A few weeks ago the streams in the Big Woods were frozen, some of them bank to bank with barely any open water for long distances.
Others were at least partially open, especially where they flow through hemlock forests and the overhead evergreen cover moderates the cold winter temperatures. Walking along the frozen streams was a real pleasure, a pleasure brought by the beautiful designs of the openings in the ice, icicles and the tracks of wildlife that had crossed or followed the frozen stream.
First a sampling of cold holes in the ice cover –
There were also icicles, some at the edges of those cold holes, some where water seeps from the steep stream banks –
Along the stream there were areas of bare ice, areas with just the barest dusting of snow and some places with about two inches of snow. Wherever there was snow there was an opportunity for tracks of passing wildlife to be displayed –
Walking along a frozen stream is always an adventure; now the ice has melted under record-setting heat and spring is on the way.