The Guards of Siberian Taiga – 3

The Guards of Siberian Taiga – 3

Projects dates: August  9-11, 2019 (3 days)
Languages: Russian, English

Location: Russian, Irkutsk region, Shelekhov area, Olkha plateau.
The long-term goal of this project: Development of educational and eco-friendly tourism in the area, maintenance of one of the most popular trails to cliffs of the Olkha Plateau.

Project scope of work: The project tasks will include clearing the trail corridor, building new sections, setting up resting points, and installing signs and trail markings.

Description of territory:
Among the cliffs of the Olkha Plateau there is an evil Lizzard and a fierce Lion, an Old woman and a proud Pharaoh, stone Mirrors and an Old fortress. In fact, the most interesting cliffs are not too far from the railway station in Orlyenok. You can visit all of these sights in just one day, taking away incredible impressions of nature and its monuments.

If you go by electric train from Irkutsk, then take a walk into the Siberian taiga, you’ll see a majestic cliff – Vityas. This 30-meter mass reveals the face of an epic Russian hero. This spot in the forest near the river Olkha has attracted hikers and climbers for many years.

If you have 40 minutes more, you can go from Vityas to another natural masterpiece – the 25-meter-high cliff Idol, a figure that appears as though it had been transformed into a stone giant. It’s difficult to believe that nature created something so incredible!
Where to meet: Irkutsk, main railway station in Irkutsk.

There will be a crew leader who helps manage all the volunteers at the work-site. He or she will be assisted by an interpreter, who will ensure smooth communication amongst all of the participants and will help run our after-hours cultural programs for the group.

The average working day is six hours, with a break for lunch. The crew leader can change the daily schedule depending on the weather and the condition of the group.


Living conditions and meals: Volunteers will set up a stationary camp on the bank of mountain river Olkha next to the Vityaz cliff.

Please note that you will need to carry your belongings, camp equipment and food from the Orlyonok railway station to the project site (6 km / 3.8 miles).


The crew leader will set up a work schedule, as well as a schedule for meal and campfire preparation amongst all the crew members. For those interested in perusing a typical menu at our camps, please look at our sample menu.

GBT will provide all food for the entire project, and will also supply a full inventory of trail-building tools, other equipment, two-person tents, etc.


There will be no hot showers at the site, but it will be possible to heat up enough water to bathe camping-style or you might choose to refresh yourself into the waters of the river.

Please note that this project is not taking place at Baikal.


Physical challenges during the project: Daily movement along the trail, working with tools (with shovels, picks, etc.), dragging stones and other types of physical activity. Also throughout the project you will need to participate in the maintenance of the camp.


Please note that the volume of your backpack must be at least 70 liters. Due to the peculiarities of the local climate, it is necessary to take a warm jacket, rain coat, sweater and pants. Also pay attention to your shoes – it should be comfortable, lightweight and non-slip.


Please be sure to carefully read the FAQthe list of necessary equipment, and information concerning ticks.


Logistics: The place of the project start is the city of Irkutsk. Participants meet on August 9th at 8:30 a.m. at the railway station Irkutsk-Passazhirsky (Chelnokova str., 1). The group takes the train to the Orlyonok railway station (~ 1.5 hours of travel). From the station volunteers walk (6 km across rough terrain) to the Vityaz cliff. Please note that project participants carry backpacks with their belongings, group equipment and products. On the last day the group gets back first on foot to Orlyonok station, and then by train to Irkutsk.



Project cost: The overall fee for joining this project is 2500 rubles for 3 days.

GBT provides:

Transfer Irkutsk – Orlyonok station – Irkutsk
Crew leader
Group first aid kit. (Attention! If you have chronic diseases or you need certain drugs, please take them with you.)
Products, as well as the necessary group inventory, tools, two-person tents



To confirm your participation please send us a scan of your travel tickets to Irkutsk to

Please remember that there is a very limited number of places available for this project!

* Please take the time to fill out an application once you are 100% sure that you will participate in this project.

* Please also note that, if you do not receive an immediate reply from us within a week—or if you have any other questions about participating in this project—you can connect with us directly via the following e-mail address: