Exercise 2.2. Identifying Depositional Environments

What To Do

Use the knowledge you have gained from the lectures and pre-lab exercises to identify the depositional environments on the following aerial images.

Google Earth Options

You can also view and explore locations in this exercise using Google Earth. If you have not used Google Earth, here is your chance to find a lab partner to work with. There are a number of ways to view the locations:

  • Use the .kmz file posted on Canvas to navigate to the locations.
  • Within Google Earth, search “Inuvik” for Exercise 2.2A, or “Brady Glacier, Alaska” for Exercise 2.2B, then zoom outwards.
  • Use the links provided in each question.

Exercise 2.2A. Canadian Basin, Arctic Ocean

Examine Figure 2.3, which is a combined image showing topographic (green/yellow=land) and bathymetric (blue=ocean) features of part of the Arctic Ocean. Click here to view the location in Google Earth.

Which location (labelled A through H) corresponds to each of the following clastic environments?

  1. Meandering River: _____
  2. Delta complex: _____
  3. Beach: _____
  4. Shelf (Storm Dominant): _____
  5. Shelf (Tidal Dominant): _____ Hint: Where might currents be generated by tidal changes in ocean level?
  6. Continental Slope and Submarine Fans: _____
  7. Basin floor: _____
  8. Glacial moraines: _____


Figure 2.3 | Bathymetric image of the Canadian Basin of the Arctic Ocean. The red track is the track of a planned oceanographic expedition. Map source: NOAA Extended Continental Shelf Program. Click the image to view a larger version.

Exercise 2.2B. Glacier Bay, Alaska

Figure 2.4 shows an oblique view of Brady Glacier which is located within Glacier Bay National Park in Alaska. (Click here to view the location in Google Earth.) A number of terrestrial and transitional depositional environments have been labeled with letters on the image.

What depositional environment corresponds to each of letters A through F?

A. _________________________

B. _________________________

C. _________________________

D. _________________________

E. _________________________

F. _________________________


Figure 2.4 | Glacier Bay, Alaska. Satellite photo: NASA Earth Observatory. Inset map: NOAA Continental Shelf Program.

Figures 2.3 and 2.4 are derived from images in the public domain.


Laboratory Manual for Earth History Copyright © by kpanchuk. All Rights Reserved.

Share This Book