Some of the ideas discussed in this blog are published in my new book called "The Stonehenge Bluestones" -- available by post and through good bookshops everywhere. Bad bookshops might not have it....
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Monday, 25 August 2014

Regenerated glaciers

Regenerated glaciers are unusual in that they are able to survive in anomalously low altitude situations because they are physically separated from their ice and snow sources.  The glacier in the top photo -- an unnamed glacier in the Franz Josef Fjord complex of East Greenland -- exists right down at sea level.  The lower photo shows the Supphelle Glacier in Fjaerland, Sogn, Norway.  The lower part of this glacier is only 60m above sea-level, which makes it the "lowest glacier in southern Norway."  In both cases the glaciers are sustained by broken glacier ice which tumbles down a cliff face before becoming compressed and reconstituted down below.  These glaciers are difficult to research, given the constant torrent of ice fragments coming down from above.......  hard hats are not of much use in places such as these, since some of the ice blocks are enormous.....

In the Greenland glacier there is a huge mass of dead ice covered with moraine down at the base of the fjordside.  There is much rockfall debris as well, and it may be that this feature is partly a rock glacier and partly a normal glacier made of ice.

The ice in the lower part of Supphellebreen is much cleaner.  But it is on its way out -- it's melting very fast, both because of warmer conditions down on the valley floor and also because the supply from the icefall above is gradually being cut off.

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