Much Of Alaska Was Ice Free During The Last Ice Age

As we saw this winter, the same weather patterns which bring cold to the central and eastern US, also bring warmth to Alaska. That is what happened during the last ice age.


ScreenHunter_1025 Mar. 25 22.44

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26 Responses to Much Of Alaska Was Ice Free During The Last Ice Age

  1. wwlee4411 says:

    Reblogged this on wwlee4411 and commented:

  2. No surprise here, as cold air masses formed over the ice cap would pour down over North America and warmer air would have to replace it. As the cold air went south, the warm air poured up over Alaska, preventing ice formation in that region. Duh.

    • Gail Combs says:

      You have to explain things like this to the sheeple who have been intentionally Dumbed Down

      • Joe Bencini says:

        Dumbed down, yes. My mother was a teacher in the US during the 60’s through the 80’s. She said as far back as the 60’s that the National Education Association had a set goal of dumbing down the American student for the explicit purpose to allow indoctrination into communist ideals and one-world government. The have succeeded. I have family members who have been so dumbed down that to engage in a rational conversation with facts is completely impossible. To formulate a thought beyond two links of logic brings out the tirade of epithets and ad hominem attacks. It makes me want to cry. No, it actually DOES MAKE ME CRY.

        • Gail Combs says:

          That is why most Tea Party members are older people. The younger people can not see or understand what is happening and rather listen to Huff and Puff or Grist than their parents.

  3. Don says:

    Very similar pattern to winter 2013-2014 during the last ice age, just saying.

    Using Alaska as proof of warming is cold. Map at the link.

  4. Anything is possible says:

    Not only was Alaska largely ice-free during the last ice-age, but so was much of Siberia, east of the Urals.

    And (this is where it gets interesting) according to this peer-reviewed paper :

    there were “seasonally open waters in the Arctic ocean.”

    • Gail Combs says:

      So it looks like a “Loopy” jet stream that sucked polar air into the lower latitudes was the weather pattern.

      Thanks for the link. Had not seen that one before.

    • Robertv says:

      I believe that the gulf stream and the north atlantic current were much stronger than today bringing lots of warm water (and moisture) to replace the cold water sunken to the deep ocean because of the colder weather conditions.In general I believe that all ocean currents were much stronger in those days because of the colder conditions.

  5. Andy DC says:

    What do they blame for the Ice Ages? I don’t think they can pin that one on humanity. If climate can make huge changes without humanity, why do we now pin every weather event on humanity? It is absurd on the face of it.

  6. Edmonton Al says:

    I would think that precession of the equinoxes would also be a reason.

  7. Morgan says:

    The US is only 2% of the globe so it doesn’t count. Alaska is the largest state so it does.

  8. Bob Knows says:

    That shows how boat people could have easilly migrated along the coast from one side of the Pacific to the other.

  9. GW says:

    Well how is it Glacier Bay filled with thousands of feet of ice if Alaska was warm and ice free ?

    • Do you always have difficulty reading maps?

      • GW says:

        I saw the picture, but am somewhat skeptical as to its validity. Why would large glaciers form in that area, but not further north also. The other thing that bothers me is that the skeptic camps state that the ice ages, especially the LIA were hemisperical and affected both the North and South. Alarmists on OTH state that they (the LIA in particular) were only regional. The jet stream theory presented above suggesting a warm Alaska and Siberia seems to support their claim that the ice ages were more regional and less global. What do you think ?

        • It is very wet in that region and there are large mountains, so lots of snow falls there. Most of Alaska is much drier and at lower elevation.

  10. Don B says:

    I have two bets. One is that the ice break up in the Nenana Ice Classic will be a couple of weeks earlier this year, compared to the 2013 record late break up.
    The second is that activists will then claim climate change caused the early break up!

  11. Hell_is_Like_Newark says:

    Would an alteration in ocean currents during the ice age also have an effect? I am thinking along the lines of the arctic being isolated from the Pacific due to the land bridge that existed at the time.

    • Good point.

    • Gail Combs says:

      Drake passage could also have been clogged with sea ice.

      Antarctic Sea Ice Extents is now setting new record high levels at 19,000,000 sq km’s. Equally alarming, the 40 year trend of ALL Antarctic Sea Ice measurements (maximum, average, and minimum extents) continues their steady increases since 1979. At today’s rates of increase in southern sea ice extents, Drake Passage could be closed to ship traffic as soon as 8 to 12 years. (Removes tongue from cheek.)

      The Antarctic actually effects the weather of the entire planet. The MOC (Ocean’s Meridional Overturning Circulation.) is the giant circulation within the global oceans. It speeds up and slows down due to density differences (from salinity) across the entire planet. When the MOC speeds up you get more cold water upwelling and flowing up the west coast of South America. This cold water increases the speed of the trade winds which reduces the probability of seeing El Nino events.

