- “It is impossible for the falls to fully freeze anymore.”
- Niagara Falls is comprised of waterfalls on both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border.
- The most remarkable (freeze) was when both the Canadian and American Falls froze solid, and that was in 1848.
Did the recent invasion of the polar vortex really cause Niagara Falls to completely freeze over?
No, that’s not true, despite some media headlines to the contrary. According to Angela Berti, a spokeswoman for Niagara Falls State Park in western New York, “it is impossible for the falls to fully freeze anymore. Instead, ice builds up from the river and the optics make it look like the falls are frozen, but the water continues to flow.”
Berti told USA TODAY that 1938 was the most recent year the American Falls froze over completely, which they also did in 1936. Niagara Falls is made up of waterfalls on both sides of the U.S.-Canada border.
“The most remarkable (freeze) was when both the Canadian and American falls froze solid, and that was in 1848,” she said. But “due to the installation of what we call the ‘ice boom,’ the falls will never freeze over again.”
The previous freezes in the 1930s were triggered by ice jams upriver. An ice boom, a device that floats on the river, now prevents flooding downstream, she said.
However, despite the fact that the falls haven’t completely frozen over, the gorgeous views of the partially frozen natural wonder are still “magnificent,” Berti said. “You can check out the Niagara Falls State Park Facebook page for a video to get a sense.”