Plan of the tour:
On this day we meet you at the airport "Khabarovsk Novy", from this place the group begins their trip to the coast of the Sea of Okhotsk, this trip lasts from 20 to 36 hours (taking into account a possible spending the night on the road). This is the beginning of our incredible journey, on cars we will overcome more than one thousand kilometers, we will visit many unique objects, we will see the river, we will overcome fords, ferry crossings and meetings with wild animals. Our way will pass along the administrative road, through the Komsomolsk-on-Amur city, as it is also called "the city of Youth" or "the city at dawn" ». Founded by the Komsomol in 1932, Komsomolsk-on-Amur is the largest administrative and industrial center of the region, the 4th largest city in the Far Eastern Federal District. Before this the taiga was here, the Permian village and the Nanai hostel of Zemga. This city has a rich and interesting history, here we will have a lunch. Further we go along the Baikal-Amur mainline. BAM was also built by the Komsomol, it was one of the greatest construction projects of the century. Now BAM is actively modernized, this is evident by the presence of modern updated sites and continuously running compounds. Our next goal is almost 600 kilometers of the taiga road, we will not meet any more settlements on our way, but we will cross the large river Amgun by ferry. This place is notable for its legends, since somewhere on its shores the convoy of Tryapitsyn with gold and valuables was lost in 1924. Gold was exported in order to hide it from the Japanese militarists attacking the Nikolaevsk-on-Amur city, this city was turned into ashes. We will drive along the 30 km stretch of the "royal road", built by gold miners in 1916 – 1918, until the 1950s it was the only one road in the area. After the crossing, we will overcome an interesting taiga pass, where we will make a stop and go to the gold mining site of Russian Mining Company Polymetal. The site is mining gold, you will appreciate the scale of the company's work, huge careers, unique special equipment and many industrial devices, which all located in the middle of the taiga very far from cities and towns.
The site has its own Internet, mobile network MTS, its medical station, airfield and much more. This is the only facility in Russia where gold is extracted by the method of flotation leaching. In a simple way, gold is dissolved with special reagents and is formed into multi-ton bales with concentrate, which is then transported to a mining and processing plant where silver, platinum and rare earths are extracted. About this and many other things we will learn passing through the site. This day is supposed to be fuller than ever, a car journey will end on the coast of the Sea of Okhotsk.
Note: In a cafe, food is at your own expense, when you leave the administrative roads, we will organize meals.
On this day we arrive on the coast of the Sea of Okhotsk, the Gulf of Nicholas, high-speed boats will be already waiting for us. After a small rest and meal, we will go to the base in Wrangel Bay, the whole way is about 1.5 hours. There will be hotly heated sauna at the end of the day. In the Wrangel Bay begins the whale watching program and the next part of our journey.
Day 3 – Day 5
These days we will be within the bay, walking, whale watching, fishing, small excursions along the coast. A distinctive feature of this place is that here lives most of the Okhotsk Sea population of bowhead whales. Bowhead whales are huge giants weighing up to 150 tons, in length they are up to 20-22 meters. Watching these whales is very difficult, since they live in the polar and circumpolar areas, but we will see them in all its glory. The Okhotsk population of these whales was practically exterminated in the early 19th century by American whalers, which traces have remained on the shores of the sea to this day. The bay was chosen for a reason, this place is a paradise for whales, here there are two powerful tidal currents, one coming from the comparatively shallow gulfs of Nicholas, Academy and Ulba, and the other from the powerful stream from the southwestern coast of the Sea of Okhotsk, in which the height of the ripple (standing waves) sometimes reaches 8 meters. It is what whales really like. Whales often stand in a bay in shallow water, during this period they have a mating season, you can watch their games and fights for many hours, sometimes killer whales enter the bay and it causes a real confrontation between them, this spectacle is not so uncommon for this place. The whales feed on plankton, which is in abundance here. At night during the tides, on the surface of the water you can see the glow and flashes of blue sparks, this is truly a magical, fascinating and interesting hydrobiological phenomenon. The glow comes from unicellular organisms "nocturuces", bioluminescent algae and phytoplankton during the breeding season, which just happens during the travel season. It is impossible to get bored here, the bright unique nature and abundance of gastronomic delights will not leave you indifferent. In the bay you can enjoy fishing: you can go out into the sea and catch fish at the seam of the currents, you can fish in the tide from the shore and coastal stones, you can also catch fish, which is going to spawn, in the coastal spring, but many prefer just to shoot this process on the camera. At this time, salmon, pink salmon and chum salmon actively go on spawning. The beauty of the bay is amazing, multifaceted and indescribable, it must be seen with your own eyes.
Note: accommodation in rooms for 4-6 people, accommodation in a common house, a unique menu with cooking your own catches, tea with local herbs and salads with coastal algae, daily sauna.
Rise in the morning, and we go through the 60-kilometer gulf of Academy to the bay Ongachan. Our way will pass through the open sea with flocks of sea birds, axes, ducks, gulls and others. At this time the birds are already on the wing and begin to flock. Upon arrival accommodation at the base, there will be a sauna in the evening. The way on speedboats through the Sea of Okhotsk is about 4-6 hours, the speed depends on the weather. There is a high probability of meeting killer whales and bowhead whales during the way. We created the way in such a way that meeting with whales was most likely.
Note: accommodation in rooms for 4-6 people, a sauna, a cabin company, hot water, shower.
Day 7 – Day 10
This day is the beginning of the travel to the Shantar archipelago. The Shantar Islands are remarkable not only because they are completely wild, here is also located a national park created in 2013. We will visit the only meteorological station, where only 2 people live, also we will see the historical object of whaling. Until today, on the seashore, you can see the 19 th century fat melting device, the remnants of the robbery whaling of American companies. Fat of whales was used for lighting houses, and whalebone for clothing and corsets. As a result of this activity whales in the Sea of Okhotsk were almost completely destroyed, but thanks to the oil revolution, the fate of the complete extermination of whales passed. Today their population is recovering. The island of Bolshoy Shantar is notable not only for its history, but also for its bright geology, the Cape of Raduzhny is one of such places. The outputs of semi-precious jasper shales of bright red and greenish shades, pink Irnites, white quartz, marble veins lie directly on the surface of this magnificent place. Next we will visit the island of Utichy, this is the place of nesting of the Okhotsk Sea birds, thousands of birds have chosen the island-rock of Feklistov with the Rosset, Sobolev and Enelgelma bays.
There are also two islands: Shilov and Sukhotin. The island of Feklistov is a “bearish land”, salmon herds go to the rivers to spawn, cloudberry and taiga grow along the shore… This place is also remarkable for the fact that here is located the island of Arka, a unique object and one of the main attractions in the region. In the tide the base of the island is flooded with water, and in the low tide it comes a narrow strip of stone platform. In the bays of the island of Feklistov, ships often endure a storm, these coves closed from all winds are also convenient for fishing.
Upon completion of the excursions we will return to the bay Ongochan.
Note: overnight in tents.
On this day we return to the Gulf of Nicholas, from where we come back to Khabarovsk, the same way as we arrived.
Note: Departure takes place from a fishing complex where you can buy fresh red caviar and see with your own eyes the process of industrial providing of salmon and other fish.
Arrival to Khabarovsk