2 Forgotten North Land

Forgotten North Land

Posted on May 30, 2012 by team


Vanavara is a lonely place somewhere on the boundless territory of Evenkiya.

Mainly sad news have come from there lately: a boiler room exploded, tap water smells with gasoline or something… But there were times when the Krasnoyarsk region was even proud of it!

That’s how the biggest sawmill of the settlement looks like today.

Snow in the end of May is normal here.

1 litre of milk or juice costs here about 3,3 USD, 1 kg of sausage is twice more expensive than in Krasnoyarsk. Fruits are almost impossible to find, despite sky-high prices they are bought at once.

Some houses are abandoned, nobody repairs them and they often become a reason of fires.

Gasoline is more than 1 dollar per litre. Cars can reach the village only in winter. Spring, summer and fall are the seasons when only planes can reach it. At that a ticket costs almost the same as a ticket from Krasnoyarsk to Moscow – 400 USD.

Boats are at every house, they are used for fishing.

Central street of the settlement

When Vanavara was a large aviation node planes and helicopters flew from here to different settlements and pastures of reindeer breeders, from here started expeditions looking for Siberian meteorite, oil and gas. Taking part in such an expedition was a nice deal: good salary, long vacations, nice retired pay… People from all over the country came to Vanavara.

In the end of the 80s it started to decline, those who didn’t manage to go to expeditions were “buried” under the ruins of the USSR in a little northern settlement.

Filling station is never crowded

The hardest time for the settlement was 1992-94, some families ate mixed fodder. People had no cash at all, they just tried to escape. Hunting and fishing let them survive somehow.

Most of those who live here today are unemployed.

Former grocery. When it worked food was cheaper.

Expedition vehicles

Here was a fur farm and local zoologists annually gave more than a thousand of black brown fox skins. In the 90s it turned out that keeping foxes was not profitable and the enterprise decayed too.

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2 Responses to “Forgotten North Land”

  1. (r)evolutionist says:

    “Northern Exposure” Russian edition? Economic determinism in play here…

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