A year has passed, and again the question arose of where to go this season. But the answer to it this time was easier: of course, to Flora! Flora is a mountain, or rather, a small hillock on the side of the large Selsurt mountain in the Lovozero mountain range on the Kola Peninsula. I had unsuccessfully tried to get into it for the previous two years. But everything was against me: in the first year a cyclone came and I had to return to Moscow. In the second year, I almost reached it, Flora was already visible, but the cart broke down, and I realized that even if I get what I want on Flora, I won’t be able to take it out: I already collected stones too heavy.
On Flora, I was primarily interested in the narsarsukite point - I really like the name of the mineral .... And, of course, having visited Flora, it was impossible not to visit the ramzaite point, although I was not particularly interested in the material from it. And then Mikhail Pozdnyakov received an offer to go together. He was on Flora last year, but did not find a narsarsukite point. And no wonder: it was first discovered in the thirties, and then, due to the fact that it is located in a wooded part, it was lost again and re-discovered only in 1990. But I had her exact coordinates, and Mikhail had an SUV. And we decided to combine our navigation and logistics capabilities.
On Saturday at six in the morning, Mikhail, his wife Anya and their German shepherd named Izhma left ... A few words about Mikhail: a professional geologist who worked in his specialty, when I was still a cool manager, he was already cool, as they joke, "pioneer of the Russian land", who went through it in search of raw materials and collectible minerals "from Moscow to the outskirts, from the southern mountains to the northern seas", while also taking the southern republics of the former USSR. His wife Anya, also a geologist by training, accompanies him on these difficult routes. In a year, they spend together in the fields for about 3.5 months. In general, Misha has a division of labor: he goes for a stone more, and I write more about it ...
We got to Lovozero in his Chevrolet Niva without incident, and in the evening of the second day we drove up to the tailing dump of the Karnasurt mine. For those who are not in the subject: tailings in mining are dumps of waste from mineral processing. The necessary congress was found, and the barrier turned out to be raised, which was not the case a year ago. And we entered... The rocky road led up, the stones on it gradually became more and more, turning into boulders. But the Chevrolet Niva confidently crawled over them, led by Mikhail's experienced hand. We were heeled and thrown from side to side - that's another attraction .... The dog had the hardest time - she could not grab onto anything (nothing) and was very nervous.
We crossed the first and second East Creeks, both of which were dry. The weather this year was diametrically different from last year. Last year there was a very long winter, the snow in the gorges did not completely melt over the summer, and the streams were full-flowing and difficult to pass. This year it is the other way around: before our arrival, there was an abnormal heat of over thirty degrees for three weeks. The snow in the mountains has almost completely melted, the streams have dried up. Can we find water? Soon it will start to get dark, and water is needed .... We decided to check the dried-up second East Stream: maybe the water went under the stones? We get out of the car, listen, but the murmur under the stones is not audible. We split up, go from the road up and down the stream. Fifty meters later, Mikhail discovers a lake of water in the bed of a stream in stones.
We decide to stop by the stream for the night. We set up tents. Beneath them is a thick carpet of blueberry and crowberry bushes. Very soft, better than any orthopedic mattress. Eat, drink, sleep. In the morning, the good weather brought with you ends and the usual Kola begins: 12 degrees, intermittent drizzling rain, overcast. But it's certainly better than 30-degree heat. Our attraction for overcoming buldygans continues on the rise. We reach the Birch Creek. It is full-flowing, although not as much as in previous years: you can easily cross in swamps. We camp with him, then on foot. The road is walking, and soon we are almost there. A trigopoint is visible on Mount Flora. I turn on the navigator, and it safely takes us to the narsarsukite point in the birch forest. An idiot's dream come true!
A little about narsarsukite: named after the place of discovery Narsarsuk, Greenland. Chemical formula Na2(Ti,Fe3+)Si4(O,F)11. For the first time on the territory of the USSR, narsarsukite was found by V.I. Gerasimovsky in the 30s. in Lovozero, on the northern slope of Mount Flora - i.e. exactly where we visited.
Let's get to work. Clearing the south wall. Monolithic forehead. In its upper part, yellow crystals of narsarsukite are visible in black rock. We get a sledgehammer for 4 kilograms. "We smile and wave" (C). But the strong breed practically does not notice this ...
We look around, we clear the grass from the stones. Anya discovers a narsarsukite buldygan in the breed of forty kilograms. Well-formed crystals are scattered over half the volume. Mikhail is trying to chip off the excess - the excess does not want this. “It's not greed, it's a need,” says Mikhail and puts the forty-kilogram bulldygan into his backpack entirely. I dig a ditch and find crystals of narsarsukite in it on the rock. Not much damage, but it seems to be there.
Moving around the point, in different places I also find pieces of decent narsarsukite raw material in the rock. In addition to narsarsukite, green quartzite also occurs at this point. It is quite dark, and when polished, it will probably look even darker. We have big doubts about him. Once they tried to promote it under the brand name "Kola Jade", but the material "did not work." I do not take it, Mikhail takes a couple of pieces to see how it will be after polishing. Gradually gets bored, the soul asks for changes. Let's go look for a ramzaite quarry. We find various digs, but obviously not his. It's evening. We return for narsarsukite, pick up the mined, go to the camp. Mikhail heroically drags his buldygan. I'm much lighter, I go forward alone. I go down to the camp, as always in such cases, singing marching songs, thereby warning potential bears of my presence. And there are bears here. We found a couple of old tracks, and last year an acquaintance ran into a bear cub here. With stones and a good mood I get to the camp. On the way, I notice fresh fox droppings. When we got there, he wasn't there yet. After half an hour, Mikhail also pulls up with his buldygan. In order to protect myself from the dampness dripping from the sky, I spent the whole day in a raincoat and raised bogs. As a result - continuous dampness under a raincoat from itself. In order to dry my clothes, in everything damp, as I was, I climb into a sleeping bag and fall asleep. I get up in the morning in everything dry.
