Packing for the Arctic when it’s 100 degrees where you live Mentally and physically adjusting for the Northwest Passage Project

Mirella Shaban Student Posts 1 Comment


We are one day out from flying out of our hometowns and meeting everyone that will be spending the next 3 weeks with us. I’m excited for this journey to begin, and I am equally just as anxious to get started! I’m looking forward to finally meeting all of the people I’ve seen and spoken with on our webinars over these past few months and finally getting to kick off our expedition.


Shopping for the Northwest Passage Project has been more fun than I expected at first. Packing, however, has been a bit of a doozy. It’s pretty difficult to pack a down jacket into a carry-on bag! My staple materials for this adventure have been merino wool, poly-type materials, and fleece! I plan on layering as much as I need to so I can avoid packing too many bulky items. I’ve also decided to bring a Buff to cover my face and/or neck whenever the wind chill picks up.

My one luxury I’ve afforded myself on my trip is Argan oil, in an attempt to combat my naturally curly hair and the dry air I am expecting in the Arctic Circle. I live in Richmond, Virginia where the whether is currently sitting in the mid to upper 90’s. Preparing for this trip has definitely taken some mental reminders of just how cold it can get in Richmond during the winter, let alone the Arctic!


My biggest struggle during this expedition will likely be acclimating to being away from my family. I come from a close knit Lebanese family and have lived in Richmond my entire life. Leaving will be bittersweet, but I am beyond excited to explore the changing Arctic!

A photo of Jounieh, Lebanon taken by me during dinner in 2017.


The Arctic ecosystem is under stress due to the changing global climate. We will be conducting important scientific research and collecting data that can help us understand these changes. The Arctic climate impacts people and climates across the world. Our research will help to educate the masses on these topics, and better understand our changing climate.

Located in Greenland.


Comments 1

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    Thank you so much for your observations! I live south of Richmond and my son Tristan is there on the trip as well. You are so right that this message needs to go out to the public and your work is crucial in defining the future of our planet.

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