Door County Peninsula, Wisconsin, USA by Daniel Anderson

Picture Story

I live in Wisconsin at the tip of an 80 mile long peninsula that extends out into Lake Michigan. There are wonderful photographic opportunities in every season but my favorite time is winter. Ice formations are one of the subjects that to me are very photogenic and ever changing. I am always watching and waiting early in the winter on the bay side of our peninsula for the ice machine to turn on for a short time but it needs very specific conditions. These conditions that are needed are very strong winds out of the northwest along with temperatures of 10 degrees fahrenheit or lower. This causes heavy waves and spray to sweep on shore driven by these winds and the cold temperatures mean that the spray will freeze on contact as it lands leading to fantastical shapes. This set of conditions only occurs at the beginning of winter because the bays are not yet frozen and once they do freeze over, then the ice machine is done until the beginning of next winter.

I was exploring all the newly created ice formations on a pier near the tip of the Door County peninsula when I discovered this mysterious little tableau in a corner of the pier. I wonder what the object now buried in the new ice is but I will have to wait to find out until spring. This image is one of my favorite examples of the beauty, textures and varied colors that just the right angle and quality of light can reveal in ice.

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