New evidence supporting extraterrestrial impact at the start of the Younger Dryas

There’s a new paper in PNAS worth having a look at. It seems the authors found some very strong evidence for a comet or asteroid impact during the period known as the Younger Dryas. According to Wikipedia:

The Younger Dryas stadial, also referred to as the Big Freeze, was a geologically brief (1,300 ± 70 years) period of cold climatic conditions and drought which occurred between approximately 12,800 and 11,500 years BP (Before Present). The Younger Dryas stadial is thought to have been caused by the collapse of the North American ice sheets, although rival theories have been proposed.

File:Epica-vostok-grip-40kyr.png

Three temperature records, the GRIP sequence (red) showing the Younger Dryas event at around 11.0 ka BP. The vertical axis shows δ18O, which is a temperature proxy showing the water molecule isotopic composition of 18O in an ice core.

With this new paper, this may be one of those “case closed” moments in science showing that “climate change”/ice sheet collapse itself wasn’t to blame for the cold event, but the climate changed due to the impact event. This rather undoes the claims last year covered on WUWT in the story Sudden Clovis climate death by comet – “bogus”. I’d say it is pretty hard to argue with micro magnetic impact spherules dated to the time.

Evidence from central Mexico supporting the Younger Dryas extraterrestrial impact hypothesis

Fig. 5. SEM images of magnetic impact spherules. (A–B) Magnetic impact spherules with dendritic surface pattern. (C) Framboidal pyrite spherule. (D) Collisional magnetic impact spherules. (E) Light micrograph of same magnetic impact spherules. (F) Teardrop-shaped spherule with dendritic pattern. (G) Photomicrograph of same MSps. For labels such as “2.80 #3,” “2.80” represents depth of sample in meters and “#3” is the magnetic impact spherule number as listed in SI Appendix, Table 4.

Abstract

We report the discovery in Lake Cuitzeo in central Mexico of a black, carbon-rich, lacustrine layer, containing nanodiamonds, microspherules, and other unusual materials that date to the early Younger Dryas and are interpreted to result from an extraterrestrial impact. These proxies were found in a 27-m-long core as part of an interdisciplinary effort to extract a paleoclimate record back through the previous interglacial.

Our attention focused early on an anomalous, 10-cm-thick, carbon-rich layer at a depth of 2.8 m that dates to 12.9 ka and coincides with a suite of anomalous coeval environmental and biotic changes independently recognized in other regional lake sequences.

Collectively, these changes have produced the most distinctive boundary layer in the late Quaternary record. This layer contains a diverse, abundant assemblage of impact-related markers, including nanodiamonds, carbon spherules, and magnetic spherules with rapid melting/quenching textures, all reaching synchronous peaks immediately beneath a layer containing the largest peak of charcoal in the core. Analyses by multiple methods demonstrate the presence of three allotropes of nanodiamond: n-diamond, i-carbon, and hexagonal nanodiamond (lonsdaleite), in order of estimated relative abundance.

This nanodiamond-rich layer is consistent with the Younger Dryas boundary layer found at numerous sites across North America, Greenland, and Western Europe. We have examined multiple hypotheses to account for these observations and find the evidence cannot be explained by any known terrestrial mechanism. It is, however, consistent with the Younger Dryas boundary impact hypothesis postulating a major extraterrestrial impact involving multiple airburst(s) and and/or ground impact(s) at 12.9 ka.

Fig. 4. Markers over the interval between 3.6 and 2.2 m. The YD episode (12.9 to 11.5 ka) is represented by dark band. YDB layer is at 2.8 m. NDs and magnetic impact spherules both peak at the YD onset, whereas framboidal spherules, CSps, and charcoal peak higher in the sequence. Magnetic grains peak just prior to the YD onset. NDs are in ppb; Msps, framboidal spherules, CSps, and charcoal are in no./kg; magnetic grains in g/kg.

Summary
Synchronous peaks in multiple YDB markers dating to 12.9 ka were previously found at numerous sites across North and South America and in Western Europe. At Lake Cuitzeo, magnetic impact spherules, CSps, and NDs form abundance peaks within a 10 cm layer of sediment that dates to the early part of the YD, beginning at 12.9 ka. These peaks coincide with anomalous environmental, geochemical, and biotic changes evident at Lake Cuitzeo and in other regional records, consistent with the occurrence of an unusual event. Analyses of YDB acid-resistant extracts using STEM, EDS, HRTEM, SAD, FFT, EELS, and EFTEM indicate that Lake Cuitzeo nanoparticles are dominantly crystalline carbon and display d-spacings that match various ND allotropes, including lonsdaleite. These results are consistent with reports of abundant NDs in the YDB in North America and Western Europe.

Although the origin of these YDB markers remains speculative, any viable hypothesis must account for coeval abundance peaks in NDs, magnetic impact spherules, CSps, and charcoal in Lake Cuitzeo, along with apparently synchronous peaks at other sites, spanning a wide area of Earth’s surface. Multiple hypotheses have been proposed to explain these YDB peaks in markers, and all but one can be rejected. For example, the magnetic impact spherules and NDs cannot result from the influx of cosmic material or from any known regular terrestrial mechanism, including wildfires, volcanism, anthropogenesis, or alternatively, misidentification of proxies. Currently, only one known
event, a cosmic impact, can explain the diverse, widely distributed assemblage of proxies. In the entire geologic record, there are only two known continent-wide layers with abundance peaks in NDs, impact spherules, CSps, and aciniform soot, and those
are the KPg impact boundary at 65 Ma and the YDB boundary at 12.9 ka.

If you’re interested, the paper is published with unrestricted access on the PNAS website.

Or, you can read a full PDF copy that’s been mirrored on Dropbox.com at: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/2268163/Mexico%20YD%20Paper.pdf

h/t to reader Dennis Cox

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254 thoughts on “New evidence supporting extraterrestrial impact at the start of the Younger Dryas

  1. See… THIS is Science. No observation-free modelling, or cherry picking… “We have observational findings, it relates to previously known observational findings, there is no other explanation which includes all relevant data, it’s falsifiable and reproducable (go dredge up another core sample and check for the same materials, or find an alternative hypothesis that includes all known observations)…
    If Climate Science was done like this, there wouldn’t be a need for so devoted a skeptical community, because they scientists would be providing the healthy skepticism themselves.

  2. I’ve been reading about this theory for many years. So I guess it has finally gained enough credibility to be mainstream? Which climate science worked like this too.

    Any connection to the Carolina Bays?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carolina_Bay

    It would seem to me that a multiple impact event, or a single large impact with the ejecta coming back down on top of ice sheets, instantly evaporating them could leave what we now can observe. Rings of sand, possibly part ejecta and part flash evaporated ice sheets (they carry a great deal of sand and debris.) The shallowness of the bays could also be a result of the impact having to melt through the ice sheet.

    ?

  3. I followed a link on another WUWT post to some interesting ideas about frozen wooly mammoths. For what it’s worth: The link suggested that, in order for a body as massive as a mammoth’s to be frozen without rot occurring in the middle they had to be subjected to ultra cold temperatures, in essence flash-frozen at 150 below. Yet they were frozen in a standing position, with unchewed summer beans still within pods in their mouths. There was the suggestion they were buried in a strange hail, unseen by modern scientific observers in modern times.

    Here is the link: http://www.grahamkendall.net/Unsorted_files-2/A312-Frozen_Mammoths.txt

  4. The caption for the first figure is wrong. (Never trust wikipedia!)

    The Vostok and EPICA Dome C data are deuterium, not O-18. As a result, the graph proves, beyond all doubt, that if one (either deuterium or O-18) is a temperature proxy, then the other can not be. Yet the “official” position is that they both are. Using deuterium, there were about 4 ice ages in the last 420,000 years while O-18 suggests that there were from 8 to 12.

    From deutnat.txt

    Deuterium data is from core 3G between 138 and 2083 meters below surface (mbs) (with one long missing section between 312 and 320 mbs)

    My translation of this is that the temperature data from 13,992 to 14,466 years BP is simply invented. In wikipedia, the Younger Dryas is given as 12,800 and 11,500 years BP. However, in the Vostok core, the peak temperature (the start of the Younger Dryas) was at a depth of 311 meters (13,938 years BP).

  5. The Younger Dryas stadial, also referred to as the Big Freeze, was a geologically brief (1,300 ± 70 years) period of cold climatic conditions and drought which occurred between approximately 12,800 and 11,500 years BP (Before Present).

    Yet 15 (± 5) years of global warming [now stalled] means a Mann made calamity. This is what I call geological time shape shifting to suit one’s purpose. ;-)
    [My bold emphasis]

  6. ah, music to my ears.

    Younger Dryas, impact event. Carolina Bays implicated. Geomagnetic excursions. Iridium. Nanodiamonds. Charcoal & coal. Magnetic spherules. Yes. Fullerenes too? Orthodoxy shutting its ears and making rude noises because the theory implicates (a) catastrophism (b) a degree of rehab for Velikowsky (c) also, electric universe material is also obliquely implicated. Can’t have that can we?

    One of the most interesting books I know came through a recommendation here a few years back. Magnetic Reversals and Evolutionary Leaps by Robert Felix. I really cannot recommend it too highly. Looking at the Amazon reviews I see a familiar two-tail rating ie some top, some bottom ratings tho mostly top. Must look carefully at one of the “intelligent” low ratings some time. Certainly, last time I reinvestigated the claims of “poor science” “lies” etc from an “intelligent” debunker on another two-tail rating, I started believing it, then as I investigated further, found I was soundly debunking the debunker’s debunks. After a while I thought, case closed. It was Cook’s Skeptical Science all over again. Thimblerigging a speciality.

  7. That Wiki graph shows Greenland and Vostok proxies. Funny how both proxies ‘fail’ to show the Medieval Warm Period. Pick and choose. ;-)

  8. What’s interesting to me is that previously a large freshwater flood was the consensus explanation of the Younger Dryas … and people found a bunch of evidence to support it.

    Also of note is that the Younger Dryas is often cited as evidence of fast climate change from postulated natural “tipping points” … whereas it now appears to be a meteor impact.

    Dang, climate science is fun. Always something new in this most settled of sciences …

    w.

  9. Sure there could have been an extraterrestrial event at the beginning of the Younger Dryas, but that doesn’t mean that it caused the YD (post hoc fallacy). If you look at most isotope proxies like the Greenland Ice cores and high resolution oceanic sediment cores ie Santa Barbara basin Cf, the fingerprint is always the same to the Dansgaard Oeschger events, this is especially true for the deuterium excess in the ice cores. This would suggest that these events have similar causes and that would require a lot of near identical terrestrial events.

    Also interesting to note that the typical start date of the YD, 12,900 years (from the Caracio grey scale and GISP-II ice core) ago is now under pressure. In Europe researchers long knew that the YD started some 12,700 years ago, because of 200 varve counted years difference between the Laacher sea tephra dated 12,900 years ago and the start of the YD. Nowadays a new carbon dating calibration table (INTCAL09) shows a large discrepancy with the old one (INTCAL04) which suggest that indeed the YD started around 12,700 Cal BP.

  10. The Younger Dryas lasted 1300 years, which is a very long time for a single event cause.

    This study throws serious doubt on the Forcings model/theory which dictates that the Earth’s climate changes at the rate that forcings change, in effect slowly (at least in the pre-anthropogenic CO2 era).

    This study indicates that the climate flips between more or less stable states irrespective of changes in forcings.

    FYI the Younger Dryas also ended rapidly.

    From wikipedia,

    Measurements of oxygen isotopes from the GISP2 ice core suggest the ending of the Younger Dryas took place over just 40 – 50 years in three discrete steps, each lasting five years. Other proxy data, such as dust concentration, and snow accumulation, suggest an even more rapid transition, requiring about a 7 °C (12.60 °F) warming in just a few years.[6][7][20][21] Total warming was 10 ± 4 °C (18 ± 7 °F).

  11. Interesting – next step, locating the impact location? Or do we have any leading theories? I know it took a long time for people to settle on the Chicxulub impact for the 65 mya event.

    I agree with the commenters above… nice to see some actual Science. And I bet that if someone else had a credible competing theory, the authors would actually be interested in hearing it.

  12. As if they used m for the scale in the first picture to mean microns. I thought that they were huge at over 10 meters in diameter. The µ symbol should be easy to use now-a-days. — John M Reynolds

  13. The big problem so far has been where to find some reasonably big crater(s) that are young enough. My feeling is that easily identifiable craters are missing because the impact area was covered by some kilometer of ice. The result would be seemingly very old craters the result of a billion years of weathering because the typical thick layers of ejecta are missing. I think two areas in SW finland should be checked. Mossala fjaerd is a crater like formation where broken edges still are sharp, experts say the crater is of volcanic origin and extremely old. My view is that what we see is the very bottom of an impact in a 1…2 km thick ice layer. No ejecta is found because it melted soon after the impact. The size of the Mossala crater is ca 6 km diameter. In the Aland area some 40 km towards WNW there is another slightly smaller crater 5.5 km in diameter. Again with broken surfaces that still seem fresh. Some 15 km south of Mossala I have found glazed sea bottom fragments similar to material found in the old Swedish Siljan krater (dia 50 km). If there is interest I could create a web page with some pictures. It is easy to see that two impacts like these would have injected tens of km^3 of water into the stratospere probably causing an extended “atomic war” like winter. /Lars Silen, physicist Finland.

  14. Isn’t there also a paper that looked at mammoth bones from that time and found high speed particulate impact pits? I recall comments seemed to be leaning toward it being a stretching of the data.

  15. Hey, I posted a link to UniverseToday about this several days ago — thought I might get a hat-tip (never had one). Oh well….

    Willis, a large-enough impact near or on the N American glacier could cause a massive fresh-water flood — faster than any natural melting.

  16. So where did the evidence of the Gulf Stream slowdown that supposedly provided the mechanism for the temperature drop come from?

  17. And then there was recent post on a mass-extinction event where Smokey posted a link to somebody’s site that examined some very strange instances of Mammoth flash-freezing (in-cased in ice) across Siberia. An impact on a massive glacier in NA could have vaporized & flung extraordinarily large amounts of ice that precipitated out on the other side of the earth as a massive hail/rain storm. Sounds like science-fiction, but who knows?

  18. Heard a great one today. Why were economists made? To make climatologists look good.

  19. This study indicates that the climate flips between more or less stable states irrespective of changes in forcings.

    As predicted by chaos theory.

  20. I believe, a single event, the eruption of Mount Toba not only caused a 1,000 year cold event but the near extinction of Humanity.

    You dont need an impact for such events, a bolide atmospheric explosion will do the business.

  21. Lars Silen,
    I would buy into that Sir, just love photos of Finland, it is not to difficult to find the results ( providing there is a will there is a way ) a seismic survey would show the whats and wherefores, and who knows you might even find oil.

  22. Certainly the dust alone cannot account for the length of the cold spell. However, the kicked up dust could account for the first couple years. Still, dust rains out pretty easily, which could happen as a result of the dust getting kicked up there in the first place. We call it cloudless rain here in NE Oregon.

    It is possible that the event could have overlapped with another oscillation that was unrelated. We have so many oscillations on different beats, it seems plausable that they will overlap. Looking for one cause over such a long period seems a bit short sighted.

  23. Jimbo says:
    March 12, 2012 at 3:06 am

    That Wiki graph shows Greenland and Vostok proxies. Funny how both proxies ‘fail’ to show the Medieval Warm Period. Pick and choose. ;-)
    Jimbo says:
    March 12, 2012 at 3:09 am

    I should have added………..

    Because the MWP was a northern hemisphere event.

    Uh, Jimbo, the MWP occurred at around the very leftmost tick on that graph. (Each division is 1,000 yrs). The little wobbles you see there are quite “consistent” with an MWP. Trivial natural variation, of course, all of it.

  24. Robert Clemenzi,

    “The caption for the first figure is wrong. (Never trust wikipedia!)”

    I hope you then took the trouble to correct the error, or at least tagged it. Using Wikipedia implies a certain obligation upon the user to correct errors, that’s the genius of the system. Just remember to cite an authoritative source, and leave a note on the article’s Talk Page to explaining your rational.

    And, or course, Wikipedia cannot itself be relied upon to be the authoritative source, its an encyclopedia. In a real way Wikipedia is just another version of what we are doing here, real people with real experience taking a grasp of humanity’s knowledge for the common good – for free.

    I devote some of my time and treasure to improving the project in my small way, do you?

    Atani

  25. Good paper–worth reading. Especially loved their micrographs and corroborative evidence of nanodiamonds.

  26. Lars Silen

    Interesting region. You guys took some heavy hits.
    Here are a few Google Earth coords:
    Mossala 60.299612° 21.382232°
    Angskars 60.471579° 21.016164°
    Aland 60.140649° 20.124260°
    Siljan 61.046054° 14.899703°

    Might have to unzoom a bit to see the crater, especially Siljan and Aland.

  27. Now if we hadn’t had that inconvenient release of CRU emails, who on the team would have been assigned to lean on PNAS to prevent publication, I guess it took quite a while anyway when you look at the date of submission and approval….

  28. Atani – Perhaps some people think that, while you are earnestly trying to improve the Wikipedia ointment, we still cannot ignore the myriad carcasses of dead flies.

