the road from Botsmark to Vindeln is Västermark nature reserve. A marked walking or skiing trail takes you through the area. Many interesting plants and mosses typical of old-growth forests can be found here, as well as birds like the Siberian jay, capercaillie, and black woodpecker.
About 1km from the parking lot, you find a cabin, ”Kvarnbäckskojan” called after the nearby stream Kvarnbäcken. The cabin has a fireplace and beds and matrasses for 4-6 people. Bring your own bedlinen!
The picture shows a moorlands spotted orchid (Dactylorhiza maculate). More information about Västermark here.
Just after the last ice age, when the massive ice sheet started retreating, Botsmark was at the shore of the Gulf of Bothnia. The rapid land uplift that followed left some distinct geological traces. The granite caves in the scree of the hill Stor-Boberget were formed by a violent earthquake in the year 7341 BC, when the southern slope collapsed in a gigantic rock-slide. You will find five caves, up to 120 metres long, below and between the rocks. You can reach the caves by an appr. half hour walk through the forest from Botsmark village.
Botsmarksblocket is ostensibly Sweden’s largest erratic: a giant boulder transported by the ice sheet thousands of years ago. More than 10 meters high, it weighs more than 5000 elephants. A road with beautiful views on the Sävar river takes you to a parking lot with fireplace, from which it is just a 100m walk.
The highest point in Umea municipality, Loberget, gives a magnificent view over the surrounding landscape. When the weather is good you can see the ships in the Gulf of Bothnia, more than 70km away. During summer you can reach Loberget by foot from Botsmark, good shoes required. Alternatively you can drive around and get closer by car, and walk only the remaining 800m from the other side. Especially around midsummer the midnight views are fantastic. During winter Loberget can be reached by snow scooter.
At Loberget there is a watchtower that allows you to view the surroundings from above the trees. Once the tower was used to spot forest fires. The person on guard would sleep in the cabin next to the tower, to resume duties the next morning. The cabin is now accommodated with beds and matrasses for 4-6 persons (bring your own bedlinen), an outside toilet, and a fireplace nearby.
NOTE THAT THE WATCHTOWER IS CURRENTLY CLOSED FOR REPAIR.
Just two km outside Botsmark, at the shore of lake Botsmarksjö is Sanabadet beach and campingsite. The quiet Sanabadet with its beautiful view over the lake is a popular among tourists, but also the favourite place for locals to go swimming on a hot summer day. A limited number of places is available for campers/caravans. Toilets and showers, as well as a lakeside sauna. Open from ###-###. Prices: ???.
The hills around Botsmark are crossed by miles of old roads, some accidentally used by a tractor, others long overgrown and hardly visible. Some trails are marked, like the path leading from Botsmark to the Loberget cabin and watchtower. Some are marked as forest roads on maps, as the old road shown here, that takes you from Forsliden to Högåker. Yet other roads were once used by workmen and their horses when collecting timber from the forest, and are hardly visible anymore.Whether you want to go for a short or longer hike, on paved roads or through the forest, you can find it around Botsmark.