Exploring the Ice Caves

February 18, 2014 Updated Feb 18, 2014 at 12:14 AM EDT

By John Borsa

February 18, 2014 Updated Feb 18, 2014 at 12:14 AM EDT

CRYSTAL BEACH, ONT (WKBW) - Thousands are flocking to this usual summertime vacation spot to wintry works of art by Mother Nature.

Winds have pushed Lake Erie surface ice against the northern shore near Crystal Beach, Ontario. The result is stunning ice sculptures shaped by the weather.

Some of them have natural tunnels, which people can walk into.

So locals have nicknamed them Ice Caves, which are attracting tons of people and traffic to this small town.

"I think we were a little overwhelmed by the number that actually showed up today," said Ft. Erie Fire Chief Larry Coplen.

"The ice is very, very slippery. We've had some people that have fallen," he said.

One person suffered a head injury while another has a possible broken him, officials said.

But for the most part, people are being cautious while exploring the ice caves, some of which have been marked with yellow caution tape because they are too dangerous for people to walk into.

"It's pretty awesome," said Kathy Zamerski of Buffalo, who explored the caves with her daughter Carissa.

"Outside of being cold, this is pretty cool that nature actually does something like this. It's pretty wild," she said.

"It's Mother Nature at its best," said Penny Lailey of St. Catharines. "When you see what's been done with the wind and the waves -- we had a cold winter -- so we got a prize out of it that's for sure."

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