Shocking Polar Vortex From 20,000 Years Ago

20,000 years ago, Kentucky had glaciers while much of Alaska was ice free.

ScreenHunter_256 Jan. 22 16.42

Glacial Geology

Look familiar?

ScreenHunter_257 Jan. 22 17.17

Weather Street: Temperature Forecast Movie

Peter William Lount put this composite together



About stevengoddard

Just having fun
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53 Responses to Shocking Polar Vortex From 20,000 Years Ago

  1. Bob Knows says:

    I’m not sure that I believe Alaska and Siberia was ice free during the major glaciation period. There has been so much bogus nonsense published as “science” it no longer is credible. It makes no sense to claim that Kentucky had ice but Alaska did not. Science has to pass the smell test.

    • It makes perfect sense. The jet stream brought warm air north to Alaska, and then brought very cold air from the pole down to the eastern US. Just like today.

      • Chewer says:

        The reasoning behind ocean/air circulation phase changes are not understood and the experts openly agree that they don’t know what change in conditions (physical & electromagnetic) are required or what events/stimulus cause the changes.
        The continuous and discontinuous permafrost along with the onset of glaciation covering the northern hemisphere has ebbed and flowed with these ocean circulation phase changes for many thousands of years and these cyclical geophysical changes have nothing to do with C02 levels in the biosphere/troposphere.

    • miked1947 says:

      Bob Knows:
      There is plenty of geologic evidence that the first map is correct. There was a lot of plant life dated to that period.

    • stewart pid says:

      Bob the reason there was / is so much placer gold in places like the Klondike is because it was never glaciated in the last ice ages. Most of Canada was scraped to the bedrock but in the Klondike the surface gravels were preserved.

      • Bob Knows says:

        The existence of gravel deposits in the Yukon could be interpreted to mean that the glaciers did not move, or that the glaciers deposited the gravel. It has a lot of resemblance to a moraine. Often the first assumptions later turn out to be wrong or incomplete. Question everything.

        • stewart pid says:

          Bob u don’t get gold in moraine … u need the action of water to sort the gold due to the high weight or density of gold vs gravel. Moraine is like puke by the glaciers while a fluvial system is capable of sorting out the gold like a natural sluice box. For example you don’t get cross bedding etc in moraine.

        • David A says:

          Also there is extensive evidence that the tropics do not change much during extensive glaciation. Massive energy entering the oceans, warming, and circulating that warmth pole ward via both the air and ocean currents.

    • Robertv says:

      Bering Street must have been closed because of lower sea level + a nearly all year long sea ice surface creates less water vapor. It must have been like a desert.

    • Lou says:

      You forgot abut sea level. It was 400 ft lower.

  2. Andy DC says:

    That is interesting. There must have been the same basic weather pattern back then, but it simply never went away!

  3. omanuel says:

    Comparing the two figures (20,000 Years Ago vs. Today), the obvious conclusion is that a lot of public funds have recently been invested in pigment colors for propaganda artists.

  4. nigelf says:

    Sure would suck to have that polar vortex pattern all summer long but I suppose that’s how the glaciation of the NH will begin. Sigh.

  5. prozacinator says:

    Northeast Asia was also ice free at the time.

  6. jeremy says:

    So the ice age was a localized and not global?

    • stewart pid says:

      The continental glaciation was global but not all parts of all continents were ice covered. Even during ice ages there is still a summer melt season and the existence of ice is all about the summer melt being less than the winter snows and then that phenomena continuing for over 100,000 years.

      • Ernest Bush says:

        It would be interesting if one could compare ice age glaciation in the SH with recent weather patterns. They had a nasty winter in some places followed by late spring frost and even snow. In fact, there will be a shortage of some wines from South America and Australia later this year.

  7. Russ Steele says:

    Reblogged this on The Next Grand Minimum and commented:
    I have been thinking about this for a few weeks now when I noted were ices age ice was and were the polars vortex was flowing. Enjoy!

  8. crosspatch says:

    There is likely some truth to that. There is some evidence that during the previous glacial, we had a persistent La Nina condition (strong trade winds). When we have a La Nina condition, we tend to have a blocking high pressure system off California that causes California to be dry. This forces the storm track North. There is a gap in the mountains of British Columbia that will allow ocean storms to pass inland while retaining a good bit of their moisture where they dump it on the Columbia Icefield. I read a paper a while back that seemed to indicate the likely source of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet was the Columbia Icefield and Athabasca glacier in particular.

