Everyone knows that the Pacific Ocean is the largest on Earth. Involuntarily, you are afraid of its greatness, thinking about the fact that it contains more than half of the entire water of the World Ocean and occupies 49.5% of its surface. The size is also striking: 16,000km from north to south and more than 19,000km from east to west. The circumnavigation expedition of the Tomsk Regional Branch of the Russian Geographical Society will have to cross this truly boundless water space. Right now, in the Chilean Port of Talcahuano, the intrepid crew is preparing the trimaran for Easter Island.
On February 15, Stanislav Berezkin, Evgeny Kovalevsky, and Egor Muzileyev completed one of the most difficult stages of the expedition. The trimaran rounded Patagonia, starting from the 37th parallel south and returning to it again from the other side of South America. It took more than three months to get from the Argentine Port of Mar del Plata to Talcahuano in Chile. And it was not the easiest time – storms and head currents, rains and the constant cold of the "fierce south" tested the strength of our travelers. But they managed.
“Today our crazy voyage around Patagonia ended with a call to Hornos Island, with a call to the southernmost permanent settlement, with the passage through the Le Maire Strait, the Beagle Channel, the western part of the Strait of Magellan, the Gulf of Peñas and other ‘seedy’ places. The route length along the general course, taking into account the San Fernando–Mar del Plata passage and the call to Hornos, amounted to 3,700 nautical miles. Yes, and the full mileage by this point is 12,500 nautical miles. We are 5,000 short of the record. To say that Patagonia was not easy is to say nothing," admitted the captain of the trimaran Stanislav Berezkin.
Now the trimaran has been lifted ashore with the help of Chilean friends. The vessel must be carefully prepared for crossing the Pacific Ocean. In addition to purely technical work, the crew performs other tasks facing the expedition. One of them is the friendship mission, a genuine "people's diplomacy".
In the Port of Talcahuano, the Russians met with local athletes and members of the public. The meeting was organized by the Municipal Sports Department.
“The crew represented by Evgeny Kovalevsky, Stanislav Berezkin, Egor Muzileyev with the participation of Pasoka the Chihuahua presented the expedition, told about Russia and its Siberian region, answered questions. The crew song was played. A shared photo. We shouted together: ‘Russia – Chile – amigos!’” said the head of the expedition Evgeny Kovalevsky.
The circumnavigators and Chilean athletes exchanged paraphernalia, had tea and cookies together, and took a lot of shared photos.
“We understand that such meetings are the real people's diplomacy, when people feel like brothers and become kinder. This is our contribution to the development of cooperation between people and organizations of our countries, in this case Russia and Chile," Kovalevsky stressed.
The Russian Embassy in Chile, the Russian House in Santiago, as well as representatives of local authorities, assist the RGS's round-the-world expedition in solving a variety of issues.
“Next week we are preparing the trimaran for crossing the Pacific Ocean, holding several more meetings with the public of Talcahuano, several events with the Russian Embassy in Chile, the Russian House, and the authorities of Talcahuano. We are buying equipment, hardware, food, water, and moving to Easter Island," Evgeny Kovalevsky shared with the readers of the RGS’s website.
On July 1, 2021, Siberian travelers Evgeny Kovalevsky and Stanislav Berezkin set off along the route of the first Russian round-the-world expeditions of the 19th century: Ivan Kruzenshtern’s (1803-1806), Yuri Lisyansky’s (1803-1806), Otto Kotzebue’s (1815-1818, 1823-1826), Vasily Golovnin’s (1817-1819), Fedor Litke’s (1826-1829), Faddey Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev’s (1819-1921). The international project of the Tomsk Regional Branch of the Russian Geographical Society "Following the paths of Russian explorers" is dedicated to the 250th birthday anniversary of Krusenstern and the 200th anniversary of the discovery of Antarctica by Russian sailors. These events for a long time determined Russia's leadership in the development of the oceans and the discovery of new lands. You can learn more about the project and provide all possible assistance in its implementation on the website of the expedition.