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At a recent retired librarians luncheon someone mentioned the ice sculptures along the Rush River. I had never heard of them but did an internet search when I returned home. I found it described on the Ripple in Stillwater Blog. According to the blog it is the creation of Roger Nelson of Ellsworth. He is a plumber by trade. He started creating the ice sculptures about a dozen years ago and had continued to do it every year.

More ice sculptures can be found on my website.


He has artesian wells flowing from porous rock formations. He taps into the wells with underground pipes which run to a couple of dozen locations throughout the property. He then attaches the pipes to PVC pipes that rise up out of the ground. Holes drilled into the pipes create the ice formations. On some of the photos you can see the water squirting out of the formation.Nelson's-On-the-Rush-River-14-1-_2220

He starts creating the sculptures in December. Since the water flows all winter the sculptures continue to change throughout the season depending upon the weather conditions.Nelson's-On-the-Rush-River-14-1-_2207

We found the sculptures by driving a mile north of Maiden Rock Wisconsin.  we turned right on County Road A and drove about 4.7 miles. The sculptures are on your right near Nelson’s “hunting shack”. There is a small parking area and a place for donations.  I would suggest you bring ice grippers if you plan on walking around.Nelson's-On-the-Rush-River-14-1-_1990

The sculptures can be photographed anytime and are lighted in the evening. You probably should not visit just after a snow storm because they will look like a large snow drift.Nelson's-On-the-Rush-River-14-1-_1959


2 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] that steam was rising off of them. If you are not familiar with them you can check out my earlier blog describing what is going on. You can also see more photos of the ice sculptures on my […]

  2. […] Rush River Ice Sculptures […]

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