Moraine Topography

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Moraine Topography


accumulative relief created by glacier activity. On plains that were covered by Anthropogene (Quaternary) continental glaciation the following basic types of moraine topography are distinguished: (1) morainic plains, which are vast, almost level or slightly rolling surfaces composed of ground moraine; (2) swell and swale topography, formed by numerous low, gently sloping large and small hills with depressions between them which frequently have swamps and lakes that are sometimes connected by streams; (3) terminal moraine topography, which is formed by single ridges or systems of parallel ridges of terminal moraines separated by valley-like depressions which sometimes contain chains of small lakes and swamps or small streams (this type of moraine, usually crescentic in form, is developed along the nearly stationary front of a glacier, marking the position of a major glacial advance); (4) hilly moraine topography, which sometimes replaces terminal moraine zones and is distinguished from morainic plains by a prevalence of hills, many of which are elongated in the direction of the glacier margin along which this type of moraine topography formed under conditions of slow glacier shrinking; and (5) drumlin relief, which develops in some places on the inner side of terminal moraines and is composed of oval morainic hills or drumlins whose longitudinal axes parallel the direction of ice movement.

In mountain valleys that were subjected to Anthropogene glaciation, moraine topography is represented by side moraines (lateral moraines deposited onto the valley slopes as ridges or morainic terraces when the glacier melted), ridges of terminal moraines, and sections of hilly moraine topography.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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