Erosion and Depositional features and landforms

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  • Created on: 03-05-14 13:10
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Features of cold environments Heleena Chauhan
Features of a cold environment:
Glacial erosion features:
Unsorted mixture of sediment, clay, gravel and rock deposited by a glacier, it is
sometimes called moraine or boulder clay.
A cirque is an armchair shaped hollow surrounded by knifeedged ridges called Arêtes
Cirques are heavily influenced by the joint pattern of rocks.
Rocks need to be resistant enough to withstand complete destruction but weak enough
to be heavily weathered and eroded
Small cirques were generally formed during periods of glacial readvance.
In Britain cirques develop best on the north and or east facing slopes.
Neve (firn):
Neve is the transitional stage between snow and ice. It has survived at least one years
summer melting and has been compressed by snowfall the following winter
Extrusion flow:
This is the movement of ice as a result of becoming too deep or heavy and therefore
unstable. It `collapses' and begins to flow outwards as a result of its own weight and
A large crack or crevasse
A gap between the rock face and ice in the hollow, caused when heat from the rock
melts the ice

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Features of cold environments Heleena Chauhan
Glacial trough and Ushaped valleys:
A glacial trough's characteristics are its steep
sides and relatively flat bottom it is usually
referred to as a Ushaped valley, few are
shaped that way.
Their form depends on mass movements,
deposition and erosion by river, since the last
A glacial trough and Ushaped valley is a
result of the channelling ice through the
valleys, combining freezethaw, plucking and
abrasion.…read more

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Features of cold environments Heleena Chauhan
Glacial deposits consisting of poorly sorted often angular, loose fragments. Many
forms exist including englacial, lateral, medial, terminal and recessional.
These are glacial troughs below or partly below sea level. Up to ¼ of
fjords have active glaciers. Fjords are more likely to be Ushaped than
land based glacial troughs. This is because most fjords are cut into
resistant rocks whereas landbased troughs are often covered with
deposits of scree and soil.…read more

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Features of cold environments Heleena Chauhan
Glacial deposition:
Erratics are large boulders foreign to the local geology that have been dumped by
the ice, usually on flat areas. Some Erratics have been left stranded in precarious
positions as perched blocks such as the bluish microgranite from an island off the
Ayrshire coast was found in the Merseyside area.
This is a common unstratified glacial deposit.…read more

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Features of cold environments Heleena Chauhan
Exam questions:
· Jan 2010 With reference to located examples of distinctive landforms, examine
the impact of climate and weathering on the physical landscape of cold environments
(25 marks)
· June 2009 ­ Identify the distinctive landforms produced by ice, A, B, C and D
shown in the map extract (4 marks)
· June 2009 ­ Explain how ice shaped one of these distinctive landforms (6 marks)
· June 2010 ­ With reference to one or more located examples,…read more


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