An oddly shaped yacht has stunned the Finnish Coast Guard, which was summoned by a signal about a strange unidentified vessel.
By their own admission, the guards saw a “three-headed monster” drifting out of the early morning fog.
“For us, going through the identification of a vessel approaching the border is a common practice, but this time the case turned out to be more amusing”, Jarmo Häkkinen of the Finnish Coast Guard told the Ilta-Sanomat newspaper.
As a subsequent search revealed, the monster was in fact the Zmei Gorynych, a Russian sailboat whose exterior is styled after a multi-headed hard-to-kill dragon from folk fiction, whose name the vessel also bears. The mythological serpentine beast is associated with spitting fire, having iron claws and several heads and being almost immune to killing.
When decapitated, its heads quickly grow anew. The only way for the beast to be slain is to chop its heads off one by one and burn off the stumps to prevent new heads from growing.
To complete the image, the seven-man crew of the fairytale ship was dressed accordingly, as medieval warriors.
The vessel is fitted with three dragon-like heads and a snake-like tail. It has two sails and is powered by a 46-horsepower motor, which allows the beast to reach a speed of 6 knots.
The Zmei Gorynych is bound for a maritime festival in Norway and will pass through the territorial waters of Finland and Sweden en route to its destination.
The crew are set to repeat the route of semi-legendary Scandinavian Prince Rurik, who is credited with founding the early Russian state. During their trip, they intend to visit ten Baltic Sea countries, as well as meet residents in 18 regions of Russia.