“A Revolving Ice Cake”


There is a curious ice formation on the Mianus River, near the village of Bedford, Westchester County, New York. The Mianus at that place is a small stream, averaging about ten feet in width. At a place locally known as the ‘ten foot hole’ the stream widens out into a pool forty or fifty feet wide. In this pool there has formed a cake of ice about twenty five or thirty feet in diameter and perfectly circular in shape. This circular cake of ice is slowly revolving and is surrounded for about two-thirds of its circumference by stationary ice. There is a space of about three inches between the revolving cake and the stationary ice, except at the ‘up stream’ side of the revolving cake, where the water is open and the current quite swift. Each revolution takes about six minutes. I inclose a rough drawing which will give an idea of this curious formation.

Letter from J.M. Bates to Scientific American, Feb. 9, 1895