- Top 3 routes in the South Urals
- The two best routes in the Northern Urals
- Two popular routes in the Middle Urals
- On a note
The Ural Mountains are the "Stone Belt" of Russia. These are one of the oldest and richest in minerals mountains of the planet, and they can rightfully be considered the first in terms of their scenic beauty. The landscapes here are amazingly varied - after all, the mountains stretch from south to north across the entire continent. You can travel through them for years and still not have time to see all the beauties that are here.
Top 3 routes in the South Urals
The South Ural is the widest part of the Ural Mountains. The predominant type of relief is mid-mountainous. Closer to the east, the mountainous relief flows smoothly into the smoother and lower Trans-Ural plain.
- Mount Kruglitsa is the most popular multi-day route in the Taganay National Park. Its main goal is the highest mountain of the Taganai Range, the town of Kruglitsa. The trail starts from the central estate of the park and rises to the Taganaysky pass over the Bolshaya Kamennaya River. This is a unique place - a channel along which it once "flowed", leaving behind huge boulders, a glacier. Now it looks like a river of huge stones - an amazing and picturesque sight. At the watershed "Steklyashka" there is a shelter where you can spend the night, and the next day climb Mount Kruglitsa itself. Its height is 1178 m. The road there is not easy - it leads among quartz boulders, but no special equipment is required. Going down the southern slope of the mountain, you can see the Responsive Ridge - an amazing rock, most of all similar to the ridge of some ancient lizard. You can spend the night in the shelter "Rattle Key", and then go down to the center of the park. The length of the route is 55 km.
- Sugomak natural-territorial complex near Kyshtym. The natural complex includes the Sugomak peak, a cave, a spring and a lake, and all this is nearby, so the walk can be done in one day. The ascent to Mount Sugomak is not difficult, it is only 591 m high, but magnificent views open from there. And not far away is another object - a cave formed in a light marble rock. There are no real stalactites and stalagmites in it - they do not form on marble, but it is amazingly beautiful in itself, and there are vertical growths of ice here. The cave consists of three large grottoes. The third, the deepest one, can only be reached by going down the rope. In front of the grotto, you can relax on Maryina Polyana near a picturesque spring called Maryin Klyuch. Nearby there is also Sugomak Lake, along which a motor road runs, so you can start the route from the lake and end it there. The southern shores of the lake are swampy, and the northwestern shores are excellent for fishing. The length of the route is 3-10 km.
- To the top of Zyuratkul in the Zyuratkul national park (Chelyabinsk region). Zyuratkul is a picturesque mountain ridge 8 km long and 1175 m high. Not far from it lies the highest mountain lake in the Urals - Zyuratkul, and one of the ridge peaks - a former volcano - stands a little apart and at a distance. It is called Golaya Sopka, and if you wish, you can also climb it. A convenient and uncomplicated eco-trail has been laid on Zyuratkul, which starts from the village of Zyuratkul. The main route is a wooden footbridge: the taiga coniferous forest here is prone to waterlogging. They are simply replaced by a path, when the forest ends and a high-mountain alpine meadow begins. But the final part of the route is the "kurumnik" leading to the top - rocky ledges and debris. The highest part of the ridge, which cannot be climbed without special equipment, but which can be conveniently viewed from the trail, is "Bears", a group of quartzite outliers. The views from here are incredible, and real bears are really found here, so you should be careful. It is better not to spend the night on the ridge itself - there are no water sources and it is forbidden to make fires, but if you go down to the lake, then there are good places for spending the night. The length of the route is 10-12 km.
The two best routes in the Northern Urals
The Manpupuner Plateau in the Pechora-Ilychsky Nature Reserve is one of the most beautiful and mysterious places in Russia. This name is translated as "Mountain of Idols": here, on the Man-Pupu-ner mountain, there are 7 huge "pillars of weathering", outliers - columnar rock formations that are revered by the Mansi people as sacred. It is not easy to get here, and the most interesting route lies through the famous "Dyatlov Pass" - the same pass where in 1959 a group of tourists died under mysterious circumstances that are still unclear. Tour operators offer different options for this route - for example, with helicopter evacuation from the Manpupuner Plateau, so as not to return back. If you don't get a helicopter, the hike will take about two weeks - it's a full-fledged adventure. The summer routes themselves are quite safe here (Dyatlov's group died in the winter) and do not require special equipment, but good physical training is needed. The length of the route is 100-250 km.
Tulymsky stone in Veshersky reserve. This is a mountain range, which includes Mount Ostraya, the highest peak of the Perm Territory. Its height is 1469 m. The route starts from the point of entry into the reserve itself - this is a settlement of 71 quarters. It will be necessary to cross the Vishera - as a rule, the staff of the reserve are ferried by boats, then through the Chuvalsky ridge to the Tulymsky stone itself. The road will pass through a coniferous forest, which will be replaced by an alpine meadow, and then a real high-mountain tundra, among beautiful outliers and kurums. One of the most popular route options is to walk to the Tulym Stone and then raft down the Vishera River back to the reserve. In this version, the length of the walking route will be about 40 km, if you go back on foot, it will be about 80 km.
Two popular routes in the Middle Urals
Kungurskaya cave is the most famous natural landmark of the Middle Urals. It has been known since the 17th century and is now a popular and convenient tourist attraction: concerts, events, excursions and much more are held here. It is unique in its beauty - it is called "icy" because it is covered with sparkling ice crystals. There are several dozen grottoes, passages and underground lakes. The length of the route equipped for visiting is 1.5 km.
Speaking about the Urals, one cannot but recall the famous tales of Bazhov. There is a route specially laid out in places associated with him or mentioned in his books. It starts from Sysert, where the oldest mining plant in the Urals was located, through the village. Mramorsky, where a sundial carved from marble in the 18th century has survived on the square, through the town of Polevskoy - another old factory settlement. Further through the famous Azov Mountain, which was a place of veneration among the pagans, and the path ends with the resort town of Nizhnie Sergi, which is considered the "Ural Switzerland". There are healing springs here. The length of the route is 180 km.
On a note
The Ural Mountains are truly wild and untouched. If you are going on routes in protected and protected areas, a permit from the reserve and payment of an environmental fee may be required. A meeting with wild animals is also quite real here, so it is worth following the rules (the simplest of which is to walk cheerfully and noisily so that the animal can notice you in time and leave the road, and store odorous food not in tents, but twenty meters from the camp).
Shoes for traveling in the mountains (and especially those covered with curums) require very good shoes. Unfortunately, there are ticks in the Urals - the farther south, the more of them, the Chelyabinsk region is in the lead. Cellular communications are almost non-existent far from settlements.