Tag Archives: russia

Snow and Yas.

There’s a Kamchatkan saying that goes something like: ‘If snow falls in June, then spring will be long and drawn-out’. Well it’s not quite June yet, but Moscow weather right up until last week sure did seem to resemble Kamchatka’s extreme climate…

The ducks have already arrived at the reservoir next to the KL office. They’re circling up above it, peering down at the water (still!) completely covered over in ice, thinking ‘EH?!’!!

Read on…

Flickr photostream

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Фэбruaяy 45, 2018.

I love Russian winters. Everything coated in spotless (at least on my balcony at the office) driven snow, and when the sun comes out, the beauty of the serene scene is multiplied several fold:

But wait. Typo, surely, no? Russian winter? But we’re 16 days into spring already. At least, that’s what I thought. What’s going on here?!!

Read on…

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Snow and sun – oh what fun!

I really cannot remember a winter in Moscow like this one. A Moscow winter as it should be – frosty, icy, snowy, chilly, splendid, and sometimes even sunny. More often than not it’s a soggy, slushy, sullied affair, but I’m normally on the other side of the planet so it doesn’t really affect me so I’ve nothing to complain about.

Not that I never see snow of a winter. I’ve seen not small quantities of it twice in Antarctica (in 2009/2010 and 2017), in Greenland, and in Sweden-Denmark in February 2011 (oh such a long time ago that was). I’ve been to the typically, famously, thoroughly chilly Iceland and Yakutia, but only in summer, so those don’t count. Ah yes, I’ve skied in the Alps a few times, but I won’t count those either. So, that makes just four times in the last 10 (or even 15) years when I saw serious snow. Therefore, a rare total white-out in Moscow is only to be welcomed! Here are the views out of my office window and from the balcony next to it:

Read on…

XIA – PEK – SVO – LHR – NAS – LHR – PHEW.

I’ve been getting about quite a bit this fall, and practically every day I’ve been as busy as a bee. It’s that slightly disorienting routine I get into every few months or so: each day something new – starting with the hotel room I wake up in.

But the other day it wasn’t a hotel room. Upon waking, my first question to myself was the usual ‘Where am I?’, but the answer this time came ‘in an Airbus!’ Indeed I was, flying Xi-an – Beijing – Moscow – London – the Bahamas – London over several days.

Such continent hopping in a short time with lots on the work agenda forces my happy-snapping habit into its minimalist regime. This isn’t so bad, as the pics that do manage to get taken are normally very much ‘greatest  hits’ and no padding. Thus, this post: ‘Greatest Hits of the Last Several Days’!

First, here’s a masterpiece from Petrovich taken at dawn at Danxia:

Before you ask about the fly, let me make the introductions: please meet our pet fly, whom we carry around the world with us in a jar and sometimes let him out for a walk fly :).

And now for a brief rundown of my recent continent hopping…

Read on: Asia > Europe > North America > Europe…

When in Cherepovets – visit Severstal Steel Plant.

My business schedule for this fall looks like it’ll be a full one, as usual. So it’s time to warm up before the long slog so as to ease into it gently and in high spirits… First up – a spot of the industrial

I’ve shown you pics of the iron-and-steel industry before here – from the Novolipetsk Steel Plant. But today you’re getting photos from another of KL’s respected customers…

Severstal! You no doubt will not have visited the city of Cherepovets :) or the Severstal steel mill here… but that’s just fine: I’ll be showing you around the latter in this here post – from where they turn ore (actually – agglomerate) into crude iron…

Read on: Converter, smelter, slabs, rolls!…

Sayan and Yenisei: Fun and frolics.

One of the most fascinating places along our Upper Yenisei adventure was where the Baliktik-Hem and Kizil-Hem rivers merge. It’s here where the ‘Yenisei’ is first mentioned on the maps (when viewing the rivers going down from the mountains); specifically, that first mention is Maliy Yenisei (Little Yenisei).

Round that corner is the Kizil-Hem, which starts out as a small stream in Mongolia!

Read on: Extreme tourists…

Sayan and Yenisei: the rapids.

Rafting on Balyktyg-Khem and Ka-Khem (aka the Little Yenisei) was pretty chilled – there were no particularly dangerous rapids to speak of. The plan of action was simple: keep paddling along the main part of the river, keep clear of rocks and immediately obey the captain’s orders. The instruction that our crew performed fastest was “Stop!”.

There were only a few rapids, probably five. Apart from that there were sand bars with light riffles, fast sections, two or three standstill sections. For rafters, standstills are an inconvenience – you have to paddle! Thankfully, we always had the wind at our backs, or there was no wind at all.

Read on: Unexpected pitstop…

Reaching the Upper Reaches of Yenisei.

So, just how exactly did we get to the upper reaches of the Yenisei?

Well, obviously, we didn’t walk. It involved various means of transport. First, we drove 400 km from Abakan to Kyzyl. The quality of the road was bearable – it is asphalt all the way, though there were lots of roadworks. Next year it should be in better shape. It took us 6-7 hours because of the repairs, detours and time spent waiting at traffic lights giving way to oncoming traffic on the single-lane sections.

But we finally made it to the city of Kyzyl, the capital of Tuva:

However, this is where things took an unexpected turn for the worse.

Read on: A marvelous artefact next to the airport…