By the Family Day holiday on February 17th, I definitely felt the need for some fun. I decided that an outing to Niagara Falls and then out for lunch was just what we needed. This winter has tied for the tenth coldest winter in the past 100 years. One of the advantages of a cold winter is the amazing ice formations at Niagara Falls. We were not disappointed.
There were huge rafts of ice going over the falls at the top along with small frothy bits of ice that made it look like a giant slushy.
The Niagara River at the base of the falls was completely covered over by a frozen bridge of ice. I didn't even know it could do that because the river moves with such force there. It wasn't until I Googled it when I got home that I learned it used to a popular excursion to walk across the river on the ice bridge and spend the day sliding down the ice mounds. It all came to an end when the ice bridge broke up unexpectedly on February 3rd, 1912 and three people were drowned. You can read about it and see historic photos here.
The cliffs across the river on the American side had amazing long blue icicles and frozen spray on the trees.
When we walked past the Falls, the mist came down as hail and coated us in ice pellets (including my camera - oops).
Both the Canadian and American Falls had huge ice mounds at the base of them.
We visited Niagara Falls one other year when it had been a cold winter so it was interesting to compare the ice formations. In February 2009 we had had a string of cold weather throughout January so there was a lot of ice and I remembering thinking the Falls were spectacular. This year has been exceptionally cold though and the ice formations were even better. I put the 2009 and recent photos in a collage so you can compare. You can see the river had more ice on it and the ice mounds were higher on this visit.