“Don’t go out on thin ice,” the Ministry of Emergency Situations warns every year. But as soon as the first layer of ice appears on Russia’s lakes and rivers, the fun begins.
Skiing in St. PetersburgDmitry Marchenko/EyeEm/Getty Images
One of the most popular pastimes in Russia is ice skating, and many prefer natural ice.
Girl extreme sports in a swimsuit on ice skatingGetty Images
Age is no hindrance whatsoever.
Lyubov Morekhodova is skating on Lake Baikal. Morehodova has been fond of skating since childhood. Now the woman uses running "Norwegian" of 1945, brought by her sister from Irkutsk. She ties the blades directly to the boots. - Natalia Fedosenko/TASSNatalia Fedosenko/TASS
Some go for a stroll or ski on the ice – this is especially common in St. Petersburg.
People walk on ice on the frozen Fontanka River in St.Petersburg, Russia, Wednesday, March 7, 2018, with Troitsky (Trinity) Cathedral in the background. The temperature in St. Petersburg dropped to minus 12 degrees Centigrade (10 degrees FahrenheitAP
Ice fishing is another favorite pastime, and competitions are held regularly.
More adventurous types prefer snow-kiting on ice.
Athletes with kites during a race in the course-flight discipline at the Siberian Cup in winter sailing disciplines on the ice of the Novosibirsk Hydroelectric power Station reservoirAlexander Kryazhev/Sputnik
Others like to run on the ice, and even organize half marathons. More than a thousand people annually take part in ice races in Vladivostok alone.
Participants of the Honor Vladivostok Ice Run half marathon near Russian Island. More than 1 thousand people from 15 regions of Russia took part in the races at distances of 5, 10 and 21.1 kilometers. Trails of 1 and 0.5 kilometers have been prepared for childrenDmitry Efremov/TASS
Ice marathons are also held on Lake Baikal.
The start of the participants of the international Baikal ice marathon "For the preservation of clean waters" on the ice of Lake Baikal in the vicinity of the village of Sakhyurt in the Olkhon districtAlyona Shatueva/TASS
As well as hockey matches.
During a hockey match on Lake Baikal in the village of Bolshoe Goloustnoe in 2021Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS
Tourists visiting Lake Baikal have the chance to enjoy the “Baikal Kiss” cocktail: they cut a small hole in the ice, pour in vodka, brandy, champagne or whatever, lie face down on the ice and slurp it out, snacking on berries.
And, of course, there are the “walruses” – ice-water lovers who always open the winter swimming season.
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