Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768dbb666b-ptlz9 Total loading time: 0.356 Render date: 2023-02-04T06:28:19.436Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

Formation of a pronival rampart on sub-Antarctic Marion Island

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 August 2007

David W. Hedding*
Affiliation:
Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences, North West University, Mafeking 2735, South Africa
Paul D. Sumner
Affiliation:
Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria 0002, South Africa
Stephen D. Holness
Affiliation:
South African National Parks Board, Port Elizabeth 6013, South Africa
K. Ian Meiklejohn
Affiliation:
Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria 0002, South Africa

Abstract

The formation of a pronival (protalus) rampart on sub-Antarctic Marion Island is investigated. Morphological attributes show debris at the angle of repose on the rampart's proximal slope and at a lower angle on the distal slope. Relative-age dating, based on the percentage moss cover and weathering rind thickness of the clastic component, indicates accumulation mainly on the proximal slope and rampart crest, implying upslope (retrogressive) accumulation. This contrasts with a previously published model for pronival ramparts, which proposes rampart growth by addition of material to the distal slope. Development of the Marion Island rampart is suggested to result from the control exerted by a relatively low-angled surface and a shrinking snowbed. A small debris step formed on the proximal slope appears to be a response to decreased snowfalls due to changing climate over the last c. 50 years. Growth rate of the rampart is considered to be variable during the Holocene in response to changes in climate and debris supply.