  29. The only two major observed impacts in recorded history are the Tunguska, Siberia event & the Shumacher-Levy comet impact on Jupiter. The first was an air-burst of a supposed chondrite meteor, the second a tidally-broken comet-train, producing a “string” of impacts. From this it is hard to imagine that such impact characteristics are unusual — much more likely they are common.

    Simple postulate: Approximately 12,900 yrs ago a comet-train impact produced shallowly-angled air-burst(s) with multiple in-line impacts — in this case stretching from central Mexico north north-east (west Texas has evidence too) to near, say, ~500 miles north of Lake Superior directly above, or on the 10,000 ft thick Laurentide ice-sheet . Terratons of ice were vaporized, or on the edges, physically blasted onto the surrounding land and into sub-orbital trajectories. How that would affect areas when it inevitably came back down is hard to imagine — but it would be awesome & incredibly destructive.

    The climate change that would occur after this event would also be hard to imagine, but yet perhaps we have the evidence right in front — the YD.

  30. Wikipedia_User
    Wikipedia is next to useless wherever there is controversy. It is basically a battle of who has the most free time. Since the alarmists have hundreds of millions, billions of dollars in funding for agitprop, they can give communications prizes to fund the spamming of that site.

    People get personally invested in their articles. It is like asking a flock of seagulls to decide the proper ownership of a fish.

  31. I just finished downloading and reading the paper – very interesting.

    Carolina Bays?? Maybe, probably not.

    Evidence proving them to be related to impact events seems to be elusive. In my mind Carolina Bays seem to be a result of a geological self-forming process of some kind, which would tend to explain their persistence in the modern landscape rather than being buried meters under the surface as at Lake Cuitzeo; genuine impact features tend to be subject to erosion, which makes identifying them later difficult.

    The new evidence presented in this new paper also tends to argue against the Carolina Bay impact hypothesis:

    “This layer contains a diverse, abundant assemblage of impact-related markers, including nanodiamonds, carbon spherules, and magnetic spherules with rapid melting/quenching textures, all reaching synchronous peaks immediately beneath a layer containing the largest peak of charcoal in the core.”

    Since we now have a very good idea of what to look for at the YD boundary, we should expect to find similar beneath the bays, no matter their striking appearance and inexplicable orientations. So far as I know nobody has shown this to be true of the CBs.

    Though I could be wrong.

    W^3

  32. Or maybe the ice sheet changes caused a large quality of heat to suddenly sink into the deep ocean into Trenberth Hidden Heat deposits which in turn mimicked either an asteroid hit or a major decrease in SUV sales.

    In any case, the ice sheet/thermohaline explanation for the Younger Dryas has been incorporated by doctrinal convenience into the Consensus and any findings to the contrary must therefore be dismissed.

  33. Kudos to WUWT:
    “This rather undoes the claims last year covered on WUWT story: Sudden Clovis climate death by comet – “bogus””
    No drama, no trying to support an indefensible position, simple acknowledgement of a better or supperior analysis or data, the attitude of lets move on and build from this, etc. Kudos. thats how it should be.

  34. Mr. Schilling,

    Nobody who actually works on the Wikipedia project is ignoring the issue, it is the central focus of our work, so I would reiterate everything I said above and challenge you to contribute some of your expertise to improving the project in whatever fields interests you.

    Massively collaborative projects like Wikipedia, created and maintained by ordinary people, are going to be the way humanity eventually learns to solve its problems – not the UN, not the IPCC, not the World Bank and the IMF, not the Bavarian Illuminati or the Cult of Cthullu either.

    History will prove me right on this.

    Atani

  35. I am extremely familiar with this issue, and I cannot see why THIS paper has begun to finally convince everyone of the likely validity of the Y-D impact hypothesis. But I am glad something finally did.

    And thank you, Anthony, for finally picking up on this study.

    Yes, as one of the early comments said, “THIS is science.”

    There are other studies that show just as much evidence of the impact materials that are in the “black mat.” I point anyone interested in this to browse through http://www.cosmictusk.com posts for other examples.

    I would also point out that 12,900 years ago – the boundary between the Pleistocene and the current Holocene – was well within the time of man. This confutes all that we have been told about the dangers ‘out there’ from relatively small objects wandering around in the nearby solar system.

    Now, this all begins to point to the next development in this saga: If we recognize that a major impact within the time of man is supported by enough evidence, then we need to begin thinking about what we should do about it. The particulars can be worked out in time, but we need to begin thinking about the import of this event. This touches on alarmism in its own right, so this will probably not be welcome here at ground zero of anti-big-government-science. Yet if it can be shown that the threat has happened before, then what? Mammoths and sabre-toothed tigers went extinct last time – not to mention Clovis Man in the New World. It is not far different from the phrase “being blown back to the stone age.” (I hope I don’t sound like James Hansen here…)

    One more thing: There is ample – if not conclusive – evidence that even more recent impacts have occurred. Much of it is historical, some of it is in the accounts of indigenous peoples (ambiguous when taken singly, but it begins to be persuasive when taken all together, by all the similarities), and at least some of it is scientific. If – and right now it is still a big ‘if’ – those other impacts happened, then we live in a much more active shooting gallery than we have realized.

  36. There are 25 of these rapid cooling events in the record of the last ice age. We would need 25 meteorite strikes.

    I think the issue is that it is really difficult to get glaciers all the way down to southern Canada and into the northern US. The solar energy was not much different than today, yet here we are on March 12 and the snow and ice is rapidly melting out now across North America. Even in the ice ages, the Sun is already warm enough at this time of year to start melting back glacial fronts in Chicago for example. How warm does the solar energy get by the summer.

    I think, in the ice ages, there are many glacial advance pulses that last for a few thousand years at a time which is then followed by periods of glacial retreat – there are at least 25 of them – the Dansgaard-Oeschger events. The Younger Dryas was just the last in these series of glacial advances.

  37. The following is somewhat circuitous, but is the the point of meteorites, CAGW, Greens and why they are so insistent that we, not the world, are warming the planet:

    The posted article supposes that the Younger Dryas some 12-13,000 years ago had a sudden, warming end as the result of a meteorite impact:

    Calgary, Alberta lies in the Bow River valley literally at the joining point of the continental glaciers sourced to the east in the Hudson Bay region, and the Rocky Mountain alpine glaciers sourced to the west (obviously in the Rockies). The line of contact is the northeastern edge of the city around Nose Hill, a bulge 200m above downtown Calgary (and the Bow River which cuts the city in two). A glacial lake, Lake Calgary, was formed when the river draining the two at their mutual front, was damed by a westward relative flow of an alpine glacier wedge along what is now the Elbow River. This lake was only one of a series of such ice-barrier bounded lakes on the way to the south perhaps a thousand kilometres, as the general drainage led into Montana, Idaho and across Washington (the state) to the Pacific Ocean.

    One raw day, with a west wind blowing an ice dam failed in mid-Alberta several hundred kilometres north of Calgary. A sudden, deep rush of water came moved massive blocks of ice capable of carrying blocks of rock approximately 7m high and 30m long from their original position west of Edson down to glacial Lake Calgary. The lake filled to overflowing, but the time it took allowed the west winds to push smaller blocks of ice with their smaller rocks – the size of Volts – to ground on the east side of Calgary, at the top of Nose Hill. The ice dam then failed and another of a cascading series of ice-dam failures occurred. Lake Calgary drained and the water carried the largest of the blocks to Okotoks and kilometres from the normal drainage path of the glacial meltwaters, where it was stranded (and is now known as the Okotoks Erratic). Others of this rock type, peculiar to its place of origin, dropped out along the way, creating a distinctive Erratic Train to the American-Canadian border. All the erratics, including the ones on the westward facing slopes of Nose Hill, sit on top of the underlying glacial sediment without sediment around them, indicating a rapid stranding without a continued surrounding body of water.

    The rush of water was, in its final amount, equal, I’ve read, to that of Lake Erie, draining in about three days. Dry waterfalls, water-cut, smooth drainage channels are present at Sunset Falls in Idaho (I’ve hiked them), looking out-of-place and telling a story of massive but suddenly ending floods. The floods swept across Washington, leaving boulders scattered across the volcanic landscape in an area now known as the Scablands. As I recall, the waters eventually ended in the Columbia River system and exiting into the Pacific (I’m hazy here: I’m in Abu Dhabi right now, thinking rather than researching). This fresh water suddenly entering the Pacific Ocean, would have been part of the similarly timed drainage of Lake Agazziz/Lake Champlain into the Atlantic Ocean that stopped oceanic currents and triggered the Big Freeze.

    The point of this story is this: the timing of this catastrophic event is in the 12,250 YBP, the same time as the supposed meteoritic event. While the set up of drainage systems had to be in place, the trigger of the cascading floods has not been known, instead suspected as a threshold event of no significance except for those pale-Indians on the west coast of Washington. I’ve been searching for years for some event that ties in to this after, in 1979 an eccentric geologist thought that Veilikovsky was right, and Venus, in near-missing the Earth, dragged up a 2000m wave from the Gulf of Mexico to the Arctic that, when Cytheria left our planetary space, sloshed back from whence it came (and filling Great Salt Lake in Utah, explaining the salt there in the process).

    The catastrophists have long claimed our imagination, but common sense suggested to me that more mundane reasons probably were responsible.

    It is ironic that a meteorite impact may be thought of as a “mundane” reason for a heating event that resulted in me plotting the positions of Cambrian Gog Quartzite from the Tonquin Valley area as they were stranded on the hillsides of eastern Calgary. But that is how it is with our planetary life: the evangelical community who think that God drifted along gently for millennia before man, and drifted along gently since man first planted wheat until men and coal-burning power plants twisted His music out of key, seem intellectually unable to accept a universe (or God) who does, at times, Stuff that isn’t man-friendly. Nature, be-it in the form of a pantheistic Gaia, a non-denomimational God or a Large White Man with a Large White Beard (other than Santa Claus), is supposed to be not just benign, but kind. Even polar bears, a determined predator unafraid of men or ice-breakers crashing through nearby, are, in this view, essentially well-intentioned towards the sons of the Earth, herein known as Greens.

    I know that religion is not supposed to be part of the CAGW debate, but I cannot but wonder if some of the Greens do not hold their alarmist positions precisely because, in their view, God (the Universe) is neither arbitrary nor unfriendly to its (His) followers. I have read it speculated at the early 20th century desire to get the Jews back to their homeland (Israel) was to further the Second Coming of Christ in this time, as the rules say that Christ will not come back unless/until the Jews are back “home”. George and George W., I understand, are of this belief; if true, it certainly explains why so many Christians in the southern States can be both anti-Semitic and hugely supportive of Israel. Theology, not intellect, rule in the recesses of their mind. Perhaps CAGW is not a religion, though even the English Archbishop of Cantebury has said that is what it appears to be, but an EXPRESSION of a preexisting religious belief. Hansen and Gore: perhaps they ignore evidence that C02 is not responsible for the global warming of late because to do so would be to accept that their Gods/Universe simply doesn’t care about whether they sweat in Washington or freeze in Phoenix.

    Logic is often linear. You accept “A”, you accept “B”. To skeptics there appears no moral issue in such connections: they are or are not, simple matters in a neutral universe. The meteorite comes, a large amount of heat is injected into the atmosphere which precipitously melts more water than ice dams can hold, and large blocks of rock end up dotting otherwise flat prairie landscapes. Who could know, who could predict? But if your Universe (or God) has created and is creating a world of promise, hope and security for your benefit, perhaps this opens the possibility that either evil, not good rules, or that … hold the thought …. there are no rules. Or at least no Plan.

  38. Error on the first part:
    Jeepers. The Younger Dryas was a COOLING event, not a warming event, that came at the end of something that was warming, and may have been a sudden, catastrophic warming event.

  39. Pamela Gray says:
    March 12, 2012 at 6:36 am

    Possibly the earth was slowly emerging from the ice age, warming very gradually. Then the dust caused much ice to reform, and the ice cooled the earth. Basically setting back the warming by 1000 years. Whatever was causing the original warming was still operational, but had to deal with all this new ice. When the new ice was dealt with, the earth’s temperature then snapped back to where it would have been had the impact never happened.

    Just a layman’s WAG.

  40. Otto Muck wrote about this over half a century ago – UNfortunately he titles his book ‘the Secret of Atlantis’ – so it was not considered mainstream – yet if you read it m you’ll realise he was a gifted scientist and knew his stuff. The book is available on Google Books and is highly recommended

  41. This is one of the many reasons I love WUWT. Last year they carry a story about research showing that the YD not being impact related and now more on the opposite side. Science is wonderful when you actually follow the scientific method. Eventually you get a picture of what happened. Like developing a photo used to be. A darkroom was fun as you watched the picture become clearer and clearer.

  42. @Kozlowski 1:07 am: “Any connection to the Carolina Bays?”

    Though the CBs were originally thought to be connected, that connection has gotten a bit tenuous lately. It still may turn out to be true, but C14 dates are not for the most part contemporaneous with the 12,900 date.

    I myself hold out some hope yet, though. See http://www.cosmictusk.com for more.

    Steve Garcia

  43. From wikipedia user Atani on March 12, 2012 at 6:43 am:

    I hope you then took the trouble to correct the error, or at least tagged it. Using Wikipedia implies a certain obligation upon the user to correct errors, that’s the genius of the system. Just remember to cite an authoritative source, and leave a note on the article’s Talk Page to explaining your rational.

    Sorry, but the Talk Page reveals William Connolley’s involvement. He and his Wiki-goons control articles even peripherally involved with Climate, and they actively “correct” anything that goes against the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming meme. References: One, two, three.

    No citation is authoritative enough if Connolley does not approve of it, especially if it says something about a skeptic that could be construed as positive. Reference.

    We skeptics would like to correct Wikipedia errors, as well as correct the noted bias where opposing viewpoints on climate issues are deliberately suppressed by Connolley and crew in violation of NPOV. But we cannot, as Connolley and his gang deride our sources as not authoritative, do not recognize there is valid scientific controversy, and use Wikipedia as their own personal forum to smear skeptics and distort their viewpoints and records, when they either allow or are forced to admit that said individual skeptics exist and are worthy of some sort of mention.

    And this is all done with the tacit permission of the Wikipedia administration. Thus we find, generally speaking, that Wikipedia is nearly worthless and can’t be trusted. And we cannot help out and try to fix it, as one of the surest ways to get banned is to challenge Connolley and his cabal, no matter what facts from real reliable sources are on your side.

    I applaud you for your idealism. But we have long since accepted and adapted to the reality.

  44. Before jumping on this bandwagon, consider the following:
    1. There may well have been a meteorite impact near the beginning of the Younger Dryas (YD), but that doesn’t prove it was the CAUSE of the YDs. It’s the same logic as saying the cause of the 1978-1998 warming coincided with rise in CO2 so the cause must be CO2. Bad logic.
    2. The YD is just the most prominent of many Dansgard-Oerscher abrupt climatic events.
    3. The YD ended just as abruptly as it began a little over 1000 years later.
    4. The YD corresponds with changes in 10Be and 14C production rates, suggesting changes in incoming radiation and pointing toward a Svensmark type cause.
    5. The problem with single event causes (e.g., volcanic eruption) is that they cannot be sustained for the length of time of the climate change. If the idea is that the cooling was caused by ejection of dust into the atmosphere, that wouldn’t last for more than 1000 years.
    6. If the YD was caused by dust in the atmosphere, it should show up in the Greenland ice cores (where even very small, annual accumulations of dust from summer ablation are well preserved). There is no such evidence of dust from an impact event throughout any of the well preserved YD ice core record.
    7. The list goes on and on–too many to include them all here. Perhaps a longer response later. The bottom line is that a single event, meteorite impact event doesn’t prove the origin of the YD.

  45. @Lucy Skywalker 3:02 am:

    Younger Dryas, impact event. Carolina Bays implicated.

    I’ve been very up to date on this. FYI: The Carolina Bays seem less and less feasible. C14 dates argue against it – some very much earlier, some later.

    Geomagnetic excursions. Iridium. Nanodiamonds. Charcoal & coal. Magnetic spherules. Yes. Fullerenes too? Orthodoxy shutting its ears and making rude noises because the theory implicates (a) catastrophism (b) a degree of rehab for Velikowsky

    Mr Leprosy himself? Hahaha – Yeah, they’ve been ripping off his ideas for decades and NO ONE has the temerity to actually credit the man. But as time has gone on, many of his points have been rendered more likely. Even his multidiscipline approach is finally beginning to take shape.

    And catastrophism? Stephen J Gould’s “punctuated equilibrium” was a small step toward catastrophism. Over time, they will be dragged, kicking and screaming to catastrophism. It is as anathema as Velikovsky, because it implies Noah’s Flood, which they HAD to take down in the battle with the Church. Uniformitarianism and Gradualism were the ‘final word’. Or were they?

  46. I wonder what Wiki will make of it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Younger_Dryas_impact_hypothesis#History_of_the_hypothesis

    Most recently, In January 2009, transmission electron microscopy evidence showing nanodiamonds from the geologic moment of the event was published in the journal Science[11] and reviewed in the International Herald Tribune.[12] Also, in the same issue, D.J. Kennett reported that:

    These diamonds provide strong evidence for Earth’s collision with a rare swarm of carbonaceous chondrites or comets at the onset of the Younger Dryas cool interval, producing multiple airbursts and possible surface impacts, with severe repercussions for plants, animals, and humans in North America.[2]

    Evidence from central Mexico supporting the Younger Dryas extraterrestrial impact hypothesis.

