Extremes on Earth
This article describes extreme locations on Earth. Entries listed in bold are Earth-wide extremes.
- 1 Extreme elevations and air temperatures per continent
- 2 Coldest and hottest inhabited places on Earth
- 3 Extreme ground temperatures
- 4 Greatest vertical drop
- 5 Subterranean
- 6 Greatest oceanic depths
- 7 Deepest ice
- 8 Northern and southernmost points of land on Earth
- 9 See also
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Extreme elevations and air temperatures per continent
|Continent||Elevation (height above/below sea level)A||Air Temperature (recorded)B|
|Africa||5,893 m (19,334 ft)
|−155 m (−509 ft)
Lake Assal, Djibouti
|55 °C (131 °F)
7 July 1931C
|−23.9 °C (−11.0 °F)
11 February 1935
|Antarctica||4,892 m (16,050 ft)
|−50 m (−164 ft)
Deep Lake, Vestfold Hills
(compare the deepest ice section below)
|15 °C (59 °F)
1 May 1974
|−89.2 °C (−128.6 °F)
21 July 1983
|Asia||8,848 m (29,029 ft)
Mount Everest, China-Nepal Border 
|−424 m (−1,391 ft)
Dead Sea shore, Israel - West Bank - Jordan
|54 °C (129 °F)
Tirat Zvi, Israel (then in the British Mandate of Palestine)
21 June 1942
|−67.8 °C (−90.0 °F) Measured
Verkhoyansk, Siberia, Russia (then in the Russian Empire)
5 February 1892
|−71.2 °C (−96.2 °F) Extrapolated
Oymyakon, Siberia, Russia (then in the Soviet Union)
26 January 1926
|Europe||5,642 m (18,510 ft)
Mount Elbrus, Russian Federation
(compare Mont Blanc)
|−28 m (−92 ft)
Caspian Sea shore, Russian Federation
(compare the Tagebau Hambach)
|48.0 °C (118.4 °F)
(and Elefsina, Greece)
10 July 1977 E
|−58.1 °C (−72.6 °F)
Ust-Shchuger, Russian Federation
31 December 1978
|North America||6,168 m (20,236 ft)
Denali (formerly known as Mount McKinley), Alaska, U.S.A.
|−86 m (−282 ft)
Death Valley, California, U.S.A.
(compare the deepest ice section below)
|56.7 °C (134.1 °F)
Death Valley, California, U.S.A.
10 July 1913C
|−63.0 °C (−81.4 °F)
Snag, Yukon, Canada
3 February 1947
|4,884 m (16,024 ft)
Puncak Jaya (Carstensz Pyramid), Indonesia
(compare Mount Wilhelm, Mount Cook and Mount Kosciuszko)
|−15 m (−49 ft)
Lake Eyre, South Australia, Australia
|50.7 °C (123.3 °F)
Oodnadatta, South Australia, Australia
2 January 1960
|−23 °C (−9 °F)
Charlotte Pass, New South Wales, Australia
29 June 1994H
|South America||6,962 m (22,841 ft)
Aconcagua, Mendoza, Argentina
|−105 m (−344 ft)
Laguna del Carbón, Argentina
|48.9 °C (120.0 °F)
Rivadavia, Salta Province, Argentina
11 December 1905
|−32.8 °C (−27.0 °F)
1 June 1907
Coldest and hottest inhabited places on Earth
|Hottest inhabited place||Dallol, Ethiopia, whose annual mean temperature was recorded from 1960 to 1966 as 34.4 °C (93.9 °F). The average daily maximum temperature during the same period was 41.1 °C (106.0 °F).|
|Coldest inhabited place||Oymyakon (Russian: Оймякон), a village (selo) in Oymyakonsky Ulus of the Sakha Republic, the Russian Federation, located along the Indigirka River. It has the coldest monthly mean with −50 °C (−58 °F) the average temperature in January, the coldest month. Eureka, Nunavut, Canada has the lowest annual mean temperature at −19.7 °C (−3.5 °F).|
|The South Pole and some other places in Antarctica are colder and are populated year-round, but almost everyone stays less than a year and could be considered visitors, not inhabitants.|
Extreme ground temperatures
Temperatures measured directly on the ground may exceed air temperatures by 30 to 50 °C. A ground temperature of 84 °C (183.2 °F) has been recorded in Port Sudan, Sudan. A ground temperature of 93.9 °C (201 °F) was recorded in Furnace Creek, Death Valley, California, USA on 15 July 1972; this may be the highest natural ground surface temperature ever recorded. The theoretical maximum possible ground surface temperature has been estimated to be between 90 and 100 °C for dry, darkish soils of low thermal conductivity.
Satellite measurements of ground temperature taken between 2003 and 2009, taken with the MODIS infrared spectroradiometer on the Aqua satellite, found a maximum temperature of 70.7 °C (159.3 °F), which was recorded in 2005 in the Lut Desert, Iran. The Lut Desert was also found to have the highest maximum temperature in 5 of the 7 years measured (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009.) These measurements reflect averages over a large region and so are lower than the maximum point surface temperature.
