Origins: These pictures of cars, boats, trees, and other landscape features encrusted with ice from severe cold weather began circulating on the Internet in late January 2005, accompanied by viewer-added comments such as "Now this is what I'd call really cold...brrrrrrrrr"; "Sure glad that it doesn't get this cold here"; "So, How cold was it?"; and "Next time you're complaining while scraping the ice off your windscreen, think again!"
Various e-mailed versions of these photos claim such different origins for them as "From a recent Massachusetts storm with hurricane-speed winds" to "Pictures from Lake Geneva, Switzerland — January 2005." We believe the latter to be correct, as these images seem to correspond to similar photos on a web site
which identifies them as pictures of Lake Léman (also known as Lake Geneva
), Switzerland, taken on 26 January 2005. (Presumably the objects shown here have been coated with spray from waves breaking on the lake's shore, which then hardened into a solid coating in the sub-freezing temperatures.)
The translated title of the French-language page is "Wind and ice on Geneva," and the text notes that the pictures were taken on the shores of Lake Léman during winds gusting up to 110 km/h.