Photo and Words by Jonathan Nimerfroh
The day of February 20th started just like any other day for me with a surf check at my favorite beach. Being a Nantucket Island resident (an island located 30 miles off the coast of Cape Cod) there is not much to do in the winter but shoot photos and surf, and on this day the choice to surf was completely off the table. It was too cold. Not the air but the water. The ocean was literally frozen. I couldn’t quite believe my eyes. Slowly, silently, slurpee-like waves crashed towards the shore. I had never seen anything quite like this. It was actually the sound that I noticed most of all – how silent the ocean was. The waves were slow and solid looking. It was an amazing site to see.
I always take my Canon 5D Mark III with me on surf checks just for this very reason. On this day, in between breaks in the car for heat, I couldn’t take my lens off the frozen slurpee waves. Several days later, I suggested that a friend of mine, Holly Finigan, post one of the slurpee wave photos to her Instagram page The Nantucket blACKbook. Within minutes CBS Boston weatherman Eric Fisher asked me if he could use it on the air on the 11 pm news with the local weather. I of course said yes and scrambled to get the photos to him. And then I sat glued to the TV, my phone in hand, ready to video my five seconds of fame. Turns out that was only the beginning, and the series went viral, appearing on a full gamut of media outlets; Good Morning America, The Evening News with David Muir, The New York Times (both print and on-line), Yahoo’s home page and many more. See the full gallery of images here.