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《Journal of Glaciology and Geocryology》 1988-02
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Climatic Geomorphology of the Anyemaqen Mountains

Wang Jingtai (Lanzhou Institute of Glaciology and Geocryology, Chinese Academy of Sciences)  
The glaciers of the Anyemaqen Mountains include those of valley, cirque and hanging types, as well as one small ice cap. They are of sub-continental type. The surrounding nivation zone is very extensive, below which lies a vegetated periglacial zone. Solifluction lobes are well developed as are the relict thermokarst forms. Below 4000m a.s.l. seasonal erosion by flowing water is widespread and there is a dense bush vegetation with some trees. The climatic landform zonation in the Anyemaqen region is a result of the long-term evolution. Current geomorphological processes have led to a distinct vertical zonality controlled in response to changes in climate with altitude. The slope forms clearly represent a gradational series. Each of these processes occurred within different height zones in the past. The steep bedrock slopes formed by glacial erosion during the last Quaternary glaci-ation have been replaced by the debris and solifluction slopes of the present regime resulting from climatic amelioration and deglaciaciation. The lower limit of the periglacial zone during the last glaciation may have reached 3800 m a.s.l. or even lower, as seen from the evidence of the distribution of former glaciers. glaciers. However, typical periglacial slopes are now hard to find in these areas, owing to the erosion by slopewashes and related processes. The last glaciation ended only about 10,000 years ago. Although the morphological framework imposed by glacial erosion still exists, the essential slope forms have been greatly changed. This is a measure of the role of the climate in the current morphogenesis to which must be added the active role played by neotectonics in the uplift of the Qinghai-Xizang plateau.
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