What a great way to see Baikal's nature and experience Siberia! Rafting Irkut River has it all. A picturesque river gorge, unexpected rapids and the virgin taiga forest make this an unforgettable trip. The River basin is almost uninhabited; just few lonely looking hunter's huts and few tiny villages.
Irkut is a mid size River. It starts from the lake Ilchir and unlike of most Baikal rivers, flows away until it meets Angara River near Irkutsk city. In most part Irkut is calm with few rapids. But during dry season (May-June), the number of rapids increases and raises the difficulty grade to #3.
Enjoy the Eastern Sayan Mountains of southern Baikal. The River cuts through them most of the way.
Observe wildlife along the river: great bird watching and good chance to see wild animals.
Visit oldest village on the shores of Lake Baikal - Kultuk. Walk through other villages deep in the forest, some are literally just few houses, to see the life of the Siberian country.
Day 1: Irkutsk city....transfer by private car to Kultuk village (120km). Stop by fish market - a view of Kultuk Bay of Lake Baikal and the Khamar-Daban mountain range. From Kultuk, we will drive to our start point-a small village Bystraya. Preparation for rafting, orientation. Lunch. First part of rafting (4 hours) through Zirkaunsky canyon, Kulitch rapid, 2 grade, and Zubkogan rapids. After passing Maliy rapid, stop on the left bank. Setting up a tent camp. Supper. Overnight.
Day 2: In route...Breakfast. Rafting. In the first part it is pretty smooth, especially in high waters. But farther down there is the hardest rapid or this tour - Bolshoy (the big rapid), 2 grade. Next we stop by the left bank for lunch and pictures of “The big rapid”. After lunch we continue rafting down to Kosaya rapid and farther down to Byk (bull) rapid. Stop for the night by Zazara river confluence. Supper. Overnight.
Day 3: In route...Breakfast. Rafting down to the deserted village Vygusovo, canyon, rapids Motsky and Sobachii (dog's) rapids. Then on the smooth water we approach Shamanka village near the Shamansky Cliff. End of rafting. Lunch and rest on the bank. Transfer to Irkutsk city (50km/31mi).
Transportation & Transfers as described;
Bilingual (Intermediate level) Instructor;
Full board & lodging (tents) as described;
Cooking, Camping and Rafting gear;
Local Medical Insurance (mandatory);
Sokol orientation guide;
Accommodations in Irkutsk;
Visa and Registration cost;
Travel/Health/Emergency Evacuation Insurance;
Special tour-related note:
Bring: insect repellent, flash light, sweater or light jacket, windbreakers, swim suite, sun glasses, snacks;
Be prepared to take a "shower" in the river if needed, fight mosquitoes and share mutual "body inspections" for ticks.
If personal hygiene is an issue-bring your own sleeping bags.
All meals are cooked on the open fire.
If you like to fish, bring your own fishing rods.
This rafting route of 100km/62mi is designed for beginners (some limitations apply), and using catamarans or rubber rafts.
Total time on water (rafting) is approximately 16 hours.