The Vachkazhets Mountains

The Vachkazhets Mountains are located 80 km west of Petropavlovsk­Kamchatsky. The twohour trip includes a 40­minute drive on a gravel road.
This area is the most interesting for its botanical diversity. Vegetation of stone­birch woods, low bush and alpine tundra, of marshes, riverbanks, lakes, and mountain meadows, as well as tall grasses proliferate.

There are also zones of Siberian alder and mountain or Japanese stone pine. Plants of stone­birch woods growing near the path bloom first, in late June – early July. Other plants grow in succession according to their elevation. At this time, goldish rhododendron bordering huge snow paths above Takhkoloch Lake as well as fields and slopes, located in the area of stone­birch forests and tundra lakes, blossom simultaneously. 

Around tundra lakes one can see orchids – heartleaf twayblade (Listera cordata) and Aleutian bog orchid, roundleaf sundew, bog cranberry, marsh Labrador tea, weaselsnout (Lagotis glauca), upside down lousewort, whorled lousewort, and Shamisso’s lousewort (P.chamissonis), and three species of onion: wild garlic, wild chives, and marsh fivefinger.