By isbi

MonoMonday #5

Another incredible day as we drove 100km on frozen Lake Baikal stopping to look at the icy formations very like the stalactites and stalagmites in caves. We had a picnic lunch (more omul baked in foil with veges - delicious) on the ice. It was only about -6C but felt colder with a light wind. It is unusually warm here at present. This has led to the ice cracking and it took quite some time to find a way home. When the ice cracks it pushes jagged chunks up, like you can imagine in an earthquake. That makes it difficult or dangerous to cross. Leonard got out many times to probe the crack with a spear like device to check for weak ice or water. The conditions are constantly changing and we were unable to return by the same route as we had gone. The crack extended almost right across the lake, probably 15km. I think all 3 of us were getting a bit concerned but Leoard said "there is always a way" and eventually we got around quite near the shore. It is also somewhat disconcerting to hear from time to time the sound of the ice cracking. The surface of the lake varies from completely flat, clear ice to great jagged chunks. In some places it's like driving on an airport landing strip, in others it's barely (or not) navigable in 4 wheel drive. As for walking you need to be extremely careful on the icy bits. There are not many vehicles on the lake, just the odd fisherman tending nets.

On our return Wally and I had a banya (Russian sauna) in a facility which would also fail an Australian O,H & S inspection. John only lasted about 40 seconds so I don't think that counts.

I think it's Monday, so this my Mono.

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