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Abstract

The Garibaldi Volcanic Belt (GVB) in southwestern British Columbia is dominated by intermediate composition volcanoes in a setting that has been intermittently subjected to widespread glaciation. The glaciovolcanic features produced are distinctive, and include flow-dominated tuyas, subglacial domes, and ice-marginal flows. Flow-dominated tuyas, which are intermediate in composition, are unlike conventional basaltic tuyas; they consist of stacks of flat-lying lava flows, and lack pillows and hyaloclastite. They are inferred to represent subglacial eruptions that ultimately breached the ice surface. subglacial domes occur as steep-sided masses of heavily-jointed, glassy lava, and represent eruptions that were entirely subglacial. Ice-marginal flows derive from subaerial flows that were impounded against ice.

Two unique aspects of GVB glaciovolcanic products are the presence of flow-dominated tuyas and the apparent scarcity of primary fragmental deposits. These unique features result from lava composition, the minimization of direct lava-water contact during eruptions, and topography. Composition influences morphology because eruption temperature decreases, and viscosity and glass transition temperature both increase with silica content. The result of this is that silicic subglacial volcanoes melt less water and are less likely to trap it near the vent, leading to the formation of structures whose shapes are strongly influenced by the surrounding ice. Topography also enhances meltwater drainage, favours lava flow impoundment in ice-filled valleys, and may, through erosion, influence the observed distribution of fragmental glaciovolcanic deposits.

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