    Isabel Israde-Alcántaraa, James L. Bischoffb,1, Gabriela Domínguez-Vázquezc, Hong-Chun Lid, Paul S. DeCarlie, Ted E. Bunchf, James H. Wittkef, James C. Weaverg, Richard B. Firestoneh, Allen WestI, James P. Kennettj, Chris Mercerk, Sujing Xiel, Eric K. Richmanm, Charles R. Kinzien, and Wendy S. Wolbachn.

    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/2268163/Mexico%20YD%20Paper.pdf

    http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/03/01/1110614109.abstract

  47. Kozlowski says:
    “Any connection to the Carolina Bays?””
    It would seem to me that a multiple impact event, or a single large impact with the ejecta coming back down on top of ice sheets, instantly evaporating them could leave what we now can observe. Rings of sand, possibly part ejecta and part flash evaporated ice sheets (they carry a great deal of sand and debris.) The shallowness of the bays could also be a result of the impact having to melt through the ice sheet.”

    The problem with this idea is that most of the areas where Carolina Bays are found were never glaciated.

  48. @Willis 3:10 am:
    “What’s interesting to me is that previously a large freshwater flood was the consensus explanation of the Younger Dryas … and people found a bunch of evidence to support it.”

    Willis, Climate scientist Rodney Chilton has a paper almost ready pointing out many of the flaws in the “Lake Agassiz” emptying. (I hope it finds a journal to call home.) For one thing, the ice sheet was still blocking the Great lakes and St Lawrence at 12.9kya. It also discusses Heinrich events and corals, etc.

    And I like Dr Carl Wunsch’s take on the other aspect of that, the THC (which Chilton does not include):

    [from ClimateAudit] “…you can’t turn the Gulf Stream off as long as the wind blows over the North Atlantic and the earth continues to rotate!” and went on to describe the ‘conveyor’ as “a kind of fairy-tale for grownups”. Professor Wunsch said that “I’m willing to talk about these things. I believe that there are all kinds of things happening in the oceans, many highly troubling, but I also believe that one should distinguish what the science tells us and what is merely fantasy”.

    http://tiny.cc/nsd2aw

    So, strike one and strike two. Without the THC, and without Lake Agassiz and its ice dam bursting, there IS no climate change explanation for the Y-D onset.

    Steve Garcia

  49. Doug Proctor says: March 12, 2012 at 7:36 am […]
    when Cytheria left our planetary space, sloshed back from whence it came (and filling Great Salt Lake in Utah, explaining the salt there in the process).

    Interesting ideas Doug, I have always suspected that the myths of ancient peoples likely have some basis in reality. Therefore I find Velikovsky’s theory that the native Americans saw something in the sky back then likely. I didn’t know we needed anything to explain the salt in Salt Lake, since the western U.S. was a shallow sea before the Rockies uplifted. I have stood on ancient shores near Keota, CO, with fossilized wave-lapped sands and water-warn stones and pebbles, at the tops of buttes several hundred feet above the eastern high plains. Here in western CO, we have coal seams everywhere, beneath red sandstones, and plenty of fossil shells at 8000′ and above.

  50. @CodeTech 4:11 am:
    “Interesting – next step, locating the impact location? Or do we have any leading theories? I know it took a long time for people to settle on the Chicxulub impact for the 65 mya event.”

    Correct on the 65mya event! Few doubted a crater would be found. Me? I look at Chicxulub and I can’t see the crater.

    The Y-D is currently suspected as being a cometary air burst, like Tunguska – and likely over the Canadian ice sheet, which would have mitigated any possible crater. Several impact possibilities do exist, still, one of which is Saginaw Bay in Michigan.

    Also, thinking is tending toward multiple impactors, ala Shoemaker-Levy/9, though it is still too early. The search has just begun. One difficulty is that astronomers and geologists can’t wrap their heads around anything but meteor impacts. Cometary impacts may be VERY different, and with the friability of comets, each case may be completely different. So winning over those two camps to new types of impacts will be a long drawn-out affair. But even for those who think in terms of comets and air bursts, there is not much known at present, so it is all out there on the frontier. Tunguska is the only real clue, and it may have been different from most; no one knows.

    Steve Garcia

  51. So, the Monolith didn’t just give a little boost to the hominids in the Olduvai gorge, it also decided that Cro-magnon needed a little climatological boost to kick off the agricultural revolution. Knocking out the megafauna that the hunter-gatherers relied on with an asteroid, interesting solution.

  52. The evidence is also in the Bahamian blue holes. Both extinct species and iron intrusions. Indicative of massive dust bearing winds from Africa that blanketed the islands then.

  53. @Philip Bradley 3:58 am:

    The Younger Dryas lasted 1300 years, which is a very long time for a single event cause.

    This study throws serious doubt on the Forcings model/theory which dictates that the Earth’s climate changes at the rate that forcings change, in effect slowly (at least in the pre-anthropogenic CO2 era).

    This study indicates that the climate flips between more or less stable states irrespective of changes in forcings.

    Yes, Uniformitarianism/Gradualism (steady gradual forcings) is the norm, but catastrophes punctuate it. What could be more plausible? Once they found out in the 1800s that rocks really DO fall out of the sky, wasn’t this an inevitable point of realization? If little rocks fall out of the sky, then big ones do, too. The geologists come up with really really old ages of most meteor craters, and they may be right. But they do us a disservice by saying “move along, there is nothing to see here” about impacts happening more often or more recently. They don’t accept any new possibilities until absolutely proven (or the old codgers die off) – which takes decades and decades for each convincing.

    FYI the Younger Dryas also ended rapidly.

    Yep. Good and valid point. Though the current focus is on the YD start, the YD end will have to be addressed some day, too. Who knows? It may overturn everything currently being concepted.

    Steve Garcia

  54. Regarding the search for a crater:

    In the original 2007 paper titled Evidence for an extraterrestrial impact 12,900 years ago that contributed to the megafaunal extinctions and the Younger Dryas cooling R.B. Firestone et al proposed that a 4 mile wide bolide had broken up in the atmosphere and that most of it had hit the Laurentide Ice Sheet.

    They cited some unpublished data from experiments by Peter Schultz from Brown U. And where he had done hypervelocity impact experiments at the NASA Ames Hypervelocity Vertical Gun Range simulating a low angle hyper velocity impact into ice. Those experiment showed that a half mile wide bolide coming in at an oblique angle can hit a half mile thick sheet of ice and leave no crater in the surface beneath after the ice melts away. Just randomized patterns of surface melting. Those experiments imply that if there is relevant planetary scarring from the event anywhere in the Canadian Shield, instead of the shock metamorphic effects like we see in a normal cratering event. The remaining scars will consists of hydrothermal blast effects. So those scars should consist of rocks that were melted under conditions of extreme heat, and pressure. And in the presence of a lot of water.

    My thinking is that if it is possible to get a valid age since melt from any suspect melt formations, and since the youngest volcanogenic rocks in the Canadian shield are some dyke formations that are something like a million years old. Then it should eventually be possible to confirm planetary scarring somewhere in the area that was once covered by the Laurentide ice sheet. And whatever that place looks like now, it won’t be a crater.

    The trouble though, is that the nanodiamond bearing impact layer is found all over North America, and even the rest of the northern hemisphere. 

    But that 4 mile wide bolide idea is what got them in trouble. Enter Mark Boslough, a physicist from Sandia Labs who objected to the hypothesis as written saying that it would be physically impossible for a four mile wide bolide to have enough time in the atmosphere to break up completely, and scatter fragments over a continent sized area without leaving a good sized crater somewhere. And that’s why “where’s the crater became the rallying cry for opponents to the hypothesis.

    But this new paper answers Mark’s very valid skepticism by citing the work of  astronomer W.M. Napier and his paper titled Palaeolithic extinctions and the Taurid Complex Bill Napier’s work show that the thing was probably the fragments and debris from a large comet that hit soon after its complete breakup. The new evidence from Mexico implies that the southwest was a impact zone too. And that almost all of it produced large aerial bursts. Hence, there is no reason to think we’ll find a crater anywhere in the southwest either.

    Perhaps something different.

    The materials in the impact layer describe temps, and pressures, at the surface that should have been capable of significant melting and efficient ablation of surface materials. But that brings us to a paradox in the search for relevant planetary scarring for the event.

    Ever since Sir Charles Lyell published ‘The Principles of Geology’ back in the 1830s it has been assumed without question under the standard uniformitarian/gradualist paradigm that the only conceivable source of enough heat to melt the surface of the Earth is terrestrial volcanism. And with the exception of a cratering impact event, no one has ever imagined that such energies could come from the sky. So that if there are formations of geo-ablative melt in the southwest impact zones of the YD event, we can assume that they have already been located. But they are listed on the geologic maps as volcanogenic.

    Folks might note that north of lake Cuitzeo, and extending all the way up into southwest Texas there are a few hundred thousand cubic miles of materials lying undisturbed, and in pristine condition in the Chihuahuan desert that were all emplaced as a fluidized flow like a pyroclastic flow. And less than 15% has ever been positively associated with a volcano.

    And in high resolution satellite images those orphan pyroclastic materials present wind-driven patterns of movement, and flow. Like the debris laden froth, and foam on a storm tossed beach.

  55. @Lars Silen4:57 am:

    The big problem so far has been where to find some reasonably big crater(s) that are young enough. My feeling is that easily identifiable craters are missing because the impact area was covered by some kilometer of ice. The result would be seemingly very old craters the result of a billion years of weathering because the typical thick layers of ejecta are missing.

    Yes, a search for some kind of crater is occurring, but with an air burst or a comet, all the meteor impact thinking may not hold true – IMHO it almost certainly doesn’t. A friable comet will not cause the same impact as an iron/nickel/rock meteor. An air burst cannot have the same surface impact.

    The Firestone team of 2007 thought the impact WAS on an ice sheet, one on top of the Canadian Shield. Thinking since then has included other possibilities, too. It is just too early to have found the impact site. And current thinking also is that multiple impacts were likely. Your Finland site may have been one. The science still all needs to be done, and though the search is on, any site(s) right now is anybody’s guess.

    Steve Garcia

  56. “This nanodiamond-rich layer is consistent with the Younger Dryas boundary layer found at numerous sites across North America, Greenland, and Western Europe.”

    The recent Japan earthquake shifted the earth’s rotation axis by about 25 centimeters. Would multiple extraterrestrial impacts alter the milankovitch cycle as the earth redistributed mass due to various orbital shifts from the impacts? If yes, wouldn’t there be an abrupt climate change indicator globally?

  57. @Garacka 5:10 am:
    “Isn’t there also a paper that looked at mammoth bones from that time and found high speed particulate impact pits? I recall comments seemed to be leaning toward it being a stretching of the data.”

    Correct. That was one of Firestone’s lines of evidence for the YD Impact. The impacts on tusks was real. But the dating was wrong. Here is the abstract from the Hagstrum et al 2010 paper, “Micrometeorite Impacts in Beringian Mammoth Tusks and a Bison Skull” [http://tiny.cc/w1f2aw]:

    ABSTRACT
    We have discovered what appear to be micrometeorites imbedded in seven late Pleistocene Alaskan mammoth tusks and a Siberian bison skull. The micrometeorites apparently shattered on impact leaving 2 to 5 mm hemispherical debris patterns surrounded by carbonized rings. Multiple impacts are observed on only one side of the tusks and skull consistent with the micrometeorites having come from a single direction. The impact sites are strongly magnetic indicating significant iron content. We analyzed several imbedded micrometeorite fragments from both tusks and skull with laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) and X-ray fluorescence (XRF). These analyses confirm the high iron content and indicate compositions highly enriched in nickel and depleted in titanium, unlike any natural terrestrial sources. In addition, electron microprobe (EMP) analyses of a Fe-Ni sulfide grain (tusk 2) show it contains between 3 and 20 weight percent Ni. Prompt gamma-ray activation analysis (PGAA) of a particle extracted from the bison skull indicates ~;;0.4 mg of iron, in agreement with a micrometeorite ~;;1 mm in diameter. In addition, scanning electron microscope (SEM) images and XRF analyses of the skull show possible entry channels containing Fe-rich material. The majority of tusks (5/7) have a calibrated weighted mean 14C age of 32.9 +- 1.8 ka BP, which coincides with the onset of significant declines<36 ka ago in Beringian bison, horse, brown bear, and mammoth populations, as well as in mammoth genetic diversity. It appears likely that the impacts and population declines are related events, although their precise nature remains to be determined.

    So the mammoth tusk micro-impacts were from over 20,000 years earlier. Maybe it is only a coincidence, but this 35kya event is pretty much contemporaneous with the end of the Neandertals. If I had the credentials and funding, I’d be looking into that possibility. After all, the end of the Neandertals is just as big an unsolved mystery as the end of the mammoths.

    Steve Garcia

  58. @Stephen Richards 5:29 am
    “This study indicates that the climate flips between more or less stable states irrespective of changes in forcings.

    As predicted by chaos theory.”

    Are you sure it isn’t Catastrophe Theory? (no pun intended)

    Steve Garcia

  59. @Pamela Gray6:36 am:
    “Certainly the dust alone cannot account for the length of the cold spell. However, the kicked up dust could account for the first couple years.”

    The ‘black mat” is not comprised of dust, but remnants of fires, on a continental scale, found forensically in Belgium and now Mexico and many sites around the U.S. The burning or fallout may extend farther. The search has just begun. It isn’t dust.

    The megafauna bones are found not only UNDER the ‘black mat,’ but when found at the same site, the ‘black mat’ lies directly ON the megafauna bones. And no such bones are found IN or above the ‘black mat.’

    Steve Garcia

  60. Pamela Gray says:
    March 12, 2012 at 6:36 am

    Certainly the dust alone cannot account for the length of the cold spell. However, the kicked up dust could account for the first couple years. Still, dust rains out pretty easily, which could happen as a result of the dust getting kicked up there in the first place. We call it cloudless rain here in NE Oregon.

    It is possible that the event could have overlapped with another oscillation that was unrelated. We have so many oscillations on different beats, it seems plausable that they will overlap. Looking for one cause over such a long period seems a bit short sighted.

    Pamela, your observation has an unspoken assumption that the ejecta dust (or most of it) stayed in the atmosphere or went outside the atmosphere and then promptly re-entered.

    What of the possibility that a significant fraction of the ejecta went outside the atmosphere and then entered low earth orbit, forming a dust shell around the planet, that might persist for several hundred years?

    Due to mutual collisions the ejecta material constantly renewing itself with ever finer and longer lasting small dust, which perhaps had higher optical thickness than the original.

    That would create a situation where the initial impact and atmospheric dust load caused a prompt cooling, followed by a long period of diminished top of the atmospheric solar intensity lasting hundreds of years, which would help maintain the long term cooling for on the order of 1000 years.

    The very fine dust that would remain in orbit would, as I understand it, gradually change from a uniform shell to a disk and unless some mechanism existed to constantly renew its mass would eventually go away as solar wind and the tenuous layers of the upper atmosphere gradually cleaned out the lowest dust.

    Once the orbital dust pall converted to a disk it would not have much effect on solar intensity at the top of the atmosphere. (at some angles to the sun it could even act as a reflector increasing solar intensity on the top of the atmosphere).

    Do we have any evidence of a vestigial ring system of dust around the earth?

    Is it likely that enough dust ejecta would go into low earth orbit with orbital decay times in the multi-century time range?

    Larry

  61. For a counter view of this, people here might want to read Pinter et al 2011 – The Younger Dryas impact hypothesis: A requiem [http://tiny.cc/55g2aw], which argues that the YD impact people are delusional and can’t tell facts from fiction. Abstract only. Paywall, but readable for $0.99.

    Most of the abstract is a political screed for their side with appeals to authority – ahtorities THEY agree with. Basically they are saying that the YD impact people aren’t real scientists and only their side can read the evidence.

    I hope they are choking on this latest find.

    Steve Garcia

  62. A catastrophic event goes a long way to explaining the extinction of large mamals (eg Mamoths) but not the length of the YD. Unless of course, the catastrophic event permanently altered the flow of ocean currents. Examination of a few of the preserved Mamoths suggest a much more benign climate for Siberia than we see in the recent past. The catastrophic event only takes us so far. We still await an explanation for the long running degradation of the Siberian climate even after the YD. This is surely the real problem.

  63. @beng 7:10 am:

    The only two major observed impacts in recorded history are the Tunguska, Siberia event & the Shumacher-Levy comet impact on Jupiter. The first was an air-burst of a supposed chondrite meteor, the second a tidally-broken comet-train, producing a “string” of impacts. From this it is hard to imagine that such impact characteristics are unusual — much more likely they are common.

    Google “Rio Carto” and pick out the hits having to do with impacts. These are impact craters that are accepted as real (they are on the international database as meteor impacts, though a vocal skeptical group argues they are aeloian – wind – formed). They are from multiple very-low-trajectory (under 15°) impactors, many are miles long, and all are VERY long ellipses. Most sources will refer to about ten craters, but there is a large field to the SSW of hundreds upon hundreds of them, all with the approximate long-axis azimuth of about 210°.

