Bridge Glacier – Summer 2013 in 6 seconds.

I’m in the process of sieving and processing about 10 000 pictures taken from the time lapse cameras, but thought it was about time to show off Bridge Glacier a little bit. Here’s a timelapse movie put together for the summer. Images were taken every hour from this camera, but this particular timelapse is one picture a day (taken at noon) to show the glacier flow, as well as get an idea of the size and frequency of calving events this summer. The movie is 30 frames per second, and each frame is one day.

Bridge Glacier Summer 2013 from Matt Chernos on Vimeo.

This summer there were three major calving events (so far!). The first, which was potentially the largest, occurred on June 23 (Click on the picture for hi-res!).


The large calving event is on the left end of the glacier, propagating back towards the middle.


Pretty much everything from the left to the middle is now an island.

This first major calving event, was one I speculated was days away when I left the field on June 22, it turns out I was close – the calving event happened around roughly 2am on June 23rd –  a full 12 hours after we left. For scale, the glacier is roughly a kilometer across, while the island-iceberg that broke off is roughly 300m long, by about 300m wide.

The second large calving event occurred on August 2, between 12pm and 1pm, and was roughly 300m long, by a 100m wide:


Calving event on the far left – look for the large ice front that is sticking way up!


Far left – all that’s left is ice fragments, as the large ice front that was sticking up calved off and shattered. The blue ice is indicative of ‘basal ice’, ice that was under particularly high pressure at the bottom of the glacier.

The final event recorded in the timelapse camera was on August 21 between 6:00am and 7:00am:


On the right front – try and find the large crack propagating from the centre to the right.


The whole (lookers) right flank has shattered and dispersed. Lots of beautiful blue ice though.

In this final one, what I find particularly interesting, is the large crack that formed for several days leading up to the event. Finally, If you look really closely in the video, you can see the ice rise up out of the water in a couple frames before it cracks off and is gone.

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