Pole of cold Oymyakon - photo, map, how to get

An informational post from my friend, who went to Yakutia on New Year's Eve, visited the Lena Pillars and Oymyakon at the Pole of Cold. Here we will talk about the latter. This information can be useful to those who will also gather in those regions on their own, and not on a tour..

The content of the article

Is the Pole of Cold so terrible

Usually, on the Internet, tours to Oymyakon at the Pole of Cold cost from 50 tr. not counting the flight to Yakutsk. If you use such a tour, you also need to understand that you will have to take tickets for a specific date, which practically excludes the possibility of catching a sale in advance and, accordingly, makes the trip even more expensive.

Here I will tell you how to go to the Pole of Cold on a budget (and in another post read about Oymyakon). Probably, someone may have a reasonable question: why go there at all, to this most severe place on Earth, where a permanent population lives?

Here's what might be interesting:

  • see people's lives in such conditions
  • ride on the track «Yakutsk-Magadan» (for some reason it is especially popular with foreign tourists)
  • feel «on my own skin» extreme frost and its effect on everything around
  • taste the foals and stroganines prepared according to local recipes

Also, history buffs will be interested in this area as a place for camps of the GULAG system and that very road. «Kolyma», built at the cost of thousands of (watered) prisoners' lives.

How to get to the Pole of Cold

It is worth going to the village of Tomtor as the largest settlement in the Oymyakon Valley, although there may be options. By plane to Yakutsk, then by car (minibus) about 1000 km to Tomtor. There is no official communication between Tomtor and Yakutsk in winter. From May to October, a plane flies from Yakutsk once a week. The rest of the time, the water obstacles on the way are covered with ice, and the trip by car becomes more profitable..

After reading chilling stories about adventures on the way between Yakutsk and Oymyakon, I laid two days of travel on this road, and even that «save» one day, I took a one-way plane ticket to the regional center of Ust-Nera, hoping to get to Tomtor on a ride on the same day.

It's better not to do that. These stories were written mainly either by independent autotravellers, for whom the road is unfamiliar and objectively seems dangerous, especially in the dark, or by participants in package tours, where it is important for operators that everyone is comfortable (well, and that they pay more days).

So, now you can get from Yakutsk to Oymyakon (Tomtor) in one day. Federal highway «Kolyma» literally in the last two years, it was significantly expanded, and the areas that were dangerous a few years ago were fortified. In general, the track itself leaves a pleasant impression in winter, and looks no worse than some in Central Russia.



You just need to find a local (Oymyakonsky) driver in advance, who already knows all the features of the road by heart and walks along it confidently at any time of the day. See the end of the note for the contacts I found..

Estimated travel time is 14-16 hours, including rest stops. Cost - 5 tr. per person one way, but depending on the conditions and the number of passengers, it can vary within 4-7 tr. Locals regularly travel to Yakutsk for their own business, so there should be places. Quite often they travel by minibuses. If you want to travel as a whole group in one car, then you need to negotiate a little more in advance.

I recommend leaving early in the winter, around 6 a.m. The first half of the way to Khandyga passes through the plain, in which there is little interesting. And then the mountain begins - the most beautiful part of the road, and it would be nice to catch it in the daytime. It gets dark in winter in these parts early, about 3 pm. It dawns at about 10 o'clock in the morning. On the way back, you can see what you missed on the way. «there». In Tomtor, the time difference with Yakutsk is +1 hour.


Oymyakon on the map

There is confusion about what Oymyakon is and where the Pole of Cold is. So the whole area called Oymyakon is considered a pole. But there is also a small settlement with the same name, it is not necessary to go to it (40 km from Tomtor), although it is beautiful there, mountains, Indigirka, a reindeer farm, but there is nowhere to stay. So, the meteorological observation station and the monument to the temperature minimum are located in the village of Tomtor, which I just marked on the map. Tomtor has an airport that is open in summer, shops, and overnight stays there too..

So, almost always, when they say Oymyakon, they mean Tomtor. This is where you need to come.

Pole of cold Oymyakon

Pole of cold Oymyakon
The entire region called Oymyakon is considered a pole of cold. A meteorological observation station with a monument is located in the village of Tomtor, which I marked on the map.

The entire region called Oymyakon is considered a pole of cold. A meteorological observation station with a monument is located in the village of Tomtor, which I marked on the map.

Where to stay

I know of two places:

1. Guest house in Kuidusun area (about 2 km from the center of the village).
I stayed there myself. It is a spacious apartment with three bedrooms, living room, kitchen and separate bathroom. It doesn't smell like European renovation, but everything is clean and tidy.

