This is the first descent of Europe’s longest river by kayak from the source in the Valdai Hills northwest of Moscow to the river’s delta at the Caspian Sea. The Volga traverses 2300 miles (3700 km) through western Russia’s most beautiful countryside with some of the richest history known to man.
TOTAL MILES TO DATE: 2130.09
TOTAL DAYS: 59
MILES COUNTDOWN: 0.00
May 5, 2014
The team traveled 35.3 miles today. The batteries in their spot tracker were low so tracking was a little "spotty" until they realized it.
They are camping in an actual campground in a birch forest. There are seats made out of tree stumps and the guys are thrilled with the idea of actually having something to sit on besides the ground. There are homes just a short distance away but they appear to be vacation homes. The reservoir crossing started out pretty easy but quickly became more of a challenge as the winds picked up and the waves got bigger. It wears them out but they do sleep very well each night.
They are 12 miles from a dam that will be crossed tomorrow and the expect to reach Novgorod sometime tomorrow evening. More cruise ships are being seen with the passengers waving freely but local fisherman still are quite standoffish. Most towns they are padding appear to be vacation towns with little to no stores or shops. They have learned that stores are called "magazines". West and Jeff have decided they could open a sandwich shop in one of these towns and make a lot of money. They are unaware how the locals make their money outside of the kayak instructors. They take their kayaking very seriously and are very organized. They use the same type of racing kayaks that we have, here in the States.
A local approaced them yesterday in his boat and took a picture of them with his IPAD. A little strange, even to them.
We've made some contacts in Novgorod, thanks to Valentina. We hope to meet up with them tomorrow and resupply a couple of items that were lost in Jeff's dump yesterday. Nothing serious but a bottle or two.