    The notion was that at some point we had a persistent pattern that brought huge amounts of snow to that region to the point where the glaciers would advance. As they advanced, there was an increase in albedo and at some point we kicked the system into the stable cold state. The author also postulated that as it got colder, the blocking high slowly drifted South allowing the storm track to dump more snow into the Cascades. Any increase in glaciation in the Sierras were determined to be more due to less summer ablation due to cooler temperatures than due to increased precipitation.

  9. crosspatch says:

    Something that might prove interesting:

    The Nature and Age of the Contact between the Laurentide and Cordilleran Ice Sheets in the Western Interior of North America
    B. O. K. Reeves
    Arctic and Alpine Research
    Vol. 5, No. 1 (Winter, 1973), pp. 1-16

    The presumed existence of a single mass of coalesced Cordilleran and Laurentide ice during most of late Wisconsin time is central to many archaeological hypotheses on the peopling of the New World. The area under concern is a 2,400-km belt of the Western Interior Plains and adjacent mountains, extending from the 49th parallel to the Arctic Ocean. Multiple Cordilleran glaciation occurred in the Rocky Mountain area during both late and early Wisconsin time. Radiocarbon dates indicate the mountain valleys were largely ice-free by 10,500 BP. Multiple Laurentide glaciation also is well established, the last advances in southern Alberta (late Wisconsin) having terminated east of the mountain front. Southern Alberta and southwestern Saskatchewan were ice-free by ca. 15,000 BP. Incontravertible evidence for coalescence west of the late Wisconsin ice front comes only from the Athabasca Valley, where Roed found that the two glaciers coalesced and flowed southeast. This event occurred either in early Wisconsin or Illinoian time. Since then the western border of the plains of Alberta has remained ice-free.

    Also: Evidence of Cordilleran Late Wisconsinan glaciers in the ‘ice-free corridor’
    Victor M. Levson Nat W. Rutter 1996

    Glaciers flowing down the Athabasca River valley during the last glacial period were fed both by local montane glaciers and by Cordilleran ice moving easterly across the Continental Divide from British Columbia, resulting in a major eastward surge into the ‘ice- free corridor’. The timing of this event has been disputed for many years and has important implications for the study of paleoenvironmental conditions and the north-south migration of biota in the corridor. Chronologic and lithostratigraphic data from the Jasper region suggest that this event took place in the Late Wisconsinan. Subtill radiocarbon dates on wood in the Athabasca River valley indicate that non-glacial alluvial sediments began accumulating there sometime before 48 ka. A finite date of 29,100 ± 560 BP (GSC 3792) on wood under till near Jasper provides a maximum age for the onset of the last glaciation in the region, although ice from west of the Rocky Mountain Trench probably did not cross the Continental Divide until after 21.5 ka. The occurrence of supraglacial metamorphic erratics as well as the distribution and nature of mapped glacial deposits and the trend of subglacial paleoflow indicators in the region east of the Rockies suggests that Late Wisconsinan glaciers flowing from the mountains coalesced with Laurentide glaciers and were deflected southeasterly along the mountain front. An even more extensive glacial event may have effected the region in pre-Late Wisconsinan times. The model of Late Wisconsinan glaciation presented here is in agreement with all known radiocarbon data from the area and is especially attractive when supratill dates on non-woody lacustrine organics are viewed in light of possible contamination by old carbon.

    • Bob Knows says:

      I have never seen any argument that convinces me of land migration to the western hemisphere rather than boat migrations. All the arguments about ocean currents preventing continuous ice sheets are even more favorable to having ice free coasts where even a very modest boat could migrate the entire distance over time. There are just way too many assumptions pulled out of someones behind and later asserted as established truth. And yes, the whole GW fraud has called all “science” in to question. Decades of flagrant lying has destroyed whatever credibilty that “scinece” may have once had. I just no longer believe any of their assertions. Show me the evidence.

      • stewart pid says:

        Hmmm … so a nomadic plains dwelling people just becomes expert boat builders and sails the coast to the new world and then abandons this sailing / boating to become nomadic plains dwellers again?
        remember KISS

        • Bob Knows says:

          Well, Steward, you don’t have to be a boat building expert. The coast route only takes a skin covered kayak building Siberian who paddled east along the coast with his wife and child. That’s all it would take to reach Argentina in 300 years. And viking long boats were built by tying hand split planks together with leather thongs. That’s not high tech much beyond kayak builders. Established “truth” leaves a lot to be desired.