    And the accepted date?

    The Imperial College London at http://tiny.cc/sth2aw puts them at less than 5,000 years ago. With that one and Tunguska, astronomers who tell us big impacts only happen every 100kya are stroking us. Indigenous accounts suggest even more often than that. 536AD is a possible impact year.

    Steve Garcia

  64. Willis Eschenbach says:
    March 12, 2012 at 3:10 am

    “What’s interesting to me is that previously a large freshwater flood was the consensus explanation of the Younger Dryas … and people found a bunch of evidence to support it.

    Also of note is that the Younger Dryas is often cited as evidence of fast climate change from postulated natural “tipping points” … whereas it now appears to be a meteor impact.

    Dang, climate science is fun. Always something new in this most settled of sciences …

    w.”

    ============================================================================

    Human beings, even (especially?) scientists, are competitive animals. So they always have to have “competing theories”.

    Nobody ever stops to consider the possibility that BOTH theories may actually be true, and that the effects of the meteor impact may have combined with the effects of an ongoing freshwater flood to produce the Younger Dryas……..

  65. Larry Ledwick (hotrod) says:
    March 12, 2012 at 9:57 am

    ===========
    If this is the case, wouldn’t it show up around the same time frame in ice cores from Alaska, Greenland, and Antarctica?

  66. @w.w.wygart 7:18 am:
    “I just finished downloading and reading the paper – very interesting. Carolina Bays?? Maybe, probably not.”

    Yes, this seems to be the case. But a more puzzling surface feature may not exist. ALL the ideas for their formation have been shown to be totally inadequate in one way or another – and there have been at least two dozen hypotheses.

    The one I just laugh at is the aeolian one. To imagine that the wind could make not one, but half a million ellipses IN the ground and all aligned, with a pattern that DOES seem to point at one vague area near Michigan as a centroid. Southern bays are more northerly aligned, northern bays more westerly, and a gradual progression in between. No wind can do that.

    As to what did, other than the wind or the YD? No idea, and I’ve been looking into it for years and years. And no one else does, either. For 70+ years scientists have tried, and all have come up with a big fat nothing. See http://tiny.cc/mri2aw for a study of LIDAR images.

    Steve Garcia

  67. While this paper is very intriguing it would seem to have one weakness in attempting to link a single event (the YD) with a multi-millennial temperature proxy. Problem is:

    a) there are a number of other events in the temperature proxy (O-18 graph) that show a similar divergence (similar amplitude and duration). Either these are all meteorites or we don’t need a catastrophe to explain the YD.

    b) the Antarctic temperature proxy does not show the same higher amplitude, shorter duration pulses that are seen in the Arctic proxy. This suggests that these events are NH only. More importantly, the Antarctic proxy starts to increase several centuries before the YD event suggesting a long-term Earth-bound event. It seems unlikely that something that was felt in Mexico and that affected the Arctic would not also affect the Antarctic.

    Some I’m leaning toward an earth-bound event to explain the O-18 temperature proxy graph fluctuations, although micro magnetic impact spherules does sound incontrovertible.

  68. Do we have any evidence of a vestigial ring system of dust around the earth?

    Pure speculation on my part, but I would guess the large Moon that orbits the Earth is hostile to a long-lived debris ring system around the earth. That is my guess why we don’t see a current ring system, aside from our own space junk. Pages 24-40 (of 167) of this Int’l Ultraviolet Explorer Sat. Final Report (1997) give some interesting plots on orbital evolution of an approximately geostationary satelite.

  69. @Don Easterbrook 8:20 am:

    Before jumping on this bandwagon, consider the following:
    “1. There may well have been a meteorite impact near the beginning of the Younger Dryas (YD), but that doesn’t prove it was the CAUSE of the YDs.”
    – A valid point. The science is not settled here. It has barely begun.

    “2. The YD is just the most prominent of many Dansgard-Oerscher abrupt climatic events.”
    – Yep. but it is the one that TOOK.

    “3. The YD ended just as abruptly as it began a little over 1000 years later.”
    – Not so. It’s ending was several times slower, according to the 18O graph as I read it.

    “4. The YD corresponds with changes in 10Be and 14C production rates, suggesting changes in incoming radiation and pointing toward a Svensmark type cause.”
    – I don’t know enough to comment

    “5. The problem with single event causes (e.g., volcanic eruption) is that they cannot be sustained for the length of time of the climate change. If the idea is that the cooling was caused by ejection of dust into the atmosphere, that wouldn’t last for more than 1000 years.”
    – Your opinion. You have no idea what happens with something coming in with the equivalent energy of tens or hundreds of times more energy than all our nuclear warheads.

    6. If the YD was caused by dust in the atmosphere, it should show up in the Greenland ice cores (where even very small, annual accumulations of dust from summer ablation are well preserved). There is no such evidence of dust from an impact event throughout any of the well preserved YD ice core record.
    – It wasn’t dust. You’ve got your facts wrong. But as to Greenland evidence, have you seen the following? Do nanodiamonds count?
    http://tiny.cc/qgk2aw “YDB press release: Scientists discover nanodiamonds in Greenland ice” —
    PhysOrg September 8th, 2010 in Space & Earth / Earth Sciences

    Steve Garcia

  70. The only way you could cause a YD transition with an asteroid impact is if it hit an ice dam here. Or possibly in the Gulf of St. Lawrence where glacial Lake Vermont and all of the coalesced glacial lakes in the East drained into the ocean forming the Champlain Sea, but that supposedly happened just before the YD. There is weak evidence of Champlain sea freshening from the West, presumably Glacial Lake Agassiz, but it’s difficult to get it by the Laurentide at this time as well. This entire problem is highly intertwined and convoluted. More data could cinch it. The problem with the Nipigon feature is that it does not have the classical supsurface impact fracture features, instead it is structurally controlled within well known faulting, and was subsequently subject to massive glacial flooding as well as the Marquette readvance.

  71. This is an amazing thread. It brings many things to mind.

    Could not an impact on a continental glacier be almost completely obscured by the movements and final melt actions of the glacier itself? The impact crater itself could have been formed in ice, not in the underlying solid crust, and quickly obscured by subsequent glacial movements. Much of the ejecta material might come to rest on top of ice, except for that which was moving at suborbital velocity and thus landed far afield. But the materials on top of the ice would then be carried away, as the glacier moved, wouldn’t it? If this had occurred, then wouldn’t the solid impact debris be found in the glacial moraines? Have we looked there for such evidence, or could we? I think such moraines would be highly complex mixtures and difficult to analyze. But as unsatisfying as this would be, if an impact could not be located, would that disqualify the theory?

    I’m wondering about the 1300 year time frame of TYD cool period. If tons of water vapor and dust were thrown into the stratosphere by an impact event, how long would it stay there? It seems to me that most of it would precipitate out fairly quickly, although I presume that via albedo effects, this would rapidly and radically cool the planet in the short term. Would something else be necessary, such as ocean saline levels or something like that, be required to extend the cool period? In other words, the impact event would be almost like a seed, but it’s side effects COULD control a 1300 year long extent?

    Also, if an impact event were from a comet, as opposed to a meteriod, what would that do to immediate atmospheric CO2 and Methane counts? It seems they would go up rapidly from the almost instantaneous vaporization of a comet? Or is the amount of CO, CO2, Methane and other GHGs in a comet too small to affect such concentrations?

    • Mickey, a very perceptive comment.
      An impact onto an ice sheet definitely impairs the ability for the impactor to make a crater. And yes, who knows what kind of evidence would be left, with the ice sheet later in full retreat. Even if a crater is formed under the ice, what degree would erosion erase the crater’s topography? All of this is a set of variables that may never be known with any clarity. Even if evidence is in the moraines, the churning of rubble and ice would make it impossible to make sense of any of it – other than its presence in some vague proportion which would be impossible to read.

      “I’m wondering about the 1300 year time frame of TYD cool period. If tons of water vapor and dust were thrown into the stratosphere by an impact event, how long would it stay there?”

      You bring up a question others here have asked. The others assume it would only be in the atmosphere a relatively short time – months or a few years. Some point out that the end of the YD was also quick – but it wasn’t as quick as its onset. That being the case, one might work backward and determine that once the particulates began to fall out of the stratosphere, the Earth would likely begin warming accordingly 0 and fairly quickly. So the question does become, as you say, “How long would it stay there?” If that answer is 1200 years, then we have exactly the YD as we see it on graphs. Is 1200 years possible? When people have talked of nuclear winter, it often is talked about as lasting a long time. But 1200 years? Of course everyone should be skeptical of that. But what do we know about impact events directly? Nothing. Equating them to volcanic eruptions seems reasonable, yet different mechanisms are at work in volcanoes, mainly convection. Do impacts and convection work the same? One would think only a bit.

      As to methane and CO2, the telltale seems to be ammonia. High spikes of ammonia seem to accompany air bursts. I don’t know enough to tell you much on that, though.

      There is much that is unknown. Your questions are among those that would need answers.

      Steve Garcia

  72. Fascinating stuff. Would appear that there were two centers of impact for comet storms – one over northern Michigan and one over northern Mexico for a continent-wide extinction event. Fred Whipple started the discussion of the Taurid Complex in 1940 as the remains of a large comet captured into the inner solar system that fragmented. The complex is in earth crossing orbit. Kresak in 1978 suggested that the Tunguska body was related to Comet 2P/Encke, the most active remaining member of the Taurid Complex.

    This discussion is going to get really loud before it is over and will be a lot of fun to watch. Cheers -

  73. John from CA says:
    March 12, 2012 at 10:21 am

    Larry Ledwick (hotrod) says:
    March 12, 2012 at 9:57 am

    ===========
    If this is the case, wouldn’t it show up around the same time frame in ice cores from Alaska, Greenland, and Antarctica?

    Quite possible, but sometimes things get missed if you are not looking for them. The signature of that sort of event would I suspect but a slight step change in annual dust levels. I know that one of the markers of cold periods like the Younger Dryas are higher dust levels, but I think everyone just assumes that dust is terrestrial and due to lower humidity and increased wind intensity during colder periods with diminished vegetation to hold wind erosion in check.

    I do not recall that any one specifically looked at that ice core dust record of the younger dryas for indications of the long term filtering out of an exo-atmospheric dust shell slowly returning back to earth. World wide distribution of impact markers obviously would indicate the presence of an impact but the length of time it took for the layer to build up might be a marker ( or falsification) for the long term return of low orbital debris returning to earth. If it was simple impact ejecta that promptly re-entered the impact signature markers would be concentrated in a brief thin layer of the dust associated with the younger dryas. If on the contrary there was a significant low orbital dust cloud formed those markers would be more sparse but would be deposited over a very long time period and a thicker layer with lower annual concentration.

    I don’t know enough about dust markers in ice cores to speculate if the evidence already exists or perhaps has already been noted but just not recognized for what it might mean.

    At this point it is just a thought experiment “what if” and then speculation on the logical out come of what we might see if a dust shell formed in low orbit for 10’s 100’s or approx 1,300 years.

    Larry

  74. In 1994 I watched the scars of the Comet Shoemaker–Levy 9 impact rotate into view on Jupiter through my backyard telescope (8″ SCT). Took pictures and was much impressed. We have all probably seen some of the Galileo photos of the impacts on the back side of the planet. Bottom line, I, like most, am not sure what caused the YD but would not rules out strikes from multiple objects as we saw on Jupiter. Who says they all had to happen at the same time or even within a couple of hundred years of each other given the complex Earth/ Moon system gravitational situation and potential orbits it could create of objects arriving in a long string. Land impacts, ocean impacts, air bursts are all possible at widely different times and places. Someone needs to model this. Ok, sorry, forget it.

  75. It seems that the America’s suffered a number of extraterrestrial bombardments beyond and after the Younger Dryas.

    See this:

    http://abob.libs.uga.edu/bobk/ccc/ce010702.html

    GOING INTO THE WATER:
    A SURVEY OF IMPACT EVENTS AND THE COASTAL PEOPLES OF SOUTH-EAST NORTH AMERICA, THE CARIBBEAN, AND CENTRAL AMERICA
    E.P. Grondine epgrondine@hotmail.com

    “INTRODUCTION: SURVEY SCOPE AND TECHNIQUES USED

    Hello Benny,

    In my survey last year of impact events and the Native American peoples of South-East North America, I mentioned several items and then let them pass, as they laid outside of the scope of that survey proper. Nearly all of those items pertained to the coastal peoples of the region, and there were good reasons for this limitation of scope: due to both the maritime nature of these peoples’ cultures, as well as to the ecological niches in which they lived, it is impossible to consider these peoples outside of the wider context of the peoples who lived during the same period on the islands in the Caribbean Sea and along the coasts of Central America.

    This essay is a first attempt to extend that earlier survey into those coastal areas. Unlike last year’s survey, where site visits were followed up with an extensive literature search, this survey is limited solely to a literature search. My opinion is that the technique used for the first survey is much more efficient, as site visits allow for a familiarization with the pottery sequences, iconography, and technologies, those items which are really the key to population movements, and thus to a full understanding of the evolution of any oral or written records which remain. But sadly yet once again, as in preceding years, the folks at the MacArthur Foundation have failed to declare me a genius and send me a large amount of money, so due to the costs involved in visiting sites over such a wide area, a literature search was the only technique available to me. Should someone wish to fund visits to sites in the Caribbean and Central America they would undoubtedly improve the survey to a considerable degree; the general consensus seems to be that site visits to the Caribbean and Central America which are taken in the middle of the North American winter are optimal.

    Before starting any survey we might reasonably expect, given the data which has been recovered up to this time from other areas of the Earth, that over a suitably long period of time the peoples living in these coastal areas would also have been affected by impact events. Indeed, several Conference participants have been arguing for quite some time for the existence of a Holocene-start impact event which affected this area. The first part of this survey will be a limited review of some anthropological materials pertaining on this possible impact event, though this will not be a detailed work. Also included in this first part of the survey will be a brief mention of a possible mega-tsunami produced geological structure, the Puuk Foothills of the Yucatan.

    The bulk of this survey will focus on a mega-tsunami event ca. 1150-1050 BCE, which fairly well devastated those living along the coasts of this area. In order, the second part of the survey will cover the peopling of the areas which the impact affected, and describe the lives of those who died in the event. The third part of the survey will cover the preservation of later historical records and folk memories of the catastrophe. The fourth part will set out some of the historical and myth materials which have survived, including also some materials which appear to refer to the earlier Rio Cuarto impact event.

    In closing this introduction, I want to state that this has been the survey from hell. These peoples were completely warped by this impact, and had a world view which was both unified and completely distinct from that of western Europe. While the world view of the South East Native American peoples resonated with me to a certain degree, as I am familiar with their lands, the world view of the peoples of the coastal regions never has. Having worked through the material on them to the extent which I have, I suspect that anthropology would be better as a science if anthropologists were generally required to work on peoples with which they did not identify, so as to reduce the problem of identification.

    Given this far far far different world view, it appears that it normally takes around 20 years for an anthropologist to master these materials to the point at which they can make substantial contributions to the field. But in the case of these impacts events, the cultural points are gross, to put it succinctly, and my ambitions extend no further than that I may direct those trained in these cultures to that evidence, without committing too many blunders along the way.

    Finally, it helps if one is not distracted by current events. That said, here goes….”

  76. The link provided by Caleb and Rick above to the text at Graham Kendall’s site leads to file not of his own writing but of a chapter “Frozen Mammoths” arguing for “hydroplate theory,” from an online book by a creationist Walt Brown. (It is not clear that Kendall himself agrees with it – there’s plenty of anti-creationist stuff at his site too.). Interesting reading, but the hydroplate claim seems very unusual – a “plate” of water ten or so miles beneath the earth.

  77. The 1833, and 1866, 67, 68 and then a significant repeat of the Leonids meteor shower in 1966, 1999,2001, and 2002 certainly provides circumstantial evidence that such repeating multiple object encounters are possible here at earth’s orbit.

    Since approximately 70% of the impacts would be at sea, and another 10% or so would impact on the ice caps or glaciers, suggest that less than 20% of the impact events would leave any observable crater evidence.

    If such a shower event occurred on a continuing cycle with large enough objects to produce significant climate changes it could help explain a long period of colder weather if the earth crossed orbits with the debris field on a regular basis for a few hundred years. Once the climate is forced into a cold cycle by such an event it would take some time to recover to normal air temperatures, snow cover and sea surface temperatures, so the event would not have to repeat on an annual basis. Every 10-50 years would probably be sufficient if the number and size of the objects were large enough.

