Variations in clastic sediment texture, mineralogy of both evaporites formed at the surface and precipitates formed below the lake floor, and the relative chemical activities of the major dissolved components of the chemical precipitates, have allowed reconstruction of the history of salinity and water-level changes in Didwana Lake, Thar Desert, India. Hypersaline conditions prevailed at about the Last Glacial Maximum, with little evidence of clastic sediments entering the lake. Between ca. 13,000 and 6000 B.P. the lake level fluctuated widely, the lake alternately hypersaline and fresh, and clastic sediments were delivered to the lake at a low rate. Deep-water conditions occurred ca. 6000 B.P. and clastic influx increased abruptly. The water level dropped towards 4000 B.P. when the lake dried briefly. Since 4000 B.P. the lake has been ephemeral with a lowered rate of sedimentation and mildly saline conditions rather like those of today. This sequence of changes documented in the lake parallels changes in vegetation recorded in published pollen diagrams from both the Thar and the Arabian Sea. Correlation of the various lines of evidence suggests that the climate of the Last Glacial Maximum at Didwana was dry and windy with a weak monsson circulation. The monsson was re-established between ca. 13,000 and a little before 6000 B.P., and, when winter rainfall increased ca. 6000 B.P., the lake filled to its maximum depth. ?? 1984.
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Late quaternary sediments, minerals, and inferred geochemical history of Didwana Lake, Thar Desert, India