SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Keywords:

  • in situ stress;
  • extensional fracture;
  • exfoliation;
  • quarrying;
  • glacial erosion;
  • Swiss Alps

In the shadow of the Matterhorn, the broad form of the Matter Valley—like so many throughout the Alps—is interrupted by a deep U-shaped glacial trough. Carved into a landscape reflecting millennia of tectonic uplift and river erosion, growing evidence suggests the 100-meter-deep U-shaped groove was produced shortly after a shift toward major cycles of Alpine glaciation almost a million years ago. Subsequent glaciations may have therefore had little effect on the landscape.