Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Coalescence of late Wisconsinan Cordilleran and Laurentide ice sheets east of the Rocky Mountain Foothills in the Dawson Creek region, northeast British Columbia, Canada

  • Adrian Scott Hickin (a1) (a2), Olav B. Lian (a3) and Victor M. Levson (a2) (a4)
Abstract

Geomorphic, stratigraphic and geochronological evidence from northeast British Columbia (Canada) indicates that, during the late Wisconsinan (approximately equivalent to marine oxygen isotope stage [MIS] 2), a major lobe of western-sourced ice coalesced with the northeastern-sourced Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS). High-resolution digital elevation models reveal a continuous 75 km-long field of streamlined landforms that indicate the ice flow direction of a major northeast-flowing lobe of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet (CIS) or a montane glacier (>200 km wide) was deflected to a north-northwest trajectory as it coalesced with the retreating LIS. The streamlined landforms are composed of till containing clasts of eastern provenance that imply that the LIS reached its maximum extent before the western-sourced ice flow crossed the area. Since the LIS only reached this region in the late Wisconsinan, the CIS/montane ice responsible for the streamlined landforms must have occupied the area after the LIS withdrew. Stratigraphy from the Murray and Pine river valleys supports a late Wisconsinan age for the surface landforms and records two glacial events separated by a non-glacial interval that was dated to be of middle Wisconsinan (MIS 3) age.

Copyright
Corresponding author
Corresponding author. British Columbia Geological Survey, P.O. Box 9333 Stn Prov Govt, Victoria, BC, V8W 9N3, Canada. E-mail address: adrian.hickin@gov.bc.ca (A.S. Hickin).
References
Hide All
Aber, J.S., Ber, A.(2007). Glaciotectonism. Elsevier, New York.
Aitken, M.J. (1985). Thermoluminescence Dating. Academic Press, London.
Arnold, T.G. (2002). Radiocarbon dates from the ice-free corridor. Radiocarbon 44, 437454.
Arnold, L.J., Roberts, R.G.(2009). Stochastic modelling of multi-grain equivalent dose (De) distributions: implications for OSL dating of sediment mixtures. Quaternary Geochronology 4, 204230.
Ashley, G.M., Southard, J.B., Boothroyd, J.C.(1982). Deposition of climbing-ripple beds: a flume simulation. Sedimentology 29, 6779.
Beach, H.H., Spivak, J.(1943). The origin of the Peace River Canyon, British Columbia. American Journal of Science 241, 366376.
Bednarski, J.M., Smith, I.R.(2007). Laurentide and montane glaciations along the Rocky Mountain Foothills in northeastern British Columbia. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 44, 445457.
Berger, G.W. (1988). Dating Quaternary events by luminescence.Easterbrook, D.J. Quaternary Sediments. Geological Society of America Special Paper 227 1350.
Bobrowsky, P.T. (1989). Late Cenozoic Geology of the Northern Rocky Mountain Trench, British Columbia.PhD. ThesisUniversity of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta.
Bobrowsky, P.T., Rutter, N.W.(1992). The Quaternary geologic history of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. G"ographie Physique et Quaternaire 46, 550.
Bogen, J. (1983). Morphology and sedimentology of deltas in fjord and fjord valley lakes. Sedimentary Geology 36, 245267.
Brennan, B.J. (2003). Beta doses to spherical grains. Radiation Measurements 37, 299303.
Bronk Ramsey, C. (2009). Bayesian analysis of radiocarbon dates. Radiocarbon 51, 10231045.
Catto, N.R. (1984). Glacigenic deposits at the Edmonton convention centre, Edmonton, Alberta. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 21, 14731482.
Catto, N.R., Liverman, D.G.E., Bobrowsky, P.T., Rutter, N.(1996). Laurentide, Cordilleran, and Montane glaciations in the western Peace River " Grande Prairie region, Alberta and British Columbia, Canada. Quaternary International 32, 2132.
Clague, J.J. (1989). Quaternary geology of the Canadian Cordillera.Fulton, R.J. Quaternary Geology of Canada and Greenland, Geological Survey of Canada. Geology of Canada No. 1 1796.Chap. 1
Clark, C.D. (1997). Reconstructing the evolutionary dynamics of former ice sheets using multi-temporal evidence, remote sensing and GIS. Quaternary Science Reviews 16, 10671092.
