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A Holocene record of snow-avalanche and flood activity reconstructed from a lacustrine sedimentary sequence in Oldevatnet, western Norway

Abstract : Two lacustrine sediment cores from Oldevatnet in western Norway have been studied in order to produce a record of floods, mass-wasting events and glacier fluctuations during the last 7300 years. River floods, density currents and snow-avalanches have deposited distinct 'event layers' at the lake floor throughout this time interval. In this study, a novel approach has been applied to distinguish event layers from the continuous background sedimentation, using Rb/Sr-ratios from X-Ray Fluorescence data. Grain-size distribution and the sedimentological parameters 'mean' and 'sorting' were used to further infer the depositional processes behind each layer. Our data suggest a record dominated by snow-avalanches, with the largest activity occurring during the 'Little Ice Age' (LIA). This increase in snow-avalanche activity observed during the LIA was probably caused by a combination of generally increasing winter precipitation and the advance of local glaciers towards the steep valley sides. Several fluctuations in snow-avalanche activity are also recognized prior to the LIA. Proxies of glacial activity from the background sediments indicate a similar development as earlier palaeoclimatic reconstructions from the area. It differs from previous reconstructions, however, by suggesting a lower glacial activity in the period from 2200 to 1000 cal. yr BP.
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Submitted on : Thursday, February 2, 2012 - 4:41:12 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, September 25, 2019 - 2:56:02 PM

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Kristian Vasskog, Atle Nesje, Eivind Nagel Støren, Nicolas Waldmann, Emmanuel Chapron, et al.. A Holocene record of snow-avalanche and flood activity reconstructed from a lacustrine sedimentary sequence in Oldevatnet, western Norway. The holocene, London: Sage, 2012, 21 (4), pp.597-614. ⟨10.1177/0959683610391316⟩. ⟨insu-00665776⟩

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