Sunday, 13 January 2019

Frazil Ice – who knew?



I had an email I thought contained a typo. It turns out it is not. It was a warning about frazil ice. I looked it up! I'd never heard of it.
Frazil ice can cause significant fluctuations in water levels as it builds and releases. Since it can form anywhere that there is open water, it is difficult to predict where or when it can occur and the impact it may have on the river. soft or amorphous ice formed by the accumulation of ice crystals in water that is too turbulent to freeze solid.
You see, we've lost a few people, and vehicles, to  unstable ice conditions. 🚓ONTARIO ROADS.
I used to like watching the ice when we lived in Bala.

The iced could be shoved up against the Flower Rock, as my mom called it. It would shift, as the lake water didn't totally freeze.

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We would watch the ice conditions, we knew how stable or unstable it was. One day (Feb., 2009: cracking ice), there were a few people who were running their truck up and down the lake. They had unloaded a canoe, and had built a fire.  After the truck began roaring around, you could hear the water rolling under the ice, headed to our side of the shore. It was amazing.

The ice wasn't too happy. In front of our property the ice cracked, rumbled, groaned and shifted with the waves that rolled under the ice. The lake is a constant 4 degrees above zero all winter (What do we know about the temperature of lake water?), and the ice might be a couple of feet thick floating on top, but the lake let us know that it wasn't happy with this traffic!

I miss my lake! We were there from 1960 to 2010.

Now I am content with watching the ice on the frog pond, or on local lakes.
Even the cats like crossing the ice.
Dec. 20, 2016

13 comments:

David Gascoigne said...

Frazil ice is a new term to me. I have always been a little nervous walking on a frozen lake and have only done it a few times, but Lake SImcoe in the winter is dotted with fishing huts as far as the eye can see.

kaslkaos said...

Hi again, thanks for the beautiful pictures. Ice is fascinating. I grew up within walking distance of Lake Ontario and winter ice, maybe it was frazzle ice, produced beautiful ice sculptures along the shoreline. I love listening to lakes on a cold winter night.

Olga said...

Always nice to learn something new! i would have guessed typo too.

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
We get this on the highland rivers some years. It is lovely to watch - don't think I would EVER feel secure enough to walk on ice over large bodies of water!!! YAM xx

Bob Bushell said...

The great freeze. I love your images, beautiful Jenn.

GreenComotion said...

Beautiful photos, Jenn.
I especially love the ones with the kitties on the ice.
I did walk a time or two on Lake Ontario, when I was in school in Hamilton, Ontario. Now, it freaks me out to think of it, as I am care barely swim, except may be in a shallow pool :)
Frozen lakes help my focus or so it seems.
Peace :)

Nancy J said...

No wonder you miss the lake, like we miss our larger 3 acres. However , life marches on, or skis or skates or snowmobiles. I cannot imagine our cats sitting down there on the rocks, but they must have felt very safe. Love the video as the water thawed, and ice receded.

Al said...

I haven't heard of it before. Pretty shots!

William Kendall said...

That is the first I've heard the term too.

DUTA said...

Interesting video and photos, especially for someone like me. Snow and ice are "greek to me" as we very rarely have it in our part of the world.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I learned a new word! Thank you...(although I am not eager to actually see it)...I tried five times to type the name of that ice, so that I’d remember the word, and stupid auto-correct changed it to ‘crazily’ every single time. You and your kitties do make winter look inviting

Angie said...

Jenn - that's a new term for me too, but I have heard the local people describe this phenomenon. One of my neighbors relies on the ice fishermen to gauge the depth of the ice and its safety, since she likes to cross-country ski across the lake near us. I know I would tread very carefully, especially when winter conditions are as mild as they have been!

Nancy Chan said...

First time I come across this term Frazil ice. We don't have winter here. I like your snowy and frozen lake pictures. At least you still get to see frozen lakes and the cute animals walking on the ice. Have a happy new week.