Pros: Can easily accommodate a group of up to 10 people. Nearby, within walking distance, non-freezing thermal springs and the river into which they flow is very beautiful.
Cons: remoteness from the center of the village.
Price: 1500 rubles. per person per night, if you have a large group, you should ask for a discount

2.Private house in the center of the village with a hostess

It can accommodate up to 6 people. The advantages include the fact that the hostess provides guests with homemade food (Yakut cuisine must be tried!), The disadvantages are typical village infrastructure, including an unheated toilet in the yard. Although, for someone it will not be a minus, but on the contrary..

Price: 1800 rub. per person per night

Locals say that you can come up with other options, you can recognize by existing contacts.

What to take with you

Although there are many private shops in Tomtor (it seems even too many per capita), the choice is very scarce and the prices are high. I recommend shopping in Yakutsk to the maximum and loading it all into the trunk. This is especially true for specific products that you consume, including alcoholic ones. It is advisable to take with you means for quick kindling of firewood.

Meat (foal) for self-cooking can be purchased from locals. There is a cafe in the village where you can order a kind of table in advance. Convenient for companies.

I also recommend that you take your MTS SIM card with you. the rest catch worse, and do not provide mobile Internet.

How to dress for the Pole of Cold

I can recommend the following:

  • Thermal underwear, preferably camel wool
  • Wool sweater
  • Down jacket, always with a fabric cover. I myself miscalculated with the down jacket, having bought the ski option in Decathlon. It turned out to be really warm, but its synthetic coating at temperatures below -40 became tough like plastic, which somewhat hampered movement. As an alternative to a down jacket, a regular wadded overalls with a fishing jacket are suitable, if you have a warm sweater. The same applies to backpacks, it is better to take rag ones. The rubberized zipper can protect you from moisture as much as you like, but in severe frost you cannot open it.
  • Life hack - when ordering online on the Decathlon website, but through the Letyshop cashback service, there will be a return of 2.5-5% for all goods, including down jackets. If you are not yet in the know, then they have delivery, so you can order everything for yourself at home. By the way, cashback works for other stores as well, look there.

  • Two woolen socks, preferably camel or lambswool.
  • (this is a must) Shoes with felt soles. Ideally, these are certainly fur boots, but they are expensive. Simple felt boots will do. The felt boots should have galoshes or a silicone coating of the sole (otherwise the snow brought on them from the street starts to melt in the warmth (in the car, for example), and the felt boot itself gets soaked). Leather shoes on «habitual» rubber sole is suitable only for a short (10 minutes) stay outside.
  • You will also need woolen mittens, always two-layer.
  • Thick phone case if you want to take pictures of them or at least be able to call them if necessary.

What to visit at the Pole of Cold

The village has two museums - local history and literary local history. In the first one, all the exhibits, even the 18th century carbine, can be touched with your hands (I still recommend not to abuse it). The second is located in the school building and is dedicated to the repressed Russian writers and the history of the GULAG in the territory of the region as a whole, for which it is called «the gulag museum».



The residence of the Yakut «Santa Claus» - Chyskhaana. Located in a mountain cave at the entrance to the village. You need to arrange a visit in advance.

You can go to a horse or reindeer farm, which is about 30 km from the village.


On the outskirts of the village flows a stream that does not freeze from thermal springs (oymyakon means «non-freezing water»). The nature surrounding the stream is striking in its unreality.


And finally - about what interesting phenomena in the cold you can experience in Oymyakon.

  • Experiments with food. You can make a cognac lollipop. Bananas, unlike juicy fruits, which become brittle, acquire metallic properties. They can hammer in a nail and, with some effort, crack an orange into smithereens..
  • You can arrange «Yakut fireworks». To do this, it is enough to pour a mug of hot water from a thermos and quickly pour it out in a fan over your head. Splashes with a crash turn into pieces of ice, scattering to the sides, accompanied by ice vapor. After one or two workouts, it turns out very beautifully..
  • In sunny weather, you can observe a halo - when the sun above the horizon turns into three almost identical.
  • Even when the frost is below 50, each exhalation of air is accompanied by a characteristic whistle. Unusual.


Useful contacts

+79142297032 Rozaliya Timofeevna (director of the local history museum)
+74115424498 Susanna Sergeevna Zabolotskaya (guest house)
+74115424110 Tatiana Burtseva (guest house in Kuidusun district)
+79644266690, +79142325510, +79142917937, +79841016681, +79244678887 - contacts of local residents who can suggest a transfer

P.S. Read also other posts - interesting facts about Oymyakon, about Ust-Nehru and the road through the tundra, about Yakutsk and Lena Pillars.