    Larry

  78. beng says: @ March 12, 2012 at 7:10 am

    ….Simple postulate: Approximately 12,900 yrs ago a comet-train impact produced shallowly-angled air-burst(s) with multiple in-line impacts….
    _________________________________________________

    Another possibility is that if the comet hit the earth with “glancing” blows it could have hit multiple times before it was completely gone. Especially if it was “captured” by the Earth. I do not know if that shows up in the “layer contains a diverse, abundant assemblage of impact-related markers, including nanodiamonds, carbon spherules, and magnetic spherules…”

  79. I present at a meeting in South Carolina where Firestone presented this hypothesis at the time his team was preparing to publish the first paper. He idea was greeted with some very concentrated scepticism. The question is tangled in wild web of odd empirical data that are less than securely dated. Firestone originally suggested that an impact had occurred somewhere in North America – as concerns bolides an “impact” includes aerial events like Tunguska and the detonation that produced the sheeted Desert Glass from the eastern Sahara. A very large bolide event might have occurred. If the detonation took place above the Laurentide Ice Sheet there would be little evidence of it. More importantly, the heat from the detonation would cause abrupt melting and evaporation of ice and water. That could mean that an impact caused a melting of a big piece of the Laurentide Ice Sheet that in turn triggered the Younger Dryas. Consider that, BOTH ideas could be part of the picture! The original PNAS paper and supporting data is available here:

    http://www.pnas.org/content/104/41/16016.full.pdf+html?with-ds=yes

    Firestone also saw evidence of radiation from space in particle tracks on the upper surfaces of paleoindian artifacts, and indications of a major firestorm in the “black mats” that are often associated with YD era archaeological sites. However, no impact event could have been the cause of the radiation tracks on Paleoindian weapons. Not, that is, unless there are some seriously radioactive comets or stony meteors out there.

  80. Re feet2thefire and George Tetley:
    I made a new web page in English of the Mossala and Ava craters in archipelago in SW Finland.

    http://www.kolumbus.fi/larsil/Mossala_and_Ava_craters.html

    Notice that I don’t know what the origin of these formations are, I think they are fairly recent but obviously I may be wrong. Comments and possible pointers to articles are very welcome. The web page also gives a feeling for what Finnish (Arctic) summer looks like. We live north of 60 deg N!. /Lars Silen, physicist Finland.

  81. Interesting theory. Lets not forget that sudden cooling events are known as Heinrich events and there were six of them during the last ice age. The causes of these sudden intense cold events is unknown, although many geologists have speculated on the possibility of a solar cause. (Sorry Leif :) ) There have also been sudden warming spells and these are known as Dansgaard-Oeschger (DO) events, also due to unknown causes.

    Bear in mind that Heinrich event cooling is thought to have taken place in a matter of decades, and some evidence indicates a time frame of just a few years. This would be catastrophic if it occurred today. The Younger Dryas is thought by some to be a Heinrich event and would make it 7th event, and some have speculated that the Holocene 8.2 kilo year event is also a Heinrich event.

    In any event, if a meteor or comet impact started the YD we still have lots of explaining to do for the other sudden cooling events, as well as the DO sudden warming events. Fascinating stuff – ins’t it?

  82. @agimarc 11:36 am:

    Fascinating stuff. Would appear that there were two centers of impact for comet storms – one over northern Michigan and one over northern Mexico for a continent-wide extinction event. Fred Whipple started the discussion of the Taurid Complex in 1940 as the remains of a large comet captured into the inner solar system that fragmented. The complex is in earth crossing orbit. Kresak in 1978 suggested that the Tunguska body was related to Comet 2P/Encke, the most active remaining member of the Taurid Complex.

    It would be nigh on impossible for Tunguska to be anything but and Encke remnant, seeing as it hit on June 30, 2008 – right in the middle of the Taurid meteor shower. Some other body hitting, right then, when the Earth is passing through the Taurid stream with its tens of thousands of fragments? Not likely at all.

    The Taurids are a real danger. We don’t really know what is in them, and we go through the worst of it every 3.3 years – and still don’t know what is there. Only NEOs that cross Earth’s orbit and are also IN our plane can hit Earth, and Taurids are the ones that do that the most.

    Steve Garcia

  83. BTW, that last is exactly why the astronomers who say we only get a big one every 100,000 years or so are leading us astray. If only ONE of the Taurids is big, it passes us every 3.3 years.

    Steve Garcia

  84. @Trent Telenko 12:24 pm:

    It seems that the America’s suffered a number of extraterrestrial bombardments beyond and after the Younger Dryas.

    See this:

    http://abob.libs.uga.edu/bobk/ccc/ce010702.html

    GOING INTO THE WATER:
    A SURVEY OF IMPACT EVENTS AND THE COASTAL PEOPLES OF SOUTH-EAST NORTH AMERICA, THE CARIBBEAN, AND CENTRAL AMERICA
    E.P. Grondine epgrondine@hotmail.com

    “INTRODUCTION: SURVEY SCOPE AND TECHNIQUES USED

    Hello Benny,

    In my survey last year of impact events and the Native American. . .

    FWIW, “Benny” here is Benny Peiser, the Director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), which many here are familiar with. Prior to that Benny was the central figure on the Cambridge Conference, which was a mostly academic online message board about Earth impacts studies. Since the Cambridge Conference ended, the amount of moneys going to impact studies has dropped almost to nothing.

    Steve Garcia

  85. The Younger Dryas was shown to have large changes in the North Atlantic ocean where polar ocean water moved in a gyre as far SE as northern Spain. Nowadays the polar ocean water is back up towards the Greenland coast.
    The Gulf stream flowed in a much more southerly direction, moving little northwards and mainly across eastwards towards Spain and North Africa. The ocean above was polar and very cold giving major ice age conditions for example to Europe. Three periods of different ocean circulation in the north atlantic ocean were found around the Younger Dryas.

    Therefore how does an impact become long term, when normally the dust takes only a few years to clear? The only possible mechanism would be to alter ocean circulation, but this seems very far fetched to be achievable. That’s for just one change on impact, but for 3 changes around this period seems impossible.

    With this consideration in mind it is difficult to accept an impact like this could bebale to change ocean circulation. Also if there was an impact large enough to do this, it should beable to be detecected on the planet as a scar around the timing of the event. Other than that there is some science in this paper that is interesting.

  86. Hi guys, I’m actually doing an essay on this for university and can’t decide whether to support the theory or reject it. What confuses me is the fact that the extinction of mammals across North America was not synchronous from the papers I’ve read. For instance, some mammals died out well after and before the beginning of the YD. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1040618209003966. They also said that the extinctions were mostly the larger mammals http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1801948. If there was an impact, would it not wipe out a number of species pretty instantaneously? Furthermore, I read a few papers who argue paleoindian cultures existed after the possible impact event when firestone said they were wiped out more or less. Some researchers have also accused firestone et al. of misidentifying nanodiamonds as a their replicate studies did not produce the same results. I can’t understand how we have such an asbolute certification that the material in Mexico is extraterrestrial but not for other sites with black mats across North America- http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2775309/ and http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20805511. Is it possible the researchers are just producing results that they want to see and making excuses for them? My own personal belief is that a meteor impact of some sort could have occured and the meteor exploded mid air as others have said, but theres still not enough evidence to prove it caused the YD event. Still, the evidence for the timing and extent of the damage the impact caused is not very well defined. Some have argued black mats are organic layers caused by wetter conditions induced by the YD cooling as opposed to wildfires, so I’m unsure about which to believe. Would there not also be evidence of any impacts in Antarctica ice cores perhaps? I think this a really interesting topic and I look forward to seeing how it develops with this new evidence. I am certainly no expert at all because I am only a student and I’m only repeating some of the research I have read.

  87. @Matt G 2:18 pm :

    Regarding ANYTHING to do with the overturning of the THC, I love quoting this from Carl Wunsch of MIT, one of the foremost oceanographers (I know, an appeal to authority, so shoot me…LOL):

    “…you can’t turn the Gulf Stream off as long as the wind blows over the North Atlantic and the earth continues to rotate!” and went on to describe the ‘conveyor’ as “a kind of fairy-tale for grownups”. Professor Wunsch said that “I’m willing to talk about these things. I believe that there are all kinds of things happening in the oceans, many highly troubling, but I also believe that one should distinguish what the science tells us and what is merely fantasy”. [emphasis added]

    I laughed out loud when I first heard of the overturning of the THC back in 2004. The stopping of the Gulf Stream is literally impossible, and I knew exactly what Wunsch was talking about. It is a mere fantasy – unless you stop the Earth rotating. The rotation drives the Coriolis-driven gyres. The heat comes OUT of the Gulf of Mexico with the current.

    Do this: Look at any THC discussion, whether on video or in black and white – and then see if they talk about the Gulf of Mexico even once. Every map of it shows the current coming across the top end of South America and then straight up the American coast becoming the Gulf Stream. They have a Gulf Stream without the Gulf. Why do they do this? A. Because they think people are stupid. B. Because if they show the Gulf in the ‘oceanic conveyor’ system, then they have to explain what happens to the heat if the Gulf Stream doesn’t carry it northward. Then see if they mention ‘Coriolis’ even once. Nope, that’s not in there, either. They leave out the physics!

    And who laughs loudest at it? An oceanographer. He says it is a ‘fairy-tale for grownups.”

    The THC isn’t going to happen in the near future and it never happened in the past – not as long as the geography of the Earth is or has been like it currently is. And it didn’t happen during the YD.

    Steve Garcia

  88. feet2thefire says:

    March 12, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    Agreed.

    The gulf stream always flows, it just helps contribute towards warmer water moving further North or further South. The THC has never been shown in past history to have stopped, only change direction and lattitude positioning.

    ,

  89. Damn, looks like I’m going to have to rethink some things. Gard to remain skeptical of a Younger Dryas impact with evidence like this.

  90. For a detailed analysis of the purported “flash freezing” of Mammoth, see “Mammoth”, Adrian iLister and Paul Bahn. Detailed analysis of those remains and when, where and how they ended up where they werer found is beyond the scope of a post here.

  91. The Carolina Bays are not a product of the Holocene start impacts, as they were already being exploited by Clovis man prior to the HSI. They may have been produced by a far earlier impact, for which see the Perigee Zero website.

  92. @Alexandra Cairns 2:19 pm:

    All good questions. Last year there was a paper Pinter et al 2011 “The Younger Dryas impact hypothesis: A requiem” [http://tiny.cc/55g2aw], in which they authors try to bury this hypothesis in toto, and the drag up stuff that has been refuted.

    To whit [you]: “Some researchers have also accused firestone et al. of misidentifying nanodiamonds as a their replicate studies did not produce the same results.”

    Not true. In the first place, the work done by Firestone’s lab people was done in 2003, the year before graphene was even discovered, yet they were taken to task for misidentifying graphene for nanodiamonds. In the second place, the original work was correct in all the time. Those were, in fact, nanodiamonds. But the incorrect refutation has never been rescinded.

    At http://www.cosmictusk.com, there is a counter:

    Kerr Watch
    Number of days writer Richard Kerr has failed to inform his Science readers of the confirmation of nanodiamonds at the YDB: 1 year, 2 months, and 21 days [as of this today]

    [You]: “Is it possible the researchers are just producing results that they want to see and making excuses for them?” Daulton and Pinter’s work “No evidence of nanodiamonds in Younger-Dryas sediments to support an impact event.” (your http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20805511 link) has already been rebutted. Daulton and Pinter were the guys who asserted nanodiamonds were graphene. They selected their samples incorrectly, too. Holliday’s “An independent evaluation of the Younger Dryas extraterrestrial impact hypothesis” (your http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2775309/ link) has this list of papers in evidence against him: http://tiny.cc/s4v2aw

    So far, the circle of skeptics is just that little circle. The YD impact hypothesis is having objective people come along and find corroborating evidence. It seems you are putting an undue amount of weight on Holliday, Pinter and Daulton, when their work has been superseded. It is they who are cherry picking.

    Nanodiamonds are nanodiamonds. Over a dozen sites have produced them. You can’t make them by lighting a match. You have to have great pressure and great heat. Natural surface processes cannot produce them. It takes hypervelocity events (or human ingenuity) to make them on the surface. If you somehow have the impression that they can just be made normally, you are misreading the literature. If nanodiamonds are found, it is a clear indicator that an extraterrestrial impact has occurred at more than a few miles per second. Otherwise, Daulton would not claim that NOT finding them was a falsification of the YD impact hypothesis. It isn’t complicated.

    As to why THIS site, the one in Mexico, has been touted as providing strong evidence while earlier ones didn’t – that was MY first question. Basically the others slipped past everyone unnoticed. Why I have NO idea You are correct on that. (Since I have actually been to Lake Cuitzeo, I feel proud of it, but am genuinely clueless why this one means more than the others.)

    On the issue of gradual extinctions of N.A. megafauna, the link’s article is behind a paywall, and the Abstract gives no indications of what you assert, so I can’t address that.

    As to your “If there was an impact, would it not wipe out a number of species pretty instantaneously?” But it did. See http://tiny.cc/y5w2aw Wikipedia – List of Extinct Animals North America, which lists 34 by my count that went extinct at 10,000 or 11,000 BCE. I did not count 9,000 or 12,000, of which there are a few. I choose to assume that the 10,000 and 11,000 are likely simultaneous.

    Nothing I say here is the last word, but it is at least informed.

    Steve Garcia

  93. E.P. Grondine and Steve Garcia, Thanks for the additional information – Fasinating!

    People like you are the reason I come to WUWT.

  94. Next year an asteroid will pass within about 16,000 miles of earth. That is closer than TV broadcast satellites:

    http://rt.com/news/paint-asteroid-earth-nasa-767

    About $100 billion has been wasted in the U.S. alone on the mythical catastrophic global warming scare, which has no supporting evidence [despite endless efforts to invent “evidence” for CAGW]. For much less than that amount a credible asteroid defense system can be set up to protect the planet. Otherwise, sooner or later there will be a major impact. It has happened many times before, and it will happen again and again, until there is a major impact, if we don’t begin to prepare.

    The first step that should be taken is to immediately de-fund all “climate studies” since they have universally failed to produce worthwhile results, and re-direct the funds into an asteroid defense system — with the caveat that none of those individuals or entities that received government monies to “study climate change” should be permitted to take part in the planet’s defense. They are proven failures, incompetents, and self-serving charlatans, and they need to step out of the way so that honest, competent scientists can plan for the inevitable threat in order to avoid planetary catastrophe.

  95. Thanks for the info it is very helpful! I had not seen the articles you have just provided about the nanodiamonds. I also had no idea the extinctions occurred on such a grand scale either. I will definitley have a sift through these articles. The hypothesis seems quite plausible given what you have told me.

  96. @Doug Proctor, 7:36 AM.

    I don’t see how a massive lake centered around Calgary could drain into the Pacific. The Rocky Mountain Range immediately to the west is way too high for such a path. The Rockies are bumpy, to be sure, but I don’t think there’s any pass low enough to accommodate your statement.

  97. ****
    Bill Illis says:
    March 12, 2012 at 7:35 am

    There are 25 of these rapid cooling events in the record of the last ice age. We would need 25 meteorite strikes.
    ****

    But not a single one of them produced a continental species extinction, or a distinct soot layer w/shock-formed nanodiamonds….

    One may speculate that an impact delivering so much fresh water to the Arctic/N Atlantic may have “reset” ocean circulation patterns back to ice-age “mode” — failure of the N Atlantic Drift & subsequent freezing of the Barents Sea. Then ~1000 yrs to recover.

  98. Re floods and dust: http://www.grahamkendall.net/Unsorted_files-2/A312-Frozen_Mammoths.txt

    There’s a lot of muck in this. If what’s being said here about quick-frozen not cold-adapted mamoths and tropical forests is indicative of the conditions which prevailed at the onset of the Younger Dryas then the event was cataclysmic on a world greatly hotter than we are in now, that perhaps would still be this if the Younger Dryas hadn’t happened:

    “Second, the well-preserved mammoths and rhinoceroses must have
    been completely frozen soon after death or their soft, internal
    parts would have quickly decomposed. Guthrie has observed that “an
    unopened animal continues to decompose after a fresh kill, even at
    very cold temperatures, because the thermal inertia of its body is
    sufficient to sustain microbial and enzyme activity as long as the
    carcass is completely covered with an insulating pelt and the
    torso remains intact.”44 Since mammoths had such large reservoirs
    of heat, the freezing temperatures must have been extremely low.

    Finally, their bodies were buried and protected from predators,
    including birds and insects. But burial could not have occurred if
    the ground were frozen as it is today. Again, this implies a major
    climate change, but now we can see that it must have changed
    suddenly. How were these huge animals quickly frozen and
    buriedãalmost exclusively in muck, a dark soil containing
    decomposed animal and vegetable matter?

    Muck. Muck is a major geological mystery. It covers one-seventh of
    the earth’s land surfaceãall surrounding the Arctic Ocean. Muck
    occupies treeless, generally flat terrain, with no surrounding
    mountains from which the muck could have eroded. Russian
    geologists have in some places drilled through 4,000 feet of muck
    without hitting solid rock. Where did so much eroded material come
    from?

    Oil prospectors, drilling through Alaskan muck, have “brought up
    an 18-inch long chunk of tree trunk from almost 1,000 feet below
    the surface. It wasn’t petrifiedãjust frozen.”45 The nearest
    forests are hundreds of miles away. Elsewhere, Williams describes
    similar discoveries in Alaska:

    Though the ground is frozen for 1,900 feet down from the surface
    at Prudhoe Bay, everywhere the oil companies drilled around this
    area they discovered an ancient tropical forest. It was in frozen
    state, not in petrified state. It is between 1,100 and 1,700 feet
    down. There are palm trees, pine trees, and tropical foliage in
    great profusion. In fact, they found them lapped all over each
    other, just as though they had fallen in that position.46

    How were trees buried under a thousand feet of hard, frozen
    ground? We are faced with the same series of questions that we
    first saw with the frozen mammoths. Again, we are driven to the
    conclusion that there was a sudden and dramatic change in climate
    accompanied by rapid burial in muck, now frozen solid.”

