Ashley Hefnawy is an editorial assistant and a content producer for Shutterstock’s blog. This post was originally published on the Shutterstock blog and has been adapted with permission.


Natural wonders of the world can be truly mind-boggling. Man-made objects are only so powerful, until they meet their eventual maker: nature itself.

In parts of Utah, Colorado, and New Hampshire, the perfect juxtaposition of man-made and nature exists in the form of massive ice sculptures. These formations were actually part of a larger project called Ice Castles—made from 20,000,000 pounds of ice, these magnificent creations were built by people and widely explored.

The structures are comprised of a combination of icicles and freezing water, modified by wind and varying temperatures. Creator Brent Christensen had the idea for the project after putting together an elaborate ice-skating rink in his backyard for his family, complete with a slide, cave, and ice castle. The result is a strange and magical phenomenon.

Arina P Habich, Silverthorne Colorado

static.squarespace 13 730x547 Journey through the colossal ice castles of the American SouthwestIce castles of Silverthorne, Colorado | Arina P Habich

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Johnny Adolphson, Utah

static.squarespace 20 730x486 Journey through the colossal ice castles of the American SouthwestFrozen ice walls in rural Utah, USA | Johnny Adolphson

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