Residents explore Crystal Beach ice caves
From left, Leah Barnett and Samantha Rossi stand underneath an ice formation in Crystal Beach. Joseph Burd/Special to The Times/QMI Agency Niagara
Mother Nature has constructed a stunning crystal-like phenomenon in Crystal Beach.
Ice caves have formed at the public boat launch in Crystal Beach, near the Palmwood Hotel. The phenomenon is called shove ice, which is the formation of ice that freezes on top of the water in winter time, then high winds come in, break up all the ice and the waves pound the ice into shore pushing it up on top of itself building castles of ice on the water.
Recent major windstorms have built the ice up to about 30 feet high and in the bay by the hotel.
This year, unlike all other years, the shove ice created three amazing caves in the ice formations. The largest of the three caves is about 30 feet deep and are about 15 feet wide and have a head space of roughly six feet high.
People from across Niagara are coming in to look at the caves and the ice formations from all over.
"It is a rare sight, seeing the ice caves" said Sherri Rossi, a lifelong Fort Erie resident.
Rossi said she has never seen such a formation of ice that included caves.
"These are a once-in-a-life time view, simply beautiful and very stunning,” she added.
While visiting the caves with her daughter and friends, Rossi said she joked there were polar bears living inside the.
Fort Erie’s Tim Hall loves grabbing a coffee, sitting by the water front and relaxing to take in the sights.
But this past weekend, he brought his two children Lexi and James Hall. out to see the caves over the week end.
Hall’s son James said he wished he could invite all his friends to the cave on Super bowl Sunday to eat pizza and watch the game.