      Research on Drakes Passage today:


      The experiments address a fundamental question of how the circulation of the ocean works. Since the global overturning circulation is apparently sensitive to wind even in regions where the ocean has eastern and western boundaries, it may be influenced by wind outside the Drake Passage latitudes. However, our results indicate that the unique geometry of the Drake Passage latitudes does make the global circulation – and perhaps the climate of the North Atlantic – especially sensitive to wind there.


      Effect of Drake Passage on the global thermohaline circulation
      The Ekman divergence around Antarctica raises a large amount of deep water to the ocean’s surface. The regional Ekman transport moves the upwelled deep water northward out of the circumpolar zone. The divergence and northward surface drift combine, in effect, to remove deep water from the interior of the ocean. This wind-driven removal process is facilitated by a unique dynamic constraint operating in the latitude band containing Drake Passage. Through a simple model sensitivity experiment WC show that the upwelling and removal of deep water in the circumpolar belt may be quantitatively related to the formation of new deep water in the northern North Atlantic. These results show that stronger winds in the south can induct more deep water formation in the north and more deep outflow through the South Atlantic. The fact that winds in the southern hemisphere might influence the formation of deep water in the North Atlantic brings into question long-standing notions about the forces that drive the ocean’ thermohaline circulation….

      A second paper involving models.
      Drake Passage and palaeoclimate

      ABSTRACT: The effect of Drake Passage on the Earth’s climate is examined using an idealised coupled model. It is found that the opening of Drake Passage cools the high latitudes of the southern hemisphere by about 3°C and warms the high latitudes of the northern hemisphere by nearly the same amount. This study also attempts to determine whether the width and depth of the Drake Passage channel is likely to be an important factor in the thermal response. A deeper channel is shown to produce more southern cooling but the magnitude of the effect is not large. Channel geometry is relatively unimportant in the model because of a haline response that develops when the channel is first opened up.

      South America and Australia separated from Antarctica between 20 and 40 million years ago, isolating Antarctica and the South Pole behind a continuous band of ocean water. The palaeoceanographic record shows that this separation led to the accumulation of glacial ice on Antarctica and an abrupt cooling of the ocean’s deep water (Kennett, 1977). Both effects persist to this day. The palaeoceanographic record gives every indication that the isolation of Antarctica was a major step in climate evolution.

      Today, the band of open water around Antarctica is most restricted between the tip of South America and the Palmer Peninsula, a feature known as Drake Passage. In one of the earliest scientific papers written about the output of an ocean general circulation model, Gill and Bryan (1971) showed how a gap such as Drake Passage alters the ocean’s meridional circulation and heat transport. With Drake Passage closed, the ocean transports heat southward by moving warm water poleward near the surface. Cooling at the Antarctic margin leads to deep-water formation and the northward flow of cold water at depth. With Drake Passage open, warm upper ocean water from the north is unable to flow into or across the channel because there is no net east–west pressure gradient to balance the effect of the Earth’s rotation. The ocean’s ability to transport heat southward is thereby diminished. Cox (1989), England (1992) and Mikolajewicz et al. (1993) carried out similar experiment…..

      Summer upper-layer Antarctic Circumpolar Current structure and transport in Drake Passage based on ship-born ADCP measurements

      It is revealed that the Subantaractic Current mostly consists of two jets. The northern jet is deeper comparing with southern one that generally is narrower and has larger average streamline velocity in the upper 500 m. The Polar current system is also as a rule bimodal. These two jets locate close to each other and often merge. The northern PC jet has a larger velocity amplitude while the southern one strongly varies in vertical direction. It is suggested that the ACC has two regimes – fast and slow switching between that causes predominantly barotropic changes in the upper-layer vertical velocity structure….

      • Gail Combs says:

        Enter your comment here…Dang, I put too many live links in.
        Steve can you fish the comment out of the sea ice?

  12. Chewer says:

    Our spring breakup won’t be much different than last years.
    The river ice is solid and 4′ thick, so the 2 week Chinook didn’t make much of a dent in the interior.
    We’ve had -10 F in the mornings recently and tomorrow morning will be -20…
    Step right up and buy your Nenana tickets before the end of the month. My bet is 5-16-2014 at 8:04 AM, among others 😉
    I still enjoy the comments about how AGW will postpone the next glaciation stage by 10,000 years, as some are pulling that straight out of their bungholes 😉
    If man can delay the next natural cycle, how is it that it can happen at all,?
    I thought we were in the “Everlasting Interglacial, all due to our carbon sins 😉

  13. Joe says:

    Alarmists think the jet stream moving south won’t make the Earth cool.

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