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There's been just one Tinder match in Antarctica

There's been just one Tinder match in Antarctica

The unlikely story of romance in one of the most sparsely populated corners of the planet is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

The unlikely story of romance in one of the most sparsely populated corners of the planet is guaranteed to put a smile on your face. 

With no native population to speak of, Antarctica is home to no more than 4,000 people working across 70 bases in the summer months, and, during the winter months, the number of people in the highly remote part of the world often dips considerably to less than 1,000 — which, as you’d expect, doesn’t provide much opportunity for social interaction, let alone first dates.

It was a dull December day when a male scientist found himself logging on to Tinder with low expectations. 

Romance is notoriously hard to come by in Antarctic (stock photo).

Initially, he somewhat found no matches. Alas, when he expanded the range, his luck somehow miraculously changed. 

The scientist told The Cut how, before working in the southernmost continent on earth, he had been using the app for a few months in the US, where we hope he had more luck finding matches. 

While working in Antarctica, he decided he'd try his luck, took his phone out of his pocket, and opened the dating app.

The man, who asked to remain unnamed for fear of punishment for using the region's precious broadband for a dating app, was as surprised as anyone when he found a match. 

It was Tinder that brought the two singletons together.

“She was actually in her tent in the Dry Valleys when we matched,” he said, referring to an area that was 'just 45 minutes away' from him via helicopter.

He added: “She was quite literally camping in Antarctica, went on Tinder, and found me. It's mind-blowing.”

The anonymous singleton describes himself simply as a ‘McMurdo scientist’. The McMurdo Station conducts research in areas including aeronomy, biology and ecosystems, and ocean and climate systems.

He had hoped that using Tinder in the base would be a fun distraction while he was working in Antarctica.

The scientist was working at the McMurdo Station.

You’d be forgiven for thinking the dating pool would be slim pickings even with a full crew in situ, but it seems they're just as bored as anyone else would be to find themselves stuck in the middle of nowhere for months on end.

Budgetary cutbacks and a government shutdown at the time resulted in far fewer people working at the base, even less than would typically be in that part of the world conducting important research and looking to unwind at the end of a cold, hard day. Which makes the scientist’s match even more remarkable.

“I was really excited for the silliness of Tinder down here,” he told The Cut back in 2014. “But there are 200 fewer scientists than there should be right now because of the shutdown. How's that for an unintended consequence?”

The population of Antarctica is less than 1,000 during the winter months.

While Tinder hasn’t released official stats for its users in the region, they believe the match is the first of its kind. 

And with temperatures plummeting as low as −70 °C in some parts of the continent, it's perhaps no surprise that Antarctica isn't exactly known as a Tinder hotpot.

Earlier this year, one couple made headlines with their whirlwind romance that began at the very same research facility – albeit without the help of a dating app.

So, you may wonder, did our own McMurdo scientist and his date end up together? Well, kind of. The pair met once, but the lady scientist he matched with was leaving the very next day, so their encounter was brief to say the least. 

The scientist was, however, confident of a second meeting and possibly a date when she returned to work for summer research sessions. 

"I have yet to become the first Tinder hookup in Antarctic history," he said. "But she is actually coming back, and we may overlap. There's still hope."

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]

Featured Image Credit: Mariia Boiko / Alamy Stock Photo/Peter Barritt / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: Weird, Science