Locals living along Newfoundland’s famed Iceberg Alley are used to passing icebergs each spring. If you’ve seen one chunk of ice, you’ve seen them all, right? But even longtime residents did a double take when an especially big one ran aground near the village of Ferryland.
The iceberg towers 150 feet above the dark blue water of the North Atlantic, dwarfing the tidy clapboard houses in this shot by Reuters photographer Greg Lock. No one can say just how big the leviathan may be, but admit that, yes, it is something else. “This one is unusually large,” says Mayor Adrian Kavanagh, a lifelong resident of Ferryland. “But they’re all special in their own way.”
The beautiful iceberg appeared three weeks ago at the start of iceberg season along the Northern Atlantic coastline. Each April, icebergs calve in the Arctic and float away, carried south by the current on a journey that takes them past Labrador and Newfoundland to the open sea. The season started early this year due to a March storm that broke up more sea ice than usual. This particular chunk of ice floated too close to shore and got stuck, making Ferryland a popular tourist destination during Easter weekend.
The US Coast Guard says at least 600 icebergs have wandered into North Atlantic shipping lanes, up from the 80 typically seen at this time of year. Smaller icebergs have appeared off the coast of Ferryland, but this one remains. It managed to break free not long ago and drifted about a mile south before getting hung up again. Kavanagh expects it to move along within two weeks, and won’t miss it when it’s gone. “You see ice and icebergs every year. It’s not like I’ve never seen one before.”