The Cryosphere Discuss., 7, 5177-5187, 2013
© Author(s) 2013. This work is distributed
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal The Cryosphere (TC). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in TC.
On the magnitude and frequency of Karakoram Glacier surges
D. J. Quincey1 and A. Luckman2
1School of Geography, University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK
2Department of Geography, College of Science, Swansea University, Singleton Park, Swansea, SA2 8PP, UK

Abstract. The return periods of Karakoram glacier surges are almost entirely unknown. Here, we present evidence of an historic surge of the Khurdopin Glacier that began in the mid-1970s and peaked in 1979. Measured surface displacements reached > 5 km yr–1, two orders of magnitude faster than during quiescence and twice as large as any previously recorded velocity in the region. The Khurdopin Glacier next surged in the late-1990s, equating to a return period of 20 yr. Surge activity in the region needs to be better understood if accurate mass balance assessments of Hindu-Kush–Karakoram–Himalaya glaciers are to be made.

Citation: Quincey, D. J. and Luckman, A.: On the magnitude and frequency of Karakoram Glacier surges, The Cryosphere Discuss., 7, 5177-5187, doi:10.5194/tcd-7-5177-2013, 2013.
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