Сообщения за Февраль, 2014

Birch bark craftsman on Baikal, Listvyanka

Today I've guided a wonderful couple from Switzerland and we were lucky to visit the house of local birch bark craftsman who lives in Bolshaya rechka village, which is on the way to Baikal. His wooden house stands on the shore of Angara river and has a view to it right from its yard. Clear, frosty air and steaming Siberian Angara river together with calm, quiet and peaceful nature around. His wife and he make cups and other utensils made of birch bark. Since ancient times birch bark (called “beresta” in Russian) was considered to have curative power. If is believed to remove negative energy from the body. Birch bark barrels were used to keep bread and milk products which can breath through birch bark, and not get spoiled for a long time. His masterpieced cups have no seals inside, they are made with one piece of birch, thus the tree has to be cut and then the inside hard part taken out, and then with the help of hot water it is softened and the bottom made of Siberian cedar tre

Ice crossing (winter road) to Olkhon should be opened in mid-February

To get to the biggest island on Baikal - Olkhon in winter you have to take an ice-road from the mainland. It usually goes from one of the bays of the Small sea of Baikal. Now the thickness of ice on Lake Baikal in a place where usually ice crossing is opened does not exceed 45 cm. For the road to be officially opened and equipped for travelling ice thickness of  not less than 70 cm is needed.  If the temperature stays at the current level (about -20 degrees Celsius) during another 2 weeks, crossing will be opened for cars with a total mass not exceeding 10 tonnes. The ice crossing to Olkhon operates until about mid-April, its length is about 12 km.