Superior ice tower collapses

The Ice Man of Superior, formerly the Ice Man of Big Lake, has met failure.

Roger Hanson was well along in his city-subsidized effort to build an ice tower in the city this week. Things were looking good and tourists were stopping to take a look, just as the city had hoped.

He had started the final tier about 10 days ago, which would raise the tower to 65 feet, a new record for him.

And then a leg gave way at midmorning today…

And down it all came…

… leaving a big pile of ice and snow, which doesn’t make Superior very unique.

The collapse couldn’t have come at a worse time; he was in the middle of talking to a New York Times reporter about the project.

Video and more info on his Facebook page.

Given warmer-than-normal temperatures and a more intense sun, it’s unlikely the tower, which was to be the center of light shows later this month, can be rebuilt this year.

“These winters are not nearly as long as I’d like them to be,” he said late last month.

  • davehoug

    Heckuva thing when Duluth is not cold enough for ice in the dead of winter 🙂

  • MrE85

    The iceman goeth.

  • Hate to be the skeptic, but is it possible this sculptor just screwed up something, and the thing collapsed because of that? Is it that warm in Superior this winter?

    • Anything is possible but it hit 42 on the 23rd and was freezing or above 7 times.

      Unlike, say, a hockey rink, there’s no refrigeration going on here so once the core ice disappears, there’s nothing to replace it and with his system, all he ended up doing was adding ice to something without any structural integrity.

      Basically, same reason there aren’t any ice dams around here right now.