Frozen waterfalls attract visitors to Brown County parks

Water that was cascading over a waterfall is frozen Jan. 8, 2018, at Wequiock Falls County Park in the Town of Scott. (WLUK/Eric Peterson)

BROWN COUNTY, Wis. (WLUK) -- Monday's warm-up may have given some people the chance to get outside and take in some of the sights.

The recent cold spell left behind some beautiful ice formations on some Brown County waterways.


Long white spindles of ice stretched to the base of the frozen waterfall at Wequiock Falls County Park.

Pat Janssen and her friend Jo Rothe took in the sights.

"We normally go on some sort of hike on a Monday. It's been such bad weather, over the last couple weeks, so we decided that today would be a good day to go for a hike," said Janssen, who's from Little Chute.

Wequiock Falls is a three-acre county park along Highway 57 in the Town of Scott.

"Wequiock Creek flows right through the Niagara Escarpment there. And that is where it drops off. That ledge, it's about a 20-30 foot fall right there," said Matt Kriese, Brown County Parks Director.

Kriese says the falls started to freeze more than a month ago.

"And as more water flowed, it just built up. So there's tons and tons of ice that you're going to see that have just been frozen. It's layer, upon layer, upon layer of ice," said Kriese.


About 20 miles to the south, Fonferek's Glen County Park features a 30-foot waterfall over Bower Creek.

"It's a beautiful view right along the Niagara Escarpment, and really where the Niagara Escarpment shows its face," said Kriese.

The Niagara Escarpment is a 1,000-mile long rocky ledge which runs from Wisconsin all the way to New York. The limestone formations are about 400 million years old. Park leaders say hikers should use cleats or snowshoes while exploring in winter.

"It's all unmaintained trails. There's steep cliffs, people need to use caution, and maybe know the park and how to get down below the glen itself at the bottom areas of Bower Creek," said Kriese.


Back at Wequiock Falls, Pat Janssen says her hike was worth it.

"Does this cure your cabin fever? Yes, it did cure cabin fever," she said.

When the waterfalls melt in the spring, they may have a slightly different look.

Park officials say the cycle of freezing and thawing causes a certain amount of erosion every year.

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