The 1938 and 1999 aerophotosurveys

Our aerial photo (26 July 1999) of the river Cheko.

Hundreds of eyewitnesses have given their testimonies about the Tunguska event. No one of them has remembered the existence of the lake Cheko before 1908. The more complete collection of testimonies is that of Vasilyev and co-workers (1.4 Mb, Russian). It contains direct observations of the Tunguska explosion from 386 different points and a list (0.8 Mb, Russian) of the geographical coordinates of these points. To these observations, the authors have added news published in newspapers, reports and communications from many official employees, etc..., for a total of 708 testimonies. In this collection, when “Cheko” is mentioned, the testimony refers to the river Cheko, to its “mouth”, not to the lake (see photo). The lake Cheko, at about one kilometre from the mouth of the river Cheko is not mentioned (see, e.g., the English translation of the account by the Evenk L. V. Dzhenkoul). Only one “eyewitness” names lake Cheko: the Evenk V. N. Dmitriev (born in 1924!) which reports in 1964 what seen by other people. He mentions Cheko as a landmark on the Strelka-Vanavara trail. He adds that the main trail was going through the place of Kulik’s izba. This statement indicates that his remembrance refers to a long time after the 1908 event. Some eyewitnesses refer about the formation of a lake during the Tunguska event. They did not indicate the name of the lake or its location. Therefore we cannot refer their testimonies to the lake Cheko (See, e.g. I. P. Lyuchetkan). V. A. Koshelev reports (2.9 Mb, Russian) that the Evenk P. D. Doptyna (born in 1880) stated that, when she was young only a swamp was present on the site of the lake Cheko. The lack of testimonies on the existence before the Tunguska event of such a remarkable landmark as lake Cheko is a strong argument in favour of the hypothesis that it was formed as a result of the 1908 impact.

To download a higher resolution image click here: 3.3 Mb.
The image can be copied and published only with a full reference to:

Longo G., Di Martino M., Andreev G., Anfinogenov J., Budaeva L., Kovrigin E.: "A new unified catalogue and a new map of the 1908 tree fall in the site of the Tunguska Cosmic Body explosion." In: Asteroid-comet Hazard-2005, pp. 222-225, Institute of Applied Astronomy of the Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, Russia, 2005. (pdf, 211 kb)

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