Ice Sculptures on Mouse River - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Ice Sculptures on Mouse River

Ice Sculptures on Mouse River

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A rare phenomenon is creating works of art on the frozen Mouse River in Minot.

Something called "air lift" is forcing water droplets through cracks on the river just downstream of a coffer dam near Roosevelt Park Zoo.

The lift is the result of turbulence created by the unusually high winter flow of the river.

Allen Schlag of the National Weather Service in Bismarck says the air lift is created when an air bubble is trapped below the surface of the water and then bursts, sending a droplet of water up at high speed.

Those droplets are quick-frozen by the very cold temperatures, creating the ice sculptures that have formed near the Burdick Expressway bridge.

Schlag says it's possible the sculptures were formed very quickly - in a matter of a few hours - by the high water flow and very cold temperatures.

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