  99. Alexandra Cairns says:
    March 12, 2012 at 2:19 pm
    ===========
    It might help to start with an understanding of the last glacial maximum and work forward in time. Check the reference section id this study for a number of good sources.

    High-resolution climate simulation of the last glacial maximum

    http://caos.iisc.ernet.in/faculty/gbala/pdf_files/kim_etal_CD2008.pdf

    Old is Getting Older

    http://www.nps.gov/akso/nature/science/ak_park_science/PDF/2005Vol4-2/Old-Is-Getting-Older.pdf

    “Sometime during the last glacial maximum between 21,000 and 17,000 years ago, archeological evidence suggests that groups of people from what is today the Russian far east, began their migration further eastward into North America [using the Bering land bridge].”

    Swan Point [Alaska]
    (Holmes and Potter 2002)

    http://www.alaska.net/~taiga2/Swan_Point.html

    “It is significant that Swan Point is not only the oldest site (radiocarbon dated between circa 15,000 and 14,200 cal. BP),…”

    Note: oldest evidence of humans in Alaska and guess what they were hunting ; )

  100. To Caleb: The old theory about how the mammoths died, standing up, with buttercups and other plants in their stomachs, was that a massive temperature inversion hit them. Temperature inversions, as I recall, are usually very cold air masses that for some reason drop through warmer air and literally engulf an area (and life) in a flash or quick freeze situation. Lungs would freeze almost instantly, thus accounting for mammoths found standing up, still eating.

    They are also suggested as one reason for reports of strange, circular holes in cloud formations, or as UFOs.

    I learned this over 50 years ago. However, I’m open to any rational speculation or explanation.

  101. For those who may have missed it, here is aa asteroid impact calculator for various sized asteroids, and the damage they would cause.

  102. @beng 4:39 pm:
    “One may speculate that an impact delivering so much fresh water to the Arctic/N Atlantic may have “reset” ocean circulation patterns back to ice-age “mode” — failure of the N Atlantic Drift & subsequent freezing of the Barents Sea. Then ~1000 yrs to recover.”

    Except that none of the scenarios work for getting the Lake Agassiz water to the N Atlantic, either visa the St Law3rence or the Arctic (Don’t forget the Arctic is even more frozen than further south). The Ice sheet did not recede enough by 12.9kya to use the St Lawrence, and the Mackensie River doesn’t work, either – not to the N Atlantic. As I said in another comment above, climatologist Rodney Chilton has a paper coming out pointing out the flaws in the fresh water and THC shutdown. And Oceanographer Carl Wunsch calls the THC shutdown “an adult fairy-tale” because the N Atlantic Gyre (the western part of which is the Gulf Stream) will not ever shut down as long as the Earth keeps rotating and winds keep blowing.

    Steve Garcia

  103. @John 4:45 pm:

    Old is Getting Older

    http://www.nps.gov/akso/nature/science/ak_park_science/PDF/2005Vol4-2/Old-Is-Getting-Older.pdf

    “Sometime during the last glacial maximum between 21,000 and 17,000 years ago, archeological evidence suggests that groups of people from what is today the Russian far east, began their migration further eastward into North America [using the Bering land bridge].”

    By that time Solutreans had been on the Eastern Seaboard for between 1,000 and 8,000 years.

    Swan Point [Alaska]
    (Holmes and Potter 2002)

    http://www.alaska.net/~taiga2/Swan_Point.html

    “It is significant that Swan Point is not only the oldest site (radiocarbon dated between circa 15,000 and 14,200 cal. BP),…”

    Note: oldest evidence of humans in Alaska and guess what they were hunting ; )

    However, note that they used microblades, an entirely different technology from Solutrean/Clovis blades. And it is not microblades that are found at Clovis sites, but – of course – Clovis blades.

    From 1st link: “Strong evidence supports the case that some people migrated from Siberia to Alaska via the Bering Strait.”

    What the evidence does NOT do is show any Clovis points. This was swept under the carpet for a long time, until Monte Verde in Chile showed that others were here before the ‘ice-free corridor’ opened up.

    Genetic data clearly show FIVE incursions. The MAIN one, the one that most American Indians came from – was over Beringia. However the Iroquois came from Europe. Up in Alaska they don’t care about Iroquois, I imagine. They want to show how important Beringia and Alaska were. But that route has had ALL the attention for several decades now, and it is time the other routes had some studies done on them. Clovis First is dead. Now we look at the Solutreans.

    From the 2nd link: “Subsistence is assumed to have been based on big game, i.e., remnant Pleistocene megafauna.” Why is this assumed? Subsistence now is based on seals and fish. Per Uniformitarianism, what is seen now is also what happened in the past, unless counter evidence is provided. Assuming subsistence based on megafauna is illogical. A few mammoth bones with cut marks or other evidence of human butchering does not in any way imply that that was their main source of subsistence.

    Steve Garcia

  104. @Smokey 5:15 pm:
    “For those who may have missed it, here is an asteroid impact calculator for various sized asteroids, and the damage they would cause.”

    What does it say about comets? How about friable comets? What does it say about air bursts of comets?

    All from out there isn’t asteroids or meteors.

    Steve Garcia

  105. Question, is it possible for an extraterristial source to deposit water into the upper atmosphere? If so how long would it remain? Longer then ash or dust?

    Data:
    nanodiamonds found at beginning YD, but no large dust cloud found in ice deposits
    Earth cools at beginning YD
    Possible large lakes in North America break ice dams around same time as beginning of YD
    Animals die off (rapid cooling alone could effect this)
    Incoming solar radiation lessons? Can this be accounted for by more water in upper atmosphere?
    What is common among all cultures? A: Smile is sign of happiness and great flood mythology

    Theory:
    Cloud of mostly micro comets and some metal asterioids collide with earth, possible repeat collision similiar to current meteor showers. Injecting initial large amount of water into atmosphere. Water turns into rain. Lots of “great floods” world wide. Extra rain causes ice dams to break. Forms thick cloud cover reducing incoming solar radiation. Cooling earth. Rain turns to snow in many places, earth cools even more due to reflection of snow. Cooling earth locks water vapor into ice causing drying of NH, fires result produce carbon seen in lake deposits.

    BS? Possible?

  106. feet2thefire says:
    March 12, 2012 at 6:15 pm
    =====
    I’m not fighting for any single approach to the NA migration and your comments are great about the Iroquois. I was just trying to give Alexandra a perspective and some references to follow.

    Why big game? Because mammoth tusks were found at the various Alaska sites and were mined in vast quantity in the late 1800s from a small island in the East Siberian Sea. Unless herds of Siberian Mammoth decided it was the place to die, someone either herded them there or dragged the tusks to that location.

  107. feet2thefire says:
    March 12, 2012 at 6:15 pm
    =====
    There is another possible explanation for the occurrence of Mammoth on the Siberian Sea Island. As the ocean rose and reopened the Bering Strait, they may have migrated to higher ground and simply got trapped on the island. We would need some first hand account from the mining expedition to determine if only tusks were found and or if there was any evidence they had been hunted by humans.

    Its hard to tell if a Russian expedition journal even exists.

  108. Steve Garcia said

    Quote

    The Ice sheet did not recede enough by 12.9kya to use the St Lawrence,

    Unquote

    Niagara falls formed just at this time.

    It is very clear that this major event had several impacts that directly affected climate. Dust, Muck, Fresh water into the far north and Gulf of St Lawrence, Melting of huge Ice Sheets, vast African dust storms and possibly a move of the rotational pole. Combine all of these and you have a 1,000 year winter, massive tsunamis, extinctions and mythology.

  109. What other evidence is there? Well there is a totally independent and uncontaminated date source. It has been demonstrated and supported with astronomical data that the Giza alignment indicates a date of 10,500 BC, the very date of the Younger Dryas initiation event. Is that a co-incidence?

    Consider this

    http://home.hiwaay.net/~jalison/index.html

    There is so much evidence, so much supporting data and so many powerful inputs that a single unrelated event could not have bought about a 1,000 year climate change on its own. Just where did 1,000 feet and more of alluvial muck come form , how was it formed?

    As an example, it has only recently been determined that the Minoan civilisation ended with the eruption of Thera and the resulting Tsunami. However it was thought that this was just coastal but recent finds have found Tsunami muck over 100 feet above the shoreline thus demonstrating that the level of destruction was much greater than thought.

  110. @John 6:39 pm:
    “Why big game? Because mammoth tusks were found at the various Alaska sites and were mined in vast quantity in the late 1800s from a small island in the East Siberian Sea. Unless herds of Siberian Mammoth decided it was the place to die, someone either herded them there or dragged the tusks to that location.”

    I trust that last was tongue-in-cheek, but even if not, it is a new perspective for me. Those two possibilities never occurred to me, but they are as good as mine. Which doesn’t say much!

    …Yeah, those mammoth skeletons – much more than just tusks, as you certainly know – were not just on one island, but on the whole of the Liakhov and the New Siberian Islands, plus/including Wrangel where the mini mammoths survived a bit longer, those islands – just how or why did those mammoths end up there? Especially the Berskova one with the buttercups in its stomach. Buttercups don’t grow there, and there isn’t enough vegetable matter to pee on, so what did they eat – herded or not? If you figure it out, then tell me. My old Plan B backup explanation was a polar shift, which is about the only explanation that doesn’t dispute the facts of the mammoths and their tummies – but it disputes everything else we know , or think we know.

    Berskova wasn’t on those islands, but the principle remains your question: WTF were they bloody doing up there? When mammoth’s hair is NOT designed for cold, when mammoth remains are ALSO found in Mexico, when mammoths in ASIA died off at the same time as the ones in N.A. – what can possibly have been going on back then? Did their being there have any connection to the extinction event itself – no matter whether climate or Clovis overkill or comet? Occam’s razor fails us. No simple explanation exists. Even Holmes’ deduction fails us. I think we don’t have enough facts to ask the right question. But yours are as good as mine or anybody else’s.

    But are you ready for this?… Mammoths weren’t the only big skeletons found on the New Siberian and Liakhov Islands.

    On Kotelnoi Island (one of the New Siberian Islands) “neither trees, nor shrubs, nor bushes, exist. . . and yet the bones of elephants, rhinoceroses, buffaloes, and horses are found in this icy wilderness in numbers which defy all calculations.” [Whitley, Journal of the Philosophical Society of Great Britain, XII (1910), pg 56.

    One must first credit Whitley with knowing the difference between horse bones and ‘elephants’ – which latter I assume are mammoths. Rhinos and buffaloes, too – if for no other reason than scale. The real weird one is rhinos! The nearest rhinos now are south of the Himalayas. NO ONE would suggest those rhinos were herded up to those islands, nor that they happened to wander there while foraging – not then the nearest forage for them is about 1,000 to the south.

    Whatever we try to assign the exitnction to, climate or Clovis man or impactor, it still doesn’t explain what the heck they were doing there in the first place. And if Clovis man killed ‘em all in N.A., who killed them all in Siberia????? Every answer is insufficient.

    Steve Garcia

  111. @John –
    Accounts from early expeditions exist, if not exactly journals. In 1829 German scientist G.A. Erman went there to measure the magnetic field. Here is some of what he said:

    In New Siberia on the declivities facing the south, lie hills 250 or 300 feet high, formed of driftwood, the ancient origin of which, as well as the fossil wood of the tundras, anterior to the history of the Earth in its present state, strikes at once even the most uneducated of hunters. . . . Other hills on the same island, and on Kotelnoi, which lies further to the west, are heaped to an equal height with skeletons of pachyderms [elephants, rhinoceroses], bisons [sic], etc’, which are cemented together by frozen sand as well as by strata and veins of ice. . . . On the summit of the hills they [the trunks of trees] lie flung upon one another in the wildest disorder, forced upright in spite of gravitation, and with their tops broken off or crushed, as if they had been thrown there with great violence from the south on a bank, and there heaped up.”

    And Edward von Toll visited from 1885 to 1902, and

    found them [wood hills] to cinsist of carbonized trunks of trees, with impressions of leaves and fruits.”

    On another island Toll found mammoth bones and other bones, plus fossilized trees with leaves and cones, making him to write,

    This striking discovery proves that in the days when the mammoths and rhinoceroses lived in northern Siberia,, these desolate islands were covered with great forests, and bore luxuriant vegetation.”

    Scary, isn’t it??? Whatever killed the mammoths seems to have also killed the trees – and not only killed them but swept the islands clean (as it is today) and piled the trees and bones high into hills, literally. It certainly wasn’t climate change. And Clovis man was a LONG way off in the USA and Mexico. Clovis spears were pretty high tech for their day, but. . .

    Steve Garcia

  112. So to summarize. Sudden cooling events during the ice age are known as Heinrich events and there were six official cooling events from the end of the Eemian to the Holocene. During these cooling events the GISP data shows sudden cooling of around 6C, from already cold ice age conditions, in a matter of a few decades, and perhaps as little as a few years.

    There are also 25 sudden warming events known as Dansgaard-Oeschger events where temperatures warmed in a matter of decades and summer temperatures may have been almost as warm as today. As for the cause – no one knows. All we do know is that Ice Age climate was extremely unstable with annual variance being an order of magnitude greater than the benign Holocene interglacial where we reside today. For more information see ” Climate Change in Prehistory: The End of the Reign of Chaos” by the late and brilliant William J. Burroughs.

    Was the Younger Dryas another Heinrich event? It is thought it might have been, but the cause is unknown. Was a bolide responsible? Maybe, but then we need to explain the other Heinrich events. Did the Y-D kill off the mammoths and other megafauna. We don’t know, but consider that megafauna survived all previous Ice Ages and the only new factor that appeared on the scene were human hunters. The arrival of humans also coincided with megafauna extinctions in Australia, New Zealand and Europe. See “Twilight of the Mammoths” by Paul S. Martin to follow the timeline of extinctions and the arrival of stone age hunters.

    Did Solutrean hunters make it to North America? Certainly the NA mitochondrial X lineage makes it seem that something like this may have happened and certainly the similarity of Clovis points to Solutrean points is very intriguing. All of this shows how little we know and how much we need still need to learn to understand the Ice Age world.

  113. Dont forget the giant Elk. A site in Alaska has hundreds of thousands, all in one spot. As Steve said, how did they all get there.

    All a good scientist can do is look at all the data and develop an idea as to how that data occurred and then demonstrate it. This event has so much data and so many strange things happening and in plain sight, indeed whole Islands made of mega fauna bones. Thus one must consider all the possible scenarios no matter how way out.

    The data just cannot be ignored or just hand waved away.

  114. There’s no need for impacts to do anything in the atmosphere directly. We dont need (to be looking for) large impact craters or associated evidence of ejecta when a series of small impacts mostly hitting the ocean could conceivably stir up the ocean bringing the frigid water at depth to the surface and insta-chilling the atmosphere. Do that in Winter far enough North and the effect could be an instant mini iceage.

  115. Some effort should be expended towards adding electricity to the impact equation. An impacting body with a large static charge differential may well have arced to earth before impact and vaporized into an exceedingly hot plasma which maintained its inertia tho not is concentration of mass and thus no crater.

  116. Hate to rain on your parade, but from memory there are two hemispheres to the globe, a extra-terestrial impact would most likely cause climate shifts in both hemispheres (volcanic eruptions indicate that mixing occurs. Yet the younger Dryas appears to be only a northern hemisphere issue.

    This would tend to back up ocean circulation theory as being a cause

  117. The large mega-mammals find in Mammoth Cave in Kentucky were said to have been deposited there by flood, as a river/streams runs through it. I’ve read claims that the Berskova Mammoth was not in very good shape, by someone who was also there. There was some wild exaggeration maybe. If I find the link to it, I’ll try to look for it.

  118. I bet if you look around Post hoc, you will find plenty of discovered Mammoth remains from South America. I’ve seen where they’d been written about.

  119. What Bill Illis and Don Easterbrook said, plus…

    According to the serially flawed Firestone et al., 2007, the Carolina Bays were formed by a massive bolide (air bursting chondrite meteor/asteroid), which also triggered the onset of the Younger Dryas stadial (cold period), caused the extinction of the North American megafauna and destroyed the Clovis culture.

    About half-a-dozen papers over the last four years have shot down every single point of Firestone et al., 2007.  The most effective was Paquay et al., 2009.  Paquay could not reproduce the iridium anomalies that Firestone claimed to be associated with the onset of the Younger Dryas.  Paquay also looked at the entire platinum group…

    Paquay PGE Plot

    Paquay noted that the presence of nanodiamonds without “a defined geochemical anomaly” is not a “robust diagnostic of an airburst event.”

