Glacial geomorphology, fluvial geomorphology, hillslope geomorphology, submarine geomorphology, tectonic geomorphology...

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Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Pseudo-weekly GoogleEarth placemark #4 - Aoraki/Mt. Cook

Aoraki or Mt. Cook is the highest point in New Zealand at 3754 m above sealevel, seen here viewing the east and Caroline faces, with Mt. Tasman to the right making up the main divide of the Southern Alps. Abel Tasman was the first European to sight Aoraki in 1642, and the glacier that bears his name flows across the foreground. In 1991, Aoraki famously became 12 m shorter, much to the annoyance of local climbers, after a massive landslide of 12m cubic metres of rock zoomed down the east face at 200 km per hour. However, as one of the most rapidly uplifting areas on Earth, Aoraki gains 10 mm in elevation each year (or would do if it wasn't eroded at pretty much the same rate!), producing huge amounts of sediment within the valleys of the central Southern Alps.