“So leave unnecessary disputes,
I already proved everything to myself
Only mountains can be better than mountains,
Which have not yet been
Which I haven’t been to yet.”
In the last topic, I described the adventures of our company in Pärnu and mentioned that from the next vacation we decided to take up mountain tourism.
Tourist routes in the USSR were divided into categorical and non-categorical. Of the first, I passed three and, in their totality, received the third category in mountain tourism and an instructor’s certificate.
There were few interesting situations in these campaigns. And what interesting situations could there be if in a week of living creatures we could only occasionally meet only wild animals and fish?
It was difficult and beautiful. Tell about the difficulties at thousands of meters above sea level, backpacks of 20-25 kg, a couple of emergency situations, or how to choose the right place for a camp in the mountains? No, it’s boring. Only the Fans remember the poverty of the mountain villages (or auls, I don’t know how) and begging children dressed in cast-offs on the street. And they asked not for money, but for food. For us, Muscovites, it was unexpected and wild. Indeed, in Moscow, only grandmothers asked for a penny from churches, and gypsies with a bunch of children at railway stations – “golden their pen.”
In these campaigns, there was no time for girls. As a rule, in groups of 15-20 people there were 3-4 of them, 1-2 of which traveled with their husband or boyfriend. Therefore, in these campaigns, we considered the girls as “combat friends” who need to be given lighter weight, but “strained” with cooking at evening halts.
Thanks to these trips, I got used to eating a little in the morning and afternoon, but to fill up in the evening. Because it was easier to go on a half-starved stomach, and I also didn’t want to waste time on cooking before going on a hike: it’s better to sleep and (or) relax at a halt extra minutes.
Another thing is the usual routes in the Caucasus mountains. Here, the gender composition was from 50 to 50 to 60 to 40 in the worst case, and the routes were easier: we spent the night in tents at most 1-2 nights, and the rest in shelters. They could live at the same base for a couple of days, going out into the vicinity to glaciers and passes. Therefore, in backpacksaboutFor most of the trip, there were only personal belongings and dry rations for one halt, and on hikes in the surroundings, they generally went light.
In addition, we were flattered that after the categorical hikes we could “make mountain bison out of ourselves”, because, except for the instructors, no one in the groups, as a rule, had such experience.
And these routes ended with 5-7 days at the camp site near the Black Sea, where we “came off to the fullest.”
I will tell you about an adventure in one of these trips.
The route began at a camp site on the banks of the Chernorechensk reservoir (now the Grozny Sea) and through the Argun Gorge we had to get to Georgia. No, of course we didn’t walk from Grozny to the mountains: we were taken to the camp site in the foothills by bus, just as after we crossed the Caucasian ridge from North to South, from the southern foothills to the Black Sea, we were also taken by bus in all campaigns . In Grozny, we were instructed for a couple of days and taken around the city on an excursion with photography. I remember the photographer with his saying with a Caucasian accent: “The boys fell, the girls got up, kindred, comrades, kindred.”
Back in Grozny, my friends and I “laid our eyes” on a short, beautiful brunette of about 17 years old from our group, traveling with her mother of about forty. Now, at my age, I remember that her mother was a beautiful woman for her age, but then the difference of 20 years for us was “an abyss”. Naturally, we “fluffed our feathers” and began to compete in courtship. The girl, however, did not give preference to any of us and “kept her at a distance”, only accepting courtship. Why did you take it? About this at the very end.
Actually, because of this girl, that story happened.
It happened in one of the mountain shelters before a hike through the pass of the Caucasian ridge. Toward evening, my friends and a couple of girls from our group were returning to the shelter from an amateur “walk” to the source of mineral water, and suddenly an excited mother came out to meet us with a quick step, saying that local “abreks” were pestering her daughter and they wanted to take her away with you for the night. By the way, we invited the girl to go with us to the source, but she refused, citing fatigue.
Naturally, my friends and I could not allow such an “assassination attempt” and rushed to fight off the girl, who was already walking with four “abreks” from the shelter. “Word for word” and a conflict situation arose. The locals, realizing that they “did not shine” against the three of us in hand-to-hand combat, retreated, but soon returned back with edged weapons. Here already we had to think about the “way of escape”. BUT! I was convinced from my own experience that a “kind word” and Russian vodka, which we had in sufficient quantities, are able to extinguish any conflict between peoples.
