Karelia (July 2014)

We have often said that modern Europeans have lost not only the spirit of a warrior, but also a spirit of discoverer. Our ancestors crossed the mountains and rivers, struggled with the challenges of wild nature, admired its pristine beauty and power.

Having seen enough at dull photos of comrades-in-arms at the beaches of Egypt, Turkey and Thailand, in the middle of summer, absolutely spontaneously ,by own efforts, there was an idea to collect group and to organize a fascinating hike or camping trip to the northern boundaries of Russia – to Karelia. It was for only four days along a picturesque route of wild open spaces. The initiative group was assembled and launched a new project VANDALS.

Initially, we set out to satisfy program to the maximum, a cycling route, climbing to the plateau, water rafting on catamarans. In this regard, we have faced a number of difficulties because the route passed away from major population centers.

Having started from Petrozavodsk to the countryside of Gimoly we ordered our gazelles but It had not reached 120 km to the finish line because the gazelle ‘ s clutch had broken. The group met the first troubles with a smile, Vandals changed the car to bicycles and continue the movement to the purpose. I must say we were lucky, and within 30 km of a local cab driver at the minivan for the small remuneration took our group to the parking at the mountain Vottovaara.

The first night was in friendly and positive atmosphere in the Vandal ‘s camp – jokes, tricks, the first impressions, heart-to-heart conversations around the campfire. Morning, we were up early and climb on the mysterious mountain’s plateau with the surprising and unique nature even for this local place. The landscapes bewitch you, the inexpressible atmosphere immerses in gloomy thoughts and sets thinking on sense of life. Having chronicled the extraordinary beauty of a natural monument and having investigated sights of “sanctuary”, the group returned to the camp, we had an easy lunch and a cycle throw program.

We had filled up supplies, had collected catamarans while on hours there was nearly midnight, our Drakkar ships plunged into the dark abyss of boundless lakes. In spite of the fact that nights in the north were quite light and the island on which we had to stop, we can not be found and had to return to the mainland, where we spent the night.
Early in the morning our guide on a single kayak went in search of the island, having returned in three hours, we had received island coordinates: “float directly, then to the right, then more to the left, you will see a beige sweater on a stone, from him 300 more meters” =)))”, our guide left to hand over rolling bicycles in Petrozavodsk.
Well, with such navigational coordinates, you can feel like a pirate in search of treasure island!

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