90 Kilometers Around The Lake

The old round Baikal railway (Circum-Baikal) which the locals call “Krugobaikalka” is one of the few unique railway lines running through the territory of our vast country.

The first part of the road – from Irkutsk to cape Baranchik (Port Baikal) – was constructed for 4 years, from 1896 to 1900. On today’s maps this section does not exist anymore: in 1956, the road was dismantled and flooded when the Irkutsk Reservoir was filled during the construction of the Irkutsk Hydroelectric Power Station.

It was a grandiose and extremely complicated project. Initially, it was assumed that 33 tunnels would be built in the mountains, followed by retaining walls and viaducts. The construction was carried out right on the bank of the lake, so all the materials had to be transported by water – on barges or across the winter ice.
 

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