Rare ice disc spotted on the Colorado River

Posted at 3:58 PM, Feb 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-01 21:25:05-05

DENVER – A rare ice disc was spotted on the Colorado River this week, according to a Denver7 viewer.

Dave Masters said he along with someone else spotted the ice disc on the Colorado River on Monday, off of Colorado River Road.

“It was very cool to see,” he said, adding he wasn’t sure how rare these ice disc formations are in Colorado. “We’ve never seen one before.”

According to a report from the Royal Meteorological Society, rotating ice discs are a “rare natural phenomenon” that have been “infrequently observed on freezing streams in North America and Europe.”

The weather phenomenon is likely caused by cold, dense air coming into contact with spinning currents that form when water flows over rocks or into an enclosed space, such as a small lake or pond.

But that’s not the end of this science story.

Researchers found that as the ice melts, the water that was once ice now becomes dense and starts spinning around downward, making the discs spin as they move across the body of water.

Another day, another mystery solved by science. Cool, eh?