Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-227
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-227
08 Feb 2024
 | 08 Feb 2024
Status: this preprint is open for discussion.

Glacial Vermicular Ridge Features on Axel Heiberg Island, Nunavut, Canada

Shannon M. Hibbard, Gordon R. Osinski, Etienne Godin, Antero Kukko, Chimira Andres, Shawn Chartrand, Anna Grau Galofre, A. Mark Jellinek, and Wendy Boucher

Abstract. Vermicular Ridge Features (VRFs) comprise a series of ridges and troughs with a circular, sinuous, and anastomosing morphology composed of clast-rich sandy diamict. VRFs were first reported on the south coast of Devon Island, Nunavut, Canada, in the Dundas Harbour region. Here, we document the presence of VRFs near Mokka Fjord on Axel Heiberg Island, Nunavut, Canada. We utilize field observations, ultra high resolution LiDAR, and ground penetrating radar to characterize and compare the morphometry and sedimentology of VRFs near Mokka Fjord to other periglacial, paraglacial, and glacial landforms. VRFs near Mokka Fjord have a diameter ranging from 6 to 37 m and reach up to 1.5 m in height. They comprise clast-rich glaciofluvial sediment and till. A leading periglacial (i.e., segregation ice features/lithalsas) and glacial (i.e., ring-ridge moraines and kame/kettled terraces) origin are presented. We interpret Mokka Fjord VRFs to be an ice-marginal feature resulting from paraglacial ablation of buried glacial ice producing a hummocky ring-ridge moraine comprised of ice marginal and supra- and englacial debris. This formation mechanism would infer a largely polythermal glacial environment with limited water supply. Likely from occasional warm-based periods at the ice margins which may allow sediment output and ice burial from basal ice debris redistribution or the thinning and subsequent burial of snout ice from glaciofluvial outwash.

Shannon M. Hibbard, Gordon R. Osinski, Etienne Godin, Antero Kukko, Chimira Andres, Shawn Chartrand, Anna Grau Galofre, A. Mark Jellinek, and Wendy Boucher

Status: open (until 21 Mar 2024)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2024-227', Anonymous Referee #1, 22 Feb 2024 reply
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Shannon Hibbard, 26 Feb 2024 reply
      • RC2: 'Reply on AC1', Anonymous Referee #1, 28 Feb 2024 reply
  • RC3: 'Comment on egusphere-2024-227', Anonymous Referee #2, 29 Feb 2024 reply
Shannon M. Hibbard, Gordon R. Osinski, Etienne Godin, Antero Kukko, Chimira Andres, Shawn Chartrand, Anna Grau Galofre, A. Mark Jellinek, and Wendy Boucher
Shannon M. Hibbard, Gordon R. Osinski, Etienne Godin, Antero Kukko, Chimira Andres, Shawn Chartrand, Anna Grau Galofre, A. Mark Jellinek, and Wendy Boucher

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Short summary
This study investigates a new landform found on Axel Heiberg Island in Nunavut, Canada. Vermicular Ridge Features (VRFs) are comprised of a series of ridges and troughs creating a unique brain-like pattern. We aim to identify how VRFs form and assess the past climate conditions necessary for their formation. We use surface elevation and subsurface data to infer a formation mechanism. We propose VRFs were formed from the burial and removal of glacier ice as the glaciers were retreating.