Monday, January 31, 2011

Midway Ice Castles

Perhaps you remember THIS post?
Bernie and I were just driving through an area called Midway when we stumbled upon an amazing scene of which we had never imagined nor dreamed was possible.

We stopped by the "Ice Castle" area again during our anniversary weekend, when there really wasn't much to see. there was something to see, and this time we got to see it all lit up at night.

The "castles" are created using plain water, PVC pipes, harvested icycles, and freezing temperatures.
And a bit of ingenuity of course.

I will just let you enjoy seeing the ice castles as photographed at night without much further comment
If you would prefer to see the pictures enlarged in a slide show format, click HERE.
Sometimes I used flash so you can see the ice details, other times I used only the lighting from the castles so you can enjoy seeing them as they looked in the dark.
The blue is the natural color of frozen water; anyone who has visited a glacier will recognize that unique shade of blue.

(Six foot three inch tall Bernie walking through one of the castle.  The castles will continue to "grow" right up through March; December was a bit on the warm side so they have not grown as fast as they did last year.)

Reminds me a bit of jelly fish floating through the water.

In the above picture you can see some of the PVC and structural design using the icicles to form the castles. The PVC delivers the water spray to encase the icicles and grow them.

The water spray also builds other interesting structures around the base.

How many pictures were taken just while we were there?
Everything from cell phone cameras to gigantic telephoto set-ups on tripods were being employed.

I really liked seeing the families strolling around together.
What a perfect family outing!

One of the naturally formed designs that would be incredible re-created by someone in glass.

Here's Brent, the maestro of ice.
I met him last year and had a nice chat with him.
Later I left a comment on his website, telling him I had blogged about my visit.

This is his wife Linda, and the youngest of their children.
I had not met her before, but when we first walked into the area, she was putting pictures of guests up on a wall.
I started to tell her how much I enjoyed seeing the castles last year and how I had posted pictures about my visit and so many people had loved seeing how beautiful the structures were.
She suddenly said "You are the hat lady!  Millinery, right?  Oh let me call Brent, he would love to see you again!"
How about that for hospitality?
We chatted together for quite awhile as people kept coming in to see the grounds.  Brent has patented his process and has trained a few people on how he creates his castles.  I could see how much both of them love doing this, and how excited they are about expanding the castles.

I hope we can get back up to Midway to see the castle "fully grown", and take some daylight pictures too. 
Oh, and there is to be a Valentine's dance there too...can you imagine?
The only thing better than that would be a wedding.
And double wow!

(if you didn't before, you might want to go back to the top of this post and visit the post from last year's castles. I am still amazed at how beautiful they were!)


Lucy (aka rharper) said...

You know what it reminds me of? Superman's planet Krypton. And wow! How beautiful are those photos!!

Sara said...

Words escape me! Stupendous and beautiful...the musician was passing by as I was looking at your photos and they caught his eye too.

How great that you met the artist and his family and they knew you as the "Hat lady" :-)

ellen b. said...

I do remember seeing your post last year on these amazing Ice Castles and was hoping to see more. What a incredible sight for sure. Love them at night. Thank goodness for digital photography!

Dolores said...

Spectacular. Thanks for the photos.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

How well I remember your post from last year! I think I'd be going back time and time again as well...if I was anywhere nearby. Amazing!

rachel said...

My mom (4:53am) had a link to visit here...she was right...these ice creations are really unique!

Lovella ♥ said...

It must be amazing watching your art grow day by day. It is wonderful that you were able to meet the couple and chat again. I love that they remember you.

You did a wonderful job of capturing them but it must be spectacular in real.

Vee said...

Absolutely incredible. I tip my cap to Brent. It must be a lot of work to set up, but oh the reward of seeing it.

Ocean Soul said...

Great night shots! That is way too cool. We should be making ice castles up here in my neck of the woods! It's a balmy -15 today with the windchill! LOL

Vicki said...

I can't tell you how many times I've scrolled up and down through these photos. They are simply stunning. It made me feel as though I were someplace I'd been before. I finally figured it out: Mammoth Cave in KY. The ice does resemble the stalactites and stalagmites that formed through the extensive cave system over the centuries. I love the way he has it all lighted, too. Absolutely beautiful! How exciting, too, that he and his wife remembered you from last year...wonderful post, Jill! :)

Maggie Ann said...

wow! how gorgeous!!!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Oh my, what amazing beauty! The frozen water made such magical designs, and the lighting accentuated their beauty. It's so nice you met the artist and that he remembered you form last year. He has such a dazzling smile.

I also had to show your photos to my husband as I couldn't explain how unusual and beautiful the ice castles looked.

Sheila said...

You've captured artistry in ice. I can just imagine a beautiful Ice Show with the figure skaters skating in and around and through Ice Castles. Amazing photos!

myletterstoemily said...

those are still some of the most amazing
photos i have EVER seen! thank you for
sharing them with us again. incredible.