SIBERIAN Taïga & Baikal Lake experience
Discover Siberia's vastness and isolation, on the footsteps of an old train line that never saw life. Through traditional Buryat villages and post communist Kholkoz, be immersed in what russia is all about: immensity and a very uniquely warm civilization. You'll experience the traditional banhya by a river, nurture your feet with shamanistic recipes, and feed like a russian bear on smoke trout and barley. Russia is unique, with its history, litterature, traditions and specially outlook on life; doing this journey along the Baikal lake and mountain range will change your perspective about the continent nation! Todays damaged western-russia relations make it the best time to undertake such a trip, and forge your opinion through cultural slap!
June to October 2018 and same season for 2019
all 2018 set dates are full, contact us for private groups
Available set depatures 2019: 1st July
3.Group Meeting Point:
Irkutsk, Siberia, Russia.
4.Who can go?
a.Min age: adults only
b.Physical condition: must be fit and healthy. This trip involves 8 continuous days of demanding hiking on mountainous terrain, while carrying your day pack.
c.You will need to:
i.To walk an average of 20km p/ day
iii.Enjoy cultural difference
d.Group size: max 6 pax + 1 guide
5.Rating (1 to 10): Overall = 7 /10
Difficulty = 7
Isolation = 8
Danger = 6
6.This activity involves (%):
Transport: Walking = 80% Train = 10%% Van = 10%
Survival skills = 20%
Orienteering = 70%
Group Autonomy = 70%
Day 1, meet the guide in Irkutsk, briefing, board the train.
Day 2, train travel.
Day 3 to 9, trek through Dscherginski National Reserve, camp every night. Enjoy hotsprings along the way, taiga wildlife, remoteness, amazing indigenous and views and a lot of history !
Day 10, hike in morning to the last trek stage, then 4x4 transfer to Yianjima goddess temple. Overnight at hotsprings camp.
Day 11, hike all morning along the baikal shore, to your lake side B&B, discover local village life, fishing and and how the lake changes during the day.
Day 12, Boat to Olkhon and settle in the camp.
Day 13, rest day, local visits and heading to Khoboi Cape
Day 14, travel back to Irkutsk via some must see sites.
8.Weather / local conditions / Terrain:
Irkutsk is in Siberia: it is characterized by an extreme variation of temperatures between seasons. It can be very warm in the summer, and very cold in the winter. However, Lake Baikal has its effect, such that temperatures in Irkutsk are not as extreme as elsewhere in Siberia. The warmest month of the year in Irkutsk is July, when the average temperature is +18 °C (64 °F), the highest temperature recorded being +37.2 °C (99.0 °F).
Precipitation also varies widely throughout the year, with July also being the wettest month, when precipitation averages 113 millimeters (4.4 in). The driest month is winter.
In the train, in 2nd class bunks (6pax)
During Hike, in tents (2 or 4pax)
In villages and Hot springs, in local guest houses, twin share
In town in 3* hotel (local standard), twin share.
Traditional local food, made of meat or fish, with potatoes, onions. Often in stews and soup. Supplemented by local hearty Buuz (big raviolis), pancakes with sour cream, or simply milky tea, soup from mutton, house noodles and also Salamat. Food in Russia is filling but not very refined. It is good but not delicate. If you are faint with alcohol, dont go near vodka, you can catch up with beer... Drinking alcohol with locals in Russia is a 'dangerous game', as most westerns have none of the drinking tradition that Russia has. You are warned !
Airport pickups and drop offs are made in mini vans.
Train, for the unmatched tranS-siberian leg of the BAM
Airplane (if this option is retained) in local airline
Local 4x4 vans for transfers
Motor Boat (ferry) across the lake
12.What to expect
Have you ever imagined you'd travel in time? well, this is your opportunity to do it. Russia thinks differently than the West, and it translates in everything of daily life. This is a trek in the pure Russian tradition: Light weight, well catered, with nice relaxing moments by hot springs. Siberia is unique by many means: its people are made of different ethnical groups, their instinctive relation to nature, the outlook on life and mainly a different perception of the world.
Vegetation is made of pine trees and burch, with high Mountains around, rivers to cross, and stunning old trails in a Taiga like environment. Don't expect to wash every day, but when you'll have access to local banhya (sauna), you'll have to go with the full treatment (pine branch massage and ice bucket!).
13.Safety and security
We take safety very seriously.
There are no major risks but the ones inherent to trekking (body injuries, weather, isolation, etc.). We minimise these risks by preparing for them. But the best is to act mindfully and carefully during the trip. The area is well known to your experienced guide, and the route could differ depending on local conditions.
Should an incident happen, rescue protocols are established and your guide will ensure your prompt safety.
a.one English speaking guide for the group.
b.Consider no internet or mobile phone network for most of the trip.
c.This trek is demanding (because of its isolation)
d.Most goods will be carried by 4x4 to our night stage
per person in a group of 6 (twin share, dormitory and shared tent) = AUD 3800 or AUD 271 p/day
a.For less pax please contact us
b.For helicopter return please contact us
16.Inclusions and exclusions
i.safety and specialist equipment carried by you or the guide
ii.all food and meals
iii.all accommodation specified in schedule (in twin share room or tents)
iv.transport and drivers as per the schedule
v.park permits and special permits
vi.local visits and museum fees
vii.invitation letter for visa application
iii.international flights to 'meeting point'
iv.personal expenses (beverages, entertainment, etc)
v.tips to local guides
vi.personal equipment (we will send you a comprehensive kit list when booked)
Should you have any questions please contact us