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Canadian tumbleweeds...


Well-known member
Called snow rollers, it's a fairly rare phenomenon where snowballs are formed naturally as chunks of snow are blown along the ground by wind. Once they get moving, they pick up more snow along the way; it’s a lot like rolling snowballs to make a snowman.

Snow rollers have been seen to grow as large as one metre in diameter.

Mostly seen in wide open fields or on frozen lakes.

The basic ingredients still apply…

  • The ground covered by a layer of ice.
  • The layer of ice must be covered by wet, loose snow with a temperature near the freezing point of ice.
  • The wind must be strong enough to move the snow rollers, but not strong enough to blow them too fast; ideal wind speed is about 45 km/h.
  • Alternatively, gravity can roll them down a hill.
Pictures of them from across the country this week, from Alberta to Newfoundland... The last one is a video showing them as they are forming.






Staff member
Pretty cool Steve.. I have heard of them.. but never have I seen them

fair winds