And after the joint “taking on the chest” a good “dose”, our opponents, instead of stabbing, offered to compete in shooting from “small things”. Three students of the Higher School of the KGB of the USSR could not refuse this offer – a matter of honor.
Empty cans of canned food were placed on stones about 100 meters from the “firing line”. We lost the competition “by one gate”. Their three shooters knocked out 5 cans out of 5 each, me and one friend 3 out of 5, and another friend of ours 2 out of 5. 15:8 in their favor. In order to somehow justify our defeat, we referred to the fact that we had not fired from the “small things” from school, that is, for more than three years, and mentioned: “if only Kalash …”. The two locals looked at each other, one of them nodded and left somewhere. And we, with the remaining three, “took on our chests” another 100 grams each “for the friendship of peoples” in his absence.
You should have seen my eyes and the eyes of my friends when the deceased returned back, carrying in his hands … an AK-74 with a full “horn”, which we saw only at shooting ranges and training grounds. Even in our armory in the “Tower” there were only PMs (one for each officer and heels for the shooting range), and a couple of 7.62 caliber AKMs (for reference, the AK-74 has a 5.45 caliber and therefore it is easy to distinguish it from AKM) .
While we were standing with drooping jaws, one of our new “friends” busily placed the cans on the rocks about 300 meters away, and the other knocked them all down with five single shots and handed the machine gun to me. And then I was really seized with fear: to pick up, that is, to leave my fingerprints on an obviously illegal weapon … Looking at my reaction, the “abrek” jerked the machine gun up and down a couple of times in a vertical position in my direction and the direction of my friends , offering to take it, but realizing that we cannot raise our hands, he laughed and offered to announce to everyone about our complete defeat, and drink another 100 grams for their victory. We agreed with relief.
One thing is good, after that “dose” that we and they “took on the chest in total”, they decided not to “take full” of our girls, in exchange for the fact that we would all sing a couple of their songs together, the words of which they taught us , albeit without translation. What we sang about, I still don’t know. After that, we hugged goodbye, and they went home, “on the road” giving a salute from the AK-74. Well, we barely made it to our beds, both because of the drunk, and because of the shock at the sight of the machine gun.
But this story also had its “pitfalls”, which we already learned about on the Black Sea beach from the girls who talked with their mother. It turned out that the girl we liked was “without complexes” and had a corresponding reputation in her provincial town. Therefore, her mother took her on a hike in the hope that she would have an affair with a decent young man, and mutual. But we were not “heroes of her novel” and she accepted our courtship only because her mother liked us. But with the “abreks”, she went herself, no one tried to take her away by force, it was all invented by her mother, who did not want these adventures.
There were many more interesting episodes in our campaigns in the Caucasus:
– a bandmate, similar to Perelman, who traveled with a suitcase, which used straps tied around the suitcase as straps,
– falling under a rockfall,
– a herd of buffaloes (or yaks?), the leader of which obviously wanted to raise someone from our group on the horns,
– descent “on foot” or “fifth point” along a steep snowy hill of 200 meters in August (!), with a comical descent of a friend with a suitcase, whose suitcase fell off his back and continued to descend on his own, and a friend, trying to catch him, fell on his stomach and drove like thataboutmost of the hill, lagging behind the suitcase,
– temperature difference from 20 to 0 degrees, and then from 0 to 30 degrees in 10 hours of hiking,
– a trip by the male part of the group to dances at the mountain base of CSKA, where the training camp of the youth women’s volleyball team took place, in which the height of the shortest of the girls was about 180 cm, mostly 185-200 cm, despite the fact that there were only three people among us of 12 with height from 182 to 188 cm, the rest from 175 to 180.
– “out of the program” experience of climbing to the top, hanging over Teberda, after which I threw away my T-shirt, and about the scratches on my chest later on the beach, I proudly answered the girls: “Nonsense, gangster bullet” © Old Robbers.
And there was also a tradition at the shelters to arrange funny amateur theatrical performances for the incoming group with the “stealing” of their girls and demanding a “ransom”.
And of course the beauty of the mountains. The same Elbrus and Kazbek, whose peaks with snow caps we saw from afar from the passes. I can say for sure that the Caucasus is the most beautiful mountains I have ever been on. And volumes could be written about them. But it turned out to be too long.