Greatest vertical drop
|Greatest purely vertical drop||
Mount Thor, Auyuittuq National Park, Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada (summit elevation 1,675 m (5,495 ft))
|Greatest nearly vertical drop||
Trango Towers, Pakistan (summit elevation 6,286 m (20,623 ft))
|Deepest mine||4,000 m (13,123 ft)
Mponeng Gold Mine, Witwatersrand, South Africa
|Deepest mine under sea level||2,733 m (8,967 ft) under sea level
Kidd Mine, Ontario, Canada
|Deepest open-pit mine||1,200 m (3,937 ft)
Bingham Canyon Mine, Utah, USA
|Deepest open-pit mine under sea level||293 m (961 ft) under sea level
Tagebau Hambach, Germany
|Deepest cave||2,193 m (7,195 ft)
Voronya Cave, Arabika Massif, Georgia
|Deepest pitch (single vertical drop)||603 m (1,978 ft)
Vrtoglavica Cave, Slovenia
Greatest oceanic depths
|Atlantic Ocean||8,648 m (28,373 ft)
Milwaukee Deep, Puerto Rico Trench
|Arctic Ocean||5,450 m (17,881 ft)
Litke Deep, Eurasian Basin
|Indian Ocean||7,258 m (23,812 ft)
|Pacific Ocean||10,971 m (35,994 ft)
Challenger Deep, Mariana Trench
|Southern Ocean||7,235 m (23,737 ft)
South Sandwich Trench (southernmost portion, at 60°S)
Ice sheets on land, but having the base below sea level. Places under ice are not considered to be on land.
|Bentley Subglacial Trench||−2,555 m (−8,383 ft)||Antarctica|
|Trough beneath Jakobshavn Isbræ||−1,512 m (−4,961 ft)||Greenland|
Northern and southernmost points of land on Earth
|Northernmost point on land||Kaffeklubben Island, east of Greenland ( )
Various shifting gravel bars lie further north, the most famous being Oodaaq
|Southernmost point on land||The geographic South Pole|
- Global Weather & Climate Extremes World Meteorological Organization
- The Kilimanjaro 2008 Precise Height Measurement Expedition. Precise Determination of the Orthometric Height of Mt. Kilimanjaro
- Harter, Pascale (2010-12-04). "A life of constant thirst beside Djibouti's Lake Assal". BBC News. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- "Mount Vinson". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 9 January 2013.
- Indicator 62 - Water levels of Deep Lake, Vestfold Hills, Australian Antarctic Data Centre. Retrieved 15 January 2010.
- "The 'Highest' Spot on Earth?". Npr.org. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- "Lowest Elevation: Dead Sea". Extremescience.com. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- "Life Is a Chilling Challenge in Subzero Siberia from the National Geographic". News.nationalgeographic.com. 2010-10-28. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- Mount Elbrus at peakbagger.com
- The Handy Geography Answer Book: Second Edition. Books.google.ca. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- Mount McKinley, Alaska at peakbagger.com
- DesertUSA.com. "Death Valley National Park". Desertusa.com. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- Carstensz Pyramid, Indonesia at peakbagger.com
- "Oceaina". Worldatlas.com. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- Aconcagua, Argentina at peakbagger.com
- "Lowest Points on Land". Geography.about.com. 2013-06-20. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- PWMU. "Ninety-year-old World temperature record in El Azizia (Libya) is invalid Improved data strengthens Climate knowledge". Wmo.int. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- Europe: Highest Temperature WM0
- "Western Hemisphere: Lowest Temperature". Wmo.asu.edu. 1954-01-09. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- "Transcript of report on the highest temperature". Abc.net.au. 2003-12-24. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- "New Zealand’s coldest recorded temperature". Niwa.co.nz. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- p. 9, Weather Experiments, Muriel Mandell and Dave Garbot, Sterling Publishing Company, Inc., 2006, ISBN 1-4027-2157-9.
- Average of table on p. 26, Extreme Weather: A Guide & Record Book, Christopher C. Burt and Mark Stroud, New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2007, ISBN 0-393-33015-X.
- p. 57, Extreme Weather: A Guide & Record Book, Christopher C. Burt and Mark Stroud, New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2007, ISBN 0-393-33015-X.
- Погода и Климат. Retrieved July 25, 2014.
- "Canadian Climate Normals 1971-2000". Climate.weatheroffice.gc.ca. 2013-02-04. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- p. 855-857, Satellite Finds Highest Land Skin Temperatures on Earth, David J. Mildrexler, Maosheng Zhao, and Steven W. Running, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, July 2011, pp. 855-860, doi:10.1175/2011BAMS3067.1.
- Table 9.2, p. 158, Dryland Climatology, Sharon E. Nicholson, Cambridge University Press, 2011, ISBN 1139500244.
- A possible world record maximum natural ground surface temperature, Paul Kubecka, Weather, 56, #7 (July 2001), Weather, pp. 218-221, doi:10.1002/j.1477-8696.2001.tb06577.x.
- Extreme Maximum Land Surface Temperatures, J. R. Garratt, Journal of Applied Meteorology, 31, #9 (September 1992), pp. 1096–1105, doi:10.1175/1520-0450(1992)031<1096:EMLST>2.0.CO;2.
- Coldest spot on Earth identified by satellite, Jonathan Amos, BBC News, 9 December 2013.
- The Coldest Place on Earth: -90°C and below from Landsat 8 and other satellite thermal sensors, Ted Scambos, Allen Pope, Garrett Campbell, and Terry Haran, American Geophysical Union fall meeting, 9 December 2013.
- "Mount Thor -The Greatest Vertical Drop on Earth!". Dailygalaxy.com. 2010-03-09. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- "Thor Peak". Bivouac.com. Retrieved 2009-11-30.
- Indian Ocean, CIA World Factbook. Accessed on line December 26, 2008.
- "Daily Reports for R/V KILO MOANA June and July 2009". University of Hawaii Marine Center. 2009-06-04. Retrieved 2009-06-04.
- Plummer, Joel. Jakobshavn Bed Elevation, Center for the Remote Sensing of the Ice Sheets, Dept of Geography, University of Kansas.