HomeNewsSpeel Glacier Retreats out of Alaska - From a Glacier's Perspective

Speel Glacier Retreats out of Alaska – From a Glacier’s Perspective



Speel Glacier in 1984 and 2022 Landsat photos illustrating lake enlargement and detachment of tributaries A-C. Crimson arrow is 1984 terminus location and yellow arrow is 2022 terminus location.

In 1984 I noticed Speel Glacier whereas flying into Juneau, AK to work with the Juneau Icefield Analysis Program. Speel Glacier is south of the Taku Inlet and the Juneau Icefield draining west from a shared accumulation space with Wright Glacier. Not like the map on my lap, there was now an enormous lake on the terminus of the glacier. This put up examines the retreat of this glacier throughout the worldwide boundary, out of Alaska, and the enlargement of the unnamed lake at its terminus utilizing Landsat photos.

Speel Glacier terminus on 8-18-2022 with the Alaska/British Columbia boundary in blue.

In 1948 Speel Glacier ended on the head of a braided outwash plain, generated by the Speel River. Upglacier in 1948 there was a small aspect valley lake impounded by the glacier, Speel Lake. The decrease a part of the glacier was closely particles lined and stagnant in 1948.  I  Within the 1984 Landsat picture the glacier had retreated 3 kilometers from the 1948 place and was fed by 4 separate tributaries flowing into the glacier A-D.  n 1984 the unique Speel Lake had drained and a brand new lake had fashioned filling the valley that the glacier had stuffed in 1948. The proglacial lake was 2.2 km lengthy. By 2003 the glacier had retreated a further 1.8 km from 1984 to the place the lake bends east, and the principle tributary from the north separated from the glacier previous to 1984. By 2013 tributaries A and B had been utterly separated.  In 2022 the glacier has retreated  6.35 km since 1948, 3.3 km since 1984 and the reference to the three of the 4 tribuaries had been misplaced A-C.  The tributary detachments have led to continued retreat, have diminished enter to the principle glacier, which by the summer season of 2022 resulted within the glacier retreating throughout the worldwide boundary from Alaska into British Columbia. The brand new lake is now over 7 km lengthy, and needs to be known as Speel Lake once more. The retreat of this glacier suits the sample of different glaciers within the area Discipline, Gilkey, and Tulsequah Glacier  (Pelto (2017). The  detachments are frequent and significanly influence ice dynamics on the Juneau Icefield (Davies et al 2022). There we discovered 176 such detachments/disconnections within the outlet and valley glaciers of the Juneau Icefield Davies et al (2022).

Speel Glacier in 1948 USGS map.


Speel Glacier in 2003 and 2013 Landsat photos illustrating lake enlargement and detachment of tributaries A-C. Crimson arrow is 1984 terminus location and inexperienced arrows are detachment of tributaries.




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