Day 102 – Stein tried to dive, but to no avail – 11 June

Day 102. 11th of June. Longasy to Kizhi. 10 km, 7.6 km/hr average speed.

We waited out the forecast morning rain, and got off to an 1145 start. With following wind and waves we were more or less blown up to Kizhi.

The boat builder Igor met us at the southern tip of the island and directed us to a chosen landing site where we were met by Yuri and Marina.

Yuri is a researcher at the museum, a friend of Viktor Dimitrev, and a veteran of several of the Polar Odyssey expeditions.

Marina is a historian and researcher at the Museum, with an interest in Karelian history and culture. She came for a month’s engagement 10 years ago, and here she still is and enjoying her work.

Today was a special day for the museum with lots of activities, including a small stage where Karelian and Russian folk music was played and sung.

We could probably have chosen a better day to visit from our hosts perspective, but they took time out and showed us great hospitality.

Soon we had changed to dry clothes and stored the boats. We gladly accepted an offer for accommodation in the staffs living quarters. Luxury for us. But basic as a year round accommodation, with shared rooms, kitchen and toilets in a separate building.

A lot happened before we got there though. First we were shown around the festival area by Marina and Yuri. They also found us some food and tea.

Then we rushed over to meet an incoming hydrofoil from Petrozavodsk. Why? Because a first mate on board doubled up as a courier for Stein’s new power bank and charger cable for his old and beaten iPhone. The old power bank and cable? They are at the bottom of Lake Onega, Stein had a mishap at breakfast, and they ended at three meters murky water. Stein tried to dive, but to no avail.

We feared that this mishap could not be compensated for until we were back in Norway.

That was unreasonably pessimistic. Stein SMSed Stas, our white water paddling friend, and with the help of him, Google translate, Marina, and the first mate, Stein had replacements in his hands four hours after the mishap. Great relief!

Next we went on stage for a short description of our project, as the first ever visitors to come by kayak.

Stein tried his hand at “kyykkä”, a high power version of “Kubb”.

Next we were allowed to join an guided tour with a group of tourists from Escape travel in Oslo, who came in on a cruise ship from Moscow. Surprise for us, surprise for them.

By now it was 1830 and time to go to the local shop an buy food for dinner. Igor accompanied us to the shop and to our room.

Tomorrow we will visit the boat building part of the museum, and wait for the arrival of a Swiss sail yacht which apparently follows the blog and want to meet up. They are expected around midday, so it will be a very late start.

Weather the next few days is forecast as uncooperative, but manageable. We expect to be at the inlet to the Belomor Canal, Povnets, on Thursday. If all goes well.

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