Morning photo: Crystalline magic

From the vault …

Smooth, round ripples and jagged frost crystals contrast along the Snake River.

FRISCO — To celebrate the start of the season of snow and ice I dug back into the archives from about a year ago, finding that — surprise — Dillon Reservoir was already frozen over by this date in 2011. By mid-December, the ice-sailing season was in full swing, as local afficionados of the sport took advantage of a few weeks of clear ice. Just like this year, I was scouring the banks of local streams and creeks, sometimes getting lost in the magical world of frost crystals growing from the water vapor above the streams.

There’s so much going on in the streams as they freeze up; bubbles, flow, shelves and delicate crystals all piled into an ice sandwich at a narrow spot along the Snake River.
The crystals, anywhere from a quarter inch to an inch long, are incredibly fragile. They can barely withstand a warm breath, much less a touch, so taking closeups requires some maneuvering, not mention some breath-holding skills.
A boulder in the stream serves as an anchor point for crystal formation.
Ice forms in the flow.
Delicate crystals sprout on equally delicate ice ledge.
Is filigreed the right word for this?

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