Archive for the ‘Alaska’ Category

Ten Unequivocal Signs Your Vacation Destination is Too Cold

April 20, 2010 Leave a comment

My fiancee looking very cold

An ice sculpture bearing an uncanny resemblance to my fiancee

Traveling to Alaska in winter offers several advantages over visiting in the warmer, yet significantly busier, summer months: There’s an abundance of available hotel rooms, the prices are relatively low, the snow-covered landscape looks spectacular and there are no annoying crowds getting in the way of your photographs.

The downside is that it’s cold. Extremely cold.

In February of this year, I spent a couple of days in the state’s interior and the highest the thermometer climbed was a positively absurd minus twenty degrees celsius. To the chagrin of my accompanying fiancee – who very nearly changed her status to ex-fiancee when she realised how cold it was going to be – much of our time was spent in even chillier conditions, with the mercury at one point dropping to a mind-numbing (quite literally) minus thirty-three.

Although I had initially assured her that the weather would be bearable, the two inconceivably frigid days we experienced before heading south to Anchorage forced me to concede that “the off-season” is considered “the off-season” for a reason and sometimes it’s best to just Photoshop the crowds out of your shots.

As a way of helping others avoid a similarly painful experience (and this could fit just as easily under the heading of “relationship advice” as it could “travel advice”), I have thoughtfully compiled the following list.

Ten unequivocal signs your vacation destination is too cold:

10) You leave your hotel wearing nineteen separate pieces of clothing, yet still feel underdressed.

9) It occurs to you that climbing into the kitchen freezer – which has a constant temperature of minus eighteen degrees celsius – would be warmer than going outside.

8) It takes just forty-five minutes for the lukewarm bottle of water you slipped into your backpack as you left the hotel to resemble a Streets Calippo.

7) You have difficulty seeing where you’re going because small icicles have formed on your eyelashes.

6) Even moderately priced hotels are advertising “heated floor” as a key feature.

5) The nightly weather report mentions the temperature at your next destination is minus two degrees celsius and you find yourself thinking “I hope it’s still that warm when we get there.”

4) Your partner finds that failing to dry her slightly damp hair before going outside results in large chunks of it freezing solid.

3) You notice that the wannabe-gangster pacing the floor of the local bus station is carrying a hunting knife big enough to harpoon a whale, yet don’t consider this sufficient reason to wait outside in the cold.

2) You realise that even if the temperature were to suddenly increase by fifty degrees celsius, it would still be necessary to put on a jumper to go outside.

1) The level of pain in your half-frozen toes and fingers becomes so intense that, if given the choice between spending another ten minutes outside and having your testicles slammed in a car door, you’d have absolutely no hesitation in choosing the latter.

Now that you’ve read this list, it should come as no surprise to learn that the relevant authorities (otherwise known as my fiancee) have stipulated our next trip can only include destinations where the definition of “extreme cold weather” is a vague feeling that a shirt might be required.

Categories: Alaska, USA Tags: , , , ,