Legends & myths

Origin of Baikal

In the ancient times at that place, where now Baikal is, dense forest grew. There were so many birds and beasts in it , that a man could hardly pass. Among the birds one stood out against the rest. It was notable for the size compared with the size of a large sturgeon. Its wings were enormous, strong, if it touched a tree, the tree with the root fell to the earth , if it touched a cliff - cliff was dispersed.

People were afraid of that bird, but could not kill it, because, when it flew, there were so hot rays from it, that hunters fell in a dead faint. But here one person was born among the people. He grew up not each day, but every hour. Soon he became a hero and was not afraid of any force.People came to him and requested to save them from misfortune and to kill that fiery bird. The hero agreed.

He made a bow of hundred trees, an arrow of two hundred lesin and went to the hunting. Soon all the ground trembled. That bird fell from a well-aimed shot, great fire began and the sky became hot. People left taiga, climbed the mountains and saw columns of water punched through the flame. And the sea appeared at that place.

When the earth and the taiga were in fire, people cried: "Baikal, Baikal!" That is why that place kept the name of"Baikal". Either great fire or that bird was so called, or maybe that word meant "a lot of water"…but people remembered.

Mighty Baikal
The barrel of Omul
Baikal island's birth