The next day. Let's go to get unfinished narsarsukite. We get. But where is ramzait? The second time we go to look for him. But somehow I've been having trouble with fried pancakes for breakfast since morning, and I'm sick. So I don't care if we find it or not. But we still find it. We are pounding what has already been pricked before us, transferring a large fraction to a small one. It pricks hard, but it pricks. The problem is different: it pricks as it should, and 70 percent of the crystals are simply “killed” at the same time. And this is doubly insulting, because here is the best ramzaite in the world (he is also Lorenzenite). By the way, ramzaite is named in honor of the discoverer Lovozero V. Ramsay, who discovered Lovozero in 1887. After all, the Lovozero mountain range is the last mountains discovered in Europe .... Having formally knocked on the ramzaite point with hammers, we return to narsarsukite. Moreover, in fact, we had completely different interests regarding ramzait ... I'm getting worse, my head is starting to hurt a little. How can I carry a heavy backpack? I'll die. I'm really afraid of going back. But then my body surprised me: as soon as I put on a heavy backpack, everything went away right away, and I returned to the camp with songs. Daytime temperature, however, dropped to plus six…. But the differences from the night are not very large.
We collect the camp and return to the same place: to the foot of Mount Karnasurt near the second Eastern stream. Our next interest is there: pegmatites 61 and 62. I ran out of raw materials from there, and Mikhail never went there. We drove up to the stream. They began to set up camp and then they heard the voices of people from the opposite side of the stream, behind the bushes. Alert. We need stones, not people. People in this business can only interfere ... After a while, the engine started, the doors slammed, and a Suzuki SUV appeared from behind the bushes. But it turned out to be their own: Ryzhaya and Vladimir, who was known in absentia from the forum. We talked, talked about our stone affairs, wished each other good luck, and they went further - to Flora. We ate, drank and slept.
The next day. Early morning, sleep. Suddenly there is a growl, and something starts shaking the tent.
- Bear climbs! Michael screams.
- Where? - throws me in a sleeping bag.
This is our shepherd Izhma asking for a visit. Joker, damn it!
We had breakfast and along the left bank of the stream we began to climb to the pegmatites, scouting the road along the way in order to take out the mined, and not to drag it on ourselves. The locals told me that there was no road there, but traces of it were visible from space. We really found an old all-terrain vehicle, but so old that trees had already grown on it. So you have to take it on yourself. We are not used to. The road along the left bank turned out to be unpleasant - birch elfin constantly grabbed my legs and exhausted me no worse than a swamp. Plus a lot of ravines adjacent to the stream. But soon, of course, we got to the 60th pegmatite. After me, judging by the fire, there was no one in the parking lot. We looked at pegmatite. What is there to see? All the best was chosen before me. More or less decent I took last time. Where will the new one come from? Nevertheless, I picked up a piece of ussingite for a ball and an egg. They did not dig - "everything was stolen before us." Let's go up to the 62nd pegmatite. Here, someone did a good job on it: the hole that swam last year deepened noticeably, even with an undercut.
We quickly collected hackmanite glowing in the UV rays, both variegated in black aegirine and white.
Natrolite was not taken. It seems that a good natrolite was purposefully chosen - there was only so-so lying around. I didn’t take one like that last year and didn’t do it this year, especially since I still have a lot of good things at home. But this time he scored a lot of hackmanite. How to endure: for a long time or martyrdom? Two walkers or one? I decide to take it out with two walkers. We left the point by a new route, rolling down the mountain to the camp directly, along the kurumnik and reindeer moss, but without the birch slant. So much easier than on the left side of the stream. Down with a load - up with an empty backpack - back down with a load. Mikhail managed with material for one run, but he chose longer and went down later than me. While he was gone, I draw your attention to the fact that the footprint on the road near the camp at the site of a stone taken out for setting up a tent resembles a bear's paw print. I finish the traces of the claws with a pebble. Michael descends. Look, I say, while we were gone, the bear came to the camp! And I point to the trail. But Mikhail remembers that he took out a stone from there. Didn't roll...
While taking out a stone from the mountains three times I passed a place with a surprisingly large shiksha (the berry is so polar, tasteless unfortunately). We came to the camp, sat down to drink tea, and then Mikhail noticed a movement in the place with this large berry, which we passed not so long ago: a dark spot moved back and forth, and then went towards the stream. Either the bear was grazing, or the elk. Three hundred meters is hard to see.
Actually, the program is completed, but there are still two free days left. We decided to rush to the Khibiny. Firstly, I have not been there, and secondly, a national park is being opened there, and soon there will be no reason to go there .... But then I call home and find out that I urgently need to return. Sorry, but what can you do? Mikhail takes me to the railway station in Olenegorsk, while he and Anya will return home from the fields only in mid-September. But his plans have also changed: due to dry rivers, he will have to change his water part of the route.
That's really true: tell God about your plans - he will laugh.
P.S. And for a snack - a photo of the bear, taken by Anya after I left and in a slightly different place. She made it from a distance of only 5 meters. What a woman! - "stops a galloping bear."