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Home Page » Our Programs » Chukotka

Chukotka


Snowmobiling expedition to the reindeer herders

The endless whiteness of Chukotka tundra, majestic mountains scenery and vastness of the ice-covered ocean - and you are flying on a powerful machine through the frosty air in this stunning landscape... The destination, the goal of our expedition is the winter camp of Chukchi reindeer herders, the people who live today the same way their ancestors did centuries ago...
This tour if for real adventurers, who are ready to face challenges, cover a few hundreds of km by snowmobile, and struggle through a snow storm to get to otherwise inaccessible places. For those who are ready to overcome discomfort in order to get the unique experience with the indigenous people of Russian North, to discover a spectacular northern land in its full magnificence and austere beauty...
Tour type: Snowmobiling expedition for experienced snowmobilers only (1 pax/snowmobile, no caterpillar support), English guiding
Special requirements: experience in snowmobiling is a must, as well as psychological resistance to the cold

Day 1, Fri    
1 pm – arrival by an overnight flight from Moscow* in Anadyr, meeting at the airport by your English-speaking activity instructor. After receiving the luggage - transfer by mini-bus along the road and across the frozen Anadyr Bay to the city of Anadyr (appr 1 hr).
Check-in at the Anadyr hotel ***, rest.
Go on a brief walking tour of Anadyr, a multi-colored northern town on the shore of the sea – the largest city and the capital of Chukotka autonomous district.
Before dinner, try on the snowmobiling outfit.
Dinner in the restaurant downtown. Night in Anadyr hotel*** (twin-basis)
 
Day 2, Sat     
After breakfast at the hotel, get outfitted. Meet your snowmobiling instructor/s, undertake safety briefing and go full-day snowmobiling in vicinity of Anadyr town – to Mihail’s Mountain or Anadyr Bay. (Weather and group snowmobiling skills permitting - a radial snowmobiling trip to the settlement Kanchalan - 140 km). Master your snowmobiling skills on different types of terrain to prepare for tomorrow’s long and challenging snowmobiling. Lunch as a light field snack.
Return to the hotel before dark. Free time in Anadyr.
Dinner. Re-packing the luggage for tomorrow (what stays in Anadyr and what goes on the trip). Night in Anadyr hotel (twin basis)

Day 3, Sun     
Check-out of the hotel after breakfast. Help your guide pack the luggage in snowmobiling sleds and onto the snowmobiles.
Start your real Chukotkan adventure with 170 km snowmobiling in the endless white tundra, towards the settlement Uelkal. Depending on the snow quality and group snowmobiling skills, this trip can take from 8 to 12 hours. Stop on the way for warming up with exercises, taking photos. Pass as quickly as possible the midway section notorious for its bad weather (winds, local snowstorms). Lunch as a light field snack.
Arrive in the evening in Uelkal, an Eskimos settlement located on the shore of the Bering Sea. Today we are hosted by the local culture club. Taste the national snacks of the local sea mammal hunters (whale, walrus meat/skin/lard).
Night in Uelkal in the sleeping bags on the camping mats in the common hall of the local club.

Day 4, Mon      
After breakfast, help your instructors pack and load the luggage. Set off snowmobiling 100 km (4-6 hrs) in flat tundra, among the challenging harsh snowdrifts and on the sea (Bay of the Cross, Bering Sea). In the beginning of the day, stop near Uelkal at the impressive radar installation, the echo of the Cold War, once upon a time covering the western half of the US area. In the second part of the trip, if the weather is clear, take a notice of the dramatic change in the landscape - from tundra to spectacular mountains surrounding the Bay of the Cross. Lunch as a light snack on the way.
In late afternoon, arrive in Egvekinot settlement nested between the mountain range and the sea. Check-in at the comfortable cottages for 3 to 6 people.
Visit the local museum with its small but interesting exhibitions on Chukotka ethnography, geology, and the history of the Egvekinot area. The passionate museum staff will tell you many interesting facts about the political exile, GULAG prisoners’ labour used in construction of the local road, and Egvekinot role in WW II.
Workshop in Chukchi handcrafts - make a souvenir with your own hands for the beloved ones who could not join you on this trip.
Dinner in the café and overnight in the comfortable cottages in Egvekinot (twin and single basis).   
 

