Yakutsk tour and photos
11/01/2007 e 18/01/2007
Yakutsk is the capital of Yakutia autonomous region and has about 240000 inhabitants. The temperature was frequently around -40 degrees, both C. and F., as the two scales meet at this low value. I hike in Yakutsk downtown, visiting the local museum, the dock onto Lena frozen river and the Permafrost institute.
Lening square, in the center of Yakutsk. Today the temperature is around -40°C and the smoke coming from cars, industries and heating systems, generates a fog that seems to make the air still more freezing.
Other images from Lenin square in Yakutsk.
Trees completely covered by snow and ice. At these low temperatures, persisting for weeks without winds, the ice grows in huge quantity, just everywhere.
Banners covered by ice.
Like shadows in their black coats, these people walk in thick fog at minus forty. Yakutsk has about 240000 inhabitants and, like any other city of the world, there are cars, offices, resturants and entertainments, regardless of the extreme winter conditions and the other challenges given by each season.
Nice ice sculptures outside buildings and along the streets.
Photos of ice sculptures in Yakutsk.
A nice cathedral.
Ice over cables and trees.
Still ice everywhere...
Trees deformed by the weight of the ice.
A nice hike over the forzen Lena river, between the ships trapped into the ice.
The nice Siberian natural history museum in Yakutsk. There are remains from anicent animals (like mammoth) and many archeological findings, coming from ancient populations. There is also a collection of minerals: this region is very reach in diamonds, gold, silver and many other minerals. It is said that any element of the periodic table can be found in Yakutia. Most of these minerals are currently not taken out, because of lack of roads throughout the region and the huge difficulties to build an efficient transporation system (this is mainly due to permafrost, which deforms any road in just few years).
Hiking in Yakutsk during the severe siberian winter.
Ancient wooden houses, not build on poles and thence heavily deformed by adjustment of underlaying permafrost.
The tour of Yakutsk finishes with a visit to the permafrost institute, where studies and experiments on permafrost are done inside tunnels several meters underground.
Here in Yakutsk, the permafrost (a layer of permanently frozen ground) starts at about 3 meters of deepness. This creates lots of challenges in home (especially the tallest buildings) and road building, because the peromafrost tends to adjust over the years. Here I'm 8 meters underground, where the temperature is -8 centigrades year round. I can touch the soil and, where it is frozen, it is hard like concrete. There are also remains of ancient plants lived about 10000 years ago, when this layer was outside.
My room at Lena hotel in downtown Yakutsk.