- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
425

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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FROM THE BURÉYA TO TRANSBAIKALIA
425
t
the years 1868 and 1897 about 1500 poods (about 24 tons
4 cwt.) of alluvial gold ; but now the yield of these mines
is not so great. Gold-washing, however, is carried on
in many places about here, and wc saw it in progress
on the bank of the river below us. All the workmen in
these mines are Chinese, as soon as the border of Trans
baikalia is crossed, and the mines are Imperial. Here,
there is no prohibition of the employment of Chinese
labourers.
The line continues to wind down through the valley
of the Black Uryiim. To our left wc have a range called
the Ksényevski Mountains, after the Emperor’s daughter.
It attains altitudes of 4600 and 4900 feet above the sea,
and forms the water-parting between the Black Uryiim
and the Shilka. It is clad with a forest of conifers
almost to the summit, only at the highest levels there
are low dwarf cedars. We stopped at the fine station
of Ksényevski, which lies on the slope of the Uryiim
valley and has a population of about 1500. A pretty
little church stood on the height above the station,
from which there was a view over the broad valley to
the hills around. From here the line continues to
descend along the river to the station of Sbega (i.e.
confluence), where the Black and the White Uryiim
meet to form the Chernåya (i.e. the black river), which
falls into the Shilka. After crossing four bridges in
succession over the windings of these two rivers, the
line again climbs slowly upward along the White
Uryiim to the water-parting between it and the Aleiir,
which flows into the Kuengå, a tributary of the Shilka.
This water-parting is not so high as the last ; it stands
about 1970 feet above the sea.
Wc arrived at Uryiim station, from which the rail
way has been regularly working westward for two
years already, and when wc were dining at the next

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