The cover photo captures Lakes Churup and Churupito, located in the valley embedded into the west-facing slopes of the Cordillera Blanca massif, Central Peruvian Andes, in July 2017. The research expedition led by Dr. Adam Emmer focused on the glacier retreat and associated processes in this highest peruvian mountain range. The image shows downstream view on the Churup valley, which underwent substantial ice loss since the end of the Little Ice Age (LIA).
In the current issue of the Journal (Journal of Mountain Science Vol. 16, No. 7, 2019), the article entitled “Glacier retreat, rock weathering and the growth of lichens in the Churup Valley, Peruvian Tropical Andes“ explores the rate of glacier retreat since the end of the LIA and various environmental consequences, employing multi-proxy approach including the analysis of remotely sensed images (1948-2016), the Schmidt hammer rock test and lichenometric dating. Most importantly, we estimate the LIA glacier extent being 1.05 ± 0.1 km2, and show how glacier extent varied in space (SE, SW and NW-facing slopes) and time, with the peak decline between 1986 and 1995. In relation to that, we reveal differences between the characteristics of surfaces exposed before and after the LIA and point out only limited reliability of lichenometrical dating in this dynamic high mountain environment and given time scale.
Full text available at: https://rdcu.be/bI2dR