Due to the popularity of my 2009 post on ice dragons, I thought it would be a good idea to provide some more information on these magnificent and terrifying creatures.
As related in the earlier post, the lands ruled by the ice dragons have dwindled considerably over the ages. And as the rivers of ice have receded with the warming of the world, so have the ice dragons become more rare, and in some cases, smaller and less powerful. Nevertheless, if you’re going to travel in the regions where these creatures dwell, it’s still important to be on your guard. Make sure you’re carrying all the necessary equipment for survival, including rope, crampons for your shoes, a first aid kit, and warm, protective clothing. The dragons are still easily roused to anger when humans or others come clambering all over the glaciers they call home.
In one case I’ve heard of, a climber fell into a crevasse which turned out to be a dragon’s mouth. The climber’s companions struggled to get him out but he was stuck fast, and only escaped when the dragon relented at last and spat the man out through a crevasse lower down on the glacier. This unfortunate (or fortunate) traveler was renowned from then on for being the only known person to survive a trip through the digestive tract of a dragon.
Few people know that Santa's workshop at the North Pole is guarded by a semi-tame ice dragon called the Yulewyrm. This creature is the reason the workshop has not yet been found: the dragon's massive body distorts compass readings and his ability to cloak the area in a thick fog have been keeping explorers from finding the real North Pole.
One of the most well-known ice dragons is Whitewing Stonegrinder, whose ancestral home is the glacier surrounding the abandoned citadel of Aran Tir, as described in The Shadow of Malabron. Some enigmatists say that Whitewing Stonegrinder is the glacier, and that all this talk about dragons is nothing but a myth or just a colourful metaphor for the power and majesty of ice. If you’ve ever hiked or climbed a glacier, you’ll have experienced the feeling that there is something alive under your feet, something powerful and fickle-tempered that has to be respected.
What is known for certain is that Whitewing Stonegrinder played an important role in the struggle against Malabron the Storyeater, as told in the three books of The Perilous Realm trilogy.
Supposed photograph of an ice dragon on Angel Glacier in the Canadian Rockies, c. 1917.