- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
276

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH SIBERIA
frost for immense periods, until these harder beds had
been left standing as ruins of what had once existed,
and all the rocks around them had been carried away
by rainwater and streams and wind. Later on, in many
parts of Siberia and the Amur district, I saw similar
sharp, jagged and worn ridges of granite, or other hard
rock, towering high above the surrounding country.
They show that there cannot have been any Ice Age
or any glaciers here throughout long geological periods,
as otherwise they would have been worn away. The
rocky ground about them was covered by a deep layer of
fragments and loose soil, which must have been due to
the extensive weathering. Indeed, there was hardly
a proper talus of large stones to be found under these
steep walls of rock, such as we should inevitably see in
Norway. Even the talus was weathered, and to a great
extent covered by small stones, mould, and vegetation.
There was abundant vegetation on the ground among
the trees, but the forest itself was somewhat thin and
consisted chiefly of small trees, many of them foliferous.
In the afternoon the Krasnoyarsk sports club and
schools gave us a great exhibition of football on the
town athletic ground. Of late years a strong athletic
movement, known as the "Sokol" movement, has
spread throughout the Russian Empire, but curiously
enough it originated among the Czechs in Bohemia,
where it celebrated its Jubilee in 1912. Sokol means
hawk. The movement has had the support of the
Russian Government, and Sokol clubs have been formed
everywhere in the Empire, including Siberia. The
Russian skaters who have been the Norwegians’ most
dangerous opponents in the struggle for the world’s
championship, are members of these clubs. We were
given a warm reception on the ground by the active
youth of Krasnoyarsk in their light football clothes,
276

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