Griesgletscher is a small, easily accessible valley glacier southwest of Nufenenpass. The fact that it has few crevasses, in particular in the lower section, and its simple shape, made it an ideal target for research into ice movement, deformation and structures starting in the 1970s. Since Griesgletscher covers a major part of the catchment area of Griessee, which is part of a hydroelectric power scheme, mass balance measurements are conducted annually.
Griesgletscher at night during full moon, 1973. Few years after the damming of the lake, the tongue was still terminating in the lake and iceberg calving was occasionally occurring. Star trails are visible in the sky as a result of the time exposure
View from the dam towards the accumulation area of Griesgletscher, 1973. Rothorn (3289m, centre left) and Blinnenhorn (3373.8m, centre right) in the background, with Rothornpass in between.
Calving front of Griesgletscher in 1973. Transverse crevasses create slivers of ice that occasionally fall into the lake, creating small icebergs; one is visible in front of the glacier terminus.
Same viewing direction as in the previous image, but a narrower field of view, summer 2002. The tongue has now receded from the lake. Note meandering meltwater channels on the steepest part of the tongue.
View from Blinnenhorn towards Lago dei Sabbione, Italy, in 1973. At that time, this glacier also calved into the lake, but it too has since receded from its shore.
Griessee in the summer of 2002. Photo taken from the Little Ice Age moraine.
Dam at the end of Griessee.
Dam, Griessee and Griesgletscher in 2002. On both sides of the lake the Little Ice Age trimlines are clearly visible.
Ice cliff from the south, summer 1974. Note person for scale in the left foreground and debris layers, derived from the bed, in the cliff face.
Cliff with crevasses induced by calving and lake, viewed from the north, summer 1974.
|Photos Jürg Alean.|