During Antarctica’s warm(er) season, the sun shines constantly. Without darkness to divide night from day, researchers find ways to cope. After 21 field seasons, here are ecologist Ross Virginia’s must-haves.
I’m not trying to make a fashion statement. It’s constantly bright and it’s wicked dry, so I protect my eyes with dark glasses that have side coverage and 100 percent UV protection.
When you finally stop working after a long day in the field, it can be hard to sleep. Music helps me make that transition. I’ve rigged an Altoids box to hold a small speaker that connects to an iPod.
3. Night Shade
To block out the midnight sun, I use a neck warmer as an eye mask. During the day, I can use it as a scarf, or wear it as an open-top hat. But when I’m in my tent, I just pull it over my eyes so I can sleep.
4. Single Malt Scotch
When music doesn’t work, there’s scotch. I don’t really drink it at home, but carrying a summer’s worth of beer isn’t an option—in the field, you have to consider the space and weight factors.
This article was originally published in the September/October 2017 Mysteries of Time and Space issue of Popular Science.