Lake Baikal - is a lake in Eastern Siberia, the maximum depth is more than 1600 metres, the length of Lake Baikal is 636 km, the width is from 25 to 80 km. There is the Olkhon island near the northwest shore of lake Baikal. Olkhon is the heart of ancient stories and historical legendaries.
The Bolshoy Goloustny Cape deeply pushes out into Lake Baikal. Captains prefer to keep the distance from the shore because of frequent winds, storms and shallow waters.
The estuary of the river is bogged up and it is better not to go the path which is close to Lake Baikal.
Wintering place was build in the seventeenth century in the Goloustny Cape. The name “Goloustny” is characterized the place and means a steppe, treeless, bare estuary of the river which was formally called Idin-Gol. The river derived its name from the cape. Now the river is also named the Goloustnaya River. The population of Bolshoe Goloustnoe settlement is more than 600 inhabitants. The river length is 125 km.
There is a Recreation Centre represented by Buryat yurtas on the upstream side from the Shantuysky Bridge, 6-7 km from the shore of Lake Baikal.
Not that long ago, there was a wooden church on the shore of Lake Baikal. Its history was tragic. The lagend says about the miraculous finding of icon of St Nicholas the Wonderworkerin the place where the Angara River disembogues its waters into Lake Baikal. The first chapel was raised in 1701 near the Goloustenskoe wintering place on the way across Lake Baikal. There a cross was also set up by monks of the Posolsky monastery at the end of the 17th century. St Nicholas church was consecrated in 5th February 1867. The church of St Nicholas, a protector of sailors, was built there later.
The church was closed in 1937, bells were removed, icons were burned, the building of the church was used for a dance club. As the locals said the head of local administration who forced to destroy the church was punished by God-he became blind. Two icons of this church were preserved. Now these icons are at the Irkutsk Sukachev Regional Art Museum.
Restoration operations of the church had started at Bolshoe Goloustnoe settlement since 1988. Financing of operations had been taken care of by American Agency "International Development".
The first stage of restoration operations ended in 1995 and church service started. Restoration operations were not completed. The church suddenly caught fire in the evening, on the eve of the Easter, and was burnt down.
Winter road from Bolshoe Goloustnoe settlement to в Peschanaya Bay is laid on the ice on Lake Baikal in winter.