Glacier Bay glaciers were retreating in the 1700s

Glacier Bay glaciers were retreating in the 1700s

Nearly two centuries before humans had much effect on CO2 levels.

“It is not true that ‘most glaciers around the globe are in rapid retreat’,” says reader David Burton.  “Some advance & more retreat, but few do either ‘rapidly’.”

“Nor is glacial retreat evidence of global warming. Global temperatures have plateaued at a relatively warm level, and that alone explains the continued retreat of most glaciers.

Above is a US Geological Survey map showing glacier extent at Glacier Bay, AK, in the 18th-20th centuries.

“Notice that those glaciers were retreating in the 1700’s, nearly two centuries before humans had much effect on CO2 levels,” says Burton.

“Note the large deceleration (reduction) in rate of glacial retreat during the 20th century, despite a dramatic increase in human CO2 emissions.

“Advance & retreat of glaciers is complex, and not just a function of temperatures. That’s why some glaciers advance as others retreat. For instance, at latitudes that never get below freezing, higher temperatures can increase sublimation but may also increase snowfall.”

21 thoughts on “Glacier Bay glaciers were retreating in the 1700s

  1. I have just returned from Glacier Bay and I noticed this effect just by looking at the tourist map. The Bay was completely glaciated (i.e. to a bit below the bottom of the map above) in 1750-1780. That time period corresponds to the depth of the Little Ice Age (LIA), which wamists would have you believe was an localized European phenomenon.
    The retreat slowed after the mid 1800’s, which is generally accepted to be the time of the end of the LIA. Of the glacial faces today, some are advancing and some retreating. But neither of these effects could be said to be “rapid”.
    It is worthy of note that the Sun’s activity has lessened over the last 20 years or so – to a level equal to that of the late LIA (the Dalton Minimum).
    The last 20 years also corresponds to a flat global temperature trend.

  2. It seems that most AGW believers I talk with are not interested in the multiple factors that modify glacier growth and retreat. They like sweeping statements and have little patience for the details. Sometimes I try to play that game with statements like:

    “Almost all glaciers outside of Greenland and Antarctica are under 3000 years old”. , or “The fact that there ARE glaciers in temperate and subtropical latitudes is an indicator Earth is in the process of returning to a glaciated state”. or “Earth has yet to return to the warmth of the Medieval Warm Period as demonstrated by what can be grown in Northern Europe, UK and Greenland. Before (IF) we get there, glaciers will retreat much further.”

    Sometimes such statements trigger critical thought, but usually the reaction is to search for MSM warmist puff pieces to fortify AGW belief

  3. It seem necessary to point out that for the past 14 years temps have started declining globally. 18 years ago the temps plateaued. Four years into the 18 years the decline started.

    Also, few glaciers are decreasing today. Mountain glaciers are mostly on the increase as are ocean glaciers. These glacier expansion have been reported on more and more frequently as the Global Cooling warning is gaining ground. Scientists are finding support allowing them to break away from the lies with less risk.

    With ice ages comes intense droughts, intense rainfall and flooding, disruptions of animal life (livestock) and crops thus leading to population displacement and decreases. Compound that with weakened immune systems from starvation and you get deaths from disease and pestilence.

    We may get to experience these effects of both extreme dry and extreme cold if Einsteins theory is correct.

  4. Peru, August 13, 2015. Snow buried south. Heavy snowfall. Arequipa, Puno and Cusco in less endured this unusual phenomenon that damaged the traffic on the roads. In the Arequipa-Juliaca road over a thousand units were stranded by ice reaching a thickness of 15 centimeters. SENAMHI estimated that phenomenon will last until August 15.
    In Arequipa, the climate event started at 18.00 from last Tuesday, ended the next morning (yesterday). In the cities of the plateau it lasted three hours. Snow covered several points of 72 kilometers of road between Arequipa – Juliaca. More than thousand units in both directions on the road were stranded. The queue of cars formed from Pampa Imata in the district of San Antonio Chuca (Caylloma) to Santa Lucia, province of Lampa (Puno).
    The crew bus, minivan drives, vans and private cars spent the night inside their units enduring freezing temperatures. At 1100 hours yesterday, the traffic was restored.
    The regional manager SENAMHI Francisco Berrios said the snow reached a height up to 35 cm in areas above 4,500 meters, as is the case in Arcata, in Condesuyos.
    Meanwhile, the head of Civil Defense of the Municipality of Caylloma, Donato Mamani said the 450,000 camels are at risk in the province, because the forage was covered by ice.

