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Chelyabinsk Oblast

Big Allaki Sanctuary

Святилище Большие Аллаки
Наш Урал

The rock outcroppings on the southeastern shore of Big Allaki Lake are called the Big Stone Tents or the Allaki Alter. The outcroppings are up to 10 meters in height and are about 50 meters from the water. They are surrounded by open, treeless ground so they stand out sharply.

The Big Allaki Sanctuary is made up of 14 rocks on a small hill.  The shape of the cliffs is simply fantfastical.  Under certain lighting, a human face can be seen on one of the rocks. The face is located on the eastern surface of a cliff located in the northern group of outcroppings. There are also stone bowls and through holes.

Over 7,000 years ago, ancient people kept sanctuary in these cliffs. This amazing archaeological site was discovered and described by the archaeologist V. Ya. Tolmachev in 1914. He was the first to make sketches of all of the discovered cave paintings. In the process of digging, Tolmachev discovered stone and bronze arrowheads, pottery fragments, circular granite slab, copper spears, and even a bird-shaped copper idol. Two human skulls were found at shallow depths in the lake. Tolmachev found that the discoveries belonged to Mesolithic, Neolithic, and Bronze Ages.

In 1969, the archaeologist V.T. Petrin performed a repeat exploration of the sanctuary. He managed to discover another, previously undiscovered group of petroglyphs.  During his excavations, many new ancient artifacts, including crystal ware, were found.

In total, scientists found three groups of drawings, made with ochre, on two cliffs. Most of the drawings are under the cliff canopy, protecting them from rain and snow. The line thickness on most of the drawings is 1-2 centimeters. There are many anthropomorphic images here. By some assumptions, they depict shamans, but geometric patterns in the form of grids, ridges, diamonds, and individual segments predominate. The meaning of a number of drawings could not be interpreted definitely. Scientists have suggested that sacrificial offerings were performed here on a regular basis.

Cave paintings were also found on the Small Stone Tent, located on the western shore. Unfortunately, now they are completely ruined. V.T. Petrin in the late 1960s noted that the cliff became covered with soot due to fires built under the cliff canopy. At the present day, no traces of those neolithic petroglyphs remain.

The Tourist Portal of Chelyabinsk Oblast / карта

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Address: Chelyabinsk Oblast, Big Allaki Lake

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