Map of Antarctica
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The Dry ValleysMap of the Dry Valleys
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Where is Antarctica?

Quick facts about Antarctica

Size: 5.5 million square miles (14M sq. km). Fifth largest continent in the world. As large as the US and Mexico combined.

Government: Antarctica has been administered by the Antarctic Treaty since 1961. No country has any definitive sovereignty over any part of it, in spite of claims.

Highest Point: Vinson Massif 16,062' (4897m)

Precipitation: Antarctica receives less than 5 cm of precipitation a year, which is similar to the amount the driest part of the Sahara Desert receives.

Summer - 20,000 visitors and station workers.
Winter - 1,200 “winter over” station workers.

Temperature: Record low of -128°F (-89.6° C).

Health Risks: Hypothermia, frostbite, snow-blindness, dehydration, sunburn.

Where are the Dry Valleys?

Located among mountains by McMurdo Sound, on the part of Antarctica closest to New Zealand, the valleys receive the equivalent of only 6 mm of water, on average, each year in the form of snow.

Completely devoid of terrestrial vegetation, the region is considered one of the most extreme deserts on the planet.