The winter months bring about something magical, from the glistening snow, cozy nights in, and fond memories of building snow forts, ice skating and sipping hot chocolate. Although winter is a time unlike any other season, it sure does come with some unwanted baggage. If you have ever truly seen was winter is capable of, then you know it isn't pretty!
Pretty snowflakes and twinkling lights aside, winter can be quite scary, especially when it comes at us full force. If you're lucky enough to live in a city that does not experience cold winters, then count yourself lucky, because for those who do, then they've seen the best and worst day of winter. From massive snow and ice storms, blizzards and an array of frozen this and that, winter may be cute at first, but it can sure wreak havoc in all the worst ways. Behold, these 25 intimidating photos that show how winter is now in full force!
25 Frozen Niagara Falls - Ontario, Canada
Niagara Falls, which is located in Ontario, Canada and Buffalo, New York, depending on which side you are on, can take on many forms. Although this destination is absolutely gorgeous all year-round, there are times when the Falls 'fall' victim to the brutal Northern winters. According to USA Today, Niagara Falls has frozen over countless times before, including its most recent time in January 2018. If that doesn't show the true force of nature winter is, then we don't know what will.
24 Ice Covered Streets - Pennsylvania, U.S
Although winter is a time to bask in the glory of pretty holiday lights, sparkling snowflakes, snow angels and cozying it up by the fireplace enjoying a hot cup of cocoa, winter sometimes comes on a little too strong. For instance, the force of winter showed its true colours in Pennsylvania last year when feet upon feet of snow covered the Pennsylvania streets, says The Weather Channel. Snow may appear pretty at first, but when you're shoveling through snow taller than you, there's a problem.
23 Frozen Lighthouse - Lake Michigan
If you have ever witnessed a true winter, then you know that the season itself comes along with many pros and many cons. In this case, the cons may just out weight the pros. According to BoredPanda, a lighthouse alongside the coast of Lake Michigan was subject to a crazy windstorm during the cold season, leading water from the lake to completely cover and freeze over a lighthouse. Not only did it cover the lighthouse, but anything that stood in its way too! Although this makes for quite a fun photo, this truly puts winter's capabilities into perspective.
22 Snow Walls - Tateyama, Japan
Last up on the list is none other than Tateyama, Japan! The location, which is close to Toyama, Japan, is known to receive nearly 125 feet of snow during the winter months, says Atlas Obscura. The amount of snow is unheard of just about anywhere else, truly showing just how insane winter can truly be. This amount of snow leads to massive walls forming in certain areas, that have become quite a tourist attraction. The view alone is mesmerizing, but remains a scary reminder of what winter is capable of!
21 Frozen Beard - Oymyakon, Russia
Now, this may take the lead as one of the most frightening effects of winter! Oymyakon, Russia, is the coldest inhabited place in the world, according to Fortune, where weather can drop to as low as minus 50 degrees Celsius (- 58 Fahrenheit), meaning it's very VERY cold! So cold in fact that it is known to completely freeze your wet facial hair! Imagine getting your beard slightly wet, only to step outside and have icicles form just about everywhere? Now if that doesn't scream winter, then we aren't sure what does!
20 Boat of Ice - Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
The United States is home to an array of different climates, where certain states are used to winter, and others don't even need to worry about wearing a jacket in January, however, for those states that are used to getting their fair share of winter, there are certain times where it just took everyone by surprise. According to ABC7Chicago, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin has definitely seen some better winter days! With high winds and cold nights, frozen structures appeared making the quite the sight to see, including many ice-covered boats, which you certainly don't see every day!
19 Massive Ice Storm - Lake Erie, U.S.
Similar to locations such as Lake Geneva, and Lake Michigan, Lake Erie has also seen the scary consequences of winter. According to Earth Tripper, anything and everything by the side of Lake Erie was covered in nothing but ice, after a not so nice wind storm took place. From the sidewalks, lampposts and cars, all that can be seen are sheets upon sheets of ice. Although this may appear to be quite the photo-worthy scene, it makes for quite the hassle, especially for those car owners who parked their cars in the worst possible spot overnight, claims the source.
