Episode 070 Immense Ice Dam Extrapolation / Floods Controversies
Behave Radically Different from small dammed lake?
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Questions continue to be raised about the “Ice Dam” that withheld “Lake Missoula” and their role in the catastrophic Ice Age Megafloods that ravaged the Pacific Northwest around 13,000 years ago. Going “Back to Bretz” to consider again the likelihood that the floods were augmented greatly by sudden rushes of meltwater from the Cordilleran Ice Sheet that loomed directly to the north of the entire suite of megaflood features, Randall shows again and again how this makes perfect and obvious sense, although it is totally ignored by the standard model that describes the flood scenario. With his diagrams and multiple quotes from published geologists, RC stresses the impossibility of ice withholding a lake over 2000 feet deep.
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0:00 Ice Sheet Margin WA
14:44 Back to Bretz idea
28:44 18 cubic-miles/hour!
38:20 Many Separate Floods?
49:59 CBD updates
55:00 Ice Dam Viability
1:13:52 Clark Fork Dam?
1:32:18 Ice/berg Jamming
1:38:02 Missoula a lake?
Early days of Harlen Bretz starting to figure out what happened to the Scablands – 1925 paper
Where is margin of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet? At head of Cheney-Palouse Scabland tract?
Termination of Purcell Trench Lobe? All the way thru Spokane Valley?
Columbia a river under the ice? Or initiates at margin of ice at head of Telford Tract
Bretz: How could you have that much water without major retreat of the ice sheet?
Must have been other sources, thus “Back to Bretz” paper (Shaw, Lesemann) in 1999
BREAK at 25:45
Bretz: “…special causes seem clearly indicated”
1910: Pardee first paper, Bretz sees USGS topo of Potholes Cataract, Halley’s Comet, Twain dies
Victor Baker calculates flow thru Rathdrum Prairie 700-800 million cfs!
Pardee calculations thru Eddy Narrows, which was consistent trench to measure flow
Cabinet Gorge Dam site near termination of ice – potential dam location; subglacial flow gorge?
Cfs flow-rates equate to 18 cubic miles per hour! Half that measured thru Eddy Narrows
What was discrepancy? Had to be augmented with equivalent flows down Purcell Trench
Various dating methods spread events over 3000 years, so they continue to evoke multiple floods
Richard Waitt in 1985, credit to as much as anyone for keeping discussion of floods alive, quote about no evidence to believe that the outburst flood should be radically different from small events
Wallula Gap and Walla Walla Valley rhythmites in Burlingame Gulch; multiple floods or ice jamming
If flow-rates are the same, why would water pond in Pasco Basin to 1000’ depth?
Have to consider multiple sources of inflow into the basin (where Lake Lewis formed)
Inconsistent with a single outflow from Clark Fork Valley
Hd BREAK at 49:59
CBD reports until 55:00
Revisit Richard Waitt quote re: glacial lake outlet thru ice dam, behaving like small dammed lakes
G K Clark from 1984 re: 3 orders of magnitude -- Can we extrapolate upwards without impunity?
Eugene Kiver in 1989 field trip guide re: Costa ref 1988 complexity, and “immense extrapolation”
Russ talks about materials failure as you scale up orders of magnitude – loads are crushing
C. Warren Hunt in 1977 paper supports/confirms Bretz findings, including allochthonous granite
He emphatically asserts the impossibility of an ice dam impounding water to 1200, or 2100’ depth
Bedrock grouting used to fill every crack/hole/fracture in the surrounding substrate to seal tight
…virtually frivolous to suggest that chance emplacement of glacial ice might have dammed [ClkFk]
The problem is really at the ice/bedrock interface; if cold enough to lock on – not gonna have water
BREAK at 1:13:51
RC ppt slides of Clark Fork Valley with ice dam issues: location, width, depth
Configuration of Lake Pend Oreille prior to filling with ice, or erosion from outburst floods
1100’ depth of southeastern trough of Pend Oreille; solid and frozen to the bottom? With Lake?
What’s the process that will re-advance and reseal the valley once previous ice dam is washed out
How can you have all this meltwater and/or rain, but still have the glacier advancing?
Surging glacier has liquid at the bottom, which limits ability to create an adequate seal
Ice would have to be a half-mile thick! Water at both ends – and no connection between?
Modern glacial-dammed lakes fail at 100-200’ water depth; 950psi is 140k or 70 tons/ft-squared
Need to go to the plateau country in central British Columbia! Rename as the “Cordilleran Floods”
BREAK at 1:32:18
Rhythmites and Wallula Gap – gathering waters rising and falling of lake level in Pasco Basin
David Alt in 2001 on curious lack of evidence that would identify the body of water as a “lake”
Missoula Basin shorelines not reminiscent of those at a lake; don’t find scales, varves, water life
Will get into major deconstruction of the “Ice Dam” next episode…
END at 1:49:49
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