North Pole Facts
11 Interesting Facts about the North Pole
Here are some of interesting North Pole facts for kids.
- There are two North Poles. The north terrestrial pole is the fixed point that forms the axis on which the Earth spins. The north magnetic pole, to which compass needles point from all over the Earth- changes daily.
- There is no land beneath the ice of the North Pole. The Arctic ice cap is a shifting pack of sea ice which is 2-3 meters thick, floating above the 4,000 meters deep Arctic Ocean.
- During the winter, the Arctic ice pack grows to the size of the United States. In the summer, half of the ice disappears.
- While Arctic ice is always dynamic— increasing during winter and shrinking during summer— during recent decades the ice cap has been shrinking in both area and thickness, due to global warming.
- The tiny Arctic tern undertakes the world’s longest migration—traveling nearly from pole to pole. The bird breeds in the Arctic Circle, but migrates during the Northern Hemisphere winter to the edges of the Antarctic ice pack. The annual journey is around 35,000 kilometers, nearly equal to flying all the way around the world.
- Robert E. Peary was the first person to reach the North Pole, on April 6, 1909. He travelled to the North Pole on dog sled.
- On May 9, 1926, Richard Byrd and Floyd Bennett became the first people to reach the pole by airplane.
- The U.S. atomic submarine Nautilus became the first vessel to cruise under the North Pole, in 1958.
- The legend of the unicorn is alive in the Arctic. The Narwhal is a smaller whale that lives most of its life north of the Arctic Circle. One of the Narwhal’s two teeth grows into a distinctive tusk, which can reach 10 feet in length— earning the animal the name, the “unicorn of the sea.”
- July is the North Pole’s warmest month, when the mean temperature rises to a freezing 0 degrees Celsius. In February, the average temperature is -35 degrees Celsius.
- There is a North Pole marathon every year since 2002, with an average wind chill temperature of 22 degrees below zero.