18 Frozen City - Oymyakon, Russia
As mentioned earlier, Oymyakon, Russia is the coldest inhabited location in the entire world! Although stepping out and having your beard completely freeze over, the same can be said for the city itself! According to Travel Triangle, the village has experienced temperatures so cold that is has caused everything to freeze over, from statues, homes, streets, cars and just about anything exposed to the coldest air in the world. Although this may be reason enough to remain inside, the locals of Oymyakon are quite used to this weather, allowing them to walk outside and go about their daily lives as if everything around them wasn't covered in snow and ice.
17 Ice Covered House - Webster, New York
Now it is one thing for a pier, lighthouse, lamppost or car to freeze over, but for an entire house to do so, is a whole other story! This was the unfortunate case for a Webster, New York home that completely got covered with ice during a storm back in 2017, says Inside Edition. Shards if icicles hung from more ice that completely surrounded the house, making for one of the worst case scenarios during the winter time. Living would be nearly impossible until the situation was taken care of, which during the winter months, could not have been all that quick.
16 Frozen Beach - Homer, Kenai Peninsula
A frozen beach is two words that should not ever be said in the same sentence, however, that is not the case for a beach in Homer. Located in the Kenai Peninsula, Homer Beach becomes completely frozen over during the winters months, making it those romantic walks on the beach, impossible. According to HomeAway, weather becomes so cold during the winter time that much of the Kenai River freezes over, truly showcasing the brutal outcome of cold and icy winters. Not fun!
15 Frozen Lake - Lake Michigan, U.S.
Lake Michigan is next up on the list of winter victims! A stunning lighthouse and wooden pier fell victim to a major wind storm, causing the cold weather to completely freeze the water over anything that stood in its way. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, this is a common event that takes place off of Lake Michigan, making for some stellar shots, however, the formation of massive ice shards just goes to show how cold the weather must be during the winter in order to freeze over at that rate. Who knows how long an occurrence like this would take to thaw out!
14 Lakeside Freeze - Lake Neuchatel, Switzerland
Winter can be beautiful, however, there are times when that beauty is just too much to deal with. This can be said during a lakeside freeze in Switzerland. Most of the shore of Lake Neuchatel was completely frozen over, becoming a land of ice shards, icicles and boulders of ice, turning the beautiful lakeshore into nothing but a scene from Disney's Frozen. According to Newly Swissed, Swiss lakes have a tendency of freezing over, so although it can be a pain, many are quite used to this during the winter time.
13 Ice Covered Pier - Senj, Croatia
The tumultuous winter times continue all the way to Senj, Croatia! If you have ever had the chance of visiting Croatia, then you know just how beautiful of a city it truly is, however, chances are, you've visited during a time when their piers were completely covered in ice. According to Lonely Planet, Croatia has some pretty incredible winters, where many riverside destinations freeze over during the winter months due to the strong and gusting winds that freeze over just about anything in its way!
12 Ice Storm - New England, U.S.
There is nothing that says winter more than an extreme ice storm! If you've never experienced a true winter before, then count yourself lucky! According to Time Magazine, one of the worst ice storms hit New England in 2008, completely covering the entire city in sheets of ice, creating havoc amongst the locals, who were without power for days! Although once things settled down, the shores of New England made for some spectacular winter shots, the experience itself is one that we're certain no one would ever want to go through.
11 Massive Snow Storm - Snow Canyon
If you're the type who loves winter, then you've definitely run outside for some good ole' snow fort making, tobogganing, skiing, snowboarding or any other festivity winter brings along. However, if there is one thing that takes away from the fun of winter, it's having to shovel! Not only if shovelling a few feet of snow a task and a half, imagine shovelling through 60 feet of snow! That is the case in Snow Canyon, Utah, where snow is so common during the winter months, that walls the size of trucks form, says Atlas Obscura, making both a beautiful yet intimidating view.
10 Snowy Palm Tree - Milan, Italy
When we think of palm trees, we think of the heat, the sun and tropical climates that include sandy beaches, coconuts and the complete antithesis of winter, however, it may surprise you to know that even certain tropical locations can't withstand the force of winter! According to The Telegraph, Milan, Italy, is quite a common destination where snow falls during the winter time, covering just about anything including their palm trees! So, if you're thinking of travelling to Italy for a winter getaway, you better think twice!
