What’s it like living in the coldest city in the world?

Yakutsk, early December. All photos by Bolot Bochkarev.
 
For the people in Yakutsk, Siberia, where the temperature last week week fell to -47°C, icy floors and frost bite are just a part of daily life. But the rigors of winter don't stop the city from functionning: shops are open, buses run and children play in the park. 
 
Situated on the left bank of the river Lena, Yakutsk is the capital of the Sakha, Russia’s easternmost federal republic.  With an average temperature of -60°C in January, it is one of the most freezing cities in the world. The actual “coldest city” world record is proudly held by the town of Verkhoyansk, 675 km north of Yakutsk, where the temperature dropped to -69,8°C in February 1892.
 
Yakutsk is built entirely on permafrost, a permanently frozen soil that requires foundations to be dug extremely deep in the ground to resist seasonal thaws. 
 
 
In the streets of Yakutsk on December 8.
Contributors

"The city begins preparing for winter in the month of June"

 
Bolot Boucharev lives in Yakutsk with his wife and two sons, aged 3 and 5. Recent entries to his blog Ask Yakutia describe the arrival of the polar winter in the city.
 
A temperature of -47°C is a normal for a December day. People here are completely used to this kind of cold. The first thing we do when we get up in the morning is look at the colour of the sky. If it’s blue, we know the cold will be bearable. If all you can see is fog behind the window pane, we know it will be a tough day.
 
It’s hardest for the children, who have to spend all day inside, either at home or at school. I try to bring my two sons to the park at least once a day. Since it’s extremely cold, we go in a taxi, so that the little time they spend outside, they spend playing. I don’t want them to get sick, so my rule is that we never stay outdoors more than 30 minutes per day.
 
 
The best clothes for this kind of weather are fur and wool. The trick is to wear as many layers of possible, even several layers of underwear. Also, you have make sure your time outside is spent quickly and efficiently. For example, you need to know exact bus schedules so as not to spend time waiting at the bus stop. But the cold and snow doesn’t stop the city from functioning. Shops are open, public transport works. The city starts preparing for winter in the month of June. All of the sewage and pipeline networks are check and repaired at the slightest hint of a leak. People here start saying “it’s cold” when the temperature goes below 50°C. In those cases, it’s best not to spend more than 10 minutes outside.”

 
All photos posted by Bolot on his blog.

Comments

City not town

The subject is coldest CITY so this quote is a bit irrelevant as is says it is a TOWN
The actual “coldest city” world record is proudly held by the town of Verkhoyansk, 675 km north of Yakutsk, where the temperature dropped to -69,8°C in February 1892.

Reply to comment | The FRANCE 24 Observers

Good day! This post could not be written any better!

Reading through this post reminds me of my previous room mate!
He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this post to him.
Pretty sure he will have a good read. Many thanks for sharing!

Actually the coldest town is

Actually the coldest town is nearby at Oymiakon (or spelling could be Oymyakon). Temps have been recorded there as low as 71.2 C

yakutsk

YAKUTSK IS NOT DREAMING OF A WHITE CHRISTMAS...MY GOD, IM A PANSY...I START SHIVERING & PUTTING ON LAYERS @ 30* FAREN. WE HUMANS ARE SO ADAPTABLE. AMAZING STORY. THANKS FRANCE 24 FOR POSTING !!!

Ottawa and Chicago are the

Ottawa and Chicago are the coldest city in the world. Not Yalutsk. America is colder than most of Russia.

Russia is colder than the US!

A simple google search can teach you about other countries. Really? yes really.

If you knew what you were

If you knew what you were talking about you would know that Ottawa and Chicago dont even come close to being half as cold as Russia.

He's right, chicago is colder

He's right, chicago is colder than russia because he's a dumbass.

cold city

A great warm to those who dare to live in those cities. Everyone in this city have that kind of determination to live on. Inspires us to go on in life.....

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