Slyudyanskiy rayon, Siberian Federal District, Russia
Est. 13.2km / 4 hrs 24 mins / Map

Baikalsk - Cya On The Road

There is a white seagull on the coat of arms of Baikalsk. The seagull floats above the blue mirror-smooth surface of Lake Baikal, it flies above the vast forests, and the golden disk of the sun caresses the coastal town with its rays. Baikalsk has all the advantages of the mild climate of the southern coast of Baikal. Mild snowy winters and the high mountains that are located around the lake create extraordinarily favorable conditions for tourism development. There is one of the biggest ski resorts in Siberia and the Far East in the town of Baikalsk. It is called Sable Mountain (Gora Sobolinaya). Volunteer sportsmen have started to develop the mountain hills more than 50 years ago. Skiers used hand-made paths that were created through the hills. Nowadays there are trails for different levels equipped with chairlifts. There is also a system for creating artificial snow. Baikalsk attracts skiers and snowboarders during winter, hikers, and mountain-lovers during summer. Tourists love the rich and lush vegetation of the Baikal Mountains, clean forest lakes, picturesque coasts of the rivers. It is hard to describe the feeling of excitement when you see the view of the sacred Baikal from the top of the mountain. You understand at that moment why locals treat Baikal as the sea. During summertime, strawberry lovers visit the town. Baikal strawberry became a trademark known far beyond the region of Baikalsk.The town of Baikalsk was not always a tourist attraction. It was founded because of the pulp and paper mill. The mill was very modern at that time (the 1960s); it was located right on the shores of the lake. The houses and work-premises were built at the same time. The town appeared in taiga in some years, young people from all over Soviet Russia came there to work. However, the mill production was not very successful.  Ecologists insisted on closing the mill because its wastes went to the lake. In 2013 the mill was closed but waste recycling has been one of the main environmental challenges in this region ever since.  

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