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The varved sediments of Elk Lake, Clearwater County, Minnesota, contain a 10,000 year record of climatic and limnologic events. Sediment traps deployed in the lake’s water column from 1979 to 1981 and from 1983 to 1984 collected samples that permitted us to identify materials, to see the timing of sedimentation events, and to deduce processes that form the microlaminae within varves. Fall and spring microlaminae consist mainly of sequential accumulations of biogenic silica and resuspended calcific and siliceous materials. Precipitates of iron, manganese, and organic detritus dominate the thin winter microlaminae. Calcific microlaminae are deposited in summer. Concentrated iron and...

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