Icefield Glacia, Canada
The Columbia Icefield is a surviving remnant of the thick ice mass that
once mantled in the
mountains of the Western Canada. Lying on a wide, elevated plateau, it
is the largest ice field
in the Canadian Rockies. Nearly three-quarters of the park's highest peaks
are located close
to the Icefield. It is ideally placed to catch much of the moisture that
Pacific winds carry across
the British Columbia interior. Most of this precipitation falls as snow,
up to 7m a year.
Since more snow falls in a year than can melt during the short summer season,
As time passes, the snow transforms into ice and begins to flow outward
through gaps in the
mountains surrounding the Icefield, creating great tongues of ice called
Athabasca is the most-visited glacier on the North American continent.
from the Icefield Centre, its ice is in continuous motion, creeping forward
at the rate of several
centimeters per day. Spilling from the Columbia Icefield over three giant
bedrock steps, the
glacier flows down a valley, like a frozen, slow-moving river. Because
of a warming climate,
the Athabasca Glacier has been receding or melting for the last 125 years.
Losing half its volume
and retreating more than 1.5 kms, the shrinking glacier has left a moonscape
of rocky moraines
in its wake.
Warning by Parks Canada:
The glacier is dangerous. People have been killed falling into deep, hidden
cracks called crevasses in the glacier.
For your safety do not cross the barriers.
(L) Rocky mountains are covered in part with glacia. (R) A welcome sign
plate to the Icefields by Parks Canada
(L) Athabasca Glacier on the Columbia Icefields (R) A 1970's snowmobile
car at the Columbia Icefields
(L) Athabasca Glacier on the Columbia Icefields (R) A snowmobile ( snow-coach
) tour bus at the Columbia Icefields
Warning by Parks Canada:
If you are living with heart or lung ailments, over-exerting yourself at
this altitude is dangerous. The elderly are especially at risk.
Big Bend on the Icefield Parkway, Alberta
A mountain lake along the Icefield Highway
Icefield Highway which was viewed from aircraft to Tokyo, This photo was
taken in May 2008.
Bow Summit, Canada
Peyto Lake (pea-toe) is a glacier-fed lake located in Banff National Park
in the Canadian Rockies.
The lake itself is easily accessed from the Icefields Parkway. The lake
is formed in a valley of
the Waputik Range, between Caldron Peak, Peyto Peak and Mount Jimmy Simpson,
at an elevation
of 1,860 m. During the summer, significant amounts of glacial rock
flour flow into the lake, and
these suspended rock particles give the lake a bright, turquoise color.
Because of its vivid color,
photos of the lake often appear in illustrated books, and area around the
lake is a popular
sightseeing spot for tourists in the park. The lake is best seen from Bow
Summit, the highest
point on the Icefield Parkway.
(L) A trail map of the Bow Summit (M) Information recorded is released
by turning handle of the voice machine.
(R) Information guide about Peyto Galacier
Waputik Mountains and Peyto Lake, Banff National Park
(L) Waputik Mountains and Peyto Lake (R) A rock flour ( glacial flour )
is flowing into Peyto Lake.
(L) Waputik Mountains and Peyto Lake (R) Icefield Parkway runs heading
to the Canadian Rocky mountains.
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The article was written and photographs were taken by Dr. J. Miyamoto,
in July 2011,
unless otherwise described.