Its no secret that people in the UK are forever complaining about the weather, but it seems this week they were well within their rights. For the first time ever a rare phenomenon usually only seen in extremely cold countries was spotted on the River Otten in Devon.
A massive spinning ice circle caught the attention of Roy Jefferies as he was walking his dog by the river last Wednesday morning. Measuring a whopping 10 ft in diameter, the rotating disc sat stationary in the river where two currents merge. Mr Jefferies called a friend, Mr Blisset, who lived nearby, and just happens to have an interest in the strange and bizarre. He identified the ice disc as a true rare specimen.
In an interview with the local paper, Mr Blisset said he grabbed his camera and ran straight to the river to see the icy disc for himself. I couldnt believe it when he told me, Mr Blissett said.
I saw the most perfect circle of ice about two metres from the edge of the bank, said Mr Blissett.
It was about three metres in diameter and, on timing it, we discovered it was completing a revolution in four minutes and ten seconds.
The air temperature at the time was sub-zero and the weather had been bitterly cold for the past week.
It is thought that ice circles are formed when surface ice gathers in the center of a body of water rather than the edges. A slow moving river current can create a slow turning eddy, which rotates, forming an ice disc. Very slowly the edges are ground down until a gap is formed between the eddy and the surrounding ice.
This six-foot-wide circle was spotted by Mississauga man, Brook Tyler last December near Sheridan Creek in Rattray Marsh Conservation area. Mr Tyler was pretty sure the circle wasnt man-made, as some people at the time thought, because the ice on the creek was much too thin to walk on.