Nature Notes

Vol. XV December - 1937 No. 4

Paradise Glacier

To augment recession studies secured from annual measurements of the four active valley glaciers (Nisqually, Emmons, Carbon, and South Tahoma) similar measurements have been initiated at the termini of two intermediate glacierets - the Paradise and Stevens.

The ice field known as the Paradise Glacier is the best known of the two mentioned and, on September 23, 1932, three prominent rocks in front of its broad face were selected and appropriately marked as points A, B, and C. Measurements have been made annually, whenever possible, from these points.

Actually the Paradise Glacier and the Stevens Glacier are combined in one ice field. That part denoted as the Paradise was formerly a large lobe of ice that extended down the extreme upper portion of the Paradise River valley and which gave rise to the Paradise River. Since that time this lobe has receded to a point where, today, it represents little more than a flank of the parent ice field which may be regarded as the Stevens Glacier. The amount of water that flows from the Paradise Glacier has been materially reduced and the justly famous ice caves of a few years ago are now non-existant.

Tabulation of recession data.

YearDistance from marker to the ice Tabulated recession.

1932 A - 13 feet
B - 38 feet
C - 45 feet
Points established.

1932-33 A - covered with snow
B - 43 feet
C - 52 feet
Not determined
5 feet
7 feet

1933-34 A - 20 feet
B - 78.5 feet
C - 76 feet
7 feet (since 1932)
35.5 feet
24 feet

1934-35 A - covered with snow
B - 102 feet
C - covered with snow
Not determined.
23.5 feet
Not determined.

1935-36 A - 92 feet
B - 162 feet
C - 110 feet
72 feet (since 1934)
60 feet
34 feet (since 1934)

1936-37 A - edge of ice covered with snow
B - 190 feet
C - edge of ice covered with snow
Not determined
28 feet
Not determined.

The above figures indicate that, from Point A, the average recession of the Paradise Glacier is 19.75 feet per year; from Point B, 30.40 feet per year, and from Point C, 16.25 feet per year. The average recession for the ice front of the Paradise Glacier, as computed from the three averages obtained from measurements from Points A, B, and C is 22.13 feet per year.


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