BAYFIELD, Wis. (AP) - The ice caves in northwestern Wisconsin are proving very popular again this year.

The caves on Lake Superior near the Apostle Islands attracted nearly 12,000 people this weekend.

Julie Van Stappen, chief of planning and resource management for the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, says more than 7,000 visited on opening day Saturday and nearly 4,900 on Sunday.

Park service officials had warned visitors there is a lot of glare ice and had recommended people use crampons and use ski poles.

The ice caves drew more than 138,000 tourists last year as the deep freeze made the caves accessible to pedestrians for the first time in nearly five years.

The park system charged a $5 fee this year for visitors age 16 and older.