6 of the Most Desolate Places on Earth

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

6 of the Most Desolate Places on Earth

From frozen tundras to alpine highlands, some of the most remote places in the world are also the most inhospitable. But from ancient cultures to scientific researchers, there are humans who live in these isolated and barren places. Between eating frozen horse blood and dodging snapping crocodiles, it takes a lot to survive in these harsh environments. Read on to discover six of the most desolate places on the planet.

Ittoqqortoormiit, Greenland

Ittoqqortoormiit, Greenland

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Greenland’s most isolated town has a mere 453 residents, thanks, in part, to its remote location and harsh winters. Located between Northeast Greenland National Park and the glaciers and fjords of Scoresby Sound, the town is covered in ice and snow for at least nine months out of the year. Although the terrain is often frozen, the small settlement’s red, green and blue houses brighten the otherwise bleak landscape. Outside of human residents, the area is home to walruses, polar bears, narwhals and reindeer. Planning a trip to Ittoqqortoormiit? Visiting in spring is advised, as the bitter winter conditions are severe. To arrive, one must take three flights on small planes starting from Reykjavik, Iceland, before boarding a helicopter towards the final destination.

Utqiagvik, Alaska

Utqiagvik, Alaska

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The northernmost town in the United States, Utqiagvik is not connected by a road to the rest of Alaska. Instead, this isolated settlement is only accessible by plane or boat. Transportation within the town is also unique — many locals prefer to use dog sleds over snowmobiles, according to Business Insider, due to the difficulty of running a vehicle in the extreme winter temperatures. Perhaps the most unsettling part of life is Utqiagvik is the darkness. The town is so close to the Arctic Circle that residents must endure two months of darkness during the winter. This past year, the sun set on November 18, 2018, and did not rise again until January 23, 2019. Despite the bleak landscape and dark days, Utqiagvik has 4,428 residents who call the seaside city home.

Changtang Plateau, Tibet

Changtang Plateau, Tibet

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Nicknamed the “Roof of the World,” Changtang is a high altitude plateau that stretches nearly 1,000 miles, from Ladakh, India, to northwestern Tibet. The only known residents of these vast and empty highlands are the Changpa, a semi-nomadic pastoral tribe who rely on their herds of goats, sheep and yaks to survive. Life on the Changtang Plateau is harsh, with unpredictable storms during the warmer months and Arctic-like temperatures during the winter. Much of the plateau is protected by The Changtang Wildlife Sanctuary, an organization that endeavors to preserve the wild landscape and the species who call it home.

Kimberley Coast, Australia

Kimberley Coast, Australia

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The northernmost section of Western Australia is called Kimberley, a region known for its vast and rugged landscape. Largely uninhabited and treacherous to most humans, Kimberley’s coastline and the surrounding outback is as unforgiving as they come. In 1932, two German pilots crash landed on this barren landscape and would have perished had they not been discovered by the local Aboriginal people. In 2017, adventurer Mike Atkinson recreated the Germans’ plight, putting himself in harm’s way to follow to the same path as the stranded pilots. During his time in the Australian outback, Atkinson managed to survive the lack of food and water, in addition to navigating the dangerous, crocodile-ridden landscape. The last leg of the trip required hiking 40 miles through the bush, all while self-filming the harrowing trek. Luckily, Atkinson is a survival instructor and a wilderness expert — it’s clear that most humans would not be able to live in such a hostile landscape.

Oymyakon, Russia

Oymyakon, Russia

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Dubbed “the coldest village on Earth” by The Washington Post, Oymyakon, Russia, is a grim settlement in the Siberian tundra. With only 500 residents calling this frozen outpost home, wintertime in Oymyakon is bleak. The town’s average temperature in the colder months is -58 degrees Fahrenheit. In 1933, Oymyakon suffered from a cold snap that brought the temperature to a mind-numbing -89 degrees Fahrenheit, the coldest temperature recorded outside of Antarctica. For the locals, existing in this frigid land is no easy task. The ground is too cold for plumbing, so townspeople must brave the elements to use outhouses. An average meal likely consists of frozen fish, reindeer meat or cubes of iced horse blood, according to Wired. A mere 217 miles from the Arctic Circle, the darkest days of the year have three hours of sunlight, making this subzero landscape a very lonely place.

McMurdo Station, Antarctica

McMurdo Station, Antarctica

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The least populated continent on Earth, 98% of Antarctica is covered in ice. As a result, not many people are able to live in such an unforgiving climate. Antarctica’s human population belongs to scientists and researchers stationed throughout the continent. One such place is McMurdo Station, a U.S. Antarctic research facility located on Ross Island. While the station itself has a post office, a chapel, two bars and a golf course, the surrounding icy tundra is uninhabitable. And while the “White Continent” may have many visitors in the summer months, winter is cold, bleak and dark. Out of the 1,200 researchers who live at McMurdo Station in the summer, less than a quarter remain for the winter. With notable effects being depression and disorientation from the harsh and desolate landscape, wintering in Antarctica isn’t appealing in the least.

The Coldest Places On Earth

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIVIA GENIUS)

 

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The coldest places on Earth

Temperatures around the world vary from location to location, from high elevations to sea level and below, and it’s easy to forget that the weather in your neighborhood can be drastically different than temperatures and climates half a world away. Extreme temperatures are par for the course when it comes to life on Earth.

That said, you probably wouldn’t want to stay long in some of the coldest places on the planet. Still, some villages, towns, and cities persist despite frigid temperatures. Here are some of the coldest places on the planet, both inhabited and uninhabited.

