When Chicago resident Patrick Ozner, 28, booked his fourth annual splitboarding trip to Montana, he knew he needed to log some training for the big-mountain days ahead. Chicago isn’t necessarily the best place to train for rugged terrain, especially when there’s a polar vortex with temperatures dropping to minus 50 degrees. But the extra-cold weather wasn’t going to stop Ozner. He strapped in and skied along the shoreline of Lake Michigan.
Ozner trekked out in fresh snow at 63rd Street Beach.
Exploring the frozen pier at 31st Street Beach, where there was still some open water despite the frigid air.
At 31st Street Beach, the trees ice over from the freezing spray of Lake Michigan.
Ozner navigated the channels of 63rd Street Beach, covered in ice-ball formations that were pushed in from Lake Michigan.
Next he made his way around Montrose Beach, on the north side of the city, with a view of the skyline.
Most Midwesterners were holed up in their homes to wait out the weather, so Ozner had the shoreline to himself. Resting, he took a closer look at the incoming ice on 63rd Street Beach before continuing south along the frozen lake to complete his four-hour training day.