Great Canadian Parks / Newfoundland

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The Parks / Newfoundland & Labrador / Terra Nova National Park



 


 

Ten thousand years ago, a massive ice cap in southwestern Newfoundland cast off rivers of ice that gouged valleys, deepened rivers and ground down the bedrock, leaving a trail of sand, rocks, gravel and boulders as it retreated. The park's 200-kilometre coastline is indented with fjords, coves and tidal flats, often patterned with caves, cliffs and rocky stacks. The narrow streams, ponds and bogs were also the work of retreating ice that left depressions and ridges of gravel that reduced drainage. Spring in Newfoundland means ice. ‘Slob’ ice forms in the Labrador Sea in winter and is brought down by the cold waters of the Labrador Current, along with drift ice and icebergs, between March and July. Each year about 400 Arctic icebergs that have broken off the glaciers of Greenland and Baffin Island survive the 2000 kilometre trip and reach the Newfoundland coast - a journey that takes several years - the most dazzling and imposing phenomenon in the entire Atlantic. Massive ice leviathans, ice sculpture on a grand scale, they tower 15 - 20 metres high and are often as long as a football field - just such a monster as claimed the Titanic in 1912 off Newfoundland®s southern coast.

 

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