      • omanuel says:

        Unfortunately, you are exactly right. We gave them public funds in exchange for reliable information.

        They took the funds and gave us government propaganda.

        That is fraud: “We don’t have a shortage of fuel. We are just protecting you from combustion products.

  10. NikFromNYC says:

    Tony Watts isn’t dumb to wonder why he is boring.

    Good niggers and fresh fruit, NYC, 2014:

    Jesus is the philosopher who make the West the best.

  11. Kithilu says:

    And this is caused by just the slightest tilt of the earth on its axis which has been moving during the last 16 years. Just 1/2 a degree.

  12. DCM says:

    If a new ice age were proven to be starting then most statists and all leftists will begin blaming people instead of taking measures for survival.

  13. Brian H says:

    Kentucky Iced Chicken just sounds wrong! >;(

  14. Hell_Is_Like_Newark says:

    A commenter here a while back posted a link that offered a possible explanation as to why Alaska was relatively warm during the ice age (I can’t find the link at the moment). From my recollection: The land bridge existed due to the lower sea level, blocking cold water from the Pacific. The polar region was instead fed by much warmer currents via the Atlantic.

    • Bob Knows says:

      Don’t know, Hell is. Why would someone assume that the Atlantic was “much warmer” than the Pacific? I would have to see some serious proof of that assertion.

      • stewart pid says:

        He isn’t talking about relative warmth of the two oceans … he is speaking about the Pacific being isolated from the arctic by the exposed land in the Bering Strait and the current in the Atlantic that we call the Gulf Stream these days.

      • Anthony S says:

        Sounds like they assumed that the Gulf Stream does shut down during iceages.

    • Robertv says:

      But the Arctic Ocean was a lot smaller. Large parts of The Bering , Chukchi , East Siberian , Laptev and Kara Sea were land. The land bridge must have been more than 1000 miles wide.I don’t know what air pressure was at sea level in those days and what influence it would have had for temperatures on the lower lying land.

  15. Kepler says:

    That’s a great observation. I wonder if there is a PV signature in the Russian glacier footprint as well.

  16. gator69 says:

    The mother of all blocking patterns.

  17. Gail Combs says:

    Do not forget The Antarctic Circumpolar Current. Antarctic sea ice growth could effect the wind and currents in the area of the Drake Passage restriction. If you look you can see the tongue from the Antarctic Circumpolar Current running up the coast of South America to become the cold phase of ENSO.

    Remember the earth went into ice box mode after the Panama Isthmus closed and Drake Passage opened so Drake Passage is a key element in glaciation.

    There is also a recent (fall 2012) paper Can we predict the duration of an interglacial? or the WUWT discussion link
    This new paper indicates we are already in the descent into glaciation because of the reactivation of the bi-polar seesaw where the Arctic warms while the Antarctic cools.

    “…thus, the first major reactivation of the bipolar seesaw would probably constitute an indication that the transition to a glacial state had already taken place….

    …Comparison [of the Holocene] with MIS 19c, a close astronomical analogue characterized by an equally weak summer insolation minimum (474Wm−2) and a smaller overall decrease from maximum summer solstice insolation values, suggests that glacial inception is possible despite the subdued insolation forcing, if CO2 concentrations were 240±5 ppmv (Tzedakis et al., 2012).”

    If the Antarctic sea Ice continues to grow at the same rate, Drake Passage could be ice clogged in winter in about a decade. See RACookPE1978 comment on WUWT. It was made tongue in cheek but has a large measure of truth.

    More and more evidence is coming in that we are facing glaciation. We are certainly not looking at ‘Global Warming’ Our best case scenario is 40,000 years of cold weather at the edge of glaciation before the amount of sunlight starts increasing.

  18. daddylonglegs says:

    Gail Combs says:
    January 25, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    If the Antarctic sea Ice continues to grow at the same rate, Drake Passage could be ice clogged in winter in about a decade. See RACookPE1978 comment on WUWT. It was made tongue in cheek but has a large measure of truth.

    Russian saying: “in every joke a little bit is joke and the rest is true.”

  19. Scarface says:

    Steven, please check the spam box or moderation box.

    I think I found the comment where the offer was made to help get funding for a paper.
    But my comment doesn’t show up here.

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