Cohen, K.M., Gibbard, P.(2011). Global Chronostratigraphical Correlation Table for the Last 2.7 Million Years. Subcommission on Quaternary Stratigraphy (International Commission on Stratigraphy). England, Cambridge.
Davis, J.C. (2002). Statistics and Data Analysis in Geology. third ed.John Wiley & Sons, New York.
Dreimanis, A. (1988). Tills: their genetic terminology and classification.Goldthwait, R.P., Matsch, C.L. Genetic Classification of Glacigenic Deposits. A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam.1768.
Dyke, A.S., Prest, V.K.(1987). Paleogeography of Northern North America, 18 000"5 000 Years Age. Map 1703A. Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa.
Dyke, A.S., Moore, A., Robertson, L.(2003). Deglaciation of North America.Open File 1574Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa.
Elson, J.A. (1988). Comment on glacitectonite, deformation till, and comminution till.Goldthwait, R.P., Matsch, C.L. Genetic Classification of Glacigenic Deposits. A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam.8588.
Evans, D.J.A., Rea, B.R.(2005). Surging glacier landsystem.Evans, D.J.A. Glacial Landsystems. Holder Arnold, New York.259288.
Eyles, C.H., Eyles, N.(2010). Glacial deposits.James, N.P., Dalrymple, R.W. Facies Models 4. Geological Association of Canada, St. John"s, 73104.
Eyles, N., Eyles, C.H., Miall, A.D.(1983). Lithofacies types and vertical profile models: an alternative approach to the description and environmental interpretation of glacial diamict and diamictite sequences. Sedimentology 30, 393410.
Galbraith, R.F., Roberts, R.G., Laslett, G.M., Yoshida, H., Olley, J.M.(1999). Optical dating of single and multiple grains of quartz from Jinmium rock shelter, northern Australia. Part I: experimental design and statistical models. Archaeometry 41, 339364.
Goebel, T., Waters, M.R., O'Rourke, D.H.(2008). The late Pleistocene dispersal of modern humans in the Americas. Science 319, 14971502.
Gregoire, L.J., Payne, A.J., Valdes, P.J.(2012). Deglacial rapid sea level rises caused by ice-sheet saddle collapses. Nature 487, 219223.
Grunsky, E.C. (2006). The evaluation of geochemical survey data: data analysis and statistical methods using geographic information systems.Harris, J. GIS for Earth Sciences.44, Geological Association of Canada, 229283.Special Publication
Gu"rin, G., Mercier, N., Adamiec, G.(2011). Dose-rate conversion factors: update. Ancient TL 29, 58.
Hanson, M.A., Lian, O.B., Clague, J.J.(2012). The sequence and timing of large late Pleistocene floods from glacial Lake Missoula. Quaternary Science Reviews 31, 6781.
Hartman, G.M.D. (2005). Quaternary Stratigraphy and Geologic History of the Charlie Lake (NTS 94A) Map Area, British Columbia.M.Sc. ThesisSimon Fraser University, Burnaby, B.C.
Hartman, G.M.D., Clague, J.J.(2008). Quaternary stratigraphy and glacial history of the Peace River valley, northeast British Columbia. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 45, 549564.
Hickin, A.S. (2013). Late Quaternary to Holocene Geology, Geomorphology, and Glacial History of Dawson Creek and Surrounding Area, Northeast British Columbia, Canada.PhD ThesisUniversity of Victoria, Victoria, B.C.
Hickin, A.S., Lian, O.B., Levson, V.M.(2015). Mapping and chronology of glacial Lake Peace shorelines and implications for isostacy and ice sheet configuration in northeastern British Columbia. Boreas 44, 288304.
Holland, S.S. (1976). Landforms of British Columbia, a Physiographic Outline. Bulletin 48. British Columbia Department of Mines and Petroleum Resources, Victoria.
Jackson jr., L.E., Phillips, F.M., Shimamura, K., Little, E.C.(1997). Cosmogenic 36Cl dating of the foothills erratic train, Alberta, Canada. Geology 25, 195198.
Jackson jr., L.E., Phillips, F.M., Little, E.C.(1999). Cosmogenic 36Cl dating of the maximum limit of the Laurentide ice sheet in southwestern Alberta. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 36, 13471356.
Jacobs, Z., Roberts, R.G.(2007). Advances in optically stimulated luminescence dating of individual grains of quartz from archeological deposits. Evolutionary Anthropology 16, 210223.