    Melott et al., 2010 did find a nitrate spike associated with the onset of the Younger Dryas, comparable to the one associated with the Tunguska bolide.  But a bolide powerful enough to trigger the Younger Dryas would have been ~6 orders of magnitude larger than Tunguska…

    Melott Nitrate Plot

    Carlson, 2010 noted that the Younger Dryas nitrate increase was not unique.  The previous stadial was also associated with a nitrate increase…

    Carlson Nitrate Plot

    So… There is no clear geochemical signature of a bolide at the Younger Dryas.  While Tunguska exhibits a clear platinum group anomaly…

    Tunguska PGE Plot

    The Younger Dryas exhibits no evidence of a major bolide.  Furthermore, Scott et al., 2010 found the carbonaceous spherules to “have morphologies and internal structures identical to fungal sclerotia (such as Sclerotium and Cenococcum).”

    Tunguska was thought to have been a 50-80 m carbonaceous chondrite that exploded at an altitude of 5-10 km.

    The Carolina Bays are assumed by some to be crater-like in appearance and consistent with a Tunguska-style bolide.  Despite the fact that the Tunguska bolide did not cause a distinctly clear crater (although a fragment of it might have caused one).

    The Barringer Crater was caused by an impacting 10-50 m nickel-iron meteor 40-50 thousand years ago.  Its explosive intensity was similar to Tunguska; but it impacted the ground rather than exploding in the atmosphere.  It left a big hole in the ground, filled with lechaterlierite (fused silica glass) and meteoric material…

    Barringer Crater Geologic Map

    Barringer Crater Cross Section

    The Carolina Bays are semi circular depressions in sandy alluvial and eolian Pleistocene-aged sediments, filled with Holocene-aged mud, muck & peat.  They are ubiquitous on flat, low-lying Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coastal plains.  They are not craters nor are they even remotely analogous to Tunguska.  The Elizabethtown NC quadrangle is loaded with Carolina Bay features…

    Elizabethtown Surficial Geology Map

    The Carolina Bays are generally NW-SE trending semicircular swampy areas occupying shallow depressions in older sandy deposits…

    Elizabethtown Surficial Geology Map Zoom

    In cross section, they don’t look anything like craters…

    Elizabethtown Cross Section

    And they really don’t look anything at all like Barringer Crater when plotted at the same scale…

    Barringer – Carolina Bay Comparison

    The Carolina Bays were supposedly craters caused by a larger bolide than Tunguska… Yet they don’t have any geochemical signature, no impact mineralogy and their “craters” are smaller than the pile of dirt at the bottom of Barringer Crater.

    The Carolina Bays meteor/asteroid/comet would have had to have been powerful enough to leave 100’s of thousands of small craters without leaving as much geochemical evidence as a much smaller bolide 12,000 years later… And those craters would have had to have been much more subdued  than the one left by a single impacting nickel-iron meteor 40,000 years earlier.  One of Paquay’s sites was Howard Bay NC (a Carolina Bay feature).  It exhibited no PGE anomaly.

    The robot from Lost in Space would say, “That does not compute.” 

  120. David Middleton, nice post but a rather lengthy “Strawman” argument. The theory does not solely rest upon the Carolina Bays being an impact site. As far as I am aware, the layers of sediments in that area have been analyzed and a layer found that is contemporary with the Younger Dryas event. A very different observation.

    As far as I can determine, there was no major single impact site unless one takes the site to be in an area that was covered with deep ice at the time.

    The fact that the event occurred and that a very large body of evidence exists, well distributed geographically, that indicates that it was a physical catastrophic event, really calls for much better investigation.

    •  

      I’m reading a lot of skepticism expressing alternate causes for the climate changes of the PH transition that don’t involve impact. This healthy skepticism all well and good.

      But if those same skeptics are going to speak to the data at hand, what I haven’t seen yet is a rational explanation for the materials in the sediment core they took from Lake Cuitzeo that doesn’t involve a major impact event. Specifically, the materials in the layer dating to 12,900 YA.

      I’m also reading a lot of unquestioned assumption that any major impact event must involve the formation of a crater somewhere. The Tunguska event of 1908 did not leave a crater because the fireball didn’t reach the ground. Only its blast wave did. So the largest impact event in recorded history was an aerial burst that didn’t produce a crater. There is nothing to indicate airburst events are unusual. And there is also no reason to assume Tunguska was a large example on the grand scale of such things.

      Here’s a few short references to think about  The Nature of Airbursts and their Contribution to the Impact Threat, Large Aerial Bursts and the Impact Threat, and High performance computing provides clues to scientific mystery.

      When you consider that a single large ablative airburst can produce planetary scarring that does not bare any resemblance to a crater, but instead is characterized as a melting event. And realize that geologists of the past have never considered that enough heat, and pressure to do such a thing could come from above, then there is a very real possibility that the planetary scarring of the YD event has already been found, and is still in very good condition, but has been mis-defined on the geologic maps volcanic.

      Another point to consider is that since the astronomical model this new paper is working from is Cube, and Napier’s work on the Taurid complex, then folks might want to start thinking, not just in terms of a single large impact somewhere, but many.

      If we are working from that astronomical model, then we should be looking for the planetary scarring of something like 10,000 tunguska class, and larger, air bursts hitting the northern hemisphere over a period of about an hour as the Earth passed through the debris of the fragmented Taurid progenitor.

      Instead of thinking of the YD impact event as the fist of God smashing into the ground at a specific location, it would probably be a better analogy think of it as his hot, and angry, breath. burning much of the biomass of the northern hemisphere away down to the last blade of grass.

  121. We are but a little blue ball in the sky with a thin shield of atmosphere to protect us from harm. small things burn up, bigger things blow up, and large things impact us.

    The earth being watery and full of life is self healing, such that these catastrophies are masked and quickly buried. Look first at our moon, a very small target but some what perturbed by very big holes. Mars also has had its fair share of things randomly causing big holes.

    Thus we can assume if we are not special and protected by the gods, that we also get a fair share of things that are not conducive to having a nice day.

    That finding in our geological record a preponderance of things that tend to fall on us, and make life difficult is no surprise. Scientists doing good research and not mentioning global warming is a pleasant surprise. Cudos to them.

  122. ****
    feet2thefire says:
    March 12, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Except that none of the scenarios work for getting the Lake Agassiz water to the N Atlantic, either visa the St Law3rence or the Arctic (Don’t forget the Arctic is even more frozen than further south). The Ice sheet did not recede enough by 12.9kya to use the St Lawrence, and the Mackensie River doesn’t work, either – not to the N Atlantic. As I said in another comment above, climatologist Rodney Chilton has a paper coming out pointing out the flaws in the fresh water and THC shutdown. And Oceanographer Carl Wunsch calls the THC shutdown “an adult fairy-tale” because the N Atlantic Gyre (the western part of which is the Gulf Stream) will not ever shut down as long as the Earth keeps rotating and winds keep blowing.
    ****

    Feet, note that I carefully said N Atlantic Drift — not Gulf Stream. The GS won’t “fail” — quite true. No more than the Japan current would fail crossing the Pacific. The NA Drift is an extension of the GS, caused by the sinking water of the Barents Sea “drawing” water northward from the GS. If covered by cold, fresh water, the Barents Sea water might no longer sink, but simply freeze in place after enough exposure to Arctic winds blowing over. AFA the glacial meltwater, it’s gotta go somewhere. One or more of the Laurentide ice-sheet borders could have been obliterated by the impact, allowing water to escape where it couldn’t have earlier. Or it may have flowed directly off the glacier itself. The subsequent cold of the YD then may have allowed the glacier to partially reform make it difficult to determine what happened at what time.

    Yeah, I know, alot of “may haves”, but I’m trying to tie together the result of the proposed impacts with the “typical” Heinrich events. One has to wonder what causes Heinrich events (producing 10C drops in Greenland), and IMO only major ocean circ changes seem to fit the bill. A “failure” of the NA Drift fits the bill. The Gulf Stream continues to flow merrily along, turning southward near the west European Atlantic coast.

  123. Sometimes, we mere mortals, have to source our information from strange places. I have seen several History Channel programs about the termination of Clovis ( not about Impacts or the Younger Dryas) which pointed out and showed a clear layer. Below was Clovis above it new technology.

    Yes, it was pointed out that the layer corresponded with an “event” but most important twas the fact that this layer was found at most Clovis sites throughout America.

    I am inclined to think that it was an electrical event, causing a massive electrical discharge machining effect on the surface and this produced the nano-diamonds and other spherical granules found in the layers as well as the carbon deposits.

    Thus no impact crater, widely =dispersed “fall out” and possible a source for the texas rubble pile mentioned above.

  124. I’ve only worked halfway through the comments, but most comments fail to discuss the idea the idea that mammoths needed to be flash frozen at 150 below to avoid having the stuff in their guts rot.

    Instead there is much discussion about heat and air blasts, and forest fires.

    I though I’d throw this out into the wonderful brew of neat ideas:

    Suppose a chunk of comet hit the ice sheet at a low angle. Suppose the very surface of the comet was quite hot, but the middle still retained the cold of outer space. Suppose it pulverized and mixed with pulverized ice. Friction would cause some melting, but it is possible there could also be a mix of earth-ice and outer-space-frozen-comet, moving like a nightmarish dust storm away from the impact zone? Could such a heavy air mass retain the chill of outer space, and could it move away from Greenland and stay dense and low enough to avoid the high altitudes where ice cores are taken from?

    I sense a neat plot for a Science-fiction movie: “The escape of Org the Mammoth Slayer.”

  125. feet2thefire says:
    March 12, 2012 at 8:22 pm
    @John –
    Accounts from early expeditions exist,
    ============
    Thanks feet2thefire, that’s fascinating. Do you have a link or Title for the source information? I’d really like to read more.

  126. Don Easterbrook wrote:

    “Before jumping on this bandwagon, consider the following:
    1. There may well have been a meteorite impact near the beginning of the Younger Dryas (YD), but that doesn’t prove it was the CAUSE of the YDs. It’s the same logic as saying the cause of the 1978-1998 warming coincided with rise in CO2 so the cause must be CO2. Bad logic.
    2. The YD is just the most prominent of many Dansgard-Oerscher abrupt climatic events.
    3. The YD ended just as abruptly as it began a little over 1000 years later.
    4. The YD corresponds with changes in 10Be and 14C production rates, suggesting changes in incoming radiation and pointing toward a Svensmark type cause.
    5. The problem with single event causes (e.g., volcanic eruption) is that they cannot be sustained for the length of time of the climate change. If the idea is that the cooling was caused by ejection of dust into the atmosphere, that wouldn’t last for more than 1000 years.
    6. If the YD was caused by dust in the atmosphere, it should show up in the Greenland ice cores (where even very small, annual accumulations of dust from summer ablation are well preserved). There is no such evidence of dust from an impact event throughout any of the well preserved YD ice core record.
    7. The list goes on and on–too many to include them all here. Perhaps a longer response later. The bottom line is that a single event, meteorite impact event doesn’t prove the origin of the YD.”

    Aside from the demonstrated fact that it was a COMET that hit, you are correct, Don.

    While I have referred to this impact event as the Holocene Start Impact, that is misleading as the PH melt was already started when this impact event occurred. But focus on the Younger Dryas Atlantic draining of melted glacial water is not correct either, though the impacts may have triggered some of the drainages. There is a European bias in PH discussion, which generally ignores Pacific Ocean data.

    The North American Glacial Sheet held several times the water of Lake Aggasiz.

    One problem is the exact timing of catastrophic outflows to the Pacific Ocean, and it is hard even to get them acknowledged. It now appears that they influenced the already occurring change in the Pacific Current. But exactly how is currently unknown, of course.

    What can be confidently asserted is that there was enough comet dust in the atmosphere to cause a global climate collapse for several years, which led to the extinction by starvation of several species.

    (Steve, Wrangle Island Mammoth had already shrunk in response to the limited food supplies on Wrangle Island, and they were the size of a large dog.)

    As far as man in North America goes, those who survived survived at salt licks or at other high food supply areas. They no longer needed Clovis points for megafauna kills by thrusting, but adopted smaller points for smaller game, points sized for throwing.

    Mr. Cox’s assertion that Tunguska is the largest impact in “recorded history” is shown by this impactite layer to be without merit, as several peoples remembered what happened and where they were when it happened.

    Don, as near as I can make out, in hypervelocity impacts some photons energy levels are raised to the point where they are able to break the binding forces of nucleons, and the detailed 14C and 10Be production charts appear to show this. I do not think the large spikes seen in free protons and neutrons at 10,900 BCE were generated by changed solar activity (though 14C and 10Be are proxies for solar activity, and solar activity is variable), or by nearby supernova.

    In summary, we’re still at a loss for explaining glacial cycles, and the data from the most recent one is “contaminated” by impact effects.

    •  

      Mr. Grondine asserts that Amerindian Oral traditions contain accurate memories of impact events more than 13,000 years old. Yet when we ask for references, or proof that any accurate memories from any culture on Earth exist that are that old, oral written, or otherwise, no such proof exists.

      He expects that we should take his word for it without question. And in spite of possessing no academic credentials whatsoever, he claims to have no peers in his knowledge of the subject.

      The simple glaring fact is that if what Mr. Grondine’s personal and subjective interpretations of Amerindian Oral traditions were in fact accurate memories of impact events, then he should have been able to locate, and confirm at least one crater, or impact structure, somewhere on the North American continent in his long career of writing about it by using that information .

      He has never done so.

      • I don’t see oral traditions lasting that long mainly because the tradition bearing cultures don’t last that long. There are abundant oral traditions about ancient catastrophe, and written traditions as well, such as the Pyramid texts and cuneoiform tablets. The many North American traditions talk of a mega destructive event(s) much more recent. But nobody wants to give mythology enough oomph to actually steer the research towards doubting Carbon and other dating methods.

        It seems to me that any event of this magnitude would totally bollox the uniformitarian assumptions that underwrite the steady and undisturbed decay of various elemental isotopes. Carbon 14 dating of living organisms in the periphery of undersea volcanic vents gives ages for those organisms of 10k+ years! The Younger Dryas event may be much more recent. Dating, as currently practiced, may be the hair in the soup. As an experiment a la Prof. Gunnar Heinsohn, throw out dating and see where the strata fall.

  127. BTW. Don, as others pointed out, the impactite layer has also been found in samples form Greenland. So you were mistaken there.

  128. @David Middleton 2:50 am:

    Re Firestone, one by one…

    Not defending Firestone 2007, because Firestone 2007 isn’t the last word.

    About half-a-dozen papers over the last four years have shot down every single point of Firestone et al., 2007.

    Well over ‘half a dozen’ papers have supported Firestone 2007’s basic premise, finding all the impact materials you are conveniently leaving out.

    The most effective was Paquay et al., 2009. Paquay could not reproduce the iridium anomalies that Firestone claimed to be associated with the onset of the Younger Dryas.

    Bull. EVERY facet of Firestone has not been proven wrong. I only need to point to Lake Cuitzeo. but I can also point to the Ussello layer in Holland, the Murray Springs black mat, the Greenland evidence, the Andronikov expedition in Belgium, Ge et al. (2009), Tankersley (2009), Tian (2010),
    Van Hoesel (2011), Bement et al. (2011), Beets et al. (2008), Sharma et al. (2009), Haynes et al. (2010), Mahaney (2010), Marshall (2011), Wu (2011). There are more.

    Paquay is Holliday (co-author), and that was a hatchet job, and was wrong to boot (see all the above). They couldn’t replicate the Iridium because they were sloppy taking samples. Others have since replicated the work of Kennet, West and Firestone, so it doesn’t matter if Holliday/Paquay failed to corroborate – it only shows Holliday/Paquay did sloppy work.

    According to the serially flawed Firestone et al., 2007, the Carolina Bays were formed by a massive bolide (air bursting chondrite meteor/asteroid)

    All involved recognize that the Carolina bays were likely a miss in Firestone 2007. Therefore they are effectively off the table as ancient history. If your whole thing is attacking Firestone 2007, you should wake up to the many other papers since then that collectively support the overall while refining the picture. Are you denying the validity of the Lake Cuitzeo findings? You are thrashing a dead horse and making yourself look like a 19th century ether supporter.

    Firestone was a starting point. Pretending to require them to have gotten it 100% correct is missing the point and mendacious. The point is: SOMETHING happened and there is evidence of it. What it was and where it happened is still to be determined.

    Saying, “There is nothing to see here – move along,” try that here at WUWT at your own risk – and get your head chopped off.

    So the big picture is that it is Paquay that is refuted, not Firestone.

    Paquay noted that the presence of nanodiamonds without “a defined geochemical anomaly” is not a “robust diagnostic of an airburst event.”

    Again, Paquay is passé and wrong. It is not just nanodiamonds, it is the entire cocktail. And the thing is: YOU KNOW IT. You are presenting one side of this and hoping the readers are stupid enough to accept your presentation without looking into it further. But you are on a site here where people DO look into things further.

    Melott et al., 2010 did find a nitrate spike associated with the onset of the Younger Dryas, comparable to the one associated with the Tunguska bolide. But a bolide powerful enough to trigger the Younger Dryas would have been ~6 orders of magnitude larger than Tunguska…

    This is totally a “WTF?” Tunguska is the biggest thing that will ever hit the Earth? You know this how? You may think it is doubtful. How big were the mushroom clouds on Jupiter in 1994? The size of the entire planet Earth. And HOW strong is the gravity of Jupiter, vs the Earth? Eight times. So HOW big would those mushroom clouds be if SL/9 had hit Earth? As big as the planet Jupiter? And what would THAT do to life on Earth?

