Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Snowmen from Outer Space!

So these are pretty cool, huh? They'll called Snow Rollers and they're pretty rare. They show up on the northern plains of the US in the winter when conditions (snow, wind, temperature, moisture) are just right. Basically, the process is pretty straightforward: under strong winds, with sticky, fluffy snow, the wind rolls up the snow. Apparently gravity can make em too - the snow rolls down a hill and makes a snow roller. These were seen in Spokane, WA last year. They're about 2 feet high.

Of course, those folks who believe that crop circles were created by aliens (as opposed to stoned college kids with rope and 2x4s) believe that snow rollers are the work of aliens as well. Not sure what the purpose would be, exactly.

You'd need to ask them.


Irrelephant said...

Where is the desert where the stones move by themselves, leaving wonderful shallow trails in the dirt behind them?

It's wonderful how Nature can throw us little smiles like this.

Gordo said...

We had those here five years ago. They weren't that large, but it was very strange to look out onto the frozen bay to see thousands of these swiss rolls made of snow. What it took was just the right amount of snow, with the perfect amount of moisture, just the right air temperature and the wind coming up to just the right speed at the right time. Rare is right.

Hilary said...

Very cool. I thought they were those round bales of hay covered in snow. I like Gordos "Swiss roll" description. :)

ArtSparker said...

Candies of the gods.

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Clowncar said...

Thanks, Irr. I just posted about the whole rolling desert rock thing. What a cool deal!

Gordo, did you actually see them? On bay ice? They are so eerie looking.

Hil, that was my first reaction as well - they look exactly like round bales of hay covered with snow. Though smaller, I'm guessing.

Art, I wish they'd given us giant Twizzlers instead.

Anonymous - I am SO on that! Thanks you for providing such a valuable business opportunity.

Eric, jump on it. You may already be a wiener.

Gordo said...

You bet! That's my picture that I linked to. They're the weirdest thing that I've ever seen.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

I thought they were snow covered rolls of hay.

Where DO you find these things?


Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Jasmine said...

You know it looks like ales of hay all rolled up and then made negative. I like your explanation fgar better. Very pretty to look at.

Clowncar said...

Gordo - went back and saw the Gordo the Geek tag. Very cool pix. Musta been wild to see something like that in person.

Scarlett - I don't find it so much as it just seems to find me.

Jasmine - they are pretty, aren't they? Their very strangeness lends them this very ethereal quality. Thank you for visiting. Loved your imagery from Alice.