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Extreme Hiking / Hiking in Lake Baikal, Siberia, Oblast of Irkutsk Russia

Type:
Ice Marathon
Track length:
26.1 mi/42 km
Preparation:
Yes
Dangers:
Many
Lake Baikal is a rift lake, situated in the south of the region of Siberia, between the Republic of Buryatiya to the southeast and the Irkutsk Oblast to the northwest.

Lake Baikal, like Lake Tanganyika, was formed as an ancient rift valley and has the typical long crescent shape. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is home to many species of animals, plants and Buryat tribes.

Among all lakes, it is the clearest, the deepest and the world’s oldest lake, formed 25 million years ago. Lake Baikal is also famous for the one of a kind ice marathon that takes place on its frozen surface.

Competitors come from over 50 different countries and race across the frozen lake. This sport is recognized as one of the world’s hardest endurance challenges. The ice marathon gives daring local and international runners the huge opportunity to race across a 26.1 mi/42 km course on the snow-covered ice of Lake Baikal. The beautiful lake offers amazing landscapes surrounding the basin, including picturesque mountains, taiga woods and boreal forests.

The marathon is predominantly flat and covered in a light layer of snow. If you are a visitor to Siberia, you may have trouble getting used to the northern winds that are harsh and unpredictable.

The climate of Siberia is the biggest challenge of this race, as past races proved that conditions vary in severity, from a sunny sky with no chill factor to a biting cold and high winds. The world’s most adventurous runners will face the uneven surface of the lake that resembles the conditions of an ice skating rink, crafting a totally unique racetrack. Prior to the marathon, get ready for a big preparation and safety precautions, as this can be a very dangerous activity.

On the day of the race, you will be transferred to the beginning spot and after the ritual of vodka sprinkling, you can start your adventure. It is your chance to pacify the spirits of the Great Baikal, keeping the Russian tradition and then take part in the coolest marathon ever.

How to Get to Destination

BY CAR FROM Irkutsk
36.1 mi/59.1 km, 45 mins
Head east. Take the 2nd right. Turn left.
BY CAR FROM Ulan-Ude
320.1 mi/516 km, 7 hrs 10 mins
Head east on ул. Сухэ-Батора toward ул. Ленина. Take the 1st left onto ул. Коммунистическая. Take the 1st left onto ул. Борсоева. Continue onto ул. Иволгинская. Slight right toward ул. Кабанская. Continue straight onto ул. Кабанская. Slight right onto Байкал/М55. Continue to follow М55. Turn right onto ул. Аргунова. Turn left onto ул. Сергеева. Turn right onto ул. Седова. Continue onto ул. Байкальская. At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit and stay on ул. Байкальская.
BY AIR
International Airport Irkutsk,
37.6 mi/60.1 km
BY AIR
Irkutsk Northwest Airport,
52.6 mi/84.2 km.
BY TRAIN

Trans Siberian Railways cover a huge area from Moscow to Siberia and China, Mongolia and other places. For fares and schedule check the website.

Audiovisual material

PHOTOS (5)
VIDEOS (2)

Schools

If you are interested in trying out this amazing sport in this spot press the request button so as to give you more information and prices.

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