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The magical Bowing Pine Tree of Lake Teletskoe

By Yevgeniy Veselovskiy
19 December 2013

A long time ago one cheerful and kind man light-mindedly called this tree 'Drunk Pine'.

No-one knows for how many years this unique tree has stood on the shore of Lake Teletskoe. Picture: Yevgeniy Veselovskiy

Today, November 3, is rainy since morning. 

Lake Teletskoe was overcast with heavy cloud, so I and my friend Rikford postponed our trip to Vaskina Mountain and decided to walk to the Bowing Pine Tree. Once again, I was surprised with Nature's strength and wisdom, which gives us signs of resilience and courage with its offspring. 

So, the Tale about Bowing Pine Tree: No-one knows for how many years this unique tree has stood on the shore of Lake Teletskoe, not far away from the main homestead of the Altai Biosphere Reserve in Yailyu village. 

Teletskoe lake in november

Lake Teletskoe was overcast with heavy cloud, so I and my friend Rikford postponed our trip to Vaskina Mountain and decided to walk to the Bowing Pine Tree. Picture: Yevgeniy Veselovskiy

Unlike the other trees around, it grows horizontal above the water, yet it's root are firm, it never keels over. 

I asked reserve workers and the old timers of Yailyu, but all of them remember this pine tree leaning on its powerful hands-branches on the shores of the Holy Altyn-Kel, as if wanting to quench the thirst with clean water.

A long time ago one cheerful and kind man light-mindedly called this tree 'Drunk Pine'. And everybody picked up this name, seeing in this image a drunk man just falling on his knees and trying in vain to stand up.

So lived the pine tree with this name, attracting people who want to sit with a bottle of 'firewater' in its mighty branches and roots.

But everything goes, everything changes... 

Children, who see the world around them as genuine and not spoiled, came to the reserve. They got to know this amazing tree and gave it another more magical name. In their stories about the days spent at Lake Teletskoe, they named it Pine Bowing, as if bowing before the majesty of Lake Teletskoe.

Magic pine tree on Teletskoe lake

A long time ago one cheerful and kind man light-mindedly called this tree 'Drunk Pine'. And everybody picked up this name, seeing in this image a drunk man just falling on his knees and trying in vain to stand up. Picture: Yevgeniy Veselovskiy

And this name began little by little to adhere to the tree. People started their trip to the Pine Bowing before the majesty of Lake Teletskoe in a completely different mood. 

They looked at the Tree and Lake Teletskoe with awe and deep respect; they listened stories of local residents and reserve staff about many interesting cases related to the Pine and the Lake. 

The children come to the Pine every summer and spend time here, benefiting their  body and to spirit, diving in the clear waters of the Altyn-Kel from its top, swimming underwater beneath its branches and bow down their heads before the majesty and natural wisdom of the Lake Teletskoe and the Pine.

Since that time the name Bowing Pine became real name of this amazing Tree, gratefully genuflecting before the majesty of the Lake Teletskoe. So children and locals using the Word transform the world around us, making it a little better and kinder.

Teletskoe lake and magic pine tree in october

Jumping in Teletskoe lake from the magic pine tree

Rickford looks at Teletskoe lake

Evgeny Veselosvky lives at Teletskoe Lake in small village of Yaylyu, since 1989 has been working in Altai Biosphere Nature Reserve. Every morning he takes his camera and walks around with his great friend Rickford Bonifacio Morfius, Rhodesian Ridgeback.

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