The deep freeze across the east has lasted long enough for some of the local waterfalls and even parts of the French Broad River to freeze. This doesn’t happen every year, we need sustained weeks of sub-freezing temperatures for the ice to form around running water. It was 27 degrees F (-2C) last weekend when we decided to take a hike and see some of them. Yes, we are a bit nuts to hike in this cold, but the skies were mainly clear, the wind was very light and the hikes were short. Bundling up in coats, hats, scarves, gloves, jeans and our hiking boots, we drove out to DuPont State Forest to see the first two. The parking lot was mainly empty, of course. Only the truly crazy go hiking now. But there were a few other intrepid souls who wanted to appreciate the beauty of the white ice sculptured by nature. We headed out on the bridge over a partially frozen stream.
The half mile hike wasn’t too bad in the cold, only one really steep section.
Coming up the hill, Triple Falls can be seen in the distance.
Getting a bit closer, all of that white that looks like froth is actually solid ice.
Look to the left of the upper falls, see the icicles?
There is still some water flowing, but most of the falls is frozen in time.
Back across the bridge and a short 1/4-mile hike later, we came to Hooker Falls. This one is not tall but really wide. The very middle is still flowing, but both sides are frozen solid.
DH took this picture across the face of the falls, the ice is pretty thick!
Gorgeous, isn’t it? The entire left side still looks like flowing water even though it is frozen stillness.
As usual for me, I notice the details like the crystals and air bubbles under the surface here at the water’s edge.
The fractured pattern is interesting. Along the right lower edge of the picture below is a gentle rippling over a rock, amazingly still moving ever so slightly.
Downstream from Hooker Falls, lovely contrast between the dark rocks and the light ice.
The next day, we drove out to Pisgah Forest and all along the road were scenes like this, icicles from the watershed forming on the rock faces.
The prisms of light inside the icicles were really lovely, but the camera couldn’t see them.
In warmer weather, these sections have dripping water.
We drove to Looking Glass Falls, also a winter wonderland. It looks like a frothy falls, but in actuality, is frozen ice. I usually try to get pictures without people in them, but this one gives you a better idea of the majesty and height of this waterfall and the stone canyon.
A little zoom in, look at the frost in the trees on the left, and over the rock face on the right, all formed from the spray from the falls.
Several minutes later to walk down the icy stairs, where the temperature dropped another 10 degrees, and the falls still look exactly the same.
Frost covered the lower rocks next to the solid ice lagoon, with icicles hanging from the ledges.
The ice was inches thick, beautiful but dangerous. The ice wouldn’t support the weight of a person.
Downstream from Looking Glass Falls, there is a trickle still moving in the very center.
For my northern hemisphere readers, is it frozen where you are? Southern hemisphere readers, do you have scenes like this near you in winter?
52 thoughts on “Frozen Waterfalls”
Sew glad you are crazy to take these priceless photos and share them… Wish I had been with you to experience these amazing vistas. oh to capture these falls in a quilt!!!!!! Thanks so much for your blog
It’s just magical. Thank you for sharing
Your photos are wonderful of this spectacular ice! Thanks for sharing.
Beautiful. Thanks for sharing!
Beautiful, surreal – these pics are amazing! You certainly have a more adventurous spirit than me! This weekend our temps will again be in the low 20’s! We are not used to such cold – but the good Lord in his infinite wisdom knows what is best! Thank you for these wonderful sights!
Beautiful photos. Brave of you to venture out to take them! I love the “fractured glass” look of the water.
Beautiful! Our pond and river are also frozen. It’s only the second time in 20 years.
Thanks Carole for the amazing pictures. I always enjoy your blog.
What beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing!
I love to get out in Nature in the bitter cold to see the wonders she has created. Didn’t go out this year and I can’t trust my back and leg not to go out on me and no one was willing to venture out there with me for back up. I’ve seen some beautiful ice photos this winter though and yours are right up there with the best of them ♥ Thanks for sharing!
