Record of late Pleistocene glaciation and deglaciation in the southern Cascade Range: II. Flux of glacial flour in a sediment core from Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon

Journal of Paleolimnology
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Abstract

During the late Wisconsin, glacial flour from alpine glaciers along the east side of the Cascade Range in southern Oregon was deposited in Upper Klamath Lake. Quantitative interpretation of magnetic properties and grain-size data of cored sediments from Caledonia Marsh on the west side of the lake provides a continuous record of the flux of glacial flour spanning the last ≈37 000 calendar years. For modeling purposes, the lake sediments from the 13-m core were divided into three sedimentary components defined from magnetic, geochemical, petrographic, and grain-size data. The components are (1) strongly magnetic, glacial flour made up of extremely fine-grained, fresh volcanic rock particles, (2) less magnetic lithic material made up of coarser, weathered volcanic detritus, and (3) non-magnetic biogenic material (largely biogenic silica). Quantitative interpretation is possible because there has been no significant postdepositional destruction or formation of magnetic minerals, nor alteration affecting grain-size distributions. Major steps involved in the interpretation include: (1) computation of biogenic and lithic components; (2) determination of magnetic properties and grain-size distributions of the non-glacial and glacial flour end-members; (3) computation of the contents of weathered and glacial flour components for each sample; (4) development of an age model based on the mass accumulation of the non-glacial lithic component; and (5) use of the age model and glacial flour contents to compute the flux of glacial flour. Comparison of the glacial flour record from Upper Klamath Lake to mapped glacial features suggests a nearly linear relation between flux of glacial flour and the extent of nearby glaciers. At ≈22 ka, following an extended period during which glaciers of limited size waxed and waned, late Wisconsin (Waban) glaciers began to grow, reaching their maximum extent at ≈19 ka. Glaciers remained near their maximum extent for ≈1000 years. During this period, lake sediments were made up of ≈80% glacial flour. The content of glacial flour decreased as the glaciers receded, and reached undetectable levels by 14 ka.

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Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Record of late Pleistocene glaciation and deglaciation in the southern Cascade Range: II. Flux of glacial flour in a sediment core from Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon
Series title Journal of Paleolimnology
DOI 10.1023/B:JOPL.0000019229.75336.7a
Volume 31
Year Published 2004
Language English
Publisher Springer
Contributing office(s) Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center
Description 18 p.
First page 235
Last page 252
Country United States
State Oregon
Other Geospatial Upper Klamath Lake
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