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A model of ice-marginal sediment-landform development at Lake Tekapo, Southern Alps, New Zealand

Sutherland, Jenna L.; Evans, David J.A.; Carrivick, Jonathan L.; Shulmeister, James; Rother, Henrik

A model of ice-marginal sediment-landform development at Lake Tekapo, Southern Alps, New Zealand Thumbnail


Jenna L. Sutherland

Jonathan L. Carrivick

James Shulmeister

Henrik Rother


The extent of the Southern Alps icefield in New Zealand is well-constrained chronologically for the last glacial cycle. The sediment-landform imprint of this glacial system, however, offers insight into ice-marginal processes that chronological control cannot. We present the first detailed investigation of sediments along the southwestern shores of Lake Tekapo, South Island. We identify seven lithofacies, from which a five-stage palaeoglaciological reconstruction of depositional and glaciotectonic events is proposed: (i) ice-marginal advance and deposition of outwash gravels in lithofacies (LF) 1; (ii) ice-marginal recession and the development of an ice-contact lake, manifest in rhythmite deposition and iceberg rafting of dropstones (LF 2), followed by a depositional hiatus; (iii) ice-marginal recession recorded in ice-proximal aggradation of glaciofluvial hyperconcentrated flows (LFs 3, 4); (iv) ice-marginal advance documented by glaciotectonic disturbance and localized hydrofracturing, coeval with the deposition of delta foresets and a subglacial diamicton/till (LFs 5, 6); (v) final stages of ice-marginal recession and deposition of outwash gravels in LF 7. Two infrared stimulated luminescence ages were obtained from the glaciolacustrine sediments and, whilst the dating has some limitations, the sediments pre-date both the global and local Last Glacial Maximum. Overall, this sequence, consistent with sediment fills recorded elsewhere across South Island, suggests recurrence of processes from different glacial advances and the role of topographic constraints on maintaining lake positions.


Sutherland, J. L., Evans, D. J., Carrivick, J. L., Shulmeister, J., & Rother, H. (2022). A model of ice-marginal sediment-landform development at Lake Tekapo, Southern Alps, New Zealand. Geografiska Annaler: Series A, Physical Geography, 104(3), 151-182.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 28, 2022
Online Publication Date Jun 27, 2022
Publication Date 2022
Deposit Date Jul 1, 2022
Publicly Available Date Feb 3, 2023
Journal Geografiska Annaler: Series A, Physical Geography
Print ISSN 0435-3676
Electronic ISSN 1468-0459
Publisher Taylor and Francis Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 104
Issue 3
Pages 151-182


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Copyright Statement
© 2022 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group<br /> This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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