An 11-mile (18km) stretch of coast was covered in the icy spheres.
The sculptural shapes range from the size of a tennis ball to almost 1m (3ft) across.
They result from a rare environmental process where small pieces of ice form, are rolled by wind and water, and end up as giant snowballs.
Locals in the village of Nyda, which lies on the Yamal Peninsula just above the Arctic Circle, say they have never seen anything to compare to them.
Russian TV quoted an explanation from Sergei Lisenkov, press secretary of the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute: