|Posted by: sebastianjer, 3:46 AM GMT on June 11, 2012||+0|
Bryson mentions the retreat of Alpine glaciers, common grist for current headlines. “What do they find when the ice sheets retreat, in the Alps?”
We recall the two-year-old report saying a mature forest and agricultural water-management structures had been discovered emerging from the ice, seeing sunlight for the first time in thousands of years. Bryson interrupts excitedly.
“A silver mine! The guys had stacked up their tools because they were going to be back the next spring to mine more silver, only the snow never went,” he says. “There used to be less ice than now. It’s just getting back to normal.”
One question I wanted to ask the rangers there was “How old are the glaciers there?” There is a very common misconception that the glaciers there exist from the last ice age. That of course is wrong, but I was curious what they would say. The answer I got from the ranger was 3,000 years old. That is a reasonable answer, but one I find unlikely. Glaciers farther north and higher than Glacier National Park are typically much younger than that. I have never been able to find an ice core from glacier national park that would answer this question. Certainly it is possible that some of the glaciers are 3,000 years old, but I suspect that 900-1,000 is more accurate. I have yet to find enough accurate information to answer this though.
Glaciers of North America—
GLACIERS OF THE CONTERMINOUS UNITED STATES
GLACIERS OF THE WESTERN UNITED STATES
By ROBERT M. KRIMMEL
With a section on GLACIER RETREAT IN GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, MONTANA
By CARL H. KEY, DANIEL B. FAGRE, and RICHARD K. MENICKE
All named glaciers within the park are mountain glaciers that have retreated dramatically since the middle 19th-century end of the Little Ice Age in the Western United States.
Since the end of the Little Ice Age, small glaciers that were insulated or protected by the surrounding topography tended to lose proportionately less area to recession. Commonly, they changed rapidly to a stagnant condition. The larger glaciers generally experienced proportionately greater and more rapid reduction in area than the smaller glaciers, but they still continue to be active (ﬁg. 25A). During the last 150 years, the larger glaciers,which had descended below cirque margins into subalpine terrain, would have had the greatest exposure to solar radiation and warmer temperatures for longer periods of time. As these large glaciers retreated and shrank in area, they regularly separated into discrete ice masses.As you can plainly see the glacier melt in the park is not a recent development, easily preceding the advent of the internal combustion engine.
In all cases, it must be noted that, although initially the distance of retreat was small, substantial thinning—and therefore appreciable volume loss—likely took place. ThisSo it a pretty well established fact that the Glaciers in Glacier National Park have been receding for over 150 years and not some cataclysmic current event except in the minds of the ALGORES of the world.
preceded the eventual retreat of termini. From 1910 onward, recession rates increased (Dyson, 1948; Johnson, 1980). This corresponded to a period of increased scientiﬁc interest in Glacier National Park glaciers, and many of the early investigators bore witness to dramatic instances of glacier recession. Following the middle 1940’s, recession rates decreased, and glaciers became increasingly conﬁned within cirque margins
Because of the apparently long and relatively stable climatic interval preceding the Little Ice Age, it is believed that most of the glacier ice remaining in Glacier National Park was formed during the Little Ice Age and is not a relic from the Pleistocene Epoch...Interesting isn't it that they refer to the time prior to the formation of glaciers in the park as "relatively stable climatic interval " or as Reid Bryson might have said "back when it was normal."
The Little Ice Age comprised a several-hundred-year-long cool period(about 1400 to about 1850 in North America), during which Glacier National Park glaciers formed and expandedSo it seems that perhaps our ranger may be off a bit in his information. According to this paper the glaciers in the park are a product of the Little Ice Age. If this is indeed true and I have little reason to question the authors, they being scientist and all, when Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492 the glaciers in Glacier National Park were just babies if they were there at all.
If for example as was proven before the AGW nonsense took hold of science that the Medieval Warming Period was warmer than today, as was accepted until these guys got their hands and agenda on the data and the process, why did we not have runaway warming? Where was the enhanced greenhouse effect while they were making wine in England?Or when there were no glaciers in Glacier National Park.
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