Here in Ontario I just watched the 6am morning news for CH news and according to them the American Falls has FROZEN OVER. This is VERY rare to happen and has only happened 3, maybe 4 times. Just thought I'd let you guys know incase any of you are in the Niagara area(NY,ON) and might want to check it out. It's expected to only last until the weekend when some nicer temperatures arrive considering we've had some VERY cold tempuratures for the last couple of weeks causing the freeze.
Ok, whatever news story you heard... it sounds like a crock, or you completely mis-interpreted it.
It looks almost like it always does, as the water is flowing just as fast as it normally does. The only difference is that there appears that there is an ice-bridge this year, but that's not uncommon at all. Here's a few photos I got for such refrence just in case one is curious:
(Pic 1) - The mist freezes as snow on the trees completely covering them, but the rapids are flowing as normal. (Pic 2) - The "Ice Bridge" as snow & ice completely covers the lower Niagara River as far as the eye can see. (Pic 3) - The water flowing over as it always does. The only exception is the large wall of snow/ice, but it doesn't obstruct the actual flow of the water. (Pic 4) - Horseshoe Falls in the background, another view of the "ice bridge" which shows the flow of the water certainly is apparent. (Pic 5) - A closer-up view of the American Falls base (Pic 6) - A last view of the "ice bridge" which is just ice chunks from the Upper Niagara fallen over the falls & clogging up the Lower Niagara.
Definately nothing rare or even news-worthy, which would explain why I didnt hear anything on the local Buffalo news stations.
The flow of water was stopped completely over both falls on March 29th 1848 due to an ice jam in the upper river for several hours. This is the only known time to have occurred. The Falls did not actually freeze over, but the flow was stopped to the point where people actually walked out and recovered artifacts from the riverbed!
One reason that may never happen again is not because of global warming, but instead because of the Niagara Power authority, as they installed an "Ice Boom" decades ago, which is kind of like a giant net that blocks the flow of ice from Lake Erie going over the Falls, to prevent such an event.
They want the water to remain a constant flow down the river since they harness the power of the water for electricity... and hense, unless there's a huuge freeze, it's rare that it'll ever happen again because the ice from Niagara River isn't enough to jam the falls since the flow of the river is strong enough to prevent a freeze for quite a period of time.
Regardless, the "Ice Bridge" will still form every couple of years or so... and has been noted to have people try to cross illegally from Canada to USA.
Wow, Im sorry... Damn CH News! Guess they'll lie about anything just to make it newsworthy. I belived it, they even showed a video SIMILAR to DawgByte's photos except they showed it from every possibly angle TO NOT include the water... how depressing. I was actually planning to hit up the falls tomorrow with a couple buddies but since this turned out to be just a crock of sh*t, that isn't going to happen. The news here is usually really good and correct about everything.. must have just been a very slow day. Sorry guys. I guess you can close this topic now or just delete it considering the Falls ain't frozen over. I was REALLY hoping it was true... =(
In the link that Swoosh posted above, I like that pic (end from last) of the American Falls with the water "stopped" in 1969 to determine the cost effectiveness of removing the debris at the base. Looks really strange.
It is a slow news day in the Falls. I'd like to try the heated Skywheel during this time of year, though... would make for an awesome view in the winter... but little to no construction is going on in Clifton Hill. This year was supposed to be the first year of construction of the new HOCO amusement park behind the "Great Canadian Midway". Not sure what the hold-up is.
The shut-off of the falls that one year is what prompted many cartoons to use the Falls as a simple shut-off valve. I still remember Woody Woodpecker cartoon where Woody wants to go over the falls in the barrel, but the ranger turns the valve off & stops the flow each time or winds up going over himself.
The water still trickled to keep the rocks moist (from cracking) but I think it would be a huge tourist draw if they shut it off again... not for tourism sake, however... but to actually remove some of the debris. All those boulders from years of erosion makes the main American Falls seem like a smaller and not as intense. Yes, environmental conservatives would complain, as it's not "natural"... but in all honesty, some removal should be necessary.
I always wondered if the American Falls would continue to erode to the point where it's no longer a vertical fall but rather rapids flowing over a pile of rocks stacked on top of one another. That could end up being just as impressive as the Canadian/Horseshoe Falls.