Icebergs? In Massachusetts? Curious onlookers walk around large chunks of sea ice washed up on Wellfleet Harbor Beach in Wellfleet, Massachusetts (AP photos)
Icebergs? In Massachusetts?
Lexile

Parts of Cape Cod have been looking a little bit like the Arctic Circle.

Icebergs aren't a common sight in Massachusetts, but massive chunks of ice have washed up on some beaches and they're drawing curious onlookers.

Children have been climbing some of the icy mammoths that cropped up along Duck Harbor Beach in Wellfleet. Despite a brief warmup earlier last week, there were still big chunks 5 1/2 to 6 feet high on the beach as late as last Thursday.

"It's amazing, they're like mini-icebergs," said Jessica Hornung, 33, who drove up from Connecticut with her three young children just to check out the unusual sight.

"It would be awesome if there were a polar bear on one of them," she joked.

Technically, the chunks aren't icebergs, which are defined as large pieces that break off glaciers or polar ice shelves.

Instead, meteorologists say, they're fragments from the extraordinary amount of ice that built up in Massachusetts Bay and were carried by currents into Cape Cod Bay and the Cape Cod Canal, a startling reminder of an epic winter that held much of New England in an icy grip for weeks.

Michelle Norcross ventured out with her husband and daughter to snap photographs of the huge chunks at low tide, when they're most visible.

Some of the pieces are so big they dwarf humans.

"I'm hoping they're right when they say this is a once-in-a-generation occurrence. It's beautiful, but it's very unusual," she said.

"I don't want this to happen every year. It's kind of freaky."

Officials say the ice chunks are melting and the phenomenon won't last long.

Critical thinking challenge: Why are people calling the chucks icebergs if they aren't icebergs?

Assigned 18 times


COMMENTS (11)
  • brandonr-DiB
    3/17/2015 - 10:36 a.m.

    Because it is really really big and is really made out of real ice. I'd call it an iceberg too because it a big piece of ice.

  • namelt-Che
    3/18/2015 - 01:56 p.m.

    I think that they couldn't have icebergs in any of the states because it is not cold enough over there to have those. I also think that it is pretty cool though because it is really cold up there.

  • madilynp-And
    3/18/2015 - 03:56 p.m.

    The people are calling the chucks icebergs if they arent icebergs because they are a mini version of the icebergs but not quite the real icebergs.

  • amandam-Koc
    3/18/2015 - 06:17 p.m.

    People are calling it icebergs because they look like one iceberg. "Meteorologists say, they're fragments from the extraordinary amount of ice that built up in Massachusetts Bay and were carried by currents into Cape Cod Bay and the Cape Cod Canal, a startling reminder of an epic winter that held much of New England in an icy grip for weeks."

  • NashMcComsey-Ste
    3/19/2015 - 01:26 p.m.

    While this is an interesting development, I personally have grown tired of winter. I can only hope that this means an end to the snow and ice that has plagued us for months on end.

  • tylerha-And
    3/19/2015 - 03:42 p.m.

    The reason that people call these things icebergs even though they are not icebergs is because they are stupidand don't know the actual defintion of iceberg because they think it is just a chunk of ice

  • AuroraH-Sym
    3/23/2015 - 09:51 a.m.

    I would want to climb those pieces of ice it looks like so much fun. I would love to see this every year. Its so crazy but so awesome.

  • MarisaG-Kut
    3/23/2015 - 05:50 p.m.

    People are calling them the chunks of icebergs because they think they look like mini icebergs. that's why they call them the chunks of icebergs cause they look so much like mini icebergs. Even though there technically just chunks of glaciers or polar ice shelves.

  • grants-2
    3/25/2015 - 10:39 p.m.

    Why are people calling them icebergs if they are not icebergs? people are calling them icebergs because they have never seen the movie titanic. (laugh laugh) Just kidding. the real reason people are calling them icebergs is because they are big chunks of ice that have landed on the beaches of Massachusetts. This is not an unusual sight in this area but the are "icebergs". So just trying to break the ice for you.

    Grant-2

  • MadisonSch
    3/31/2015 - 08:36 p.m.

    I think that they couldn't have icebergs in any of the states because it is not cold enough over there to have those. I also think that it is pretty cool though because it is really cold up there

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