Surfing In The Arctic Circle Is A Harsh But Beautiful Experience

Video: This video captures photographer Chris Burkard’s journey to the Arctic Circle to film professional surfers braving sub-zero temperatures. The cold really hurts, but there are moments of raw and aching beauty despite the harsh unforgiving environment.

World's Northernmost Big City Is A Brutal Mosaic Of Colour And Pollution

Welcome to Norilsk, Russia. With 175,365 citizens, it’s the northernmost big city in the world. The architecture is brutal, it’s highly polluted, and it’s freezing cold all year round. Yet its geometric and colourful shapes make it an oddly pleasing sight — at least as captured from the air by photographer Slava Stepanov.

Melting Arctic Ice Is Drastically Changing National Geographic's Atlas

When the the 10th edition of the National Geographic world atlas is released this fall, it will look markedly different from previous versions. That field of endless white usually covering the very north of the planet will be dramatically reduced to reflect the real-life shrinkage of the Arctic ice sheet.

First Ever Point-of-view Video Recorded By A Wild Polar Bear Is So Cute

US Geological Survey’s biologists attached cameras and radio collars to four free-ranging female Alaskan polar bears last April. One of the resulting videos shows one of the bears in action in the Beaufort Sea, checking out a potential mate, swimming below ice, and trying to eat a frozen seal (which is kind of gross.)

How Will Search And Rescue Work If A Plane Goes Down In The Arctic?

It has been nearly a month since Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappeared from radar, and its ultimate whereabouts remain unclear. The complex international effort of searching for the plane in a remote stretch of the South Indian Ocean raises the question of what would happen if a plane were to go down in the Arctic: who would coordinate the necessary search and rescue teams, and where should they be based? Geographer Mia Bennett tried to answer this question on her blog, Cryopolitics.

A Floating Arctic City Fuelled By Eating Icebergs

With glaciers firing off more icebergs into the Atlantic than ever before, it shouldn’t be surprising that people are envisioning futures that make the most of the dystopian realities a climate-changed world could bring. Cities that float around the arctic while eating icebergs are another one of those futures.

Canada's About To Claim The North Pole As Its Own

Have you spent the past decade believing that Canada is nothing more than the friendly, innocuous country north of the US? Good — that’s what they wanted you to think. In reality, Canada has given the past 10 years of its life and $US200 million dollars in taxpayer money to file the ultimate claim: 2.6 million square kilometres of Arctic seafloor that, yes, includes the North Pole.

The North Pole Is Now A Lake

If you think these images from the North Pole look more like a lake than the snow-covered expanse you’d expect, that’s because it is — the North Pole has melted. April saw the ninth heaviest snow cover on record measured in the Arctic, covering the Pole in more of the white stuff than it’s seen in a long ol’ time. But by May temperatures increased and almost half the cover melted.

The Skies Of Greenland Are Full Of Alien-Looking Optical Effects

We live in a wonderful world indeed. And in places like Greenland, the skies are wonderful too, full of spectres, ringed glories, sundogs, coronas, lunar halos and cloudbows. These weird atmospheric optical phenomenons are common there.

These Beautiful Waterfalls Are Made Entirely Of Ice

Sisse Brimberg and Cotton Coulson — two veteran National Geographic photographers who have been married for 28 years — have captured this beautifully surreal image of waterfalls fully made of ice. I guess that those ice caps are really melting.