Every few years, a stunning event takes place in Patagonia, as tons of hardened glacier ice of Perito Moreno plummets into the chilly waters below, making for an awe-inspiring spectacle that draws thousands of people to the area to observe. While this event is rather unpredictable, recent measurements have shown that another collapse may be coming in the near future. Fret not, environmentalists; this is a naturally recurring event at Perito Moreno Glacier that isn’t the result of global warming.
The reason for this collapse is how the ice collects in this particular spot. The Perito Moreno Glacier is actually growing, and it proceeds across a section of the Argentino Lake, which resides in Los Glaciares National Park. The ice actually gets pushed across the entire lake, splitting it into two sections. The Southern part of the lake, known as Brazo Rico, is cut off from the rest. This split causes the water levels to vary between the two bodies of water, which can result in the Brazo Rico section rising up to 30 meters above the rest of Argentino Lake. This displacement eventually leads to pressure and water being pushed through the glacier into the lake through tunnels under the glacier. As the tunnel grows, eventually there is a dramatic collapse as the barrier breaks and water rushes into the lake.
View a complete Timeline of the Perito Moreno Glacier Rupture.
The last time this exciting event occurred at Perito Moreno Glacier was in March, 2016. Recent measurements have placed the water displacement at 11.2 meters, which is actually larger than two recent breaks; the 2016 one and another back in 2004. Potentially, this means that the area is ripe for another collapse in the weeks ahead. Since this event usually happens in March, this is a great time to schedule a trip to Los Glaciares National Park in Patagonia, Argentina to see this phenomenon first hand. While the officials haven’t pointed to an impending collapse just yet, the circumstances generally don’t become clear until just a few days before the event.
Regardless of the collapse or not, the Perito Moreno Glacier is a very popular site for travelers in Patagonia, including those who stay at the nearby Hosteria Helsingfors Lodge. With great access to Los Glaciares National Park, the Helsingfors is the perfect spot to unwind after an exciting day on the glaciers, where one may just witness history with the next Perito Moreno explosion that is waiting to happen…
- Wikipedia: Perito Moreno Glacier
- Prevén que la ruptura del glaciar Perito Moreno será la mayor en 30 años
- ¿Cuándo romperá el Glaciar Perito Moreno?
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