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Frozen “Slurpee” Waves Lick Shores of Nantucket

The waves captured by photographer Jonathan Nimerfroh are so thick with ice that they've drawn comparisons to "Slurpees" and other frozen beverages, but the texture and shape of the wave also suggest a giant, grey tongue, licking the shores of Nantucket.

Jonathan Nimerfroh

Here's what the photographer had to say about his images: "When I pulled up to the beach I could see the horizon just look strange. When I got to the top off the dunes I saw that beginning about 300 yards away from the shoreline the ocean was starting to freeze."

"The high temp that day was around 19 degrees. The wind was howling from the southwest which would typically make rough or choppy conditions not so good for surfing, but since the surface of the sea was frozen slush the wind did not change the shape. What resulted was perfect, dreamy, slush waves. Most waves were around 2 feet with some larger sets slushing through around 3 foot or waist high. What an experience to be absolutely freezing on the beach watching these roll in while I mind-surfed them! I wonder if a shaper can make me a special designed slurfboard?"

"The next day I drove up to see if they melted but beginning that same 300 yards away from shore the water had frozen solid and there were no waves at all. I've been asking all the fishermen and surfers I know if they have ever seen such a thing and they have all reported that this is a first, a result of it being the coldest winter we've had in 81 years. I guess the people I asked weren't old enough to remember a colder winter than this!"