As you might know, Rohje has profiled itself as a watch for brave and daring adventurers, so-called Adventuristers. It was therefore no coincidence that the Finnish research expedition FINNARP had Rohje watches in use when they arrived at the Aboa research station on the most isolated continent in the world, Antarctica.
With years of global cooperation among nations, the Antarctic treaties reserve the continent only for scientific research and peaceful purposes and e.g. military activity is banned on the continent. As a cold, isolated and untouched environment, it is a unique research environment. That is why it has around 70 permanent research stations from 29 different countries. Among these stations is also the Finnish Antarctic research station Aboa (73°03'S, 13°25’W). The Finnarp research expedition spent around six weeks on the Aboa station researching movements of the Earth’s crust and ice sheets, among other things. At the same time, the Rohje watch got to test its mettle in the extreme conditions of Antarctica.
"When discussing the journey with the Finnarp research expedition leader Mika Kalakoski, we came to the conclusion that this adventure requires its own special watch," said Henry Wilen, one of Rohje’s founders.
In 2020, it will have been 200 years since the discovery of Antarctica and, in honour of that, Rohje reworked their Adventurister watch model into the Rohje Antarctica Special Edition, which honours the science and research work done in Antarctica.
Expedition leader Mika Kalakoski inspecting freight inventory in Cape Town before the flight to Antarctica. Photo Pasi Ylirisku / FINNARP 2019
Aboa camp in Antarctica. Photo: Pasi Ylirisku / FINNARP 2019
The changes made to the watch were mainly to do with colours and practicality. The colour of the dials and hands were changed to more easily distinguishable white, and even though the sun doesn’t set on the Antarctic during the beginning of the year, the hands are luminescent. The distinguishing feature of Rohje – the Finnish reindeer leather strap – was retained in the watch, and it might be the only reindeer leather strap that has visited the Antarctic and the polar circle.
“It was an honour to have the Adventurister on a real research expedition. The successful expedition in extreme conditions gave us some extra inspiration. The 200-year anniversary of the discovery of Antarctica inspired us to make the Antarctica model a 200-piece limited edition with unique serial numbering. We also chose to donate a part of the profits to help future natural science research,” stated the CEO of Rohje, Antti Heikkinen.
In the end, one might ask how the Rohje watch performed in Antarctica.
“The watch worked the entire expedition and received good testing experiences. A stylish watch, I have to say!” said Finnarp Expedition leader Mika Kalakoski.
To find out more about Antarctica, read here.
Would you like to take a closer look at the Rohje Antarctica special model? Have a look here
- Mika Kalakoski -interview, 03.03.2020