Wintry Weather

The chill of mid-winter has set in around the northern hemisphere, bringing freezing temperatures to much of Asia, and an unusual snowstorm to the Mideast this week. People are coping where they must and playing where they can, from China to Maine, from Minnesota to Austria. Gathered here are a few recent images of the chilly weather across the north.
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1. Frost covers the tips of a woman's hair as she shields her face while facing the abnormally freezing outdoors in the Siberian city of Novosibirsk, about 2,800 km east of Moscow, on December 14, 2012. The temperatures in Novosibirsk had dropped to -35C (-31F).




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2. Two passengers brave the frigid weather while riding outside on a ferry crossing Casco Bay in Portland, Maine, at sunrise, on January 3, 2013. The overnight low temperature dropped to 0 degrees Fahrenheit in Portland.




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3. People take pictures of ice-covered real flowers during the exhibition "Flowers of the Snow Queen" in Kiev, Ukraine, on January 8, 2013.




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4. Firefighters and frontier soldiers rescue icebound ships at the frozen Bohai Bay of Bohai Sea in Jinzhou, Liaoning province, China, on December 27, 2012.




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5. Bulgaria's Vladimir Zografski soars through the air during his competition jump of the third stage of the four hills ski jumping tournament in Innsbruck, Austria, on January 4, 2013.




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6. Germany's Andreas Wellinger crashes during his competition jump at the fourth stage of the four hills ski jumping tournament in Bischofshofen, Austria, on January 6, 2013.




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7. Belarus emergencies ministry workers and ornithologists try to catch a sick swan on lake near the village of Shvaby, some 95 km north of Minsk, on December 6, 2012, to transport the bird to an unfrozen lake near the Belarus capital.




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8. Early morning frost clings to a leaf on December 11, 2012 in Knutsford, England.




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9. People skate on chained sleds on a frozen lake in Beijing, on January 6, 2013. Temperatures in China have plunged to their lowest in almost three decades, official media said over the weekend. Since late November the country has shivered at an average of minus 3.8 degrees Celsius (25 F), 1.3 degrees colder than the previous average, and the chilliest in 28 years, state news agency Xinhua said, citing the China Meteorological Administration.




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10. A street vendor sells fruit and vegetables covered in snow on the side of the road in the West Bank town of Hebron on January 9, 2013. Extreme weather, including torrential rains and heavy winds, killed four people in Israel and the Palestinian territories on January 8, as widespread flooding swept the Middle East.




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11. Thousands of anglers cast lines through holes created in the surface of a frozen river during a contest to catch trout in Hwacheon, South Korea, on January 5, 2013. The contest is part of an annual ice festival which draws over 1,000,000 visitors every year.




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12. A child angler looks through a hole into a frozen river during an ice fishing competition at the Hwacheon Sancheoneo Ice Festival in Hwacheon-gun, South Korea, on January 5, 2013.




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13. A boy looks at a tiger made of ice, at the Ice Sculpture festival in Bruges, Belgium, on Friday, January 4, 2013.




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14. Half-naked South Korean Special Warfare Forces members exercise on the snow during a winter exercise in Pyeongchang, South Korea, on January 9, 2013.




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15. A student attending a winter military camp reacts during a training session in Ansan, south of Seoul, on January 3, 2013. Hundreds of students between 11 and 17 years old attend winter boot camp training courses every year.




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16. On a foggy day, mountain goats fight in their enclosure at the zoo in Wuppertal January 4, 2013.




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17. People celebrate the pagan rite called "Kolyadki" in the village of Zhazhelka, some 48 km (30 miles) east of Minsk, on January 7, 2013. Kolyada is a pagan winter holiday, which over the centuries has merged with Orthodox Christmas celebrations in Ukraine and some parts of Belarus.




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18. A bird flies over a frozen crane sculpture fountain with icicles hanging from its wings at a Tokyo park, on December 27, 2012.




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19. Children pose for a photograph next to a snowman at the Syrian refugee camp 5km from Diyarbakir, after a snowfall, on January 9, 2013.




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20. A man walks on a frozen lake at the Summer Palace in Beijing, on December 27, 2012.




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21. A bald eagle sits on a branch over the Des Moines River, in downtown Des Moines, Iowa, on January 8, 2013. Iowa's cold, icy winters drive the birds to rivers to forage for food when inland waters freeze over.




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22. A spotted seal swims in a partly frozen lake at Dongpaotai Park in Yantai, Shandong province, China, on December 25, 2012.




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23. A snow-covered statue stands before a mountain in Tulufan, northwest China's Xinjiang province, on December 23, 2012.




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24. A boy makes a print of his hand on a car windscreen covered with snow before clearing it, during stormy weather in the Druze village of Majdal Shams on the Golan Heights, on January 8, 2013.




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25. A man and his child explore the Mall of America Ice Castle in Bloomington, Minnesota, on January 4, 2013. The castle is made of icicles grown from four million gallons of water and then fused together.




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26. A pedestrian holds an umbrella in the snow in Yangzhou, east China's Jiangsu province, on December 26, 2012.




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27. A person walks up a path to a frost covered Wendelstein church, Germany's highest church, on the 1838 meter (6030 foot) high Wendelstein mountain, near Bayrischzell, on January 8, 2013.




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28. A boy rides in an "ice-car" on the frozen Houhai Lake during winter in central Beijing, on December 28, 2012.




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29. A woman poses for a photographer on the bank of the Yenisei River, with the air temperature at about minus 25 degrees Celsius (minus 13 degrees Fahrenheit), outside Russia's Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk, on January 8, 2013.




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30. Austria's Manuel Poppinger soars through the air during his competition jump of the fourth stage of the four hills ski jumping tournament in Bischofshofen, Austria, on January 5, 2013.




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31. A participant emerges during the annual Polar Bear Plunge at Bradford Beach in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on January 1, 2013. Participants braved below freezing temperatures to take the annual New Year's Day dip into Lake Michigan.




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32. A trio of sledders make their way down the side of a hill at Fort Harrison State Park on December 27, 2012, in Indianapolis. Sledders enjoyed the hill after the area received 7.5 inches of snow.




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33. A couple embrace in a park with snowy trees seen around, with the air temperature at about minus 8 degrees Celsius (17.6 degrees Fahrenheit), in Russia's southern city of Stavropol, on December 24, 2012.




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34. A man polishes a snow sculpture in preparation for Shenyang International Ice and Snow Festival, Liaoning province, China, on January 8, 2013. The festival kicks off on January 10, local media reported.