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Glacier Wasting and Retreat in the Southern ALPS of New Zealand

  • H. J. Harrington (a1)

Abstract

Down-wasting has affected southern glaciers in New Zealand later than northern glaciers under the influence of a southward rising snow line which is attributed to a southerly shift in prevailing wind belts. Evidence from the Hooker Glacier indicates that the present period of wasting is the fourth of a series which began about 200 years ago.

As the firn line rises a glacier is planed in the ablation zone so that successive surfaces are parallel to the original surface, which shows that ablation is more active for a short distance below the fern line than near the terminal face. A period of accelerated terminal retreat can result from parallel down-wasting without a correlative acceleration in the rate of climatic change.

Zusammenfassung

In Neuseeland werden südliche Gletscher auf Grund einer sich südwärts erhebenden Schneegrenze, die auf eine in vorherrschenden Windgürteln südliche Verschiebung zurückzuführen ist, später von einem Abschwinden beeinflusst als nördliche Gletscher. Beweis vom Hooker Glacier zeigt an, dass die gegenwärtige Periode des Schwindens die vierte einer Serie ist, die vor etwa zoo Jahren begann.

Mit dem Anwachsen der Firnlinie wird der Gletscher in der Ablationszone „abgehobelt”, sodass aufeinanderfolgende Oberflächen mit der ursprünglichen Oberfläche parallel laufen, was darauf hinweist, dass Ablation auf einer kurzen Strecke unterhalb der Firnlinie wirksamer ist als nahe dem Gletscherende. Eine Periode beschleunigten Endrückzuges kann durch paralleles Abschwinden verursacht werden, ohne mit einer entsprechenden Beschleunigung im Grade einer klimatischen Änderung verbunden zu sein.

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Copyright

References

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Journal of Glaciology
  • ISSN: 0022-1430
  • EISSN: 1727-5652
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