The 300 Club Is So Much Worse Than You Can Imagine

“Nothing fun about frost biting your lungs. [. . .] The most important thing is that I’m now the owner of a ultra cool cloth patch.” —Darryn Schneider, 300 Club member

In A Nutshell

The 300 Club is the name given to people who have experienced an instantaneous 166 degree Celsius (300 °F) drop in temperature. The practice takes place at the Amundsen-Scott Base in Antarctica during winter on any day when the outside temperature reaches -73 degrees Celsius (−100 °F). The participants will then sit in a sauna set at 93 degrees Celsius (200 °F) for 10 minutes before running outside . . . naked.

The Whole Bushel

During the winter in Antarctica, the few dozen staff members of the Amundsen-Scott Base at the South Pole are completely isolated from mid-February to late October while immersed in a perpetual night. For eight months, the station must be entirely self-sufficient. Energy is produced by three generators running on JP-8 jet fuel while a small greenhouse hydroponically (using only water and air) grows fresh fruit and vegetables. The station is so inaccessible in the winter that the resident physician once had to self-administer chemotherapy after she discovered she had breast cancer.

Under such psychologically trying conditions, there are very few things to do for entertainment. Over the years, the winter-over crew of the South Pole came up with one daring and creative activity—they experience an instantaneous 166 degree Celsius (300 °F) drop in temperature by running outside naked.

The participants must first wait for a day when the temperature reaches a brisk -73 degrees Celsius (−100 °F), not factoring in wind chill. With wind chill, this has been known to feel more like -97.7 degrees Celsius (-144 °F). Then, everyone piles into the sauna set at 93 degrees Celsius (200 °F) for 10 minutes. Once the heat becomes too much to handle, everyone runs outside. The bravest will run all the way to the geographic South Pole and back, going through all 24 time zones. However, as long as they make it to the top of the nearest hill, they receive a commemorative patch. Aside from the patch, the frosty participants also reward themselves with a return trip to the sauna and some alcohol.

To be clear, there are two exceptions to the rule about being nude: insulated boots and an optional neck gaiter. The neck gaiter is worn over the mouth and the nose to prevent frostbite in the lungs. The lack of underwear is both amusing and practical. It is highly discouraged because it would gather moisture from perspiration while in the sauna and instantly freeze when worn outside in the sub-zero temperatures, and that certainly wouldn’t feel comfortable scraping against the wearer’s genitalia.

One participant described the experience of running outside as feeling “like somebody was hitting me with a tennis racket full of needles.” So why do something so painful and dangerous? Perhaps it is to be able to say you belong to one of the most exclusive clubs on the planet. Or maybe it is just a way to keep your spirits up when faced with what must be an overwhelming sense of cabin fever.

Show Me The Proof

Reuters: South Pole’s 300 Club not for the cold-blooded
Darryn’s Antarctic Diary: Week 37—300 Club
National Science Foundation: Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station
KOMO News: There’s exclusive clubs, then there’s the South Pole’s “300 Club”

  • CSisonweb

    I think it is odd that this knowledge nuts does not contain information that when the males penis is salvaged by doctors after the run is the operation covered by insurance or not?

  • TheStupidityofLiberals

    This sounds really exciting honestly. However, to make it more fun, the researchers should bring illegal immigrants from the US and race them in the cold, placing bets to see who reaches the south pole first.

    • lbatfish

      Q: “Excuse me, Mr. TheStupidityofLiberals, but . . . just how was it that you got the nickname ‘Stumpy’?”

      A: “Well, that’s actually a long story. You see, I used to live down in Antarctica, and . . . .”

      • TheMadHatter

        Lol! Oh wow, I’m dying!

      • Lisa 39

        No response? I believe you may have “cut him down to size” 🙂

        • lbatfish

          No, there was no need for anything like that. It turned black and then fell off all by itself.

          • Lisa 39

            Well that certainly explains why he focuses so much time and attention on politics, he has nothing else to do with his time!

      • Ray

        I call bullshit, he never had a penis to begin with.

  • new

    Now somebody knows how to have fun!!!

  • Nathaniel A.

    This would have made a better “300” movie.

    • Lisa 39

      Good morning nathaniel, this is off topic but i found something for you, its lotr being performed by cats!

      • Nathaniel A.

        Love it.

