All-terrain vehicles SHERP, Expedition

“To the East!” expedition – Plutorana Plateau “roof”

June has finished. The team travelled 3500 kilometers and is continuing their challenging way on Plutorana Plateau. Day by day ATVs pass new kilometers and the expeditioners shoot video and record the unbelievable beauties of Plutoran region. Vladimir Shilnikov prepared the final June report, entering the new month with new stories.

 

  • We ascended the plateau. Three ATVs Sherp accompanied by the experimental ten-wheeler climbed using their wheels to the height of almost one thousand two hundred meters above sea level. As planned we used the Valley of Burdykhan River. In the first day we crossed half the way, and the remaining part the next day. That was the hardest part. We had to do a scouting on foot, which was well performed by Pavel Emelin and Timofey Cherkasov. As a result of the scouting, we amended the trajectory of movement for the ATVs. Then, headed by the navigating officers, the pilots headed their vehicles up the slope, avoiding dangerous skew or screes. By 1PM all ATVs came up and we congratulated each other with this small victory. The ascending maneuver is not a waste and wasn’t done to show off. This way we saved time and fuel, because both aren’t endless. If we had continued moving up Yakhtali River then the waste of the fuel would have bit all norms. And by the way, during the ascend we didn’t use hoists, which came in handy many times before. Kureika River has brought many challenges and surprises, part of which could only be solved by hoists. However WARN products has never let us down. WARN hoists are strong and reliable and very fast in work. The navigating officers just had to fix the end safely on a suitable support and ATV was soon on a river bank. I am scared to imagine what would we have done without them, most likely we’d have lots of troubles.

 

 

  • A little about the things we saw up there. Frist of all, the breathtaking views of the mountain surroundings – rivers, valleys, other peaks. Our photographers will prove that by showing their highly artistic pictures. Secondly, we saw with our own eyes that the plateau is really as flat as a table, if you don’t take small caves and barely visible hills into consideration. Only streams cut plateau surface with canyons, heading down and slowly getting strength and depth, getting ready to become inflows of fuller and stronger rivers.

 

 

  • As strange as it may seem, the plateau is really a swamp soaked with water. Without wellingtons there is nothing to do here. Water among stones, grass hillocks, rare bushes on the slopes, in the valleys and just on the ground. When you are taking every step there is a good chance to dive calf length into clay slush. The Plateau is like a hydro accumulator keeping all melted and rain water to then give it back to streams and rivers that run on its surface or at its footsteps.

 

 

  • The weather is very changing – just a second ago there was sun, then a huge cloud with thunder and lightning comes and covers the ground with hail. Similarly now the sky can’t get calm, keeping the cloud right on top drizzling on us.

 

 

  • Finally came long waited July, but it didn’t bring any warmth. We again got our winter jackets out alongside with hats. In the afternoon the temperature is six above zero, but at night it is just one. It isn’t strange, we are on Plutorana Plateau.

 

 

  • It is really interesting tendency, we are constantly moving to the places where it is colder. First from the coming spring in the Arctic Circle, then from warm weather back into winter. Now when Kureika river bank is blossoming with flowers and greenery, we are rising one thousand meters up and reach tundra zone among moss and lichen. Although flowers can also be seen here. Small, sometimes really tiny, hiding among the stones – sometimes barely visible. Spring…

 

 

  • In a day we passed thirty three kilometers. It seems like not much. Everyone will say – why not driver, have climbed up and now go on even on the side. But it isn’t that easy. There is also relief up there, though it is not so distinctive, but pretty solid. There are hills, hollows, also walls and steps. In addition there are also streams in the canyons in the making and scree. So it is never boring. For that reason our track is so complicated and our navigating officers are having fun. Each step of the way they have to decide how to move – to the right or to the left, or just go round. It is still pretty far from river Kotuy.

 

 

 

  • This is our third day on Plateau. We are moving without any rush. Yesterday we passed thirty two kilometers and today twenty seven. The speed is not high, from five to twelve kilometers an hour. On the stony and swampy parts you can’t really speed. The trajectory is twisty. The peaks of Plutoran in this south part are not the same as in the north. People say the peaks are flat and even there. Here is partly relief. That is the reason why we are moving so slow, not to make mistakes and in order not to pass extra kilometers.

 

 

  • Yesterday we rose up to one thousand four hundred meters. From up there it is really easy to see all the mountain range, steep cliff and caves. On the top there is a rock duck with an ancient flagpole. Sometime ago there must have been a flag, but now there are only nails left (the ones that kept the flag fixed). Also nails from a notice board remained. But the notice board itself is gone now. So basically the history of the flag establishment is kept in mystery now.

  • As we moved further up we encountered some parts that looked like Alpine meadows. Pretty flat valleys deceptively covered the ground side to side. Deceptively because they were all swampy and it was really difficult to move there. We used mainly stones and bumps to walk. But the pictures are outstanding.

  • Today we reached the head of the stream that inflows into Luksina lake. Up in the mountains it is so nice and docile, in parts it can be simply crossed with one step across. A little lower it accumulates strength and streams within the steep river bed. We don’t need to go there, we will continue our way tomorrow.

 

 

The expedition is continuing.

The organizers and participants of the expedition thank their partners and sponsors:

The organizers and participants of the expedition thank their partners and sponsors:

The company Ravenol, the main technical partner.

Iridium Russia, thanks to them the team will always be connected. The equipment for the data transfer was made available by the companies “Satellite mobile technologies” and “Iridium 360”.

Product sponsor for the expedition – the company X5 Retail Group, managing brands “Pyaterochka”, “Perekrestok” and “Karusel” for the support of the idea of moving to the east.

Technical partner Paptor U-Pol.

Garmin Russia – for the navigation and action cameras Garmin Virb.

Webasto – technical partner and sponsor of the expedition.

Company “Dinakor – strength technologies” and brand Kubota.

Company DJI alongside the 4vision.ru – the provider of quadcopters for the video shooting from the air.

4×4 Club and brand Warn.

“Medical technologies of survival” for the organization of the medical part of the expedition and the expedition’s medical kits.

KB “Radar”.

Transport company “Promit” for the help in transportation of the cargo to the East.

Informational partners of the expedition:

National Geographic Russia, Popular mechanic, Men’s Health, strana.ru, vesti.ru, Russia.travel.ru

 

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