Late pleistocene glaciation of the kosciouszko massif, snowy mountains, Australia

Timothy T. Barrows*, John O. Stone, L. Keith Fifield, Richard G. Cresswell

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Late Pleistocene glaciation of the Australian mainland was restricted to a small area of the southeastern highlands. Geomorphic mapping of the area and exposure dating using the in situ produced cosmogenic isotope 10Be provides evidence for at least two distinct glaciations. The Early Kosciuszko glaciation consisted of a single glacier advance before 59,300 ± 5400 years ago (Snowy River Advance). The Late Kosciuszko glaciation comprised three glacier advances 32,000 ± 2500 (Headley Tarn Advance), 19,100 ± 1600 (Blue Lake Advance), and 16,800 ± 1400 years ago (Mt. Twynam Advance). The Early Kosciuszko glaciation was the most extensive and the Late Kosciuszko advances were progressively less extensive. These periods of glaciation in the highlands correspond to episodes of periglacial activity and peaks in lake levels and river discharge at lower elevations in southeastern Australia. Glacier advances on the Kosciuszko Massif correlate with advances in Tasmania, South America, and New Zealand and are broadly representative of hemispheric climate changes during the last glacial cycle.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)179-189
    Number of pages11
    JournalQuaternary Research
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2001


    • Australia
    • Exposure dating
    • Glacial geology
    • Late Pleistocene


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