A glacial readvance during retreat of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet, British Columbia central coast

Jordan B.R. Eamer, Dan H. Shugar, Ian J. Walker, Olav B. Lian, Christina M. Neudorf, Alice M. Telka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Descriptions of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet retreat after the last glacial maximum have included short-lived readvances occurring during the Older and Younger Dryas stadial periods and into the Holocene, but identification of these events has been largely limited to southwest and central British Columbia and northwest Washington State. We present evidence of a late Pleistocene readvance of Cordilleran ice occurring on the central coast of British Columbia on Calvert Island, between northern Vancouver Island and Haida Gwaii. Evidence is provided by sedimentological and paleoecological information contained in a sedimentary sequence combined with geomorphic mapping of glacial features in the region. Results indicate that a cold climate existed between 15.1 and 14.3 cal ka BP and that ice advanced to, and then retreated from, the western edge of the island between 14.2 and 13.8 cal ka BP. These data provide the first evidence of a major fluctuation in the retreating ice sheet margin in this region and suggest that a cold climate was a major factor in ice readvance. These data contribute to the understanding of past temperature, ice loading and crustal response, the nature of ice margin retreat, and the paleoenvironment of an understudied area of the Pacific Northwest.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)468-481
Number of pages14
JournalQuaternary Research (United States)
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2017


  • Cordilleran Ice Sheet
  • Dryas
  • geomorphic mapping
  • glacial readvance
  • late Pleistocene
  • macrofossils
  • paleoecology
  • stratigraphy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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