Here in Michigan we venture out to Lake Michigan to view the frozen waves. Huge caves of frozen water are formed. Last week we had sub zero temps and tomorrow the forecast is in the fifties and then back to the teens Saturday! I have booked a cruise:)
Wow, Carole! Amazing photos and sights – thanks for sharing! We actually saw some frozen waterfalls on a drive up into the Colorado mountains last week, but our rivers/creeks are so much narrower here that they aren’t quite as scenic as what you’re showing us.
Those pix are gorgeous even though I DETEST the cold!! We have another cold snap coming in tomorrow so I’ll probably be hibernating for the most part over the next several days. I would LOVE to see Yellowstone in the winter but not sure I could take the cold!
Good morning, Carole. We were frozen here in southern IL. Quite cold temps and wind chill below zero. The pond was frozen behind me with the exception of where the aerator keeps the top moving. We had Canadian geese parked on the ice and mallards paddling in the water. Haven’t seen the Great Heron lately but every so often there’s a bald eagle on the lookout. Love walking my dog this time of year. No one wants to venture out so we get the trails all to ourselves! Lol! 50s today & tomorrow with teens this weekend. Brrrrr! Glad I’ll be on retreat with friends!
Wow….they look pretty, but oh….so….cold!
Beautiful pictures! Hugs,
Amazing photos. We are on a temperature roller coaster right now. Last Friday, high of 5° and lows below zero. Tomorrow, 55° high, then back in the deep freeze by Saturday with rain, then sleet, then snow. But right now the sun is shining brightly and it looks much warmer than it is.
it is always nice to get out and see things like this first hand. We used to get out and take short hikes in the cold weather but hubby has gotten wimpy over the years and no longer likes to get out in the cold weather, and I won’t go by myself – never know if you might fall or whatever – always love seeing others photos of it though!
I love the pictures! Thank you for sharing. They look just like Michigan in winter.
Don’t you love our beautiful North Carolina variety! Some years we are warm enough that I don’t wear a coat, other years we have the frozen waterfalls! Even areas of Lake Norman have been frozen…mostly shallow coves, but frozen none the less.
Carole, absolutely stunning photos! Haven’t been there in 10 years, have never had the pleasure of being there in Winter. May just have to plan a road trip to visit my sister soon! Absolutely Gorgeous!!
Beautiful photos- thankyou for sharing them. Here in the southern hemisphere we are melting at the moment…where we live in the top of New Zealand we only get a couple of frosts in winter … I would love to experience a cooler winter for its sheer beauty.
Your photos are fantastic. Now I don’t feel the need to hike to see waterfalls. The tiny branches near our house were frozen over, although water was still flowing under the ice. I went to Hooker Falls on a hot summer day. What a contrast with your photo!
How nice. We don’t see that often in Texas. haha 🙂
How beautiful is that!! Nothing like that happens, that I have seen, in Australia or NZ, I did get excited once when the bird bath froze over!! 😆😆 thanks for sharing, the waterfalls look amazing.
Enjoyed the beautiful pictures, but glad I was in my warm house while seeing them!
Oh Wow double wow what a sight to see-I am so glad you took photos to share with us-I enjoyed it all I would take that hike too with this reward of beauty Kathy
These photos are just so lovely… Thankyou
Wow! That is amazing…no I live in Calif and we usually stay well above freezing in the winter!
Thank you for sharing your pics….. just stunning! I could stare at those frozen waterfalls for hours! It is summer here and going to be 38C today (100.4F) so your waterfalls seem very surreal. It never freezes here beyond a frost or two.
As I am a chemist by trade I enjoyed the water crystals. I can just “see” the molecules attracting one another and forming patterns. Thank you
Carole, thank you so much for sharing! Gorgeous photos! Thank you for braving that dreadful cold to share these vistas with us little house plants!!!!
