Watch these 3 incredible videos of Lake Superior sea smoke

These 3 videos – including one with an icy ship cutting through the mist – are absolutely stunning.
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A silver lining of Minnesota's stupidly cold winters is sea smoke.

Every year when the temps drop to obscene lows above the water of Lake Superior, it creates waves of mesmerizing clouds that roll across the surface. Even the BBC's readers across the pond are wowed by it

And we've got three great videos from the past couple days to show you.

First, this one from Duluth Harbor Cam's Denis O'Hara, who shared footage of the Cason J. Calloway ship cutting through the thick mist near Two Harbors on Christmas Day. It was -20 at the time.

KBJR shared a time-lapse from Monday morning, showing the dramatic wall of smoke rising up from the lake.

And then Destination Duluth posted this video from Jerry Thoreson, with the iconic lift bridge in the foreground. This is from Tuesday morning, after a night when wind chills hit -40 in the city.

What causes sea smoke?

Encyclopedia.com describes the process that creates sea smoke: When cold air passes over warmer water it heats rapidly, which induces "convection currents" that rise in the air, carrying moisture upwards from the water.

This moisture quickly condenses in the cold surrounding air, creating columns of rising water vapor. It is typically seen around Arctic landmasses, such as parts of Norway, Greenland and Canada.

Lake Superior seems to get some every year too – check out these videos from 2016:

Sea smoke made Lake Superior look incredible

This video of sea smoke is super cool

The same thing can happen with rivers, when the air is 50 degrees or more colder than the water, the website notes.

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