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Data release for Lake levels in a discontinuous permafrost landscape: Late Holocene variations inferred from sediment oxygen isotopes, Yukon Flats, Alaska


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Anderson, L., 2018, Data release for Lake levels in a discontinuous permafrost landscape: Late Holocene variations inferred from sediment oxygen isotopes, Yukon Flats, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey data release,


During recent decades, lake levels in the Yukon Flats region of interior Alaska have fluctuated dramatically. However, prior to recorded observations, no data are available to indicate if similar or more extreme variations occurred during past centuries and millennia. This study explores the history of Yukon Flats lake origins and lake levels for the past approximately 5,500 years from sediment analyses guided by previous work on permafrost extent, thermokarst, and modern isotope hydrology. Sediments dated by 210Pb and AMS radiocarbon indicate stable chronologies following initial lake initiation. Subsequent lithology is autochthonous, and oxygen isotope ratios of endogenic carbonate reflect lake level change at multiple time scales. [...]


Point of Contact :
Lesleigh Anderson
Originator :
Lesleigh Anderson
Metadata Contact :
Lesleigh Anderson
Distributor :
U.S. Geological Survey - ScienceBase
SDC Data Owner :
Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center
USGS Mission Area :
Land Resources

Attached Files

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“Track Lake core A09 all data”
7.64 KB
“Track Lake core B10 carbonate isotopes”
6.09 KB
“Track Lake core B10 bulk sediment properties”
6.02 KB
“Twelvemile Lake core B08 carbon and mineral content”
6.5 KB
“Twelvemile Lake core B08 dry bulk density”
5.46 KB
“Twelvemile Lake core B08 magnetic susceptibility”
3.07 KB
“Twelvemile Lake core GL07 all data”
6.33 KB
“XML metadata file”
Original FGDC Metadata

18.63 KB


This data was collected in order to develop a long-term context and better understanding of the significance of recent Yukon Flats lake fluctuations. This study examines sediment records from two lakes that have recently changed dramatically in response to climate, Twelvemile Lake and Track lakes. Both lakes underwent sustained water losses over the past two decades, with ~80% volume declines, and subsequent enrichment in heavy oxygen and hydrogen isotopes in their lake water. Both lakes have also undergone full recovery to maximum lake levels within a 13-month period between 2014 and 2015 in response to higher than average precipitation. The lakes are located in similar settings in terms of surficial geology, vegetation, permafrost distributions, and surfacegroundwater connectivity. Evidence presented for stable radiocarbon chronologies and autochthonous lithology further indicates that following initiation lake formation, minimal permafrost-induced changes in shorelines or basin morphometry has occurred. Twelvemile and Track lakes are alkaline and undergo endogenic carbonate (CaCO3) precipitation and sedimentation. The sediment records therefore provide continuous calcium carbonate oxygen isotope ratios (18OCaCO3). The 18OCaCO3 values reflect the values for past lake water (18OH2O), which in turn reflects lake hydrology, lake levels, and climate. Additional sediment measurements also included in this data release, in addition to lake water 18OH2O observations, climate records, lake level histories, and isotope mass balance model sensitivity experiments presented in the associated publication, further inform the paleoclimatic interpretation of the Track and Twelvemile lake 18OCaCO3 records. The combined datasets indicate that the sediment data accurately reflect lake level fluctuations during the observational period and thereby provide a record of lake level change in response to hydroclimate for the past ~4000 years prior to the recent period of monitoring.



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Additional Information


Type Scheme Key
DOI doi:10.5066/P9GVYFNW

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