Type
EARTH SCIENCES
Copyright
Copyright © Antarctic Science Ltd 2007

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Ballantyne, C.K. 1987a. Winter-talus, nivation ridges, and pro-talus ramparts. Journal of Glaciology, 33, 246247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ballantyne, C.K. 1987b. Some observations on the morphology and sedimentology of two active protalus ramparts, Lyngen, northern Norway. Arctic and Alpine Research, 19, 167174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ballantyne, C.K. & Kirkbride, M.P. 1986. The characteristics and significance of some late glacial protalus ramparts in upland Britain. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 11, 659671.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Birnie, R.V. & Thom, G. 1982. Preliminary observations on two rock glaciers in South Georgia, Falkland Islands Dependencies. Journal of Glaciology, 28, 377386.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Boelhouwers, J. & Hall, K. 2002. Periglacial and permafrost research in the southern hemisphere. South African Journal of Science, 98, 46.Google Scholar
Boelhouwers, J.C., Jager, D.F. & De Joode, A. 1999. Application of relative-age dating methods to openwork debris flow deposits in the Cederberg mountains. South African Geographical Journal, 81, 135142.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Boelhouwers, J.C., Holness, S.D. & Sumner, P.D. 2000. Geomorphological characteristics of small debris flows on Junior's Kop, Marion Island, maritime sub-Antarctic. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 25, 341352.3.0.CO;2-D>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Boelhouwers, J.C., Holness, S.D. & Sumner, P.D. 2003. The maritime subantarctic: a distinct periglacial environment. Geomorphology, 52, 3955.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Curry, A.M., Walden, J. & Cheshire, A. 2001. The Nant Ffrancon ‘protalus rampart’: evidence for Late Pleistocene paraglacial landsliding in Snowdonia, Wales. Proceedings of the Geologists' Association, 112, 317330.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Grab, S.W. 1996. The occurrence of a Holocene rock glacier on mount Kenya: some observations and comments. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, 7, 381389.3.0.CO;2-5>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hall, K.J. 1978. Quaternary glacial geology of Marion Island. PhD thesis, University of the Orange Free State, Bloemfontein, 269 pp. [Unpublished].Google Scholar
Hall, K.J. 1980. Late Glacial ice cover and palaeotemperatures on sub-Antarctic Marion Island. Palaeogeography Palaeoclimatology Palaeoecology, 29, 243259.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hall, K.J. 2002. Review of present and Quaternary periglacial processes and landforms of the maritime and sub-Antarctic region. South African Journal of Science, 98, 7181.Google Scholar
Hall, K.J. & Meiklejohn, K.I. 1997. Some observations regarding protalus ramparts. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, 8, 245249.3.0.CO;2-R>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Harris, C. 1986. Some observations concerning the morphology and sedimentology of a protalus rampart, Okstindan, Norway. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 11, 673676.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hedding, D.W. 2006. Geomorphology and geomorphological responses to climate change in the interior of sub-Antarctic Marion Island. MSc thesis, University of Pretoria, South Africa, 113 pp. [Unpublished].Google Scholar
Holness, S.D. 2001. Periglacial slope processes, landforms and environment at Marion Island, maritime subantarctic. PhD thesis, University of the Western Cape, Bellville, South Africa, 551 pp. [Unpublished].Google Scholar
Holness, S.D. & Boelhouwers, J. 1998. Some observations on Holocene changes in periglacial activity at Long Ridge, Marion Island. South African Journal of Science, 94, 399403.Google Scholar
McCarroll, D. 1989. Schmidt Hammer relative-age evaluation of a possible pre-“Little Ice Age” Neoglacial moraine, Leirbreen, southern Norway. Norsk Geologisk Tidsskrift, 69, 125130.Google Scholar
McDougall, I., Verwoerd, W. & Chevallier, L. 2001. K–Ar geochronology of Marion Island, Southern Ocean. Geological Magazine, 138, 117.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ono, Y. & Watanabe, T. 1986. A protalus rampart related to alpine debris flows in the Kuranosuke Cirque, northern Japanese Alps. Geografiska Annaler, 86A, 213223.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pérez, F.L. 1988. Debris transport over snow surfaces: a field experiment. Revue de Géomorphologie Dynamique, 37, 81101.Google Scholar
Sancho, L.G., Palacios, D., De Marcos, J. & Valladares, F. 2001. Geomorphological significance of lichen colonization in a present snow hollow: Hoya del Cuchillar de las Navajas, Sierra de Gredos (Spain). Catena, 43, 323340.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Schulze, B.R. 1971. The climate of Marion Island. In Van Zinderen Bakker, E.M., Winterbottom, J.M. & Dyer, R.A., eds. Marion and Prince Edward Islands. Cape Town: Balkema, 1631.Google Scholar
Shakesby, R.A. 1997. Pronival (protalus) ramparts: a review of forms, processes, diagnostic criteria and palaeoenvironmental implications. Progress in Physical Geography, 21, 394418.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Shakesby, R.A., Matthews, J.A. & McCarroll, D. 1995. Pronival (‘protalus’) ramparts in the Romsdalsalpane, southern Norway: forms, terms, subnival processes, and alternative mechanisms of formation. Arctic and Alpine Research, 27, 271282.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Shakesby, R.A., Matthews, J.A., McEwan, L.J. & Berrisford, M.S. 1999. Snow-push processes in pronival (protalus) rampart formation: geomorphological evidence from Smørbotn, Romsdalsalpane, Southern Norway. Geografiska Annaler, 81A, 3145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Smith, V. 2002. Climate change in the sub-Antarctic: an illustration from Marion Island. Climate Change, 52, 345357.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sumner, P., Nel, W., Holness, S.D. & Boelhouwers, J.C. 2002. Rock weathering characteristics as relative-age dating indicators for glacial and post-glacial landforms on Marion Island. South African Geographical Journal, 84, 153157.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sumner, P.D., Meiklejohn, K.I., Boelhouwers, J.C. & Hedding, D.W. 2004. Climate change melts Marion Island snow and ice. South African Journal of Science, 100, 395398.Google Scholar
Thorn, C.E. 1992. “Periglacial geomorphology: what, where, when?” In Dixon, J.C. & Abrahams, A.D., eds. Periglacial geomorphology. London: Wiley, 130.Google Scholar
Verwoerd, W.J. 1971. Geology. In Van Zinderen Bakker, E.M., Winterbottom, J.M. & Dyer, R.A., eds. Marion and Prince Edward Islands. Cape Town: Balkema, 4061.Google Scholar
10
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Formation of a pronival rampart on sub-Antarctic Marion Island
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Formation of a pronival rampart on sub-Antarctic Marion Island
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Formation of a pronival rampart on sub-Antarctic Marion Island
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *