Month / August 2015

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  • Roundup: Glacial Sounds, Rhythms and Reactions

    Flutist Claire Chase Captures Glaciers in Music Claire Chase performs “Glacier,” a piece by Japanese composer Dai Fujikura. “…in Chase’s performance of “Glacier” (2010), a solo for bass flute by Dai Fujikura, her breath floated audibly above much of the music, giving it a ghostly quality,” New Focus Recordings writes. “With subtle changes in the angle…

  • Photo Friday: The Snow Star Festival

    In the Peruvian Andes, tens of thousands of pilgrims climb to the Sinakara valley to participate in an annual, multiple day celebration – Qoyllur Rit’i, or the Snow Star Festival. Held under a waning moon, the festivities are surrounded by the looming glaciers of Mount Qullqip’unqu. The Catholic festival celebrates not only Jesus, but also the mountain gods…

  • Emerging Storms: Glacier Dust and Climate Change

    Dust storms are most often associated with hot deserts. However, there are 5 million square kilometres of cold arid land globally where significant dust storms have been reported. The combination of sparse vegetation and strong winds make some humid cold climate areas important dust sources. These can be found in Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Iceland…

  • Did Glaciers Lure Wolves Back into California?

    After more than 90 years since the last wolf in California was killed, a pack was recently observed near Mount Shasta. Its presence was established by photographs taken earlier this month by trail cameras managed by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). These images show five gray wolf pups and two adults in…

  • Meru – The Story of The Impossible

    A spine-chilling documentary of three climbers, Conrad Anker, Jimmy Chin and Renan Ozturk, premiered in New York last week. It shows how they maintained a fine balance between insanity and persistence as they filmed their climb of the Shark’s Fin on Mount Meru.  It is grim trying to understand the drive it took to attempt…

  • Roundup: Tien Shan, Breweries, and Glacier Plants

    Glacier Loss in Tien Shan Populations in Central Asia are heavily dependent on snow and glacier melt for their water supplies. Changes to the glaciers in the main mountain range in this region, the Tien Shan, have been reported over the past decade. However, reconstructions over longer, multi-decadal timescales and the mechanisms underlying these variations—both…

  • Photo Friday: Quyllur Rit’i – Eulogy for Glaciers

    In the ancient Andes, high mountains were worshiped for their power of controlling the weather as well as crop productivity. Moreover, Andean people honored these mountains as being the origin of their culture, the home of powerful spirits, and the linkage between the Earth and sky. Hence, it is not surprising that they hold ceremonies every…

  • Mines in Kyrgyzstan Exacerbate Glacier Advance

    Mines in Kyrgyzstan contribute to increased glacier advance, according to a new study from Durham University. Over 15 years, the Kumtor gold mine dumped debris in layers as much as 180 meters thick on parts of glaciers. For comparison, 180 meters is about twice the height from the base of the pedestal on which the Statue of Liberty sites…

  • Melting Glaciers Inspire Artists

    Artists have witnessed, documented, and represented glaciers with performances, photographs, movies, and various forms of art. Recently, the glaciers have come to embody multitudes of social connotations, including as indicators of the most tangible manifestation of anthropogenic climate change, according to M Jackson at Department of Geography, University of Oregon, in her paper Glacier and…

  • Ecuadorean Eruption Sparks Fears of Glacier Floods

    Ash erupted from Ecuador’s glacier-covered Cotopaxi volcano last week after seventy quiet years. The debris shot five kilometres into the air, covering homes, cars, fields and roads as it descended, according to the Independent. Patricio Ramon, of Ecuador’s Instituto Geofísico, said the eruption was phreatic, meaning that molten rock encountered water, creating a forceful release of…