Thermokarst and Kettle Lakes MP 41 to MP 42

The lowland approaching the Maclaren River contains several geographic features with glacial and ice age origins. Look to the north side of the road for what appears to be a steep pit with a conical shape. This is an example of thermokarst. Melting ice lenses in permafrost create sinkholes like this one, which can undermine roads, foundations, and whole villages. Warming climate is causing increasingly rapid and more profound changes like this across northern landscapes. Look out across the tundra and you’ll see several small lakes and depressions that date to the ice age. Kettle Lakes are formed when buried ice left by retreating glaciers finally melts out to form circular ponds and depressions.

Getting There

Latitude: 63.124882
Longitude: -146.497685
Driving Directions