- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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but, as everywhere here, the rock is covered by thick
loose strata, formed by severe weathering during long
ages. As it seems that there cannot have been any
Ice Age here, at any geologically recent time in any case,
all this weathered material has remained on the spot.
The plateau is scored by valleys of water erosion ; here
and there the streams have cut their way into the
sandstone and formed deep and narrow gorges.
At one time, perhaps, these moors were covered with
forest, although I found no sign of it. But then the
forest was probably burnt long ago and the moors trans
formed into grass land, which remains more or less un
productive ; there was no cultivation to be seen, except
down in the valleys, and not much there either.
Saturday, September 27. As my incomparable host
had found out that I should be glad to see something
of the mountains and of the structure of the country
on the other side as well, east of the Yenisei, he provided
horses early next morning, and I went off again with
young Mr. Gadålov and the curator of the museum.
A little above Krasnoyarsk a bridge nearly 1000
yards long carries the railway across the Yenisei ; but
there is no road-bridge over the river and one has to
take a ferry. The main ferry is arranged on a very
handy and practical principle, as the force of the stream
is used to take it across. A long cable is anchored some
distance up the river, and rests upon boats or floats
down the stream. The end is made fast to the ferry boat,
which has a big rudder. Then, by means of the rudder,
the ferry-boat is laid in an oblique position, so that it
cleaves the stream, and it is carried across from one
side to the other, like a pendulum, right in to the quay ;
horses and people go ashore and others are tåken aboard,
the rudder is put over the other way, and the ferry
swings back again to the other bank. Thus it goes to and

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