Janou"ek, V., Farrow, C.M., Erban, V.(2006). Interpretation of whole-rock geochemical data in igneous geochemistry: introducing geochemical data toolkit (GCDkit). Journal of Petrology 47, 12551259.
Jull, T.G., Geertsema, M.(2006). Over 16,000 years of fire frequency determined from AMS radiocarbon dating of soil charcoal in an alluvial fan at Bear Flat northeastern British Columbia. Radiocarbon 48, 435450.
Kleman, J., Jansson, K., Angelis, De, Hern"n, , Stroeven, A.P., H"ttestrand, C., Alm, G., Glasser, N.(2010). North American ice sheet build-up during the last glacial cycle, 115-21 kyr. Quaternary Science Reviews 29, 20362051.
Levson, V.M., Rutter, N.W.(1996). Evidence of Cordilleran late Wisconsinan glaciers in the "Ice-Free Corridor". Quaternary International 32, 3351.
Levson, V.M., Rutter, N.W.(2000). Influence of bedrock geology on sedimentation in pre-late Wisconsinan alluvial fans in the canadian Rocky Mountains. Quaternary International 68"71, 133146.
Lian, O.B., Hu, J., Huntley, D.J., Hicock, S.R.(1995). Optical dating of Quaternary organic-rich sediments from southwestern British Columbia and northwestern Washington State. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 32, 11941207.
Liverman, D.G.E. (1989). The Quaternary Geology of the Grande Prairie Area, Alberta.PhD. ThesisUniversity of Alberta, Edmonton Alberta.
Liverman, D.G.E., Catto, N.R., Rutter, N.W.(1989). Laurentide glaciations in west-central Alberta; a single (Late Wisconsinan) event. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 26, 266274.
Mathews, W.H. (1954). Quaternary Stratigraphy and Geomorphology of the Fort St John Area, Northeast British Columbia. Bulletin 65. Geological Society of America, Boulder.
Mathews, W.H. (1955). Ground-water Possibilities of the Peace River Block, British Columbia. Ground-water Paper No. 3. British Columbia Department of Mines, Victoria.
Mathews, W.H. (1978). Quaternary Stratigraphy and Geomorphology of Charlie Lake (94A) Map-area, British Columbia. Paper 76"20. Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa.
Mathews, W.H. (1980). Retreat of the Last Ice Sheets in Northeastern British Columbia and Adjacent Alberta. Bulletin 331. Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa.
Mathews, W.H. (1986). Physiography of the canadian Cordillera. Geological Survey of CanadaMap 1701A
Menzies, J., Rose, J.(1987). Drumlin Symposium. Proceedings of the Drumlin Symposium. 1st International Conference on Geomorphology, Manchester, 1985, Balkema, Rotterdam.
Miall, A.D. (2006). The Geology of Fluvial Deposits; Sedimentary Facies, Basin Analysis, and Petroleum Geology, 4th Printing. Springer, New York.
Morgan, A.J., Paulen, R.C., Slattery, S.R., Froese, C.R.(2012). Geological Setting for Large Landslides at the Town of Peace River, Alberta (NTS 84C). Open File Report 2012-04. Energy Resource Conservation Board/Alberta Geological Survey, Edmonton.
Occhiette, S. (1973). Les structure et d"formations engendr"es par les glaciers-Essai de mise au point. Revue G"ographique de Montr"al 27, 365380.
Patterson, W.S.B. (1994). The Physics of Glaciers. third ed. Butterworth Heinemann, New York.
Peltier, W.R. (2004). Global glacial isostasy and the surface of the ice-age earth: the ice-5G (VM2) model and GRACE. Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Science 32, 111149.
Plouffe, A., Paulen, R.C., Smith, I.R.(2006). Indicator Mineral Content and Geochemistry of Glacial Sediments from Northwest Alberta (NTS 84L, M): New Opportunities for Mineral Exploration. Open File 5121. Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa, Special Report 77. Alberta Energy and Utility Board, Alberta Geological Survey, Edmonton.
Powell, R.D. (1981). A model for sedimentation by tidewater glaciers. Annals of Glaciology 2, 129134.
Prescott, J.R., Hutton, J.T.(1994). Cosmic ray contributions to dose rate for luminescence and ESR dating: large depth and long-term time variations. Radiation Measurements 23, 497500.
Prest, V.K. (1983). Canada's heritage of glacial features. Geological Survey of Canada 28, 120Miscellaneous Report
Pye, K. (1982). Morphological development of coastal Dunes in a Humid tropical environment, Cape Bedford and Cape Flattery, North Queensland. Geografiska Annalar 64, 213227.
