The Lykovs: Adapting to Life in the Wilderness

The Lykov family was a Russian Old Believer family who fled to the Siberian wilderness in the 1930s to escape religious persecution. Old Believers were a sect of Eastern Orthodox Christianity that rejected the religious reforms of the 17th century and as a result, faced persecution from the Russian government. The family, consisting of Karp Lykov, his wife Akulina, and their children Savin, Natalia, and Dmitry, settled in the remote Kolyma River region and lived in isolation for decades.

In the depths of Russia, in the Siberian taiga, the Lykovs, a family of 6, have not seen any human beings for more than 40 years. can you modify this sentence.

Escape to Isolation

In the 1930s, Karp Lykov and his family were forced to flee their home to escape religious persecution. The Russian government was cracking down on Old Believers, a sect of Eastern Orthodox Christianity that rejected the religious reforms of the 17th century. The Lykovs, like many other Old Believers, were forced to flee their homes and seek refuge in remote and isolated regions of the country.

The family found a small plot of land in the Kolyma River region, deep in the Siberian wilderness. They built a small log cabin by hand and set about creating a new life for themselves. They subsisted on hunting and fishing, and grew their own food. They also maintained their Old Believer beliefs and practices, which had been passed down through generations.

Living in Isolation

For decades, the Lykov family lived in complete isolation, completely unaware of the major historical events that were taking place outside their small cabin. They were completely cut off from the rest of the world, with no access to news, modern technology, or medical care. They lived in a very simple, self-sufficient way, relying on the natural resources around them to survive.

Despite the extreme isolation and harsh living conditions, the family managed to survive and even thrive. They were able to adapt to their new environment and find ways to make a life for themselves in the wilderness. They were able to maintain their cultural and religious traditions, even in the face of persecution and hardship.

The Discovery of the Reclusive Lykov Family in the Siberian Wilderness and Media Attention

In 1978, a team of geologists searching for iron ore in southern Siberia came across an unexpected discovery while flying over the Khakassia sector by helicopter. They spotted a hut in the middle of a remote forest, despite the nearest inhabited place being over 240 km away. Intrigued, the team decided to land their helicopter and investigate.

Upon approaching the area, they were met by an old man with a shaggy beard and bare feet, who turned out to be Karp Lykov, the father of a family. The Lykovs were members of the Old Believer Orthodox sect and had been forced to flee to the Siberian Forest in 1936 to escape persecution by both the Tsarist and Bolshevik regimes. Despite the harsh conditions, the family had adapted to their new way of life and had even welcomed two more children into their family.

The family was initially suspicious and fearful of the outsider, but eventually warmed to him and allowed him to take pictures and interview them. The story of the Lykov family quickly gained international attention, and they were the subject of several documentaries and articles.

The family was interviewed by journalists and researchers, and their story was featured in National Geographic, The New Yorker, and other publications. The world was fascinated by the Lykov family’s resilience and adaptability in the face of extreme isolation and adversity. They were seen as a symbol of human endurance and the ability to maintain cultural and religious traditions in the face of persecution.


The story of the Lykov family is a fascinating example of human resilience and adaptability in the face of extreme isolation and adversity. It also highlights the impact of historical events and societal changes on individuals and families, and the ways in which individuals and communities can maintain their cultural and religious traditions even in the face of persecution.

Despite the harsh living conditions and isolation, the Lykov family were able to survive and even thrive, maintaining their traditions and beliefs throughout their time in the wilderness. Their story is a testament to the human spirit and the ability to adapt and overcome even the most challenging circumstances.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *