In this study, we characterized glacial meltwater flow through a proglacial area with a focus on proglacial lakes and their hydrological regime and connection to a stream. The studied lakes showed a distinct development throughout an ablation season. For example at Lake 2, the mean daily water-level fluctuation amplitude increased from 0.07 (June) to 0.18 m (August), then dropped to 0.07 m (September). Glacial meltwater flows through the lakes and further downstream through a rock glacier rather fast (0.085 m/s), however only a small portion of water (< 1%) is routed efficiently. The complexity of the site‘s drainage system is supported by varying isotopic composition of water in the tarns situated on the rock glacier, with Tarn a) being the most enriched and Tarn c) the most depleted in heavy isotopes. The results from this study site provide new insights into the complexity of a drainage system connecting a glacier and a stream. Further research of the tarns and subsurface water routing could bring new knowledge about the temperature-related degradation and internal changes of the rock glacier. Considered significant global water storage and influencing hydrological conditions of watersheds, these landforms will certainly draw more attention in near future.
Falátková K., Šobr M., Slavík M., Bruthans J., Janský B. (2020): Hydrological characterization and connectivity of proglacial lakes to a stream, Adygine ice-debris complex, northern Tien Shan. Hydrological Sciences Journal 65, 610-623. (DOI)