Reeves, B.O.K. (1973). Reeves BOK. 1973. The nature and age of the contact between the Laurentide and Cordilleran ice-sheets in the western interior of North America. Arctic and Alpine Research 5, 116.
Reimchen, T.H.F. (1980). Surficial Geology, Dawson Creek, West of Sixth Meridian, British Columbia. Map 1467A. Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa.
Reimchen, T.H.F., Rutter, N.W.(1972). Quaternary Geology, Dawson Creek, British Columbia. Report of Activities, Part A, Paper 72"1. Geological Survey of Canada, 176177.
Reimer, P.J., Bard, E., Bayliss, A., Beck, J.W., Blackwell, P.G., Ramsey, C.B., Buck, C.E., Cheng, H., Edwards, R.L., Friedrich, M., Grootes, P.M., Guilderson, T.P., Haflidason, H., Hajdas, I., Hatt", C., Heaton, T.J., Hoffmann, D.L., Hogg, A.G., Hughen, K.A., Kaiser, K.F., Kromer, B., Manning, S.W., Niu, M., Reimer, R.W., Richards, D.A., Scott, E.M., Southon, J.R., Staff, R.A., Turney, C.S.M., van der Plicht, J.(2013). IntCal13 and Marine13 radiocarbon age calibration curves 0"50,000 years cal BP. Radiocarbon 55, 18691887.
Roberts, M.C., Cunningham, F.F.(1992). Post-glacial loess deposition in a montane environment: South Thompson River Valley, British Columbia, Canada. Journal of Quaternary Science 7, 291301.
Rutt, I.C., Hagdorn, M., Hulton, N.R.J., Payne, A.J.(2009). The Glimmer community ice sheet model. Journal of Geophysical Research 114, F02004
Rutter, N.W. (1977). Multiple Glaciations in the Area of Williston Lake, British Columbia. Bulletin 273. Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa.
Smith, M.J., Clark, C.D.(2005). Methods for visualization of digitial elevation models for landform mapping. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 30, 885900.
Stokes, C.R., Clark, C.D.(2003). The Dubawnt Lake Palaeo-ice stream: evidence for dynamic ice sheet behaviour on the Canadian Shield and insights regarding the controls on ice-stream location and vigour. Boreas 32, 263279.
Taylor, R.S. (1960). Some Pleistocene lakes of northern Alberta and adjacent areas. Journal of the Alberta Society of Petroleum Geologists 8, 166177.(revised)
Westgate, J.A., Fritz, P., Matthews jr., J.V., Kalas, L., Green, R.(1971). Sediment of mid-Wisconsinan age in west-central Alberta; Geochronology, insects, ostracodes, Mollusca, and the oxygen isotopic composition of mulluscan shells. Geological Society of America 3, 419
Westgate, J.A., Fritz, P., Matthews jr., J.V., Kalas, L., Delmore, L.D., Green, R., Aario, R.(1972). Geochronology and paleoecology of mid-Wisconsinan sediments in west-central Alberta, Canada. International Geological Congress 24, 380
Wolfe, S.A., Huntley, D.J., Ollerhead, J.(2004). Relict Late Wisconsinan dune fields of the northern Great Plains, Canada. G"ographie Physique et Quaternaire 58, 323336.
Wolfe, S.A., Paulen, R.C., Smith, I.R., Lamothe, M.(2007). Age and Paleoenvironmental Significance of Late Wisconsinan Dune Fields in the Mount Watt (84-K) and Fontas River ((4-I) Map Sheets, Northern Alberta and British Columbia.Current Research, 2007"B4Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa.
Woolf, K.E. (1993). Radiocarbon Chronology for Glacial Lake Peace.M.Sc. ThesisSimon Fraser University, Burnaby, B.C.
Young, R.R., Burns, J.A., Smith, D.G., Arnold, L.D., Rains, R.B.(1994). A single, late Wisconsinan Laurentide glaciations, Edmonton area and southwestern Alberta. Geology 22, 683686.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Quaternary Research
  • ISSN: 0033-5894
  • EISSN: 1096-0287
  • URL: /core/journals/quaternary-research
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Type Description Title
PDF
Supplementary materials

Hickin et al. supplementary material
Supplementary Data

 PDF (216 KB)
216 KB

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 76 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 307 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 20th January 2017 - 17th August 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.