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Another ice disk pops up in Maine, just in time for the end of 2020

Spinning ice disk captured on video in Maine
Scott Croteau captured a video of a spinning ice disk at Small Falls, near Rangeley, Maine. (Video courtesy of Scott Croteau)

Just in time for the end of 2020, another ice disk has popped up in Maine.

The 10-foot disk was first spotted spinning Saturday at Smalls Falls, just south of Rangeley in western Maine, about 85 miles west of Bangor.

“It was nice to be able to view it without it being messed with, so keeping it in its natural form was really cool to see,” said Saige Purser, 32, who saw the disk Saturday.

Purser said she went up to the falls with a friend who wanted to see where the annual “Smalls to the Wall” kayak race takes place, where people ride their kayaks down the falls.

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They almost turned around, she said, but they went further along, where they saw the spinning disk.

“I thought, ‘Wow, this is really cool,’” Purser said. “I’ve never seen one in person that has naturally formed like that.”

The ice disk at Smalls Falls in western Maine.
The ice disk at Smalls Falls in western Maine.Saige Purser (Custom credit)

Purser said she saw the news coverage of past ice disks, furthering her amazement. In 2019, a giant one in Westbrook made national headlines, gathering so much attention that police had to ask the public to not go out onto the ice. It also made a return in the beginning of 2020.

Others have also popped up in other places across Maine, including Haynesville, Milo, and in Baxter State Park.

Purser said she didn’t see any other tracks in the snow, leading her to presume that they were the first to catch sight of it. As an Indigenous person, she said the experience felt like a spiritual moment to her.

“A perfect circle like that being formed out of ice: it was a pretty intense moment,” she said. “It felt like it was a sacred thing that was happening.”

The disk was still around Sunday, giving Scott Croteau, 51, a chance to capture a video of it spinning.

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Croteau was hiking to the top of the falls Sunday morning with his son Sebastien when they spotted the disk.

Sebastien was first up to the top, saying, “Dad, you’ve got to see this,” Croteau recalled.

This is the first time the pair has seen something like this at Smalls Falls, one of their favorite hiking places, Croteau said.

“It was truly amazing to see this up close and personal,” he said.



Breanne Kovatch can be reached at breanne.kovatch@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter at @breannekovatch.