Meet 15 people who brave freezing temperatures to live in the Arctic Circle

Life On The Line PhotosCristian BarnettHans Bengtson, better known as ‘Vild Hasse,’ lives in Jokkmokk, Sweden, near the Arctic Circle.

As we near the end of January, brutal winter has set in in some parts of the world.

The Arctic Circle is one of those places. Average temperatures in the summer hover around 50° F, and in the winter they can drop below -50°F in many places.

While the Arctic is not very populated, people do inhabit the area. Photographer Cristian Barnett decided to document the lives of those people who make their homes on or near the invisible, dotted line of the Arctic Circle. In 2006, Barnett began his series, “Life On The Line,” which was released as a book last year.

“The Arctic Circle is much more than just hunters and polar bears,” Barnett told Business Insider. “There are many thriving, modern settlements where you’re more likely to meet a hairdresser than a reindeer herder.”

Barnett told us about 15 of the people he photographed.

This post was originally written by Christian Storm.

Benjamin, Enoch, and William are excited about their new wheels, which means freedom and independence -- especially in Fort Yukon, Alaska. The town was officially founded by the Hudson's Bay Company, famous for their wool blankets, though the area had been inhabited by indigenous people for thousands of years prior.

Standing outside her father's multi-story log cabin in Fort Yukon, Alaska, Chasity Herbert is proud to show off her newly won Miss Fort Yukon sash.

Maria Manninen is a fashion student in Rovaniemi, a large city in Finland only six miles south of the Arctic Circle. Even though it's technically outside the borders of the Circle, it still gets pretty cold. The lowest temperature ever recorded here was −54° F.

Anatoly Gushkin, a student from Zhigansk, Russia, is seen here 'tricking,' a form of acrobatic martial arts. Founded in 1632, Zhigansk is reportedly the first settlement within the Arctic Circle.

With his ship frozen in the Lena River in Zhigansk, sailor Vladimir Egorevich Kuchev uses the opportunity to apply a fresh coat of paint. Fishing, hunting, and cattle breeding are the main occupations in Zhigansk.

Maria Ivanova, seen here in traditional Evenk dress, is holding a rifle used for practice shooting after a family picnic in the forest in Zhigansk. The Evenk people are an indigenous ethnic group from Northern Asia. The Russian Evenks live mostly in the Siberian taiga, where their population is around 35,000.

Daniel Szwarc is a Polish missionary priest at the Roman Catholic Mission in Repulse Bay, Canada. Here he is seen standing at an altar made from an Inuit sledge.

Matti Härkönen builds a fresh ice house in his garden in Sonka, Finland, each year. Due to his bad back, this year's was smaller than usual.

Hans Bengtson, known to everyone in town as 'Vild Hasse' (Wild Horse), is a self-proclaimed 'master of glibness and a sausage poet.' He sells a wide range of culinary delights from the mountains at the winter market in Jokkmokk, Sweden. The market has been happening in Jokkmokk without fail for more than 400 years.

Karl-Erik Vesterberg, a trapper who clearly takes pride in his work, is seen here at a winter festival in Jokkmokk, Sweden. Temperatures can dip below -40° F during the festival, so Vesterberg's pelts will certainly come in handy.

Roger Møen is seen here enjoying a happy moment with his cattle in Træna, Norway. His cows are one of the most northern herds of Hereford cattle in the world. Træna is a remote and beautiful island in the Arctic Circle, 33 miles off the coast of Norway.

Handyman Ivar Sigthorsson tries out a new face mask to protect against the bitter winter cold while hanging Christmas lights in the northern Icelandic town of Raufarhöfn. Since it is the most northern town in the country, Raufarhöfn has the longest summer days and shortest winter days in all of Iceland.

Pavia Ludvigsen is certainly an interesting figure, walking around Sisimiut, Greenland, in his full-length leather coat and cat ear headphones. Sisimiut is 25 miles north of the Arctic Circle and has a population of only 5,598 people, which still makes it the second-most populous town in Greenland.

Sisters Dorthe and Ellen are seen here celebrating their niece's first day at school in Sisimiut, Greenland. Glass beads first arrived in Greenland in the 19th century as trade items, and they have been used in decorative clothing ever since.

Children all over the world love to build play houses, and Olga, from the Yamal Peninsula, Russia, is no exception. Here, she has made a miniature 'Chum,' a traditional tent used by nomadic Nenets people. Traditional ways of life on the Peninsula are being threatened by the exploitation of the world's largest natural gas reserves, which exist below the ground there.

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