The official Cumberland Gap polar dip was canceled Monday, but a handful of hearty souls took it upon themselves to make sure New Year's Day didn't go by without someone taking a dip in the frigid water.

Monday was set to be the 18th annual polar plunge in the small town of Cumberland Gap in Claiborne County, where Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia meet.

But when exuberant swimmers showed up to take the plunge into the creek, they were met by a sign saying this year's event had been canceled.

2016 STORY: Brave souls take frigid plunge in New Year's Day tradition

"Due to circumstances beyond our control, the annual Cumberland Gap polar dip is canceled. The staff of the Little Congress Bicycle Museum thanks everyone for 17 great years," the sign said.

The event is held outside Cumberland Gap's Little Congress Bicycle Museum, which is owned and curated by Judge Ralph McClanahan, who started the polar dip.

It wasn't immediately clear why the event was canceled, but a handful of people decided to take a dip in the water anyway.

The organizers typically dam part of the creek to make it deep enough for the annual dip. Since that wasn't done on Monday, the creek was unusually low, making the "plunge" more of a "sit and splash."