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Day One

On October 5th, I had to leave the comforts of Moscow. Due to my visa I had to be out of Russia by the 15th, and the train trip would take six and a half days (9259 KM, over 5700 miles). I planned to spend four days in the area of Vladivostok. So I said, farewell to Moscow and my friend, Carol.
This is page 1 of a series of 5 pages covering the trip across Russia. The trip was long and at times boring, but generally it was an interesting experience. I couldn't count all the photos I took on the trip. And many of them were of very poor quality, because of the weather and the condition of the train windows. What you will see on these pages is the best of them.
In 1891 the construction of the Trans-Siberian Railroad began in Vladivostok. This is very important for the development of many remote Rusian outlying districts. At 9,302 kilometres (5,767 miles) and spanning 8 time zones, it is the longest railway in the world.

This was to be my home for the bext six plus days. Compared to the trains I had been riding in since leaving Western Europe, this was a palace. Well it seemed to be at first sight. The photo on the left is my bunk. Number 9. I stayed there two nights brfore getting a "private" (more or less) room. More on that later.

These are the first two shots taken from the train. We were probably 300 miles southeast of Moscow by then. In the plains west of the Urals.

I saw many apparently run down farms, like these. along the way.

And countless birch trees. It must be the national tree of Russia.

And I couldn't tell you how many rivers we crossed. They must all run more or less north-south.

As I said, countless birch trees

And farms

And buildings that seemed not in use

And hundreds of small villages like this one

Kirov, first daytime stop

A large apartment building in Soviet "style"

The Beijing-Moscow Train

The sign has Beijing-Ulan Bator-Moscow in three languages. Russian, Chinese, and in Russian with the different pronunciations for Peking and Beijing. Part of the city of Kirov is on the right as we pulled from the station.

More of Kirov and more apartments. On the right is another village near Kirov.

Another village

And another farm

A village with it's prominent church. And more birch trees. It seemed like we could go for hours at a time without seeing much of anything except fot these trees.

On the left is a panel from the aisle wall of the train car. It shows the different places to visit in Vladivostok. Of course I couldn't make heads nor tails from it. But I did have a tour guide waiting in Vlad. On the right is more of the flat country, and, yes, those are birch trees.

A couple of more villages. You can see on the right the sky started to clear up a bit. And you can see a bit of slant to the terrain.

The Balyzhino Station

Another village

Another village as day draws to an end. The suns begins to slide from the sky.

The sun slowly sets

Day one is done
You can see by the sun's reflection off the water that we were crossing or paralleling another river.

Music is "Flight of the Bumblebee from Tsar Saltan"
by Rimskij-Korsakov

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