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TitleDune stabilization in central and southern Yukon in relation to early Holocene environmental change, northwestern North America
AuthorWolfe, SORCID logo; Bond, J; Lamothe, M
SourceQuaternary Science Reviews vol. 30, 2011 p. 324-334,
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20090434
PublisherElsevier BV
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
NTS105D; 105E; 105M
Areasouthern Yukon; Whitehorse; Fox Creek; Rusty Creek
Lat/Long WENS-136.0000 -134.0000 62.0000 60.0000
Lat/Long WENS-136.0000 -134.0000 64.0000 63.0000
Subjectssedimentology; surficial geology/geomorphology; environmental geology; Nature and Environment; dunes; eolian deposits; glacial deposits; Holocene; climatic fluctuations; vegetation; sands; sediment transport; erosion; paleoenvironment; loess; Cenozoic; Quaternary
Illustrationslocation maps; photographs; tables
ProgramClimate Change Geoscience
Released2011 02 01
AbstractEolian deposits of central and southern Yukon, northwestern Canada, consist of loess mantles, small areas of active dunes, and larger stabilized dune fields. Dune fields in valley settings within the region are situated both within and beyond the limit of the last glaciation. Infrared stimulation luminescence (IRSL) dating in central and southern Yukon reveals that these dune fields stabilized as late as 9e8.5 ka, well after the retreat of Cordilleran glaciers. These findings are comparable to other valley-setting dune fields and loess from central Alaska, which record activity during the period from the Lateglacial to the Holocene Thermal Maximum (HTM), and reduced or altered activity after 9e8 ka. Post-glacial dune activity was most likely related to warm, dry conditions during the HTM, under predominantly shrubtundra vegetation. Early Holocene stabilization of these dunes probably occurred in response to cooler, moister conditions, and replacement of predominantly tundra by boreal forest cover, dominated by spruce. Stabilization of dune fields in southern Yukon and Alaska most likely represented an extension of the time-transgressive stabilization of dune fields that occurred across northwestern North America with the post-glacial expansion of the boreal forest.

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