Thank you for sharing your beautiful photos. There is beauty all around us no matter what the season. Yes it’s been cold here in Ontario -25c but we have enjoyed some lovely blue skies. Enjoy your winter hikes, the quiet is so peaceful this time of year.
I got to see Niagara Falls last week when I was crossing the Rainbow Bridge from Canada going home. It is pretty frozen now and they light it up at night. Your falls remind me of the scene from The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe when it finally begins spring and the falls thaws instantly.
You took some incredible photos, Carole.
These are just beautiful.
HA! amazing this miserable cold and wind does give us some lovely sights. Frozen nature is pretty
Lol. Love your pictures as we don’t have much for waterfalls here in Northern Alberta but frozen we are. We have been frozen since November and will not thaw until March/April! Tonight as I write this it is -28C with wind chills making it feel like -40c. Life goes on. We are out and about like usual. While hiking is moved to skiing and cross country skiing and maybe even snow showing if we were to get some more snow! It doesn’t snow when it gets cold! Crisp and cold and it really isn’t too bad it is the wind which while it may not be strong the breeze makes it feel much colder. I am happy and love winter as long as my (plugged in) car stills starts! Love a remote starter too! Good weather to quilt in. Enjoy your cool temps they will be gone for you too soon.
Looks like a fairyland! Canyon Lake has enough ice that three people were out ice fishing on Tuesday! It was pretty strange to see the geese swimming on one end, and fisherman on the other! We had a couple of 50 degree days, but are now going back to the polar zone for a week, so I guess the ice will hold awhile longer. The creek is still running full tilt, too much volume to freeze, I think. Stay warm!
Incredibily beautiful Carole, it’s astounding that moving water could just freeze in motion! I have never been as cold in my life as I have been this winter…we don’t have the clothes for freezing weather, and my house with non insulated leaded glass windows was drafty and cold, Brrrr…. We warmed up to the 60s this week thank goodness! I loved seeing your frozen beautiful area,
My hubby and I love waterfalls, always seeking new ones for when we do travel. We usually see them flowing so this was really fun to see your pictures frozen!!
Beautiful photos Carole and nice you shared. We are experiencing another cold freeze this weekend, unfortunately. Below -0 temps and of course, we have the wind. A little snow has blown in but imagine the drifting will create slick roads once again. Good weekend hunkering down and sewing!
Your photos are wonderful. These are magnificent sights. Love seeing what the falls and river have done. Well worth the drive and the hike to see each one. Thank for sharing your pics.
As a comparison, we had 108 degrees last weekend.
Absolutely amazing!!! Nothing like this ever down here. Thanks for sharing your pics.
This is so beautiful!!! You have such a gorgeous river, I’m glad you can visit it frequently. We live close to the Yuba River and love going for River walks especially in the off-season!
So beautiful it was a pleasure to see all that snow as we are roasting here in Queensland Australia. It 36 degrees. Celscius today. And its expected 39 tomorrow. So the snow was cooling to look at.
Thank you for sharing such great interesting photographs. Mid and northern Spain is having a lot of snow this week and very low temps. One motorway was completely snowed under with thousands of cars trapped for hours on end during the week.
Gorgeous captures. Thanks for enduring that cold to take these pictures. =) One of the prettiest sights I’ve seen in NC was a day when I was driving back from Charlotte and went through where the tunnels are – frozen falls all down the side of the mountain, and no place to pull over to take a picture.
Carole, these photos are gorgeous! I can’t believe how thick the ice is and how the water appears to be flowing. It must have been such a treat to see it all in person. We are in Vermont this weekend and right now it’s -3 degrees but it’s even in the teens back in New Jersey. We have had some really cold days in the northeast this year! Glad you got to enjoy such beauty and thanks for sharing at this month’s Take Me Away Party! I always look forward to your link ups! Enjoy your weekend!
That hike looks amazing! Chilling but thrilling 🙂
Gorgeous photos, Carole!
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