  5. Peru, August 12, 2015. Are blocked by snow 2000 road cars in Arequipa – Puno.
    During last night’s snowfall that occurred at the height of Imata (in Caylloma), resulted in from 21:30 hours, a lot of vehicles, interprovincial buses, trucks and minivans, were stranded in the middle of the road was obstructed.
    From 07:30 hours today, the vehicles began to advance slowly, as the sun could melt the snow blocking the road; passengers had to spend the night inside vehicles and criticized the authorities have not sent heavy machinery to clear the roads.

  6. Humans still don’t have much effect on CO2 levels. Increases lag behind natural warming by as much as 200 to 800 years, as well as decreases that also lag behind natural cooling events. We are entering a natural cooling event(not without natural ups and downs) right now that may last as long or longer than 50,000 years.

    “David Dilley, former NOAA Meteorologist and current CEO and senior research scientist – Global Weather Oscillations, Inc., gives a presentation on Mind Your Own Business TV with Debi Davis. Mr. Dilley provides the viewer a full picture and understanding of climate change cycles and carbon dioxide cycles. Mr. Dilley combines his own research with peer reviewed research from other scientists and applies it to what is happening today, and to the likely dangerous climate change that will occur between the years 2019 to 2050. ”
    I highly recommend this to anyone who is concerned about the direction our climate is headed, no matter whether they think it is headed for warming caused by man, or whether they have not bought into the phoney 97% consensus(which is really 97% of 33% polled thinks that the warming is human induced).
    David Dilley explains all this and more in this powerful presentation released just a few days ago:

    See also Mr. Dilley’s Free Ebook “Natural Climate Pulse” here:!ebook-

    By the way Mr. Dilley’s research matches closely to that of other similar researchers that we’ve previously seen posted and talked about here on Ice Age Now. And, he’s a former meteorologist for NOAA. Which should tell you something.

    • How quickly? : “The ice age(Wisconsin) ended in one year” according to Dorthe Dahl-Jensen, professor at the Center for Ice and Climate at the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen:
      “We have analysed the transition from the last ice age to our current warm interglacial period and there is such an abrupt change in climate that it is as if someone just pushed a button”

      Could this also be true for entering an Ice Age?

    • Related to the Dilley video above, I found a time index from
      Here are the points he makes in the video:

      1. The 18+ years temperature pause is real. (4.09)
      2. Natural cycles are behind the current pause.
      3. Ice cores show CO2 lags temperature. (5.00)
      4. 7000 years ago there was 50% less Arctic ice. (8.20)
      5. The 1000-year cycle is real. (9.20)
      6. Planet has been cooling over past 10,000 years. (9.34)
      7. Natural cycles are driving our climate. (10.04)
      8. Shows cooling from 2023 to 2150.
      9. Current warming is perfectly natural.
      10. Milankovitch cycles driving large-scale cycles. (13.00)
      11. Gravitational forces can bulge Earth’s core by 1.4 km (15.35)
      12. Gravitational forces impact global temperature (17.20)
      13. Warming and cooling both begin at the poles (17.48)
      14. Arctic warming/melt was caused by warm ocean pulses (19.50)
      15. “Now starting to see a dramatic cooling in the Arctic“. (22.50)
      16. “Arctic is cooling rapidly now. Rapidly!” (24.06)
      17. Both poles are cooling rapidly now. (25.05(
      18. Poles don’t show signs of warming. (26.30)
      19. Western drought and Eastern cold due to 26-year cycle. (27.55)
      20. Polar vortices due to Arctic/global cooling. (29.25)
      21. Lunar cycles correlated with warming/cooling cycles. (31.30)
      22. Rapid global cooling by 2019. (32.00)
      23. “Temperature fiddling” are “more political than anything”. (32.56)
      24. “Could be the biggest scientific scandal ever”. (33.20)
      25. IPCC using “estimated temperatures”. (34.00)
      26. How the government manipulated, rewrote data. (36.00)
      27. “This is temperature fiddling.” Not the truth. (36.45)
      28. NASA, NOAA’s “politically driven press releases”. (37.00)
      29. Met Office calls NOAA’s 2014 claim untrue. (38.00)
      30. Major data fiddling, cheating by NOAA. (39.50)
      31. “The 97% consensus is bogus”. (41.00)
      32. John Cook cooked the consensus data. (41.30)
      33. 85% meteorologists say climate change is natural. (42.20)
      34. Global cooling is the real danger. (43.20)
      35. Volcanoes and cooling often correlated. (44.00)
      36. Crop failures from cooling “very likely”. (45.45)
      37. “Extremely cold” from 2025 to 2050. (46.36)
      38. Global cooling next 125 years. (47.00)
      39. “The cooling is coming”.

