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Autumn and Winter

My favorite picture. Vast spaces and loneliness... One of the main images of Siberia. This was the reason why we have chosen this picture as the banner for our web server.

The first autumn snow. Time when transparency of air and the nature purity come to their utmost. The air does not catch the lungs with cold yet, but braces cheerfully. It seems that the owners of the rick forgot to put their harvest to the mow.

Autumn is the best time for hunting. My grandfather had a very old and nice riffle which he used with great success, and also a lot of great hunting and fishing stories. The only problem with those stories was complete impossibility to verify them.

Though, some stories have witnesses. For instance, imagine a Siberian village at Baikal named Mishikha, time of sunset. All people inside our wooden summer house are waiting for supper. And suddenly, there is a shout from outside "A goose is over the house!" "Where!" - my grandfather is rushing out, the riffle in a moment appears in his arms. Ba-bah! and the goose is falling down near the threshold, almost into an empty pot standing there.

This is a preparation for winter fishing. If to look through the hole in the ice, the bottom will seem very near, though the actual depth is about 4 meters. We can see the backs of smoothly floating fishes - omuls. Fishing-rods for winter fishing on Baikal traditionally are just sticks with shortly cut branches which are used to wind the fishing-line around. These traditional fishing rods look very simple. I recall how I brought from Irkutsk a very nice looking polished fishing-rod. But I did not get anything but disdainful glances from real fishermen. The results of my fishing showed that fishes also did not find my new rod good.

Sokuyi (the Russian word) are fantastic conglomerations of ice and snow at the frontier between the shore and the flat field of ice. You can't help feeling that they are just frozen waves. Baikal is struggling against cold weather for very long time, throwing away to the beach the thin films of ice which bind the movement of water. Sokuyi are the result of this struggle, so if you want to reach the clean ice field of Baikal (from which this picture was shot) it is necessary to get over these hills of several meters height.

Winter sunsets on Baikal are also very beautiful.

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