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Category Archives: Ice

Walking around the ice on Lake Menomin I found a few items of interest. There were a few leaves on and embedded in the ice.

I found a partially eaten Crappie on the ice. Not sure where it cam from. Once when I was watching ice fishing the fishermen were throwing the fish out on the ice and a dog was picking them up and walking away with them.

This is an old ice hole that was drilled in the ice and has since frozen over.

 

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On one of the rare sunny days we have had recently I walked out on frozen Lake Menomin to take some ice photos.

 

It has been treacherous to be out and about this winter. Snow followed by rain has turned most trails and driveways int a sheet of ice. The Red Cedar State trail was no exception. When we decided to walk down the Trail to see the ice formations we wore our ice cleats. Sever other people were making the journey but they soon turned back because they didn’t have ice cleats. Or it could have been they weren’t dumb enough to walk a mile and a half on a treacherous trail. The ice wasn’t the best that we’ve seen but it should get better with the cold weather.

 

My wife has put together an exhibit of eight of my winter photographs for the Menomonie, Wisconsin Public Library. The photos selected are shown below.

A Female Northern Cardinal taken during snowstorm.

A Bald Eagle shot at Colvill Park in Red Wing Minnesota. It was fourteen below zero.

These trees covered in ice were photographed above Lake Superior at Tettegouche State Park in Minnesota. A strong March storm roared across Minnesota and Wisconsin. The Nor’easter caused huge waves along the lake which then froze on the trees.

Bridge along the Red Cedar Trail near Downsville, Wisconsin after an early November snowfall.

An Ice formation at Devil’s Punchbowl near Menomonie, Wisconsin

Bond falls is my favorite winter waterfall destination. It is located near Paulding, Michigan in the U.P.

Trees photographed, during a winter snowstorm, while skiing the Backcountry Trail at Swedetown. Swedetown is located in Calumet, Michigan.

A rock and Ice formation along the Apostile Islands.

Cold weather as gotten the ice formations at Devil’s Punchbowl off to an early start.

 

The recent cold weather resulted in ice along the Red Cedar State Trail.

Skiing is done for the season and the barriers have been removed from the trial head so it is now OK to hike on the trail. We walked down South from Irivington.  It was a beautiful day. We saw Sandhill Cranes, Wild Turkeys, a Pheasant, Deer and Robins. The trail is still mostly covered in packed snow from the grooming although there are starting to be some bare spots. Once the snow is gone the trail will likely be muddy during the day. typically it hardens up overnight and then gradually softens up during the day making walking difficult.

This a shot of grass floating in the spring melt water.

 

The leaves are melting into the snow.

There is still ice on some of the spring melt .

Last years cattails can still be found along the trail.

 

 

We had skied to the Ice Wall the previous day and were very surprised to find that there had been significant melt in just 24 hours. With the warm temperatures forecast for the next week I suspect the Ice Wall will be gone by the end of the week.

At the bottom Tripp Falls Ravine is a small spring fed stream that flows into the Red Cedar River. It is located about 1.5 miles outside Menomonie, Wisconsin.  Access to the area is via a short steep trail which leads into the ravine. In the winter it can be treacherous because the stream and the ravine floor may be solid ice. You can hike up the gully for about a half a mile although the most interesting sections are found within the first 400 yards. There are a variety of winter photographic opportunities which include the stream, frost, ice patterns,a large ice wall and several small waterfalls. Conditions vary a great deal in the winter. If it has been warm the stream will be open. If it has been cold the stream and the floor of the valley may be solid ice. If it has been really cold there may be a lot of frost shots. A short distance up the valley you will encounter a large ice wall and a 10 foot waterfall. It is possible but difficult to climb up the side of the waterfall. The climb over the waterfall can be a challenge on the snow and ice. There is a second small three foot waterfall about twenty yards above the larger waterfall. A sort walk above the smaller waterfall will lead you to the springs that feed the stream. I typically wear ice traction devices on my feet, during the winter, to prevent falls on the ice.  Because the ravine is vary narrow photographing on a sunny day is difficult. The best light is usually on a cloudy or overcast day.

As you walk down into the ravine you will encounter the small spring fed stream. The stream itself is not large but offers a variety of shots. During transition seasons and during periods of warming and cooling the stream offers shots of the ice formations along the edge of the stream. When the stream is completely frozen and the temperatures are below zero you have the chance to shoot patterns in the ice and frost that forms on the ice.

 

If you time your visit just right you can photograph ice covered leaves, twigs and ice formations that remind you of diamonds. This opportunity may occur for only a few days during the transition periods when the ice is first forming or is melting.

As you walk up the stream you will encounter large ice walls along the sides of the ravine. Throughout the year water seeps from the cliffs and during the winter producing these large ice walls.  After a short walk up the stream you will also encounter the first of two waterfalls.

This shot shows the waterfall and ice formations at the end of the ravine.

This is the largest at about 10 feet and is not so much a waterfall as water tumbling down over a sandstone slope. At times the water is open and at other times it is frozen completely over. Normally there are opportunities for shooting ice patterns along the waterfall.

To continue up the ravine you must climb along one side the waterfall. This can be a bit treacherous since it is usually solid ice. Once on the top you can walk up the stream a short distance to the second waterfall. This one is only about 3 feet but is a free falling waterfall. There are usually some ice formations around the waterfall but nothing spectacular.

At this point I usually stop but if you can get up over the waterfall you can continue to walk up the gully for quite a ways. The springs provide the water for the stream are found about 100 yards above the waterfall. There used to be a nice ladder to help get over the waterfall but it was destroyed by vandals.

You can find additional photos and driving directions to Tripp Falls on my website.

It snowed overnight so once we were done blowing snow we headed down to the Red Cedar State Trail for some Cross Country Skiing. It was a beautiful day but as usual this winter no one else was around. The trail had not been groomed after the overnight snowfall. There were a lot of deer tracks on the trail and we finally noticed a couple of them watching us ski.

The winter Sumac was beautiful against the blue sky.

 

The ice was is still in good winter condition. We were disappointed that there did not appear to be any eagles in the two nests across from the ice wall.