      – See more at:

  7. People seem to conveniently forget glaciers are really frozen “rivers” and like all rivers they flow downhill to the sea.

    Calving is equivalent to river discharge and to be expected – it is not evidence of warming. I can imagine many of the fools who associate calving glaciers with some manmade catastrophe arguing that a river should not discharge into the sea.

    Like rivers glaciers are driven by the accumulation of mass upstream and in times of “drought” will not flow as much – just as a river dries up from lack of rainfall.

    Besides all that, temperatures have increased slightly over the period since the little ice age ended – we are told an increase of 0.8 – 1degree C over more than a century or more.

    As the tropics are always heated to the “max” this increase in average temperatures is likely to be most likely to be due to increases in temperate and cold regions.

    Any wonder glaciers retreat and advance.

    And just “up the road” at Mendenhall glacier evidence of a past estimated as perhaps not much more than 2500 – 3000 years ago when the climate was significantly warmer than today is emerging due to glacier retreat.

    A lot of climate scientists and ALL alarmists are liars – about glaciers as well as most of the things they state publicly.

  8. Wow, some more proof that man made global warming is fake, can’t wait for Gore and his cronies to see the Hudson Bay, and the Great Lakes freeze over for 8 months

  9. I am 70 years old & remember my Geography teacher [Mr Clarence Hitchey} telling the class about the cycles of nature & particularly the cycles affecting things like glaciers advancing & retreating in cycles of X number of years. I don’t think he was even sure of the length of the cycles or the consistency of the cycles. No doubt the cycles & lessons in the ways of the natural world are no longer taught.

    It’s just a cycle!!! Not a signal to burden the world with a tax that leads to World Government & the destruction of our Capitalist System.

    For Christ’s sake people, wake up.
    Don’t discuss the science let the Socialists know that we are aware of their Socialist / Marxist Communist plans to enslave the world.
    It’s quite simple…. To control the world & it’s economy you need to control all production of wealth. The only way to do that is control all the energy that drives production & thus wealth!!

    • They know that some are aware of their agenda. We are known as Denier. We are defined as not caring about the Environment, the World we leave our children, stupid and uneducated.

    • Well, we are living in paradise here in Scotland that we are obviously unaware of: all the main industries of production and distribution are in private ownership ( electricity, coal, gas, oil, hydro, wind, road haulage, rail etc) and we have the greatest concentration of private land ownership in the fewest number of owners anywhere in a so-called democracy with under 500 owners in possession of 50% of the land. Even national parks are owned privately, often by non resident foreign billionaires. Perhaps we could discuss it further in a foodbank in a slum sink estate or in the ruin of a Highland cottage the landowners evicted the people from so that they could have empty glens to shoot grouse and rear sheep on?

  10. Quote: Nearly two centuries before humans had much effect on CO2 levels.

    This presupposes it has which is contrary to available evidence.

  11. Of course about 100 miles NW of Glacier Bay is Hubbard Glacier, the largest tidewater glacier in North America. “Hubbard Glacier has advanced at a rate of about 80 feet per year since 1895 (fig. 8). Although the timing is uncertain, the prospect of the glacier continuing to advance and again blocking the entrance to Russell Fiord is much more certain.”:

  12. A lot of the melting of a glacier sitting on the sea can come from below, and be due to cycles of ocean currents such as “The Blob”. However it can be an error to focus too much on the sea-water and not enough on the atmosphere, as I just learned watching O-buoy 12 up in the Beaufort Sea. The atmosphere apparently didn’t get the memo about “The Blob” and started to form “pancake ice” in mid August, when the sea ice is suppose to still be melting.

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