What on earth does one wear in Antarctica? That really depends which part of the continent you are planning on visiting, and what time of year you are there. It is much warmer in summer time, with 24 hour sunshine reflecting off the ice and creating some very interesting sunburn lines if you don’t watch out…
On days when the wind is howling a gale though, you’ll want all of your ECW (Extreme Cold Weather Gear) on. The mittens even come with fluff on the back of the hand for easy nose-wiping in sub zero temperatures! Antarctica New Zealand have made this time lapse video showing all of the layers New Zealanders take down south. Notice the bright orange colouring of the jackets? That’s a safety feature, making expeditions more visible in the snow.
Tourists also need to be well prepared before heading south. Layers are key! Thermals, polar fleeces, puffer jackets, windproof parkas… you may not need everything when you head out, but the weather can change very quickly, so it definitely pays to be prepared. Alok Jha from The Guardian has a good example of layers.
Antarctica has also inspired designs for clothing that can be work elsewhere, such as this fleece inspired by Belgium’s Princess Elisabeth Station:
Burberry and thick wool may once have been the order of the day in Antarctica (see Robert Falcon Scott below), but no longer. It pays to wrap up warm to survive the elements with all limbs and fingers still intact!