Monday, Feb 20 2017
All Cities
Choose Your City
'What has enabled Russia to rise among the great powers of the world…has been the conquest of Siberia'
W.Bruce Lincoln

Siberia's speedy 'rocket tram' which only stops rattling through taiga when cold hits -58C

By The Siberian Times reporter
03 February 2017

The greatest tram ride of the world? A 30 km odyssey from '40th Anniversary of the Great Victory Street' in Ust-Ilimsk to the town's power station.

The tram keeps running unless the thermometer hits minus 58C. Picture: MMG

Designed by Soviet planners, it connects the town through pristine Siberian taiga in the valley of the Angara River, an incongruous sight that has seen it voted the Best in Russia in 2001 in an international competition of top tram rides.

It is one of four 'rocket trams' in Russia - the only one east of the Urals - and reaches a top speed of 70 kilometres per hour on its undulating route. 

Officially, it is known as a speed tram. 

It also keeps running unless the thermometer hits minus 58C, and it operates year-round, including the long winter from October until April.

Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga
The tram keeps running unless the thermometer hits minus 58C. Pictures: MMG


Considered a tourist attraction in Ust-Ilimsk, the tram line went into service in 1988, but the adventurous part of the route, connecting the Angara Farm with a local cellulose factory and the Northern Heat and Power station was opened four years later.

It was built after workers of the local timber manufacturing complex were polled at the beginning of 1980s on the most convenient way to get to work.

A majority voted for tram. 

Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga

Siberian tram goes through taiga

Siberian tram goes through taiga
Full steam ahead through taiga! Pictures: MMG, Vladislav Fomenko, LVM


The first part of the line was built to provide a speedy connection between the city and the timber plant.

Trams depart every 5 minutes at peak times, and every 30 minutes during the rest of day. 

Every car - seating 32 passengers - has a tram attendant. 

There are two routes - number 1 goes from residential district number 9 to via 40th Anniversary of the Great Victory Street' to Dimitrova street, followed by stops at Mechtateley Street, Lesnoy village, Dachas, Tram Depot, Angara farm, Cellulose Factory and Northern Heat and Power Station. 

The second route doesn't go beyond the Tram Depot. 

Pictures of the Ust-Ilimsk tram by Andrey Sergachev, Vladislav Fomenko, MMG

Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga


Siberian tram goes through taiga

Comments (3)

USANDO IMÁGENES COMO FONDO DE ESCRITORIO
SACHA OMAR OBREGON ROOM, PERÙ
06/02/2017 20:53
2
0
HERMOSO INCREIBLE
SACHA OMAR OBREGON ROOM, PERÙ
06/02/2017 20:49
2
0
Thanks for this beautiful pictures.This tram looks like a toy in the Siberian vastness landscaps.
It is efficient with charm !
jocelyne, FRANCE
04/02/2017 19:14
9
0
1

Add your comment

We welcome a healthy debate, but do not accept offensive or abusive comments. Please also read 'Siberian Times' Privacy Policy

Name

Town/Country

Add your comments

The views expressed in the comments above are those of our readers. 'Siberian Times' reserves the right to pre-moderate some comments.

Control code*

Type the code

* obligatory


News

Business

The Bank of Russia official exchange rates of foreign currencies
EUR61.45USD57.63GBP71.99Other...