Lena Lebedeva-Hooft (lenaswan) wrote,
Lena Lebedeva-Hooft

74. Tuva, my new love! Part 1

Apologies for all who have to read it in English. This is mainly done for Jan Jaap, my hubby, but also for all possible foreign friends - and with assumption that most of Russian friends are also able to read in English.   ...After some days Tuva reflections are partly sharper, partly digested and smoothed, partly overrun by other new impressions from other places - thus time to write about this end-of-May trip. Though some of the moments stay in my memory and are even in my dreams daily - as if it is indeed new love and inspiration!


Again, apologies for English.

Tuva trip started 21st May with flying via Krasnoyarsk by Tuva Avia to Kyzyl. As you can see from the photos there can be improvements...

...but I’m now sure they will come. In Kyzyl lodged in the good-quality hotel, and coming few days spent for the Protected Areas workshop (not to repeat – see http://www.wwf.ru/resources/news/article/3054 in Russian and a bit in English).

Kyzyl photos: sure that a bit of the most famous can be found online (like Center of Asia monument), but rather of interest – local center of Shamanism and the Monument to Unconquerable Tuvinians (obviously Tuvinian Lamas who were persecuted in 1920s-1930s with overall USSR-Stalin case over Buddhism).

Finally 25th May was the start of our trip to the south – to discuss initial WWF plans for Dzeren (Mongolian Gazelle) reintroduction in the south of Tuva with local people and local governments. Passing by on the way – Buddhist Suburgan at the last mountain pass of Tannu-Ola Ridge towards the Ubsunur Lowland – shared by Tuva and Mongolia.

Before the horse festival visited local Buddhist Dugan, and many thanks to the local Lama – who allowed to make two pictures and also said some predictions for coming year based on my birth year-date-time. Strange as he did not know but predicted all in line – difficulties coming from the East, and successes coming from the West. Right in the time that I am about to move to live with my hubby in the Netherlands. See one photo here.

It appeared that the Erzin kozhuun horse-riding festival became the great place for such discussions. Local people in Tuva are absolutely fantastic! Look at the pictures of the Head of Erzin Administration Mr.Bair Damdyn, or at the local Tuva No.1 horse breeder Sergey Ynaalai, or at the fantastic dancing Tuva ladies, or at the faces of some of Erzin kids! And here I also had a chance to feel back an ornithologist – as over the entire field there were dozens of soaring Black Kites!

Besides the main issue of Dzeren reintroduction talks WWF was deciding on a small award to the horse-riding. Pictures of the whole event see yourself, and finally the award from WWF went to the owner of the “most wild horse” – which rejected the standard polygone of the horse-riding filed and ran beautifully to the wild nature! Sure that this horse will get the name of “Wild Nature”.

Later horse-riding altered with traditional Tuva wrestling, called “khuresh”. Just see the faces of observers!!! It is still a puzzle for me why the boy in the red panties (part of uniform of khuresh wrestlers) won over the blues. But that was indeed the fact.

Sure I have to show the picture of Chaizu on horse back, so elegant in comparison with myself (although contrary to the Altai it was easy to climb a horse just by myself, as Tuvinian horses aren’t so tall).

Absolutely all with whom we spoke on Dzeren are in support, even realizing that the area of ca. 5000 hectares will be made as enclosure where they will not be able to graze. The local administration suggested that among six sites that we thought over we better concentrate on surveying four – although it is clear that at the final end we will only select one.


Final end of 25th spent in the yurt of the Andrian Doduk family – with special and rather delicious local food some of these on the pictures. Inside the yurt – for those who do not know – the area on the left is where you can pass, the area opposite front entrance is for the acknowledged guests, and the right side is where visitors better do not go if they want to follow the rules: this is the hosts’ side. Yurt is covered by thick wool, stove stays in the center, floor covered by wool or carpets or just planks (in more simple habitations which was not the case).

And finally the day ended at the Tore-Khol lake, which is partly located in Russia (Tuva) and partly in Mongolia, and in the windy morning we could awake with the sound of waves and whistle of the wings of ducks passing by (Red-crested Pochard Netta rufina).

Tags: Буддизм * Buddhism, Горы * Mountains, Животные * Animals, Поездки * Travel, Птицы * Birds, Россия * Russia, Сибирь * Siberia, Тува * Tyva Republic, Фото мои * Photos My Own
  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.