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Old ice in rock glaciers may provide long-term climate records

January 1, 1996

Anyone who spends much time above the treeline has probably seen rock glaciers and paused to wonder about them. Their curious and occasionally spectacular forms (Figure 1) occur in alpine and polar regions throughout the world, yet much remains uncertain about how they develop. A core of ice recently recovered from a rock glacier in the Absaroka Mountains of northwestern Wyoming vividly illustrates several important aspects about rock glaciers. At least some rock glaciers are a form of debris-covered glacier, and original isotopic stratigraphy may be preserved within their ice. Perhaps most interesting of all, the core of some rock glaciers is composed of layered ice that can be drilled and recovered, and some of this ice is exceptionally old.

Publication Year 1996
Title Old ice in rock glaciers may provide long-term climate records
DOI 10.1029/96EO00149
Authors D.H. Clark, E.J. Steig, N. Potter, J. Fitzpatrick, A.B. Updike, G. M. Clark
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Eos, Transactions, American Geophysical Union
Index ID 70018955
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse