Abstract

This paper presents relative sea-level curves from Amund and Ellef Ringnes islands, northwest Queen Elizabeth Islands. These curves are of exponential form and record continuous, ongoing Holocene emergence, although northwest Ellef Ringnes Island is experiencing a late Holocene transgression. Isobases drawn on postglacial shorelines rise south-eastward towards an uplift centre in Norwegian Bay. These suggest the Ringnes Islands occupied the northwest radius of the Innuitian uplift, which is congruent with glacial geological evidence suggesting parts of the Ringnes Islands were covered by the Late Wisconsinan Innuitian Ice Sheet. The isobases provide a provisional reconstruction of glacioisostatic recovery within the northwest Innuitian uplift. Their pattern supports earlier reconstructions tha t maximum Late Wisconsinan ice thickness occurred across Norwegian Bay, marking the position of an ice divide, which is consistent with ice-flow features on Amund Ringnes Island. They record the diminishing thickness of the Innuitian Ice Sheet from Norwegian Bay to the Arctic Ocean. The absence of an isobase embayment across the Ringnes Islands suggests a relatively uniform ice load across both islands and Hassel and Massey sounds. Parallel isobases across Peary Channel indicate this ice load extended beyond Massey Sound, although their northward deflection suggests an increasing influence of the former Axel Heiberg Island ice load.

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