"Если я чего решил - я выпью обязательно"
(V. Vysotskiy)


There was my third attempt to reach Opoki - interesting place at river Sukhona in seventy kilometers from Velikiy Ustug town. It was third summer since my first attempt. First attempt was in 2012 and I was stopped in 100 kilometers from Opoki - my car's front axle was damaged. I couldn't to visit Velikiy Ustug town. Second attempt had place a year later - in June 2013. I tried to reach Opoki from Velikiy Ustug town. That time I was stopped in 10 kilometers - damaged bridge across river Strelnia which had become an insurmountable obstacle to reach there. This summer I drove to Velikiy Ustug through Vologda town. This attempt was successful! You can reach Velikiy Ustug from Moscow by two ways. One way lays through Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Nikolsk. Another one - through Vologda - Totma. I tried to use first way in 2013 because of that way was shorter. But road was terrible

and I had to spend there more time that it was planned.

This time I chose way number two. Road from Moscow to Vologda was fine. Only a couple of road repairs didn't hinder to drive and it was spent about 14 hours for my way to Ustug. But one hour and a half I spent visiting Opoki. Of course, only for recognizing that place.

How to reach Opoki? You turn from asphalt main road to metal one and drive along it about a 1.5 km. Turn is indicated by big sign near road. Then you can leave you car at the big ground square and go hike or continue to drive about 500 meters along ground road, which squirms between the trees in the forest. And then you will see a wonder!

Coastal cliffs of Sukhona river reach a height of 60 meters or more, and their slopes very abrupt and they are nearly 70 degrees. Permian rocks are exposed here - the last geological period of the Paleozoic era. These rocks have an age more than 250 million years!
Steep bank of the river like a layer cake: here alternate stripes of different colors - from white to gray and greenish to red. Layers which was accumulated over hundreds of millions of years were cut by stream of Sukhona river and now they are presented to our view.

After we were having a little walk in Opoki we had written the mobile number of boatman which was on the shield. And then drove to the hotel in Ustug.

The funny thing happened during our supper in the hotel. Waitress confused and brought us dumplings instead fish we ordered. Dishes were similar and our fish was yet eating another visitor. At the morning we returned to Opoki and had gotten a boat. Mostly boatmen to carry tourists only to fountain which is situated on the opposite shore. But I asked our boatman

to show us rapids and little waterfall. He agreed and firstly delivered us to the fountain. Then he asked to make a call to him when we would ready to continue our cruise. And we went to the fountain. Five minutes later motorboat delivered us to the opposite shore downstream. There we had to go hike along shore because river was too shallow in front of fountain.

Firstly we heard noise of water stream and then we had seen small stair-step waterfall

and upper part of fountain.

Then after dozen steps up the slope and we came to the square. Fountain was in the middle of that square. It was a beautiful sight. Unfortunately, I couldn't saw a rainbow in the fountain drops - may be sun was not in the needed place in the sky.

We spent about an hour near fountain and then called the boatman. He arrived very soon and we went upstream Sukhona. Boatman talked us about this place - ruined village on the shore, rapids and waterfall. Also he talked about constructing dam in the middle of 1940th, which was built by prisoners in 1947. But spring flood broken all constructions in the same year. Now you can see only remains of the dam on the shore.

Then we reached place where was waterfall. Waterfall is situated at the same shore as the fountain in the triangle break into the Permian wall (you can see that place at the second photo of this report). About hundred steps along stony shore and we had seen falling water. It flowed by thin streams along layered wall to the tiny lake.

Then small creek carried the water with white foam into river Sukhona. After visiting waterfall we returned to pier and said goodbye boatman and started to watch ruins of the dam and memory cross. We drove to the shore of Sukhona opposite the waterfall and I went through little swamp towards dam. Only a little part remained from constructions.

And how many lives and how much labor were spent there! Last place we visited in Opoki was the memory cross.

I tried to drove closer to it and suddenly front wheel fell into hole which was hidden by grass. Firstly I couldn't to get out from hole and got off the car. Well, left rear wheel was in a half of meter above the ground. I was a little confused with this but then I remembered about differential lock. In two minutes my car crawled from hole without some problems. We went to cross, watched the rapids from high shore

and began our returning to Ustug. My dream had come true, at last!