Glaciers / Glacial Features
Glaciation is a slow process. As an ice age approaches, the climate gradually becomes colder, but when the climate shifts to warmer temperatures, the change is much quicker (approximately 1000 years). Glacier ice varies from ice you would find in your freezer. It is made of packed snow and has a plastic-like movement. The last glacier to pass through this region was the Wisconsin, which brought the Laurentide Ice Sheet to the region, 11,000 years ago. The Laurentide Ice Sheet was up to two miles thick and merged on its western side with the Cordilleran Ice Sheet. Mount Washington at 6,288 feet is the highest peak in Northeastern United States and is approximately 120 miles northeast of Saint-Gaudens NHS. During the Wisconsin ice age Mount Washington was blanketed in ice a mile (5,280 feet) thick.
Did You Know?
Bas-relief is the most difficult form of sculpture. The detail is achieved by the way that light strikes the relief’s shallow surface, creating shadows that give an illusion of depth. Some of Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ portrait reliefs are only 1/8th of an inch deep.