Day 5, Tue        
After breakfast, check-out. Today a long day of challenging snowmobiling to reindeer herders awaits us.
Head by snowmobiles along the road built by GULAG prisoners to Amguema settlement (90+ km). Stop on the way at the Arch when crossing the Arctic Circle. If the weather is bad, these 90 km can become a challenge, especially the midsection of the road Egvekinot-Amguema which is famous for winds – the 35 km through the narrow valley acts as an aerodynamic pipe).
Arrive in Amguema, a national Chukchi settlement, the village that today, with its new Nordic cottages, looks rather modern. Lunch as a light snack in Amguema.
Leave by snowmobiles further, towards the reindeer herders’ camp in the open tundra (70 to 150 km depending on the location of the herding team).
Arrive in the reindeer herders’ camp in the evening. Tonight you will be hosted in yaranga (Chukchi traditional tent, teepee-type). Meet your Chukchi hosts over tea and traditional dinner consisting of reindeer meat.
Night in yaranga (in the sleeping bags, in the pologs - traditional skin-curtained beds for 4-5 persons).
 
Day 6, Wed      
Experience the day schedule of Chukchi herders who go to bed early (with twilight) and wake early together with the sun. After morning tea and light breakfast, walk or snowmobile to the reindeer herd (depending on the herd distance from Chukchi camp). The hosts will pick trained for sledding reindeer. See how to catch and harness the deer, and try out the widespread local activity - reindeer sledding.
14.00 - Say good-bye to your hosts and set off snowmobiling along the already familiar terrain back to Amguema and further by road to Egvekinot. We will stop on the way back to do the ice-angling on one of the lakes or rivers.
By 8 pm, arrive in Amguema. Enjoy dinner cooked by the activity instructor and sauna after the frosts of tundra.
Night in the sleeping bags (in the common area).

Day 7, Thu
Late morning, breakfast.
11.00 - set unhurriedly towards Egvekinot. Today there will be an opportunity to snowmobile in the mountainous area. Weather and snow permitting, we might go to the Junction Point of the Arctic Circle and the 180th meridian (the line where dates change).
Arrive in Egvekinot in the afternoon or evening. Check-in at the cottages, enjoy their comfort.
Visit the local museum and take part in the crafts workshop – make with your hands a traditional Chukchi souvenir for yourself or for those who could not join you on the trip and stayed home.
Dinner in the cafe. Night in Egvekinot cottages (twin and single basis).

Day 8, Fri       
After breakfast, go for a radial snowmobiling trip to the mountains (70 km or, weather and snow conditions permitting, up to 120 km) along the valleys, in tundra and past the mountain passes. It the winter conditions and the group skills allow, snowmobile towards the Junction Point of the Arctic Circle and the 180th meridian (the line where dates change).
Take in different Chukotka landscapes and enjoy challenging snowmobiling in the mountainous area. Lunch as a light field snack.
Return by the evening. Dinner in the café and overnight in the comfortable cottages in Egvekinot (twin and single basis).  

Day 9, Sat     
After breakfast, pack your luggage, help your instructors loading it onto the snowmobiles and leave by snowmobile for Uelkal (100 km, 3-5 hrs), with a stop on the way to see how the locals are fishing.
Arrive in Uelkal in early evening. Concert of the national dance by the local Eskimos dancing group.
Night in Uelkal in the sleeping bags on the camping mats in the common hall of the local club.

Day 10, Sun      
After breakfast, the last day of snowmobiling expects us.
Go snowmobiling Uelkal-Anadyr (170 km, 9-10 hrs). If the weather and visibility are fine, enjoy high speed snowmobiling and the feeling of a flight through the tundra. If the weather is not fine, be ready to face the challenges Chukotka still has in store, and bring yourself together to overcome them all.
Arrival in Anadyr, check-in at the hotel. Rest.
Farewell dinner in the restaurant and night in Anadyr hotel (twin basis)

Day 11, Mon   
After breakfast – free time in Anadyr.
Transfer to the airport and departure by flight to Moscow.
Arrival in Moscow (Domodedovo airport) in the late afternoon of the same day.
 
Attention: the above itinerary can be changed on the spot due to the weather conditions (snowstorms, frosts, strong wind, etc).


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