Chernogolovka and its outskirts. Oasis of intelligence
Southern lake — Peschanka — Chernogolovka pine — Northern lake — Military technical museum

This little town in Moscow Region can surprise a tourist — the «science town» reminds of either some perfect Soviet city with clever, intelligent and polite people, or a dream of a writer Nosov with his books about Dunno. The roads here are clean, learned scholars and egghead youngsters with thick books are sitting on the benches instead of hooligans, cyclists replace their four-wheeled colleagues…

The town itself is strikingly rational: everything is built and organized in a right way, as it should be. The reason is its origin: in the mid 50s of the last century an Institute of chemical physics was built here, then scientific institutes started appearing at a run. At the moment there are more than 10 Scientific Research Institutes here, and scientific intellectuals (there are more than 300 Doctors of Science here) embody the town’s look, making it clear and beautiful, like a formula. Let’s see what else Chernogolovka is famous for (also called «Chege» by the locals), where «the light of knowledge expels the darkness of ignorance».

1. Southern lake
  • Southern lake
There is a high diving-board here and, God knows why, a berth 
You will get to the first buildings of Chernogolovka (Old Chernogolovka) when you cross Institutsky avenue or turn right if you travel by car. You can park near the bus station and feel the atmosphere of the «science town», which is so close to the nature. For example, when you turn from the avenue to Pervaya street, you will see a so called «closer» lake. «Closer», also known as Southern lake, is not big, yet cultivated: there is a high diving-board here and, God knows why, a berth. There are volleyball grounds, recreational facilities and a mobile cafe on the banks. The water is not too clean, but there are lots of people on the beach in the summer anyway — both locals and tourists.
2. Peschanka
  • Artificial mound Peschanka
Orodruin of local adrenaline addicts
Through the cutting from the lake you can get to Peschanka. It is an artificial mound on Berezovaya street — Orodruin of local adrenaline addicts. It is not very high — about 50m, but everyone likes it. In the summer they fly kites, in the winter it is very noisy: ski, snowboards, snow-scooters — people in bright overalls are everywhere. From the top go the hill there is a great view on high water of the Chernogolovka river and new micro districts.
3. Osveshchenka
  • Footpath Osveshchenka
The length of this soothing and restorative path is about 2 km
Another important thing in Chege is a short, but impressive footpath from the eastern bank of Southern lake to the forest. This path was called Osveshchenka by the local people — the name means «illuminated», you can walk here in the day and night because there are a lot of lamps. The length of this soothing and restorative path is about 2 km, but if you go off the concrete road, you will come across a bunch of cuttings and footpaths. It is not hard to go astray here. And be careful when meditating — you can suddenly hear a vague sound of explosion: there is a proving ground in the thicket, where propellant and other things are still being tested.
4. Chernogolovka pine
  • Chernogolovka pine

The main symbol of Chernogolovka is a three-headed pine. 
If you go back to Institutsky Prospekt and then walk (or go by car) further from Moscow, you can see the main symbol of Chernogolovka — a three-headed pine near the Institute of chemical physics problems in AkademikaSemyonovaProspekt. You can also see this pine on the town’s emblem and on its flag. Local dwellers consider it as a totem, so you can’t touch it: there is a thin, but high fence around it. Though you can take a picture next to “the tree of knowledge”. 
5. Northern lake
  • Northern lake
It is very easy no find a quiet corner here
If you go straight through InstitutskyProspekt to the forest, you can reach a so-called Far lake, also known as Northern lake. Unlike Southern lake, where it is not possible to make a fire and set an outdoor grill, Northern lake is perfect for romantic gatherings with the guitar near water. If you came by car, you can park it right in front of the lake (the access road is quite good) and then walk along the bank. Though Northern lake is artificial, it looks very authentic: wind sways cane, the water reflects the tops of the red pines, perch shines with its scales in the bottom. It is very easy no find a quiet corner here.
6. Military technical museum
  • Military technical museum
Military technical museum in Ivanovskoe village
On your way back to Moscow don’t forget to visit Military technical museum in Ivanovskoe village. It is located 5 km on the north-west from “Chege” — you will need to ride on the east through the concrete sur-faced road, the Moscow Little Ring. The exposition is quite impressive — there is almost a full range of the Soviet car industry products, from first GAZes and ZiSes to trophy Horches and Volksvagens. There is some exotics, too — for example, a flying saucer, not launched for mass production, or an odd hybrid of an aircraft and an amphibian. But the most exciting thing here is a reconstruction of war operations of First World War and Great Patriotic War. Tanks, armored troop carriers, artillery self-propelled guns will be tempering clay and stunningly shoot with blank cartridges. Such “battles” are carried out regularly, you can find the schedule on the museum’s website.

Where to eat

The best cafes in town are “Komarik” on Tsentralnayastreet and “AkademKlub” on Pervaya street. “Komarik” is a timbered building right next to the forest. “AkademKlub” is more stand-offish, both have very delicious food and reasonable prices, comparing to cafes in Moscow. You can also have lunch in a dining-hall of Institute of chemical physics problems in AkademikaSemyonovaProspekt. The food is quite simple there, but you get a chance to meet a future Nobel laureate. 

Where to stay

You can stay in a tent on Northern lake or in one of the hotels in town. Hotel NTsCh RAN on Shkolnybulvar is quite simple, the Soviet type. “KonferentsTsentr” on Tretyaulitsa is a comfortable cottage with 10 rooms, surrounded with academicians’ houses.

How to get there

By car: 43 km on Shchelkovskoeshosse.
By public transport: minibus or bus Moscow — Chernogolovka number 320 or Moscow — Dubrovo from Shchelkovsky bus station. The journey time is from 1 hour ad infinitum, depending on traffic jam when lwaving Moscow. The ticket costs about 90 roubles..

Written by Daniil Kolomiychuk
Photos: Panoramio

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