After mosquitoes galore, heat (Siberia is experiencing a heat wave right now, which seems to be pretty much the same as, not only, the UK, but most of the world too) and the latest van hiccup, we had been yearning for some mountains. Siberia was lovely but it’s pretty flat and forested.
Yes, it is not the most direct route to Kazakhstan, but we had gained a lot of time and mileage not heading to Lake Baikal – the call of the mountains and driving on one of the most spectacular roads in the world was too tempting, and the lack of mossies and cold nights was just wonderful.
|testing out the new camera with some long exposure shots|
|Its hot but that river was pretty pretty cold!|
|Settling in for a tense 90 mins!|
|Who can't resist brusing your teeth in a ice cold mountain spring?|
|We saw a lot of this weed growing, not sure what it is though|
We camped for a night on a high desert plain. Probably one of the most amazing wildcamping sites we have ever stayed in. We were at 1900m and the night time temperature dropped to a low of 3 degrees, which meant we slept like babies. The next day we also discovered that we had inadvertently camped next to some sort of sacred site.
The Altai republic really was a wonderful way to close our time in Russia. We were blown away with this place. The only downside, when we turned the ignition on to leave we were greeted with the ‘Orange check engine light of death’ More van problems.
|time for a haircut|
|sacred stone circle on the plateau|
|The last town before Mongolia|
|Our lovely friendly petrol station pump man from Kazakhstan|
|a lovely camping spot right next to a river|