As winter approaches, temperatures fall and lakes around the world get shrouded in ice and snow. Here are seven lakes that become even more beautiful in winter.
1. Lake Superior, USA
Lake Superior is the largest of the five Great Lakes of North America, as well as one of the world’s largest bodies of fresh water. The lake is bounded on the east and north by Ontario (Canada), on the west by Minnesota (U.S.), and on the south by Wisconsin and Michigan (U.S.). It has a length of 563 km east to west, while its greatest width is 258 km from north to south. The mean surface elevation is 180 m. As the temperatures drop, Lake Superior freezes, making it possible to walk on its surface to reach the ice caves and admire the frozen waterfalls on the Apostle Islands.
2. Lake Michigan, USA
Lake Michigan is the only lake of the Great Lakes of North America lying entirely within the United States. The lake is bordered by Michigan (east and north), Wisconsin (west), Illinois (southwest), and Indiana (southeast). It is 517 km long and has a maximum width of 190 km. With a mean surface elevation of 176 m above sea level, lake Michigan experiences very low temperatures during the winter months. When the lake gets frozen, the ice creates some spectacular natural wonders, such as St. Joseph North Pier, or Chicago shores, which get covered in a thick layer of ice.
3. Lake Baikal, Russia
Lake Baikal is located in the southern part of eastern Siberia, Russia. The lake covers an area of 31,500 square km, it has a length of 636 km, and an average width of 48 km. The lake is estimated to be around 20 million–25 million years old, which makes it the oldest existing freshwater lake on Earth. It is also the deepest continental body of water, having a maximum depth 1,620 m. Lake Baikal is surrounded by mountains, some of which rise more than 2,000 m above the lake’s surface. During the cold season, the lake gets frozen, making it possible to skate or even drive on the surface.
4. Lake Jökulsárlón, Iceland
Jökulsárlón is a glacial lake that lies next to Vatnajökull (Vatna Glacier) in southeastern Iceland. It has a depth of 248 m and a surface area of 18 square km. Jökulsárlón is Iceland’s most famous glacier lagoon. The lake is a popular stop for many self-drive tours and guided packages. When it is frozen, the lake becomes a natural wonder. The chunks of ice together with the black volcanic sands recreate a unique scenery that can’t be seen anywhere else. The lake becomes even more magical when the Northern Lights reflect on the water.
5. Grey Lake, Chile
The Grey Lake – Lago Grey in Spanish – is located in Patagonia, one of the world’s greatest wilderness areas. The lake is nestled in the spectacular Grey Glacier, on the eastern side of Torres del Paine National Park. This natural beauty acquires different shades of color – mostly steely blues and grays shades – depending on the light and the sediment it contains. Additionally, the lake surprises its visitors with gigantic icebergs and ice sculptures carved by nature. You will also have the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the Paine Massif from different angles.
6. Ellery Lake, USA
Ellery Lake is set in Upper Lee Vining Canyon, CA, just a few miles from Yosemite National park’s east entrance. The lake offers to its visitors two vistas: one from the end nearest Yosemite and a second one from the eastern end of the lake. Ellery Lake boasts an alpine scenery, clear waters, and breathtaking waterfalls (the Ellery Lake Falls). In addition, its proximity to Yosemite National Park makes it a popular destination for camping and fishing. Once temperature drops and snow falls, the lake becomes an icy, mirror-like surface. Although it can be a little hard to reach it, the views you’ll enjoy once there makes the journey definitely worth it!
7. Lake Braies, Italy
Lake Braies (Lago di Braies in Italian or Pragser Wildsee in German) is one of the most popular lakes in Italy. The lake is located 1,500 m above sea level and is surrounded by the Seekofel Massif, a 2,810-meter-high mountain. Lake Braies attracts nature lovers and hikers, in both summer and winter. During the coldest months, the lake gets transformed into an incredible winter wonder with glittering snow crystals, and animal tracks on snow-covered paths around the frozen lake.