Monday, July 20, 2009

July 19 to 24 – Hanging out in Ridder (NE Kazakhstan)

While Jen and I were sitting in a cafe in Ridder on the 19th we ran into Roma, a local engineer and cyclist who graciously offered to show us the town. After an afternoon ride with Roma he had shown us the town and introduced us to two of his friends, Zhana and Vitalli and the three of them offered to bring us along on a day hike the following day.

The hike was a beautiful climb up a local peak during which Zhana collected mushrooms which she later prepared into a delicious supper they invited us to later that night. Thank you Zhana, Vitalli and Roma, we had blast!

Jen and Vitalli starting the hike among the many flowers.

Roma, Zhana, Vitalli and Mike with the town of Ridder in the background.

The three peaks are called the three brothers, we climbed to the top of the one
on the far right.

Lunch time..

The group at the summit.

Zhana with the mushrooms she collected in the walk back down.

Waiting at the bus stop to bring us back into town...

The delicious meal that she created from the wild mushrooms which we all enjoyed later that evening at Vitalli and Zhana's house.

The plan now is to hang out in Ridder for the next few days until our Russian visa become valid near the end of the week and then we are going to try out a new road that was just built into Russia which will hopefully save us a week or so compared to our planned route! Ridder is a great city with nearby mountains and lakes and enjoying ourselves here for the next few days will be no problem! For more info on the town of Ridder (in Russian) go to Vitalli's site

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