Outlet Glaciers of the Pleistocene (LGM) South Tibetan Ice Sheet between Cho Oyu and Shisha Pangma as Potential Sources of Former Megafloods

  1. I. Peter Martini2,
  2. Victor R. Baker3 and
  3. Guillermina Garzón4
  1. M. Kuhle

Published Online: 17 MAR 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9781444304299.ch17

Flood and Megaflood Processes and Deposits: Recent and Ancient Examples

Flood and Megaflood Processes and Deposits: Recent and Ancient Examples

How to Cite

Kuhle, M. (2002) Outlet Glaciers of the Pleistocene (LGM) South Tibetan Ice Sheet between Cho Oyu and Shisha Pangma as Potential Sources of Former Megafloods, in Flood and Megaflood Processes and Deposits: Recent and Ancient Examples (eds I. P. Martini, V. R. Baker and G. Garzón), Blackwell Publishing Ltd., Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444304299.ch17

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Department of Land Resource Science, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada

  2. 3

    Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721–0011, USA

  3. 4

    Dpto de Geodinámica, Fac. de Geología, Universidad of Complutense, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Author Information

  1. Geographical Institute, Geography and High Mountain Geomorphology, University of Goettingen, Goldschmidtstraße 5, D-37077 Goettingen, Germany

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 17 MAR 2009
  2. Published Print: 10 FEB 2002

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780632064045

Online ISBN: 9781444304299

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Keywords:

  • outlet glaciers of Pleistocene (LGM) south Tibetan ice sheet - between Cho Oyu and Shisha Pangma as potential sources of former megafloods;
  • field evidence;
  • Bo chu (also bote chu, pa ho or Sun kosi khola) valley;
  • Middle Bo Chu valley;
  • upper Bo Chu and adjoining parts of Tibetan Plateau;
  • Kyetrak valley area;
  • Kyetrak Chu located to north-north-west of Cho Oyu - key area for understanding history of glaciation and related events of region

Summary

Field evidence suggests that the Late Pleistocene Bo Chu (c. 75 km long) and Kyetrak Chu (c. 100 km long) glaciers did not originate in the main Himalayas range, but farther north in southern Tibet. From this location, they flowed down through the Himalayas to the south slope. Ice flow across the local water divide in southern Tibet (Bo Chu glacier) and the Himalayas (Kyetrak Chu glacier) suggests that outlet glaciers formed from a major ice sheet covering the Tibetan plateau. Large lakes developed, dammed by Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) to Late-glacial (c. 20–13 ka) Himalayan glaciers on the southern edge of Tibet, as documented by varve-like rhythmites dovetailed with moraine deposits. Late Late-glacial deglaciation resulted in major glacier lake outbursts. The megafloods apparently removed vast amounts of glacigenic sediments from the high transverse valleys of the Himalayas and redeposited them into the Himalayan foreland.