Balaklava

Only a few kilometres from Sevastopol and now officially incorporated into the city borders

Another one for the Crimean War history books

The Battle of Balaklava 1854…..and the infamous Charge of the Light Brigade.

On the hill to the harbour entrance is the ruins of a 14th century Genoese fort which is being restored

dscn2413

dscn2562

The narrow harbour twists inland between high granite promontories on either side making it well protected and secure

Now Balaklava is fast becoming a seaside playground for the Russian and Ukrainian nouveau-riche which is an irony of the greatest proportions given that only as recently as 1990 Balaklava was a closed city and one of the most restricted and secret nuclear sites in the USSR.

dscn25631

The nuclear submarine base is a tunnel which extends through the headland with and entrance within the harbour and the exit opening to the Black Sea. The tunnel can accommodate 4 nuclear submarines in docks along with all the requisite equipment to arm, provision, maintain, and staff the subs. The base is considered to be indestructible tunnelled some 300 metres below the mountain surface and was designed to take a direct nuclear hit.

bal-825-05

dscn2537

dscn2416

bal-825-16

The façade of the exit is not concrete but hand laid stone, so as to blend in with the surrounding historical stone fortifications.

dscn2556

The roadways were built when the base was decommissioned and closed in 1993

the road las been built across the exit and entrance since the base closed

Inside……..

Thru vast blast proof doors which lead into tunnels deep in headland

Massive undergound complex of tunnels

Massive undergound complex of tunnels

Underground submarine pens

Submarine pens for 4 subs end to end and a seperate drydock facility

Room for 4 subs end on end...and a dry dock facility for repairs

bal-825-47

Map showing how facility runs under the headland, the entrance is at the bottom

Map showing the complex..the entrance is the lower right of the pic in the inner harbour

Hinge mechanism for blast doors

Hinge mechanism for blast doors


There is a small museum in the complex

There is a small museum in the complex

Pic from museum showing missile loading on dock before base was finished

Photo of missile being loaded on harbour dock before complex was operational

much is still not restored

Much of the complex has yet to be restored

more doors.....

More huge doors…..

Taking a bit of an offroad jaunt around the outskirts of Balaklava

dscn2575

dscn2570

I came across this huge open-cut quarry…….

dscn2568

I don’t think that a natural colour for water……

dscn2567


….. and later, up a track and miles from a sealed road was another memorial….

dscn25711

…this one in memory of a particular army division which fought the Germans to a stalemate and subsequently drove them off the Crimean Peninsula…..and here it is off-road and basically out of sight but still well tended and maintained.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: