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Icy-clist: Japanese tourist gets frostbite in quest to get to Yakutia’s Pole of Cold

A Japanese tourist tried to get to the Pole of Cold in Yakutia’s Oymyakon District by bike

YAKUTSK, February 21. /TASS/. A Japanese tourist got frostbite while trying to get to the Pole of Cold in Yakutia’s Oymyakon District by bike, head of the regional External Relations Department Vladimir Vasilyev informed TASS on Wednesday.

"A Japanese citizen has sustained a light-degree of frostbite on his foot near the village of Tyungyulyu. He received medical care in Yakutsk’s burn center. A group of four Japanese students… did not take into account the temperatures in the region (plunging to minus 40 degrees Celsius - TASS) when planning the trip," Vasilyev said.

He noted that the tent, in which the tourists spent the night, was unsuitable for extremely low temperatures. "After a conversation with us, they gave up the idea of travelling there and agreed that it is necessary to have suitable experience for such an expedition," Vasilyev added.

He noted that the Japanese students decided to travel to the Pole of Cold on their own initiative, adding that Japan’s Consulate General in Khabarovsk was informed about that. "A letter has been sent through the Russian Foreign Ministry’s office in Yakutsk," he said.

An attempt to get to the Pole of Cold by bike was earlier made by 61-year-old French traveler Yves Chaloin. However, his bicycle could not withstand the 60-degree frosts in Yakutia. Nevertheless, the French traveler finally reached his destination in late January.

The Pole of Cold in the Northern Hemisphere is located, according to one version, in the Tomtor rural locality in Yakutia’s Oymyakon District. A record low temperature - minus 67.7 degrees Celsius - was registered there in February 1933. The Oymyakon valley is one of the coldest permanently inhabited places on Earth.