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Inspiring Iceland

From pale aquamarine to deep cobalt they appear in all shades of blue. Glacier Caves in Iceland are an outstanding piece of nature. Photographer, Iceland native and tour guide Skarpi showcases his favourite spots.

This set of photos proves once more that his home country Iceland is a dream for photographers and absolutely worth a visit.

Photographer Skarphedinn Thrainsson is specializing his exquisite photography work on nature of Iceland including volcanoes, ice caves, animals and classic landscapes. All images © Skarphedinn Thrainsson Photography.

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Lake Michigan Ice Caves

The cold February weather has brought back a welcome attraction to Leelanau County, Michigan: ice caves (located not too far from the ice balls we told you about a year ago http://on.fb.me/1Dwz79V). From the shore they appear to be nothing more than mounds of snow, but from the other side they are something much more impressive.

The caves form when wind and waves push snow and ice into piles. The layers stack up and freeze allowing the formations to grow. Meanwhile, the waves carve out crevices in the mounds, and the spray freezes inside sometimes creating icy stalactites. Numerous caves like these may appear for a few kilometers along the shoreline. The process can continue until the surface water freezes over.

The formations can only occur when conditions are cold enough and with enough wind. The area went without for a several years until last year’s Polar Vortex reportedly created ice caves that were up to 10 meters (30 feet) high. The ones this year apparently aren’t as large but are still impressive.

Last year the caves proved to be a boon for local tourism, with cars parked along the lakefront for 3 kilometer (2 miles) from visitors eager to see them. It remains to be seen if the caves will be as popular this year. Unfortunately, the only “safe” way to access the caves is to find an opening onto the frozen lake and walk some distance along the ice…which of course is slick with sharp shards sticking out. Anyone who tries to get to the caves by climbing over them may fall through them. Last year at least one person who tried it was seriously injured.

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Photo Credit: Tom Auch

References:
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