Younger Dryas and early Holocene age glacier advances in Patagonia

Neil F. Glasser*, Stephan Harrison, Christoph Schnabel, Derek Fabel, Krister N. Jansson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

Reliable dating of Southern Hemisphere glacier fluctuations since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) is crucial to resolving debates about millennial-scale climate change. Here we present Be-10 dates for lateral, valley-mouth and cross-valley moraines formed between the contemporary South American North Patagonian Icefield (NPI) and its LGM position in four separate valleys around 47 degrees S. This is an area near the core of the precipitation-bearing southern westerly winds, where it is known that rapid shifts in climate occurred during Lateglacial times. The dates indicate that outlet glaciers advanced, or at least stabilised, to form large moraines east of an expanded NPI at 11.0 +/- 0.5/11.2 +/- 0.6, 11.5 +/- 0.6, 11.7 +/- 0.6 and 12.8 +/- 0.7 ka (Putnam southern-hemisphere production rates and Dunai scaling scheme, assumed boulder erosion rate of 2 mm/ka). Four of these ages are statistically indistinguishable and probably represent a single, regional ice advance. The dates indicate that glaciers in Patagonia were larger during these times than at any point since the LGM and provide evidence in Patagonia for glacier advances around the time of the European Younger Dryas (12.9-11.7 ka) and into the very early Holocene. Although palaeoclimatic records from this area are often contradictory, these glacier advances were probably associated with a period of cooling or regionally increased precipitation related to the changes in the position of the southern westerly winds. (C) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-17
Number of pages11
JournalQuaternary Science Reviews
Volume58
Early online date07 Nov 2012
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Dec 2012

Keywords

  • Patagonia
  • Be-10
  • Cosmogenic
  • Geomorphology
  • SOUTHERN SOUTH-AMERICA
  • COSMOGENIC-NUCLIDE MEASUREMENTS
  • ANTARCTIC COLD REVERSAL
  • BE-10 PRODUCTION-RATE
  • LAGO BUENOS-AIRES
  • NEW-ZEALAND
  • CHONOS ARCHIPELAGO
  • LATE QUATERNARY
  • CLIMATE-CHANGE
  • EROSION RATES

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