Butterflies at the Heckrodt Wetland Reserve, Menasha, Wisconsin

In the middle of one of the two coldest winters experienced in Wisconsin in the last 30 years, it's good to be reminded that the snow will eventually melt and the weather will improve. As a reminder of summer, here two monarch butterflies take a break on blooms in the butterfly garden at Heckrodt Wetland Reserve in Menasha, Wisconsin.

 

A horse logging team at work in Wisconsin

On what turned out to be an unusually warm day in January (meaning the lower 20s F.), horse logging enthusiasts gathered at a farm in Northeast Wisconsin to skid timber from the woods.

 

the polar vortex over Lake Michigan

The polar vortex got a lot of press over the past few weeks, and for good reason. It was cold. Not the coldest ever along Lake Michigan, but still, respectably cold. The result has been more ice coverage over the big lake than has been seen in years. From the shore, it looks like an infinite expanse of ice. Here, the late afternoon sun streams across the frozen waters along the shore of the Door Peninsula, the shadows cast by the lowering sun accentuating both the rocky shore and the textures of the snow covered ice.

 

The Algoma Light Looks Out Over Lake Michigan

Algoma, Wisconsin is known for its sport fishing fleet that brings anglers to the game fish in Lake Michigan's pristine waters. But, it is also one of the more picturesque towns along the Lakeshore. The light that guards the town's harbor entrance is always a good subject for a photo.

 

A birch tree stands along the cold shore of Lake Michigan

Robert La Salle Park in Southern Door County is a quiet, out of the way place to enjoy nature and the vastness of Lake Michigan. The part is on two levels and in winter is rarely visited. This single Birch overlooking the newly formed ice along the lakeshore seemed to magnify the Winter solitude of the park.

 

Wisconsin's Frosted Landscape

When conditions are right in early winter, fog blowing in from Lake Michigan can coat the landscape with a magical frosting of ice crystals. This panorama features a view across a pasture to a farmers woodlot, covered in frost, about 35 miles inland from Lake Michigan. With the temperature hovering near the freezing point, this scene lasted only a few hours.

 

Anderson's Dock, Ephraim, Wisconsin

By early December, the crowds of visitors that flock to Door County for the summer months are long gone. Many of the boutique shops that fill the peninsula's quaint villages of Fish Creek, Ephraim, Sister Bay and others are closed for the season. Traffic on the county's roads is reduced to just a few local residents. Add in fog, drizzle and snow showers and the Door Peninsula takes on an ethereal quiet and charm. At Anderson's Dock in Ephraim, the deceptively calm waters of the bay lap the newly frozen shore while fog shrouds the forest cover of Peninsula State Park across the water. Meanwhile, on the Lake Michigan side of the Peninsula, strong winds driving up the big lake from the Southeast whip up massive waves that crash into the rugged cliffs of Cave Point....

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