Personal clothing and equipment


A safe and productive field season depends heavily on the choice of clothing and equipment. Clothing should be of good quality, able to withstand the harsh Arctic environment. Please note that the summer conditions in Svalbard (usually during the months June, July and August) are similar to a severe British winter. A list of essential clothing is provided below:

Waterproof/windproof anorak and trousers
Thick woollen pullovers and/or fleeces
2 x hats or balaclavas
Head-over or scarf
Walking/climbing boots and gaiters
Mitts and gloves (several pairs)
Thick woollen socks
Casual wear for use on the station
Thermal underwear
Smart wear for Saturday evening dinner
Outdoor shirts
Slippers (shoes are not worn indoors)
Outdoor trousers


Some items of specialised clothing and footwear are held on the station for use in the cold spring period. Those planning to visit Svalbard during the Spring should contact Iain Rudkin (

The station is equipped with a washing machine and drier. Bed sheets, pillowcases, duvets and bath towels are provided. There is a small shop in Ny-Alesund where you buy essential products if required.

Personal Equipment:

Each person must provide their own rucksack containing the following equipment which must be carried in the field.

Map (can be purchased in Ny-Ålesund)
Spare clothing pack (min.hat, mitts, socks)
Emergency food pack
Medical first-aid pack
Sunglasses and/or goggles
Paper and pencil
Bivvi bag
Full outer shell clothing (if not being worn)
Thermos flask (optional)


The Station will provide a VHF radio to be carried by the field party. Individuals or groups going into the field must also carry a rifle for protection against polar bears. At the Station Managers’ discretion, rifles will be allocated to those who have attended a Kings Bay rifle training course in Ny-Ålesund.

Those using the station boat are provided with floatation suits.  CO monitors are provided for those using field huts. For a full list of Station equipment, please see the Station Facilities and equipment page.