It's so cold out that Niagara Falls has partially frozen over

Frigid temperatures and wicked wind chills have been ravaging the northeast over the past week and the prolonged below-freezing temperatures have turned Niagara Falls into a winter wonderland.

The above image shows the American side of the famous falls on Tuesday when temperatures dropped to 6 degrees Fahrenheit around the Great Lakes. The American side of the Niagara Falls is much more likely to freeze than the more iconic shoehorn-shaped Canadian side.

Still, the American side is far from frozen solid. Water is still flowing, but layers of ice sheets have built up around the water.

The crazy temperatures haven’t kept tourists away. Last year when the falls partially froze, the site got more visitors than any other winter day on record, according to USA Today.

Frozen niagra fallsLindsay DeDario/ReutersTourists visit the frozen falls on Feb. 17.

The sheer volume and speed of the water plummeting over the falls makes it impossible to completely freeze over. However, the mist that constantly wafts up from the rushing water can freeze into sheets of ice during the winter. Those ice sheets combined with frozen slush flowing down from Lake Eerie can make the falls look frozen:

Frozen niagra fallsLindsay DeDario/ReutersA rainbow appears over Niagara Falls on Feb. 17.

Here’s what the American side of the falls looks like when it’s not frozen over:

Bitter cold temperatures over President’s Day weekend also froze the Bryant Park fountain in New York City. Central Park hovered around 3 degrees — the coldest it’s been in over a decade.

The National Weather Service has issued a wind chill warning starting Wednesday night through Friday for parts of western New York.

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