Visit Siberia: push your limits

Push yourself to the limit: 4 reasons to visit Siberia in winter.

Push yourself to the limit: 4 reasons to visit Siberia in winter.

Stepan Zuev
Steep, snowy mountain slopes, wooden huts hiding in the forest, cedars and fir-trees shrouded with snow all combine to make an incredible playground for adrenaline junkies.

We spoke with several energetic Siberians to find out what outdoor activities lure them out of their cosy homes during the very long and very cold legendary winters of the region.

Snow-kiting

Yelena, brand promotion manager, age 33:

Winter kiting is not very popular in Krasnoyarsk and Siberia, although there are plenty of good spots. When the Krasnoyarsk Reservoir freezes over, the entire kiting community of Krasnoyarsk heads there. Some go kiting in the fields surrounding the city.

Source: Yelena Lebedeva

For me, snowkiting is a way to put a little variation into my winter relaxation options in Siberia, improve my steering techniques and perfect my downhill skiing skills.

Kiting is a lot of fun. It attracts creative individuals that are looking for freedom and new experiences regardless of their social background. As for Siberia, it is a stunningly picturesque and unique kiting destination: a perfect choice for those that like outdoor sports, breathtaking mountains and fascinating nature preserves.

Locations: Novosibirsk Reservoir in Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk Reservoir in Krasnoyarsk and Lake Baikal

Snowboarding

Vitaliya Vorobyova, freelancer, age 24:

I have been skiing since I was a child, so my life revolves mostly around winter. I hardly have any summertime photos in my phone.


Source: Yelena Lyubimova

This New Year, I went to Mamai in the Irkutsk Region (Editor's note: a peak and ski resort, a legendary destination for Baikal freeriders). It is a place where you suffer, sweat and hate every minute of it, but continue walking uphill for just a single down-run. You got me right – you go uphill on foot, without any lifts, but later you are rewarded by the feeling of having truly earned this slope and this downhill run. In short, I enjoy sweating and meeting people that are always on the move – like I am.

Locations: The Sheregesh ski resort in the Kemerovo Region, the Mamai ski resort in the Irkutsk Region, the Ergaki mountain range (Western Sayan Mountains) in the Krasnoyarsk Territory and the Bobrovy Log fun park in Krasnoyarsk. The Biryuzovaya Katun winter activity complex in Altai Republic and Mount Gladenkaya near Sayanogorsk, Khakassia

Cycling

Anton Tyrkov, inventory manager at an auto-parts warehouse, age 41:

A bike is your guide to attractive and picturesque wild destinations, which are often barely accessible on foot or by car. In winter, many of my fellow cycling enthusiasts take a break and switch to cross-country or downhill skiing, or snowboarding. However, my friends and I are developing a new biking trend in Krasnoyarsk – fatbiking.


Source: Anton Tyrkov

A fatbike is a bike with extra wide tires and therefore it has an enhanced off-road capacity on such terrain as snow, sand or mud. This allows us to go cross-country cycling even in winter. Naturally, some areas are impassible even for a fatbike, so we mostly follow paths left by skiers or snowmobiles.

In winter, every cyclist has a personal temperature limit. Some time ago my friends and I figured out that riding at –30°C (-22°F) was not the best idea, but four daredevils, one of whom was a girl, attempted riding in such freezing conditions. My temperature limit is around –25°C (-13°F).


Source: Anton Tyrkov

Preparing for a winter outing, we pack thermoses, layered clothing and extra underwear. I take a few extra balaclavas to keep my head warm at all times. The air in the suburbs is fresher, much easier to breathe and the nature in Siberia becomes entirely different in winter.

Locations: Lake Baikal

Skiing

Daniil Selyutin, the stolbist, age 31:

When there’s heaps of snow around it’s great and you feel that you’re experiencing a true winter. It is invigorating, as cities in winter are often gray and snowless. That's why I get on my skis.

Different techniques offer you different emotions. When you use the skate technique, you enjoy the speed and the struggle with yourself, while classic skiing somewhere in the forest gives you ample time to admire the scenery.


Source: Stepan Zuev

I like skiing in unfamiliar areas and using a map to find my way. An important thing is to make sure that you have food supplies and a flashlight in your backpack in case you get lost in the Siberian forest.

Locations: The Sheregesh ski resort in the Kemerovo Region, the Mamai ski resort in the Irkutsk Region, the Ergaki mountain range (Western Sayan Mountains) in the Krasnoyarsk Territory and the Bobrovy Log fun park in Krasnoyarsk. The Biryuzovaya Katun winter activity complex in Altai Republic and Mount Gladenkaya near Sayanogorsk, Khakassia

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