Sunday, December 23, 2012

So Glad It's Not This Cold

     Image source: Big Picture

I read that it can get as low as -50C in Yakutsk, Russia, and -40C could be a day time high. In the photo above, it's -35C (-31F). A warm November means temperatures not dropping below -25C. I like this excerpt written by Shaun Walker from The Independent:

         Starting from the feet and working up, I'm wearing: a pair of cotton socks, with a pair of thermal 
         socks over them; a pair of ankle-high Gore-Tex boots; a set of thermal long-johns; a pair of jeans; a 
         thermal undershirt (a present from a worried family member); a long-sleeved T-shirt; a tight-fitting 
         cashmere jumper; a fleece; a padded winter coat with hood; a thin pair of woollen gloves (so that 
         when I take the outer pair off to take photographs I won't expose naked flesh); a pair of gloves made 
         of wool and Thinsulate; a wool scarf; and a woolly football hat.

         Lumbering from my hotel room like the Michelin Man, and already breaking into a sweat due to the 
         hotel's industrial heating system, I decide that I'm ready to face everything Yakutsk has to throw at 
         me. I stride purposefully out of the hotel door and... well... it really isn't that bad. The small oblong 
         of my face that is naked to the elements definitely registers the cold air, but on the whole, it feels 
         fine; pleasant, even. As long as you're dressed right, I think, this isn't too bad.

         Within a few minutes, however, the icy weather begins to assert itself forcefully. The first place to 
         suffer is the exposed skin on my face, which begins to sting, and then experience shooting pains, 
         before going numb, which is apparently dangerous, because it means blood flow to the skin has 
         stopped. Then the cold penetrates the double layer of gloves and sets to work on chilling my 

         The woolly hat and padded hood are no match for minus 43C either, and my ears begin to sting. 
         Next to succumb are the legs. Finally, I find myself with severe pain all across my body and have to 
         return indoors. I look at my watch. I have been outside for 13 minutes.

No comments:

Post a Comment