By: Peter Matthiessen and B Norton
92 pages, 50 col photos
Photos by Boyd Norton. Evocative account of one of the loveliest places on earth, under serious environmental threat.
During a long night spent thinly clad on rocks on a steep mountainside, I have time to consider why I find myself in such hard circumstances after scarcely a fortnight in the Soviet Union. The reason lies below, in great Baikal, which has drawn me since the day, long years ago, that I first learned of a primordial deep lake of diamantine clarity that lay off to the north of the Gobi Desert. Even today, despite serious damage, Baikal remains the cleanest large lake in the world, not because care has been taken but because its enormous depth and volume have absorbed -- so far -- man's efforts to despoil it. Only recently has it been known how swiftly the lake's ancient ecology could unravel, and how close man has come to losing it forever.
-- From The Text By Peter Matthiessen
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