Introducing The Glacial Linebacker

Over the last decade or so, scientists have begun to recognize that glaciers limit the heights of mountain ranges by eating away at the tops as fast as the forces of nature can push them upward. They call this mechanism the “glacial buzzsaw” and now, a new study sheds light on the important role of the glacial valleys known as cirques. Learn more in my short piece for New Scientist.

A small glacier in the French Alps flowing down from a cirque. (Credit: Julia Rosen)
Cirque valleys, carved by glaciers like this one in the French Alps, may play an important role in limiting the heights of mountains. (Credit: Julia Rosen)