Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science






glaciers, used, data, icefield, side


The goal of this project was to understand and characterize changes in the Harding Icefield, specifically three glaciers that flow off the icefield through the 20th century. The three glaciers include McCarty Glacier on the south side of the icefield, Exit Glacier on the north side and Tustumena Glacier on the west side. These glaciers are important due to the fact that the glacier dynamics are slightly different for each site in characteristics such as orientation and prevailing climate. The climates include marine and continental. Imagery, glacier outline data and ArcGis were used to determine the area of the glaciers during the 20th century. This data was used to determine a trend in the areas of the three different glaciers. Finally, the mass balance trends were related to trends in meteorological data from weather stations on the Kenai Peninsula to measure the strength of the relationship between climate over the last two centuries and glacier area. The meteorological stations used included Kenai Airport, Homer Airport and Seward. This research is important because it contextualizes adjustments in the water cycle and water balance related to changes of the glaciers. This research can be used as an example for other cites.