Beautiful Ice

December 31, 2014

Ice Formation on the North ShoreThe river always changes, I tell guests as they marvel at the glittering formations of hanging ice within the canyons.

If it has been cold recently, I might come back to a waterfall to find it almost entirely iced over – or perhaps if there has been a warming spell, the river will have melted its way through again, and gouts of snowy will rush through the openings. When the river freezes back, it will create new forms, new icicles or mounds of frozen foam whose shapes are impossible to predict. Thus, every tour gets to see something that no one has seen before, and will never see again.

The Onion River, Caribou, Cascade and the Temperance River gorge offer all of these marvels. In a few places guides can (carefully!) lead guests out onto the thick sections of ice, so that they can, put their ears near a gurgler, listen to the heartbeat of the river’s ebb and flow.

The Onion River and Caribou offer opportunities to walk up canyons that would have been inaccessible in the summer months, and look up the walls. Caribou Falls is especially spectacular amidst the freeze. The frozen plunge pool at the bottom offers a place to get closer to the wall of chaotic ice and admire its spectacular overhanging ledges.

Meanwhile, the spray of waves along the North Shore of the Superior Shoreline create their own kind of sculpture, encasing trees and rocks with shining icy layers.

The fragile, changing beauty of these ice formations create memories that make any winter trip to Bluefin one of a kind.

-Tom Fagin, Bluefin Bay Activities