During the expedition, the six members of the Ice Team will be required to work outside in the freezing temperatures on a regular basis, with the two-man ski team skiing out in front for an average of eight hours a day. It is crucial, therefore, that the members’ bodies are protected at all times from the elements – just a few seconds’ exposure to extreme cold could cause serious frostbite which could put the all the members’ lives in danger.
Unfortunately, before The Coldest Journey there has never been a need to develop clothing and equipment which can withstand such extreme conditions for such a long period of time on Earth. So in the absence of any tried and tested clothing, everything passed as suitable for the expedition has had to undergo rigorous testing, and in some cases modification, to ensure it stands up to the task.
Cue, the equipment specialists… Follow the links below for more on each of the two phases of the cold chamber testing, as well as a who’s who of the equipment testing team.