Magazine article Geographical

The Continent of Antarctica: The Antarctic Is Perhaps the Least Known Place on Earth. in a Richly Illustrated New Book, Director of the Scott Polar Research Institute, Julian Dowdeswell, and Professor Michael Hambrey of the Centre for Glaciology at Aberystwyth University Draw upon Their Extensive Seasons of Fieldwork on the Continent to Examine the Future of the Planet's Last Great Wilderness

Magazine article Geographical

The Continent of Antarctica: The Antarctic Is Perhaps the Least Known Place on Earth. in a Richly Illustrated New Book, Director of the Scott Polar Research Institute, Julian Dowdeswell, and Professor Michael Hambrey of the Centre for Glaciology at Aberystwyth University Draw upon Their Extensive Seasons of Fieldwork on the Continent to Examine the Future of the Planet's Last Great Wilderness

Article excerpt

* A geologists' camp at the edge of the George VI Ice Shelf on Alexander Island, under stormy skies. As part of a programme to investigate the response of the Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet to climate change, Hambrey had arranged to undertake fieldwork on Alexander with the support of the British Antarctic Survey from their station at Rothera. He and his team lived in this three-man pyramid tent for a month, enduring temperatures of -21[degrees]C at nights.

* Multiple cloud layers drape Mount Gaudry during changeable weather conditions at Rothera Station on Adelaide Island. Wormald Glacier on the right forms a steep ice cliff, grounded on the sea bottom, adjacent to Rothera's runway.

* A storm beach of pebbles and cobbles at Fort Point on Greenwich Island, South Shetlands. Substantial numbers of chinstrap and gentoo penguins, as well as fur seals, occupy the beach and adjacent sea stacks.

* A landscape of glacial erosion. A pair of peaks known as 'horns', at Cape Renard, form striking sentinels on the approach to Lemaire Channel from the northwestern Antarctic Peninsula. The vast ice sheet covering the continent averages almost 2km in thickness and currently leaves only about 45,000 sq km (less than one per cent) free of ice.

* Granite bedrock, smoothed by glacial erosion, provides a site for a gentoo penguin rookery on Pleneau Island near the southern entrance to Lemaire Channel. The curved fractures are known as crescentic gouges and are formed by the juddering effect of boulders embedded in a glacier moving from left to right. …

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