For the eighth year running, the see-it-to-believe-it ice and light phenomenon known as the Ice Castles is on display now at the Homestead Resort in Midway. It takes a staff of 30 about four weeks to create this surreal, icy experience.
Warm temperatures provided a particular challenge in getting the display up this year; a challenge addressed in part by with a product used by the Park City ski resorts to make snow called Snomax. This protein-based ice nucleator is added to water systems used to create snow -- or in the case of the Ice Castles, ice -- allowed ice crystals to form at higher temperatures than water alone.
The Ice Castles are open Monday through Saturday at 6 p.m. Ticket prices vary, but is less when purchased in advance. If you go, be sure to wear sturdy snow boots (the floor of the Ice Castle is made up of millions of ice cubes and is similar to walking on sand) and, instead of a stroller, use a small sled to transport young children.
And don't dilly dally: The Ice Castles will be on display through the end of February, weather conditions permitting.