Adventures

Baikal of the Wild

Heli-Motocrossing Around Siberia’s Biggest Lake

E7e12304a3e97d7f478864a04bf8d32d1397c29d5 PhotosProject Baikal 2014
If you’ve never spent 10 days helicoptering around Siberia and dirt biking around Lake Baikal... well, no worries. Neither has any other human, because such a thing has never been arranged.

Well, now it has. It happens next July, it’s called Project Baikal 2014, and it’s just a little 10-day heli-motorcycling expedition around one of the world’s biggest lakes. Your guides will provide the Soviet-era military helicopter and the 450cc motorcycles. (Which is great, considering luggage fees nowadays.) But as for everything else, make sure you pack this stuff...

Good socks. To keep circulation flowing during your 30-hour flight to Irkutsk. Plus, Siberia gets kind of chilly.
A real camera. Not your smartphone’s camera. These helicopter rides—from five-star hotel to Mongolian steppe to lakeside drop point and back again—deserve better.
Beef jerky. For quick energy while zipping down pine-forested ravines at 60 mph. Also, you’re in the Siberian backcountry. This is no time for croque-monsieurs.
A Russian-English dictionary. Better yet, a translator who can talk you around a sharp curve or two.
19 gifts. To help break the ice with your expedition group of 20. Candy bars work. So does vodka.
A water bottle. An empty one. Because Lake Baikal has enough drinking water for every human on earth. For the next 50 years.

And yes, you get free refills.

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