Arctic explorers learnt how to make ice shelters from the indigenous communities. Ice shelters kept them warmer than canvas tents as they remained dry, especially in the extreme weather the explorers faced – including temperatures down to minus 50°C.

Ice shelters made use of the materials around them and meant that the explorers didn't have to carry their tents with them across the hostile landscape that was difficult to travel over with sledges.

Can you make your own shelter from the materials you have to hand?

Satellite sledge assigned to HMS Discovery for Arctic exploration

You will need:

table and chairs with folded blankets and cushions on top.





Step 1

Use a table to create the main structure for your shelter.

You can use the chairs to extend out the front of your shelter.

Drape a blanket over the top.

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Step 2

Make your shelter cosy inside by adding a blanket to the floor and lots of cushions.

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Step 3

Make your shelter really comfortable by adding a light and some books to entertain you.

You could make your own animals from toilet roll tubes to transport your shelter to the Arctic or Antarctic.

An image for 'Step 3'


Share a picture of your shelter with us on social media!