9 Snow Buried Cars - Montréal, Canada
Snow definitely has its way of making us love it and hate it all at the same time. For those who are used to snowy winters, then you know just how big of a pain snow can really be, especially if you live in countries such as Canada. According to Global News, Montréal, Canada, is definitely a city who has familiarized itself with winter and its bad effects. Many of which include cars becoming completely buried under snow, which has happened countless times in the past when the city has had massive snowstorms!
8 Snow Storm - Depew, New York
Winter time is often referred to as a charming time of the year, where the streets are soaring with the holiday spirit, and sparkling snow, many don't realize just how detrimental winter truly is until your shovelling your way through banks of snow taller than yourself! This is the case for the town of Depew, New York, who received nearly 10 feet of snow one season, covering just about everything! According to WeatherBug, the snowstorm marked one of the worst in all of New York, really highlighting the negative impact winter truly has.
7 Frozen Cars - North Carolina
If you are into these insane shots of ice covered everything, then you're in luck, cause there's plenty more to go around. In this case, North Carolina is the next victim to a terrible wind storm, creating frozen cars, streets, trees, sidewalks and just about anything touched by water. According to Fox8, the only way to eliminate this much ice, particularly on a car, is to use calcium, rather than salt, as it has very low erosion effects, allowing the ice to melt much faster, and leave your car in decent condition. A fact that many living on the East Coast of the U.S. should know!
6 Snow Storm - Sterling, United Kingdom
Although most winters in western Europe are quite mild, there are times when winter decides to creep up and perform a sneak attack! This was the case in Sterling, England, where an ice storm during the cold winter months took locals by surprise. According to Ib Times, cars, streets and walkways were completely covered in layers of ice, marking it as a major first for the city. When you aren't used to tough winters, it can be quite a difficult pill to swallow when the cold season decides to erupt everywhere out of nowhere!
5 Ice Storm - Wichita, Kansas
Next up on the list is a terrible ice storm that hit Wichita, Kansas! According to KWCH, Kansas has been home to some of the worst ice storms in American history. The last major one took place in 2005, which covered just about anything and everything, from trees, homes, streets, and cars. Although the city itself is used to such occurrences, winter definitely had a way of testing their limits this time around! If you think winter is a "pretty" season, as many would put it, try saying that when it's caused your entire city to freeze over. Not so "pretty" now, are we?
4 Blizzard - Chicago, Illinois
Winter can be a fun-filled time of snowball fights and making the perfect snowman, however, one downside of winter are massive blizzards! When a city is hit with feet on feet of snow, things can go completely awry! This was the case during one winter in Chicago, where one snow blizzard created more havoc then they bargained for. According to The NY Times, the blizzard was so bad that it led to car owners abandoning their vehicles on the highway, as driving conditions were so poor, it was nearly impossible to see anything in front of you!
3 Snow Buried Home - Newfoundland, Canada
An ice-covered home is one thing, however, having your home completely buried by feet of snow is just next level. Winter has a way of truly testing our limits, and that was certainly the case for these homeowners in Newfoundland, Canada. According to the Toronto Star, one Newfoundland home was completely buried over during a massive snowstorm that hit the city, leaving only the roof exposed! If this does not make you want to pack up and move somewhere warm year-round, we aren't sure what will! Just the idea of shovelling your way out of this one is reason enough to get up and go.
2 Frozen Forest - Finland
Finland is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful countries in the world, especially in the winter, however, the cold months sure had a way of making an appearance this time around. According to Finland Naturally, the country experiences so much snow in its northern areas that it completely buries and freezes over entire forests! Although this may come off as a downfall, no one actually lives nearby, therefore, the feet and feet of snow and ice, make for quite a stunning landscape, rather than an inconvenience!
1 Snow Covered Town - Toyama, Japan
If you have ever complained about a few inches of snow in the past, then count yourself lucky to not have to deal with so much snow that it covered an entire town! According to Condé Nast Traveler, Toyama, Japan receives the most snow across the globe. The city sees more snow than just about any other location in the world, making for quite the winter wonderland! Although this seems very picturesque, winter appears to have no mercy on this city, as it snows up to nearly 60 feet at a time during some years!