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Offbeat Traveler: Ice Castles at Silverthorne, Colorado

In Silverthorne, Colo., Brent Christensen has created a frosty, fairy-tale-like landscape out of icicles. His Ice Castles, as they are called, currently rise 15 to 20 feet and stretch across about an acre of land. At their height, they'll reach 30 to 40 feet high and together weigh about 10,000 tons. The Ice Castles, which will evolve throughout the season, grow and shrink depending on the weather. On good days, when the air is between 15 to 20 degrees, Christensen will use hundreds of gallons of water. On warm days, the castles may lose 10 to 20 gallons. Christensen started building icicles in his front yard for his family in Utah. One year, a local resort asked him to build it on their front lawn. Since then, tens of thousands of people have seen his ice castles. The Ice Castles made their public debut last December at Silverthorne Pavilion and will stay open for as long as the weather permits. General admission is $10, and the castles are open morning to evening Monday through Saturday. Visit its website for more information. -- Jason La, Los Angeles Times