Mix of cold, snow leads to stunning ‘icecanoes’ at Milwaukee’s Schlitz Audubon Nature Center

MILWAUKEE -- The mix of snow and cold has created an incredibly rare sight at the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center.

FOX6 Photojournalist Sam Gaudet captured "ice volcanoes" that popped up overnight Jan. 15/Jan. 16:

"When the water gets down to 32 degrees, and there's a cold wind and strong waves from off the lake, and the air is below freezing, ice formations build. One of the most impressive and one of the most common are what's called 'icecanoes.' They look like volcanoes, and they form with the same general principle of cooling and solidifying with a central shaft of, in this case, water, and when it cools, of course it makes that cone, so you'll see some cone formations with holes as you look out on the beach there. It can build up really fast. These formations actually built up overnight. You have to be really cautious though because the low areas are not solid. They may feel solid, but overnight they can actually soften up even if they were solid," Don Quintenz, senior ecologist at the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center said.