Dimitri has reached Vayegi!!
Sunday June 8, 2008 -
He was picked up late friday evening by the mayor the village, victor at the intersection of the Mayn and Algan rivers. He could not have continued any further toward Vayegi since the Mayn river was running against him and he could not have pulled his sled upstream. He made very good mileage the las two days covering about 18 miles each day with the help of the now calmer Algan river.
I do not believe I have ever heard his voice as overjoyed as he was when the boat arrived to pick him up. Three weeks alone and being seriously challenged by nature made the encountering of friendly people and the idea of returning to 'civilization' a very welcome one indeed! He was thrilled with the meal of lard, garlic, onion and vodka which the men brought along to greet him with.
He is now staying in Vayegi, awaiting transport to Anadyr. It is unclear when he will be able to travel, but in the meantime he is enjoying himself with getting to know the locals, the culture, and the language. He is relishing simple acts like taking a shower and being able to wash clothes.
He has found out that the river freezes over in late November, and then the region continues to get very, very cold, -40 deg. which will make for some very cold traveling conditions. He did not see his goal of trekking of out of the region of Chukotka on this trip, but he covered a great distance. We are very proud of him for his achievements, but looking forward to seeing him home all the same. He seems very eager to return home and see all of his wonderful friends and family but is enjoying the remote part of the world this leg of his journey has brought him to!
Let's give him a great welcome home!