        • Lisa 39

          Its so cute it made me giggle and go awww!

    • Lisa 39

      On topic now, that would be a good movie, or a documentary, here in cleveland we have a polar bear club, these crazy people go to lake erie in the winter, strip down to undies or swimsuits and go swimming, its on the news when they do it, that’s how i know about it, crazy people.

    • UN

      THIS IS ANTARCTICA!!!!!!!

      • Joseph

        That’s going to be the third movie in the trilogy.

  • Valdez

    Since I find being cold one of the most loathesome states on earth, I think me and my titties will have to pass up on this unique opportunity…

  • Check

    I am so glad I live in a tropical island. Reading something like this makes me appreciate what I have. I think I’ll go to the beach tomorrow.

    • Lisa 39

      Check, its comments like yours that make me cranky when i’m stuck in winter hell 😉

      • lbatfish

        Don’t fret, Lisa — you can get your payback as soon as the next typhoon rolls across his island (where windspeeds have sometimes exceeded 140 mph). And given the number of them that they usually get, you may not need to wait for more than a few weeks. 🙂

        • Lisa 39

          Then i’ll feel bad and worry about him lol

        • Check

          You know what’s funny? We have one nearby right now. I think its only a depression at the moment, but considering its line of trajectory, it might be destructive winds if it rolls by us.

          • lbatfish

            On a layover from Yap to Manila, I once got stuck in your airport for about five days, due to the tank farm there catching on fire. None of the hotels that I could afford had power or water, so why leave one of the few places that did?

            But I did get tired of the food from the ONLY snack bar that was outside of security at the time . . . . 🙁

  • TheMadHatter

    “Poppin bottles in the club
    Like a blizzard”
    This is the only song that came to mind taking into account extreme temperatures and clubs…

  • Hillyard

    I wonder how the guy that first came up with this got the others to go along. Can you imagine that conversation?

  • oouchan

    Nope! Not that brave….and not sure I’d like to see so much “junk” flapping in the breeze.

    Interesting though.

    • Lisa 39

      I’m with you sister!

    • rincewind

      At a temperature of -97.7 degrees Celsius (-144 °F), you wouldn’t “see so much “junk” flapping in the breeze”. 😉

      • Joseph

        It depends on what kind of junk it is. I got a box filled with random electrical cords that I’m sure would flap nicely in that kind of temperature.

  • Exiled Phoenix

    You know its to see the women naked… eight months, you know you’d want to as well..

    • Lisa 39

      Would you be willing to do that just to see naked women?

      • Nathaniel A.

        Keep in mind they are in the nude also.

        • Lisa 39

          Well yes they are nathaniel, its been my experience that most males will do just about anything to see a naked woman but i think that this is extreme considering the temperature, and that brings up another point, doesn’t the excessively low temperature defeat the purpose of seeing naked women?

          • Nathaniel A.

            Not if they’re hot enough…

          • Lisa 39

            You just made me lol, ok, they would have to be swimsuit models or porn stars to counter the effects of -100°, -144° with the wind chill. Wait, if porn stars were there then nobody would leave the building, i give up, you win, i think i just gave myself issues dang it.

          • Nathaniel A.

            *grins sadistically*

          • Lisa 39

            You’re so ornery!

          • Joseph

            That should be “beings down another point”.

          • percynjpn

            Of course, they’re doing it in 24-hour darkness, so. .

          • Lisa 39

            So they can’t even see anything, that makes me wonder how many “accidental” run ins occur 😉

      • Joseph

        Maybe Kate Upton… I mean no.

        Edit: I really mean yes…

        • Lisa 39

          So you would go freeze your pieces and parts off just to see a naked woman, i guess i have to give men everywhere credit for being determined, but if i were going to do something like that i’d look for a naked event with a tropical climate :p

          • Joseph

            Yeah, a warmer climate would be preferable.

  • nic

    And I’m stuck in the 700 club.

  • UN

    I’ve got a great ambition to die of exhaustion rather than boredom…..Thomas Carlyle

  • percynjpn

    I wonder how many of them have died from cardiac arrest.

  • JosefinaNawrocki

    The Scenery is so very awesome and heaven place for live in the Ice area.
    http://goarticles.com/article/Safer-Colon-Review-Get-Flattest-Belly-Within-4-Weeks/8543441/