Freedlyville Ice Quarry

Posted on April 15, 2014 at 9:32 pm
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We paid a little visit to the Freedlyville Quarry, an abandoned marble quarry located north of Manchester, VT. Opened in 1790, it measures an impressive 200 by 600 feet (60 by 180 meters). Flooded portions freeze during the winter, forming a natural ice rink until early summer. Or, as we call it around here, the new winter.

More photos below. Click on any of the thumbnails to open a larger view, or check the full-screen Flickr slideshow.

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The cave is a popular spot for skating. I can’t skate to save my life; truth is, I would still be splattered somewhere in this quarry if I hadn’t brought spikes that day. Heed my advice, friends.

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While we all had our tripods handy, I don’t think we managed to get a picture that properly conveys how thick the black, translucent ice is (somebody else did though). I would venture 3 to 6 feet, with beautiful air bubbles frozen in time on their way to the surface.

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I couldn’t find a good enough friend to stand directly below for scale, but these stalactites and dripstones in the photo above are about 15 feet tall. The one at the entrance of the cave, displayed in the post header, is much larger.

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I wouldn’t want these blocks to land anywhere near me, and yet it felt as if they had crash-landed the day before — check the blue soda can to the right for scale.

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This opening in the picture below was vertigo inducing; a good 150+ feet vertical.

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Unfortunately, the cave has been vandalized a lot. For this reason, and per request as well, I set the geo-location attached to the pictures to the town of Dorset, VT — close enough.

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Thanks to Justin for pointing out this quarry, and to Darren and Paul, below, for letting me join.

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I post mostly on Instagram nowadays, if the square is your thing, feel free to follow me.

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More photos

Check Patrick’s project, An Occasional Experimental Underground Music Festival, for recent experiments in this location. There is a lot more to read on the List of Quarries in Vermont page too, in the Freedley Marble section.

Darren’s pictures on Flickr:

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Some good shots and panoramas by Michael P Bartlett in his photoset on Flickr:

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The quarry makes for a nice pool too when it thaws (I guess), as seen in J. Van hoesen‘s photoset in July 2011:

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Ice skaters give you a sense of scale; see more photos by Yun & Rich:

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Looking through the ice, by C S on Flickr:

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Frozen bubbles, by rocknrollvt on Flickr:

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Another photoset by Flickr user winsto99:

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A YouTube video by Peter Olguin:

Tags: cave, dorset, quarry

2 Comments

 
  1. Jesse Miner says:

    Hi Im planning a day trip with my girlfriend in January and were planning on going to Mount Snow during the day and I was hoping after we could come to this ice skating quarry because it looks awesome and I know she would love it. i Would like to know how far away it is from mount snow if you have any idea, if not im sure I can find it using Google maps. Also we most likely wouldn’t get there till dark and I was wondering if there was lights and if not could we bring head lights and not be yelled at for trespassing or anything. And last does it cost anything and if so how much.
    Thank you so much,
    Jesse

  2. Mar B says:

    Awesome photos – thanks for sharing on the web