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Earlier this year, French architecture firm AZC proposed a trampoline bridge across the Seine in Paris, and while that dream may never be fully realized, trampolines are already being used for an unusual reason in Russia. As part of the 2012 Archstoryanie festival, design company Salto built a 170-foot long trampoline path in a Russian forest that provides for a most unique mode of transportation.
The trampoline is known as Fast Track and was installed in the town of Nikola-Lenivets, where visitors may have been making it part of their Russia tours over the last several weeks. The unusual feature was installed for the festival, which serves as a tribute to local art and music. The trampoline serves a number of purposes, but the designers say that the placement in the middle of a forest serves an important purpose.
"'Fast Track' is an attempt to create intelligent infrastructure that is emotional and corresponds to the local context," the designers wrote on Salto's website. "It gives the user a different experience of moving and perceiving the environment."
While Fast Track is the latest trampoline-inspired transportation design to garner international attention, it is not the only unique way to get around Russia. The city of Irkutsk, which is in the harsh region of Siberia, has become famous in recent years for being home to ice sailing and racing. In fact, Irkutsk hosted the 2012 Russian Iceboat Championship, which were hosted at Lake Baikal, often regarded as the world's oldest lake.
Whether you're interested in hopping through a Russian forest or sliding across one of its frozen lakes, the country is home to some modes of transportation you can't find anywhere else in the world.
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The scent of rich pine forests lingers in the breeze as the 13th-century ruins of Turaida Castle are revealed before your eyes in the lush Gauja River valley in a medieval sanctuary untouched by the march of time.
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