Topographic control of asynchronous glacial advances: A case study from Annapurna, Nepal

Beth Pratt-Sitaula, Douglas W. Burbank, Arjun Heimsath, Neil F. Humphrey, Michael Oskin, Jaakko Putkonen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Differences in the timing of glacial advances, which are commonly attributed to climatic changes, can be due to variations in valley topography. Cosmogenic 10Be dates from 24 glacial moraine boulders in 5 valleys define two age populations, late-glacial and early Holocene. Moraine ages correlate with paleoglacier valley hypsometries. Moraines in valleys with lower maximum altitudes date to the late-glacial, whereas those in valleys with higher maximum altitudes are early Holocene. Two valleys with similar equilibrium-line altitudes (ELAs), but contrasting ages, are <5 km apart and share the same aspect, such that spatial differences in climate can be excluded. A glacial mass-balance cellular automata model of these two neighboring valleys predicts that change from a cooler-drier to warmer-wetter climate (as at the Holocene onset) would lead to the glacier in the higher altitude catchment advancing, while the lower one retreats or disappears, even though the ELA only shifted by ∼120 m.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL24502
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume38
Issue number24
DOIs
StatePublished - 2011

Fingerprint

Nepal
valleys
valley
equilibrium line
Holocene
moraine
late glacial
climate
glacial drift
hypsometry
glaciers
cellular automaton
mass balance
cellular automata
high altitude
coolers
topography
glacier
time measurement
catchment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)
  • Geophysics

Cite this

Topographic control of asynchronous glacial advances : A case study from Annapurna, Nepal. / Pratt-Sitaula, Beth; Burbank, Douglas W.; Heimsath, Arjun; Humphrey, Neil F.; Oskin, Michael; Putkonen, Jaakko.

In: Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 38, No. 24, L24502, 2011.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Pratt-Sitaula, Beth ; Burbank, Douglas W. ; Heimsath, Arjun ; Humphrey, Neil F. ; Oskin, Michael ; Putkonen, Jaakko. / Topographic control of asynchronous glacial advances : A case study from Annapurna, Nepal. In: Geophysical Research Letters. 2011 ; Vol. 38, No. 24.
@article{7fd297b82f584eb0941fb62adae4299b,
title = "Topographic control of asynchronous glacial advances: A case study from Annapurna, Nepal",
abstract = "Differences in the timing of glacial advances, which are commonly attributed to climatic changes, can be due to variations in valley topography. Cosmogenic 10Be dates from 24 glacial moraine boulders in 5 valleys define two age populations, late-glacial and early Holocene. Moraine ages correlate with paleoglacier valley hypsometries. Moraines in valleys with lower maximum altitudes date to the late-glacial, whereas those in valleys with higher maximum altitudes are early Holocene. Two valleys with similar equilibrium-line altitudes (ELAs), but contrasting ages, are <5 km apart and share the same aspect, such that spatial differences in climate can be excluded. A glacial mass-balance cellular automata model of these two neighboring valleys predicts that change from a cooler-drier to warmer-wetter climate (as at the Holocene onset) would lead to the glacier in the higher altitude catchment advancing, while the lower one retreats or disappears, even though the ELA only shifted by ∼120 m.",
author = "Beth Pratt-Sitaula and Burbank, {Douglas W.} and Arjun Heimsath and Humphrey, {Neil F.} and Michael Oskin and Jaakko Putkonen",
year = "2011",
doi = "10.1029/2011GL049940",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "38",
journal = "Geophysical Research Letters",
issn = "0094-8276",
publisher = "American Geophysical Union",
number = "24",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Topographic control of asynchronous glacial advances

T2 - A case study from Annapurna, Nepal

AU - Pratt-Sitaula, Beth

AU - Burbank, Douglas W.

AU - Heimsath, Arjun

AU - Humphrey, Neil F.

AU - Oskin, Michael

AU - Putkonen, Jaakko

PY - 2011

Y1 - 2011

N2 - Differences in the timing of glacial advances, which are commonly attributed to climatic changes, can be due to variations in valley topography. Cosmogenic 10Be dates from 24 glacial moraine boulders in 5 valleys define two age populations, late-glacial and early Holocene. Moraine ages correlate with paleoglacier valley hypsometries. Moraines in valleys with lower maximum altitudes date to the late-glacial, whereas those in valleys with higher maximum altitudes are early Holocene. Two valleys with similar equilibrium-line altitudes (ELAs), but contrasting ages, are <5 km apart and share the same aspect, such that spatial differences in climate can be excluded. A glacial mass-balance cellular automata model of these two neighboring valleys predicts that change from a cooler-drier to warmer-wetter climate (as at the Holocene onset) would lead to the glacier in the higher altitude catchment advancing, while the lower one retreats or disappears, even though the ELA only shifted by ∼120 m.

AB - Differences in the timing of glacial advances, which are commonly attributed to climatic changes, can be due to variations in valley topography. Cosmogenic 10Be dates from 24 glacial moraine boulders in 5 valleys define two age populations, late-glacial and early Holocene. Moraine ages correlate with paleoglacier valley hypsometries. Moraines in valleys with lower maximum altitudes date to the late-glacial, whereas those in valleys with higher maximum altitudes are early Holocene. Two valleys with similar equilibrium-line altitudes (ELAs), but contrasting ages, are <5 km apart and share the same aspect, such that spatial differences in climate can be excluded. A glacial mass-balance cellular automata model of these two neighboring valleys predicts that change from a cooler-drier to warmer-wetter climate (as at the Holocene onset) would lead to the glacier in the higher altitude catchment advancing, while the lower one retreats or disappears, even though the ELA only shifted by ∼120 m.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84855414748&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84855414748&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1029/2011GL049940

DO - 10.1029/2011GL049940

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84855414748

VL - 38

JO - Geophysical Research Letters

JF - Geophysical Research Letters

SN - 0094-8276

IS - 24

M1 - L24502

ER -