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Tuesday, 3 December 2013

The Sheyenne ice disk -- an amazing wonder!!


A little video has been getting huge numbers of hits on assorted news sites -- showing a slowly rotating disk of ice fragments on the Sheyenne River in North Dakota, USA.    As the enthusiastic reporter keeps on telling us -- it is "an amazing wonder" --or, if you prefer it,  "a wondrous amazement" ...........

It is certainly very strange -- I've never seen anything like it before.  Apparently it's not very big -- just about 50 ft across.  And it rotates very slowly in an anti-clockwise direction.  It's not made of solid ice at all -- it's just an aggregation of small ice fragments which appear to have become trapped in a rotating eddy in the river during very cold freezing conditions.  There are even growth rings on it -- you can see these if you look closely.  Apparently if you throw a stone into the ice disk it just goes straight through and splashes into the water beneath.

Very ephemeral and very freaky.  Not sure how long it lasted.  It's probably gone by now......

1 comment:

K.D. said...

Truly amazing what Nature can do! Worth the trip over to see it …