December 26, 2015

The Igor Belousov (Игорь Белоусов) joins the Russian Navy

Igor Belousov (Игорь Белоусов) Project 21300
Photo Credit -
According to media reports (, etc ) the latest deep water search and rescue ship of the Russian Navy was commissioned and hoisted the Russian naval ensign on December 25th 2015 at a ceremony in St Petersburg.  What I find interesting about this is the route mentioned to transfer the ship to Vladivostok, which will be its home port:
The Russian Navy intends to send the rescue vessel Igor Belousov to its base in Vladivostok in the Russian Far East "across all the oceans" rather than via the Northern Sea Route, Bursuk said. "A final route for the ship has not yet been approved but most likely it will run across all the oceans rather than via the Northern Sea Route to check the vessel in various latitudes. We plan to start the transfer in the spring of 2016," Bursuk said.
To visualize, if your geography is rusty, here is an illustration of St Petersburg to Vladivostok. By plane, it's a long flight; by ship, it is considerably longer.

Arguably going around the southern tip of Africa or through the Red Sea is the logical route for the time of year; I would think the Northern route would be at least partially iced over during the spring.  Indeed taking the southern route will take the Igor Belousov through the North Atlantic, South Atlantic, Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean - touching all off the earth's oceans.  I've been speculating they may cross the North Atlantic, go to Cuba, maybe Nicaragua, then head to Vladivostok via the Southern tip of Africa.  Those same stops have been made by the Nikolay Chiker in 2014 and the RV Yantar in 2015. Of course, they might just go through the Mediterranean and the Red Sea.  Time will tell.


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