Antarctica

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On a high ridge within hollows on the East Antarctic Plateau in Antarctica, temperatures have reached a bone-chilling -133.6 degrees Fahrenheit (-92 degrees Celsius). At least that was the case in 2013 according to NASA.

“Scientists made the discovery while analyzing the most detailed global surface temperature maps to date,” the 2013 article says. “Researchers analyzed 32 years’ worth of data from several satellite instruments [and] found temperatures plummeted to record lows dozens of times in clusters of pockets near a high ridge…on the ice sheet known as the East Antarctic Plateau.”

Russia

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Russia has long been notorious for its cold weather and below-freezing temperatures. With that in mind, it’s no surprise that two of the coldest permanently-inhabited places on the planet are located in Russia.

Oymyakon

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A 2010 census reported that approximately 460 people live in the rural locality of Oymyakon, Russia, one of the coldest-yet-still-inhabited villages on Earth. That’s right, people live in Oymyakon. Schools will even stay open unless temperatures dip below a teeth-rattling -52 degrees Fahrenheit (-46.6 degrees Celsius).

In December 2016, Oymyakon’s weather station recorded temperatures of -96 degrees Fahrenheit (-71.1 degrees Celsius).

Verkhoyansk

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The more than 1,000 people living in the remote region of Verkhoyansk, Russia, may call it home, but they always seem to be in contention with Oymyakon for being the most miserable place in the world. That’s almost certainly due to the unbelievably cold temperatures year-round.

It’s been a while since the lowest temperature in Verkhoyansk was recorded (-93.6 degrees Fahrenheit/-69.8 degrees Celsius) in 1892. But it can be hot one day and cold the next, as the saying goes. The town of Verkhoyansk holds the Guinness world record for the greatest temperature range on Earth, with temperatures known to range from -90 degrees to 98 degrees Fahrenheit (-67.7 degrees to 72.2 degrees Celsius).

Canada

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Canada is known for its vast expanses and consistently cold weather, so it’s natural that a tiny village in the Yukon territory makes the list of coldest places on Earth. Snag, Yukon, Canada reached a record-setting low temperature of -81 degrees Fahrenheit (-63 degrees Celsius) in the winter of 1947.

United States

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Not all of the coldest places on the planet are in remote winter wonderlands. Here are a handful of the coldest places you’ll find in the U.S.

Prospect Creek, Alaska

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Average low temperatures dip below minus 60 degrees Fahrenheit (-51 degrees Celsius) in Prospect Creek, Alaska, but the coldest place in the United States has gotten colder in the past. The tiny outpost in Alaska began as a hub for mining expeditions and evolved into a camp for construction of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System. The region is currently uninhabited other than the occasional attendant manning a pump station in the area, and that’s probably a good thing. Lowest recorded temperatures in Prospect Creek, Alaska reached -78.8 degrees Fahrenheit (-61.5 degrees Celsius) in January 1971.

Rogers Pass, Montana

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Rogers Pass, Montana, holds the record for coldest recorded temperature in the United States outside of Alaska. The pass is only around 5,500 feet above sea level, but on January 20, 1954, temperatures dipped to an icy -69.7 degrees Fahrenheit (-56.5 Celsius).

International Falls, Minnesota & Fraser, Colorado

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Both International Falls, Minnesota, and Fraser, Colorado earned their spot on this list even if they aren’t technically the coldest places in the United States year-round (or even consistently). The reason they’re here is that they’re cold enough for long enough. Both towns have claimed—and even trademarked at one point—the term “Icebox of the Nation.” They came to an agreement in favor or International Falls in 1986, then International Falls let the trademark lapse, and a dispute followed.

Internationals Falls currently has a trademark claim for the “Icebox of the Nation”title, but both towns have an average year-round temperature that borders on freezing.

Cold May Get Colder as Time Passes

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Temperatures will continue to fluctuate towards extremes, both hot and cold, if climate change science is any indication. That means the coldest places on Earth are going to get colder, and cold areas of the globe may get a little more frigid during the winter months. Some of your favorite cold weather winter spots may make the list next year or the year after!

 

Temperatures Plunged to -88.6°F in Parts of Russia

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TIME NEWS)

 

By ASSOCIATED PRESS

Updated: January 16, 2018 12:33 PM ET

(MOSCOW) — People living in some of the coldest places on earth are hunkering down as temperatures fall to near-record lows that are even defeating thermometers.

Temperatures in the remote, diamond-rich Russian region of Yakutia on Tuesday plunged to minus 67 degrees Celsius (minus 88.6 degrees Fahrenheit) in some areas.

In Yakutia — about 3,300 miles east of Moscow — where students routinely go to school in minus 40 degrees, school was canceled throughout the region. Local police also ordered parents to keep their children at home.

Over the weekend, two men froze to death when they tried to walk to a nearby farm after their car broke down. Three other men who were with them survived because they were wearing warmer clothes, local investigators reported on Monday.

The press office of Yakutia’s governor said Tuesday all households and businesses in the region have working central heating and access to backup power generators.

In the village of Oymyakon, one of the coldest inhabited places on earth, state-owned television showed mercury falling to the bottom of a thermometer that was only set up to measure down to minus 50. In 2013, Oymyakon recorded an all-time low of minus 71 degrees Celsius (minus 98 Fahrenheit).

Residents of Yakutia, home to nearly 1 million people, are no strangers to cold weather, and this week’s cold spell was not even dominating headlines in local media on Tuesday. Some media outlets, however, ran stories of selfies and stunts in the extreme cold. Women posted pictures of their frozen eyelashes, while YakutiaMedia published a picture of Chinese students who got undressed to take a plunge in a thermal spring.

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