|Dog Sledding in Bystrinsky Nature Park
Feb. 1-Mar. 31
|Total Days: 10
Group size: 1-4
Activity level 1 2 3 4 5
||Photography, snow shoeing, sight seeing, dog sledding, snow mobile, visiting reindeer herders
The Bystrinsky Nature Park, Kamchatka’s largest nature park, is home to Even reindeer herding people. Take the public bus 9 hours north to the village of Esso, population 1200 people. Stay at a comfortable guest house. Travel with Even and Koriyak people to visit the reindeer herds grazing on lichens near the Ichinsky Volcano, the only active volcano in the Central Mt. Range. Transportation will be with you sitting in the dog sled driven by an aboriginal dog musher. Carrying your gear, food, and cook/interpreter will be 2 snow mobiles with sleds, which also break a trail for the dogs. On the trip you will sleep in small cabins owned by hunters. Near Ichinsky Volcano 2 herds of reindeer are spending the winter and you will visit them. Return to Esso and enjoy the hot springs pool in the village. Take the bus back to Yelizovo and stay at guest house.
Dog Sledding Itinerary
Day 1 Arrival in Kamchatka and transfer 15 minutes to Bolshakova Guesthouse. Visit the local market to loosen up after the long flight to Kamchatka. Double check all supplies and gear for trip to Esso and Bystrinsky Nature Park. Dinner.
Day 2 Breakfast 800. Depart the guest house at 900 to the Yelizovo bus station. The public bus departs there at 930 to Esso. Stops are made at Sokoch (in 1 hour), and at Milkovo (in 2.5 more hours), and at least 1 more time prior to getting to Esso, 650 km north of Yelizovo. Check into the Altay Hotel, just across the street from the bus stop. Dinner at a local cafe with your interpreter. Enjoy the Altay Hotel’s small geothermal pool.
Day 3 Breakfast 800. Depart by snow mobile (in sled) 12 km to Dymchikanskiy Ranger Station in the park, where you’ll meet the dog team and get acclimated to riding on the dog sled.
Day 4-7 Travel by dog sled toward Ichinsky Volcano, spending the night in hunters’ cabins along the way. Note that you will not have a private room at the cabins, but all will stay in one or two rooms. This is a great chance to see how these people live off of the land. Also visit the reindeer herds.
Day 8 Return to Esso. Spend the night at Altay Hotel.
Day 9 The public bus departs at 800 from Esso. Arrive in Yelizovo and transfer to Martha’s and Yuri’s guest house.
Day 10 Breakfast. Airport transfer. Departure.
Note: Weather and other unforeseen circumstances can necessitate changes in the schedule and we make every effort to adhere to this program.
Price includes: Professional instruction and guiding, interpreter/cook; meals; accommodations in Yelizovo and Esso (single room); shared accommodations on dog sled trip staying in hunter’s cabins; all permit fees, documents for visa support and registrations, and emergency insurance.
Not included: Transportation to Kamchatka; trip insurance; snacks or energy foods; alcoholic beverages; guide gratuities and personal items.
This trip is rated STRENUOUS OR 4 for people in good physical condition who can travel in cold weather conditions all day. This is the coldest time of year in this area and expect temperatures down to minus 40 Celsius. Previous experience is good, but not required.
Food & hydration
Bring your own quick snacks to be eaten throughout the day. Energy bars, trail mix, salami, and salty snacks are all good choices. Staying adequately hydrated is important and you will need to be able to carry a water/thermos.
Daytime temperatures in Yelizovo usually range between minus 14 to minus 20, and in Esso from minus 20 to minus 40 or even lower. We will provide a required winter clothing list for you when you book this trip.