State Nature Reserve - "Visherskii"
In order to preserve the unique nature of the northern Urals, in 1991, the state nature reserve “Visherskii” was established. It is located in the northern-eastern part of the Perm and Krasnovishersk regions. “Visherskii” covers an area of 2412 sq. km (1.5% of the Perm district) and is the fourth largest reserve in Europe.
It is the most beautiful part of the northern Urals, where is situated the highest ridge on the western slopes of the mountains – Tulymskii Kamien (1469.8m), mounts Isherim (1381m), Ern-Pupy, Munin-Tump (924m), Chertov Palets (Devil’s Finger), Pasar-Vat-Munin-Nel, ridges - Molebnyi (Yalpyng-Ner), Muraviinyi (Khus-Oika), Oshner, Lopiinskii Kamien (Manchi-Khomit-Nel) all with heights over 1000 metres are located here in this mountain system.
Munin-Tump (924m), (“mountain with rocks” in Mansi language) is the most exotic mountain, situated at the watershed between the Vishera and Niols rivers. Russian hunters gave this mountain the beautiful, figurative name – “Army”, because of the numerous rocks with various and amazing shapes at the peak. These rock formations on Munin-Tump reminded them of great soldiers and also of a majestic castle.
The reserve is situated in the basin of the river Kama, including upper reaches of the river Vishera and its tributaries - Lopiya, Niols, Moiva, Lypiya and Vels. In the reserve you can see waterfalls (heights - up to 9m), transparent mountain lakes flowing into underground karst cavities, mountain streams and rivers, springs with crystal-clear cold water, having a permanent temperature of +2.6°Ñ the whole year round. On the rivers Vishera, Niols, Big and Small Moiva there are rapids.
The climate is continental, typically with warm summers and long cold winters.
The flora is abundant and diverse – species of vascular plants numbering about 500, mosses - more than 100, and lichens - about 150 – all can be found in this reserve. On the slopes of the mountains Isherim and Tulymskii Kamien are relic groves of surprisingly beautiful larches, with some of them aging more than 300 years. In the beginning of summer the alpine meadows along the forest border are covered with a continuous white carpet from anemones. It is possible to come across the shrubbery of the poisonous aconite growing to a height of more than two metres, amongst the 150 rare species of flora.
The animal world of the reserve is diverse because of the mix of European and Siberian faunae. About 40 animal species inhabit the park’s forested areas. It is possible to see lambs, bears, sable, martens, beavers, northern deers, gluttons and many other animals. Among the birds are tundra partridge, wood grouse, pine-grosbeak, golden plover and many others. The golden eagle, osprey and white partridge are recorded in the “Red Book of Russia” (listings of protected and endangered species of wildlife). In the rivers, different species of fish are found - grayling, taimen, burbot and others.
The uniqueness of the reserve is connected to the geological structure of its territory, which has caused geomorphologic and biological variety. Diamonds, gold, silver, tungsten, lead and rock crystals are found here along with many rare and unusual other kinds of rocks.
In the upper region of Mt. Saklaim-Sori-Chakhl (1128.1m) is a unique point in the Urals, where the basins of three great Russian rivers meet – the Ob, Pechora, and Volga.
In July 1997 the obelisk “Europe – Asia” was erected here in honor of the 250th anniversary of the Perm district.