Since 2013 the complex expedition "Hogland" summarizes the available data and is looking for new findings on the nature and history of the outer islands in order to compile their "passports" and tell people about everything in detail.
The team of the "Hogland" expedition mainly consists of experienced researchers, who are not frightened by unpredictable Baltic weather and uneasy living conditions in field camps in complete isolation from civilization. The main friends and partners of the expedition are the Institute of the History of Material Culture of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Search Movement of Russia. The first group conducts archaeological work and adds all the new facts to the rich and bright history of the islands, the latter are looking for the remains of those killed during the Great Patriotic War on the islands of Hogland and Sommers and restore the military records in the archives.
Specialists of Komarov Botanical Institute, the Institute of Geology of the Russian Academy of Sciences, A.F. Mozhaysky Military-Space Academy, ornithologists, and divers also participate in the work. For three years, more than three hundred students from Pushkin Leningrad State University, V.I. Vernadsky Crimean Federal University and Belgrade University (Serbia) have gained valuable experience here. The most active support of the expedition is provided by the Ministry of Defense of Russia, the Western Military District and the Leningrad Naval Base.
A lot of results have been achieved already. It should be mentioned that burials were discovered on Hogland, and although they are in Finland and Estonia, they were first found on the territory of Russia. Not only traces, but also tools of the Stone Age were discovered, and it became obvious that the island was inhabited 5 thousand years ago. In general, there are many ritual stone embankments, petroglyphs, and cup stones on Hogland.
The cultural layer of former Finnish villages was also carefully studied. The only thing that was not found was a cave, where in the XVII-XVIII centuries the alarm signal mountaineers were hiding from the bad weather - because it is still impossible to discover the very mountain. Also the treasures of the medieval pirate Aleph von Malen, who traded near the islands and hid the stolen goods on Hogland, were not found too. But the expedition still has everything ahead.
There are great prospects on Bolshoy Tyuters as well. It is already known exactly where a Scandinavian settlement was located, and a Bronze Age burial ground was found. Most striking findings are the weather vane of the Lutheran church of 1772, which was once there, a silver hryvnia (cervical decoration), dated to the 10th century, and a bronze vessel bearing the coat of arms of the presumably Polish city of Shecin.
The results of research conducted on this island by Komarov Botanical Institute are very interesting: 20 new plant species have emerged for 10 years on Bolshoy Tyuters with the area of only 8.3 square meters!
Islands Hogland and Tyuters have been fully studied in the field of geology. On Hogland, by the way, there is pink porphyry and there are also emeralds-beryls (although, small). There are no precious stones on Tyuters, but glacial basins were found - cavitz at the base of a glacier with vertical walls and concave bottom, drilled during the rotation of boulders by streams flowing into the cracks of the glacier. Glacial basins were discovered for the first time in the Leningrad Region.
Three books have already been published: two photo albums "The Lost Worlds of the Baltic" and "Land of the Gulf of Finland", and, together with the Russian Search Movement, "The Battle at the Point of a Knife, or The Forgotten Battle on the Island of Sommers." And since historians continue to work in the military archives and find new data, "The Battle ..." will be reissued and will become a three-volume book, from which it will be possible to learn about all the landing operations in the Gulf of Finland during the Great Patriotic War.
Four films have been shot and shown. Two - "The Baltic Outpost" and "Secrets of the Island of Hogland" were made by our friends from St. Petersburg company "AgitEcoStudio". The film "War on the Cold Isles" is the result of the work of the team of "Zvezda" TV channel, while "Bolshoy Tyuters. Secrets of the Isle of Death" was made by "My Planet" TV channel.
There are two films in production now: the film about the expedition itself and the movie that the Hogland team have dreamed of for many years - “The Lost Worlds of the Baltic”, which brought together all the available historical data about the islands.
A lot of work with interesting and serious tasks is still ahead.