    Actually most of what Melott finds supports there being a Tunguska-type air burst – even if he says it is so big he can’t fathom it. But isn’t that the point? Tunguska’s forest fire had effects (ammonia and N2 products) was like the YD only about a million times smaller than the YD ammonia and N2 spikes. Thank you for this info. Mellot is behind a paywall, so I can’t go into it like I would like to.

    Carlson, 2010 noted that the Younger Dryas nitrate increase was not unique. The previous stadial was also associated with a nitrate increase…

    This point may need looking into. A nitrate increase – by itself – may not be an indicator. Point taken.

    So… There is no clear geochemical signature of a bolide at the Younger Dryas. While Tunguska exhibits a clear platinum group anomaly…

    That is an ill-informed conclusion, especially when your own Melott paper supports a YD impact/airburst event, since Melott says it has the markings of Tunguska, though a million times as big. The plot you refer to has nothing at all to do with the YD. It is only Tunguska and doesn’t show how it relates to the YD at all.

    The Younger Dryas exhibits no evidence of a major bolide.

    Incorrect conclusion. Melott shows definite corroboration. Plus all the rest of the papers you should read. Did you even READ the Mexican paper? I invite you to read all the above papers. Educate yourself.

    Furthermore, Scott et al., 2010 found the carbonaceous spherules to “have morphologies and internal structures identical to fungal sclerotia (such as Sclerotium and Cenococcum).”

    So, Scott argues that the carbonaceous spherules in ALL the sites are infected with the same fungus? Cute, but it won’t hold water.

    Tunguska was thought to have been a 50-80 m carbonaceous chondrite that exploded at an altitude of 5-10 km.

    This one is a joke, right? I quote your own Melott et al. 2010 (caption with Figure 1): “The Tunguska event, thought to be a comet airburst, took place in A.D. 1908.”

    Comets are not carbonaceous chondrites, but some meteors are.

    The Carolina Bays are assumed by some to be crater-like in appearance and consistent with a Tunguska-style bolide. Despite the fact that the Tunguska bolide did not cause a distinctly clear crater (although a fragment of it might have caused one).

    This is all neither here nor there. No one – including Firestone – is now proposing that the Carolina bays were part of the YD impact. Too much evidence argues against it. We are not arguing Firestone 2007 here, but the YD impact and what is the current state of research.

    The Barringer Crater . . .

    Barringer has nothing to do with the YD impact hypothesis. Barringer was a meteor. The YD has always been looked at as a cometary impact or air burst. The geologists need to understand that an impact or airburst by a comet will not have the same features/markers as a meteor impact. They can use Barringer only as a bare starting point – but must recognize that there will be surprises, and to not try to fit Tunguska or the YD into the meteor mold. Tunguska for years was a puzzle exactly for this reason – which is why your saying Tunguska was a carbonaceous chondrite is so amazingly ill-informed. That was ruled out DECADES ago.

    The Carolina Bays are semi circular depressions…

    Again, you are beating a dead horse. Plus they aren’t semi-circular in the first place. They are ellipsoidal. From Webster’s: ” Semicircular – 1.) a half circle, 2.) anything in the form of a half circle.”

    The robot from Lost in Space would say, “That does not compute.”

    You are so wrong on so many fronts. Your outdated and sloppy sources have all been refuted several times over.

    Summing up, it is not ONE feature that argues for the YD onset as being an impact. It is the collection of ET markers. (And it is not the Carolina bays.) Yes, one of them may in some cases have some other possible causes. But put them all together and it becomes more and more persuasive. That is, unless you have the negative form of Confirmation Bias. (That is a term known well here. If you don’t know it, look it up.) You presented one side of the case and conveniently ignored ALL contradictory papers. Tsk tsk. Readers here have dealt with that kind of distortion for a long time and won’t fall for it.

  129. Caleb says:
    March 13, 2012 at 6:17 am
    I’ve only worked halfway through the comments, but most comments fail to discuss the idea the idea that mammoths needed to be flash frozen at 150 below to avoid having the stuff in their guts rot.

    […]

    There is absolutely no evidence of “flash frozen” mammoths anywhere on Earth.

    “Baby Lyuba” was even better preserved than the famous “Baby Dima” and she was not “perfectly preserved”…

    The animal’s trunk and eyes are still intact and some of its fur remains on the body.

    […]

    “The mammoth has no defects except that its tail was bit off,” said Alexei Tikhonov, deputy director of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences and a member of the delegation.

    “In terms of its state of preservation, this is the world’s most valuable discovery,” he said.

    […]

    LINK

    Lyuba is the first and only mammoth carcass to have “well preserved” internal organs…

    “We could see for the first time how internal organs are located inside a mammoth. It is pretty important from a scientific point of view,” said Alexei Tikhonov, deputy director of the Russian Academy of Science’s Zoological Institute, who has been leading the project.

    “Her internal organs were well preserved — the heart was seen distinctly with all its ventricles and atria, as well as the liver and its veins,” Tikhonov told Reuters.

    “This is the best preserved specimen not only of the mammoth but of any prehistoric animal.”

    The mammoth species has been extinct since the Ice Age. Tests on Lyuba showed she was fed on milk and was three to four months old when she died 37,000 years ago in what is now the Yamalo-Nenetsk region in Russia’s Arctic.

    Scientists were excited by the find because, although her shaggy coat was gone, her skin was intact, protecting her internal organs from contamination by modern-day microbes.

    Tikhonov said the computer tomography, which provided a sharp three-dimensional image of Lyuba’s insides, revealed no injuries or fractures.

    The scans showed her airways and digestive system were clogged with what scientists believe was silt, leading them to conclude that she must have drowned.

    LINK

    The fact that “airways and digestive system were clogged with” silt is a pretty clear indication that she drowned in a flash flood, sank in a bog or was killed by a mudslide. Parts of mammoths, including a few nearly intact mummified carcasses, with some well-preserved soft tissue and fur, have been found frozen in permafrost (not in ice). These carcasses have been found primarily deposits of silt & mud. All of the other mammoth carcasses show some signs of slow decay with poor preservation of internal organs. Even the previously best-preserved specimen (baby “Dima”) showed some signs of decay. Carcasses buried in mud in near-freezing conditions tend to be preserved fairly well.

    Most animals die with food in their digestive systems and many die with food in their mouths. Most of the mammoths were found in the sort of alluvial deposits associated with flash floods, mudslides and bogs. Now, flash floods are catastrophic – But they are localized phenomena. They happen all the time. Animals don’t often finnish chewing their food, much less digesting it, before being entombed in mud downstream.

    Animals tend to congregate near sources of water – Like rivers & streams. During the Pleistocene glacial stages, Siberia and much of the non-glaciated northern latitudes had an arid, steppe/savannah climate. Roughly every 1500 years, the climate would warm significantly (glacial interstadials, Dansgaard-Oeschger Events) and there was extensive melting of the Laurentide and Cordilleran ice sheets. This led to lots of flash floods. Occasionally, massive lakes formed (Missoula, Agassiz, etc.). These lakes were impounded by giant dams of rock, sediment and ice. When these dams failed, floods of biblical proportion occurred; creating landforms like the Channeled Scablands. But these events occurred episodically on a regional scale, not synchronously on a global scale.

    Baby Lyuba probably died toward the end of the the 38.5-36 KYA interstadial.

  130. Greylensman says:
    March 13, 2012 at 3:57 am
    David Middleton, nice post but a rather lengthy “Strawman” argument. The theory does not solely rest upon the Carolina Bays being an impact site. As far as I am aware, the layers of sediments in that area have been analyzed and a layer found that is contemporary with the Younger Dryas event. A very different observation.

    As far as I can determine, there was no major single impact site unless one takes the site to be in an area that was covered with deep ice at the time.

    The fact that the event occurred and that a very large body of evidence exists, well distributed geographically, that indicates that it was a physical catastrophic event, really calls for much better investigation.

    Fair point… I did harp on about the Carolina Bays a bit too much. There’s something about “scientific” assertions that ignore obvious geology that get me going.

    The fact remains; there is no geochemical evidence of a major bolide at the onset of the Younger Dryas or any other Pleistocene glacial stadials.

    Nanodiamonds and carbonaceous spherules in absence of elevated PGE and other geochemical signatures are not diagnostic of impact events… Particularly when the carbonaceous spherules are identical to fungal spores.

    Climatologically, the Younger Dryas is non-unique. It is the last Pleistocene glacial stadial in a sequence of glacial stadials that occurred with almost clockwork regularity in the Pleistocene. If there’s an “anomaly,” it’s the Bølling-Allerød interstadial. Temperatures in Central Greenland during the Bølling-Allerød interstadial may have been nearly as warm as the Little Ice Age.

  131. @beng 5:04 am:
    “The NA Drift is an extension of the GS, caused by the sinking water of the Barents Sea “drawing” water northward from the GS. ”

    This is another of the impossible aspects of the entire THC hypothesis.

    “Drawing” means suction. Anyone who has ever worked with HVAC knows that if you are open on all sides, there is no suction at the entry end of your system. It all depends on static pressure at each point. Each bleed-in (opening) lowers the suction (negative pressure) available to draw from the upstream ductwork. The more openings, the quicker the negative pressure drops to zero. And once it drops to zero, that’s it, folks! There is no more suction.

    And what do we have in the North Atlantic? Do we have any closed ductwork? No. We have a column of sinking water that can “draw” in water from all 360° around it. The incoming water, therefore, is as likely to come from the north as from the south – and WILL. The suction will be next to none 100 mile away. (Maybe even 10 miles away.) That 360° open system means suction at the sinking is basically taking in water from all directions. It does take in water from the GS, but that is because the Earth’s rotation has PUSHED it to that area. If there is no other water there, it is because the GS had pushed that water out of the way.

    Now, what do we have when we talk of sinking water? What is the motive force? Convection – caused by gravity (a really weak force). THAT force is the only force working when water sinks – but even that force is only the difference between the fresh water and the saline water. The saline water doesn’t just move out of the way on its own – it offers resistance. So we have a resultant gravitational convective force that is supposed to “draw” water north all the way from the Florida coast 4,000 miles away. That force is far too small to “draw” that much water – probably too small by a factor of a billion.

    As an engineer, I know no way that system can work in the real world. It loos pretty on a ma, but when you look at what is being said, it simply can’t work.

    The motive force for the GS is – as Carl Wunsch said – winds and the rotation of the Earth (causing the NA Gyre via the Coriolis effect). The sinking is not the DRIVER of the system – it is the drain, the tail end of a petered out flow. People who sign on to the THC as a driver or “drawer” of water 4,000 miles away just have no idea that the concept has no possibility of being true.

  132. feet2thefire
    ===========
    I ran down some information on Baron Eduard von Toll, very amazing career. His Polar Expedition of 1900-1903 took him into the Ostrov Bennetta Island area of the East Siberian Sea.

    The Islands I was referring to (mined for Mammoth tusks) are in the Kara Sea surrounding Ostrov Pushkareva Island and possibly include Perkatkun Island. These are near to shore, include fresh water from a near by river, and are much closer to the Bering Strait.

    However, any chance you have run across a English translation of Toll’s 1900-1903 diaries? Especially the diary recovered from Ostrov Bennetta Island.

    PS for Anthony
    Baron Eduard von Toll’s Last Expedition: The Russian Polar Expedition, 1900-1903
    WILLIAM BARR’

    http://pubs.aina.ucalgary.ca/arctic/Arctic34-3-201.pdf

    INTRODUCTION
    “The opening years of this century witnessed an international flurry of activity in the area of arctic exploration; many of the expeditions involved are among the best known in the history of the Arctic. They include, to name only a few: Roald Amundsen’s successful voyage through the Northwest Passage in Gjoa between 1903 and 1907 (Amundsen, 1908);…”

  133. @E. J. Mohr 8:23 pm:

    A good summary of Heinrich events and Dansgaard-Oeschger events.

    Did the Y-D kill off the mammoths and other megafauna. We don’t know, but consider that megafauna survived all previous Ice Ages and the only new factor that appeared on the scene were human hunters. The arrival of humans also coincided with megafauna extinctions in Australia, New Zealand and Europe.

    Correlation does not equal causation. That is a gospel on this climate skeptic site, I can assure you.

    It is erroneous to state that “the only new factor was humans,” because the mammoths in Asia went extinct at the same time as the ones in the Americas. Humans were certainly not new to Asia. Another problem in Asia is that the megafauna (which on the New Siberian Islands included not only mammoths but horses, rhinoceroses – yes rhinos – and buffalo) were so far north. HILLS of bones and trees were found there and mined in the 19th and 20th centuries for the ivory. Offshore of those islands were also found megafauna bones. Were humans at 12.9 kya traveling all the way up there with spears and cornering mammoths and rhinos – and then piling them up? And why did the retreating megafauna not circle back to where there was more food? Siberia is damned wide, and it would be easy to circle back south. Obviously that didn’t happen. But there they all are/were. All our speculations end in big question marks. One can’t say Clovis man was new and therefore he killed them all – because he didn’t kill the ones in Asia. Not one Clovis point has been found in Asia. Clovis man was not there. Is it just a coincidence that all the megafauna in Asia happened to die out at the same time as the ones in N.A.? If Clovis man didn’t kill the Asian ones, what did? And if Clovis man didn’t kill the ones in Asia, who can say that Clovis man did it in America? It is much more likely that some other COMMON factor killed them. Clovis man is not a common factor. What is?

    Climate? Not likely, when mammoths ranged from Siberia to Mexico, with all the climate zones in between.

    If it wasn’t climate and wasn’t Clovis man, what is left? A comet impact/airburst is certainly worth looking into. And with the evidence seeming to support that concept, why not use that as our current understanding – and try to prove it wrong. And try to do that without Dave Middleton’s Confirmation Bias, please…

    So far the evidence is making a comet more likely rather than less likely.

  134. feet2thefire says:
    March 13, 2012 at 9:27 am
    @David Middleton 2:50 am:

    Re Firestone, one by one…

    Not defending Firestone 2007, because Firestone 2007 isn’t the last word.

    […]

    Actually most of what Melott finds supports there being a Tunguska-type air burst – even if he says it is so big he can’t fathom it. But isn’t that the point? Tunguska’s forest fire had effects (ammonia and N2 products) was like the YD only about a million times smaller than the YD ammonia and N2 spikes. Thank you for this info. Mellot is behind a paywall, so I can’t go into it like I would like to.

    […]

    Melott – Full text

    In modeling Tunguska and YD, Melott et al, assumed “half cometary ice and half rock for both events, but this matters little for atmospheric ionization.”

    If a major bolide impact is involved, existing ice cores should show a large nitrate signal at the onset of the YD. Such an impact could not take place without the production of large amounts of nitrate. The GRIP and GISP2 data show only a modest enhancement.

    […]

    Our estimates suggest that there should be greater deposition of nitrate than so far observed from an atmospheric ionization process if the YD event were a cometary airburst of the requisite size.

    […]

    As Carlson wrote in the same issue of Geology,

    The Melott et al. study thus lays out a test for the occurrence of a Younger Dryas bolide impact, constrained by observations of the recent Tunguska impact. Their estimates, however, for the increases in nitrate and ammonium associated with a Younger Dryas–size comet are orders of magnitude larger than observed in the Summit Greenland ice core records; the Younger Dryas nitrate and ammonium increases are at most just half of the Tunguska increase. Likewise, the anomalies noted at the start of the Younger Dryas appear to be non-unique in the highest-resolution records (Figs. 1A and 1B). This may be due to the ice core sample resolution. The GISP2 ~3.5 yr sample resolution could potentially under-sample a nitrate or ammonium increase (Mayewski et al., 1997) because both compounds have atmospheric residence times of a few years. As Melott et al. note, higher-resolution sampling from the Greenland ice cores could determine if large (i.e., orders of magnitude larger than the Tunguska event) increases in nitrate and ammonium occurred at the start of the Younger Dryas.

    The nitrate and ammonium anomalies in the GISP2 ice core at the onset of the YD do not support an impact event any larger than Tunguska.

  135. John from CA 7:47 am:

    I don’t have copies, but look these up on Google Scholar:

    1. D. Gath Whitley, “The Ivory Islands in the Arctic Ocean,” Journal of the Philosophical Society of Great Britain, XII (1910)

    2. J.D. Dana, Manual of Geology (4th ed.; 1894), pg 1007

    3. F. Wrangel, Narrative of an Expedition to Siberia and the Polar Sea (1841) [wording may not be quite correct – see following…]

    (Wikipedia) An account of the physical observations during his first journey was published in German (Berlin, 1827), and also in German extracts from Wrangel’s journals, Reise laengs der Nordküste von Sibirien und auf dem Eismeere in den Jahren 1820-1824 (2 vols., Berlin, 1839), which was translated into English as Wrangell’s Expedition to the Polar Sea (2 vols., London, 1840). The complete report of the expedition appeared as “Otceschewie do Sjewernym beregam Sibiri, po Ledowitomm More” (2 vols., St. Petersburg, 1841), and was translated into French with notes by Prince Galitzin, under the title Voyage sur les côtes septentrionales de la Sibérie et de la mer glaciale (2 vols., 1841). From the French version of the complete report an English one was made under the title A Journey on the Northern Coast of Siberia and the Icy Sea (2 vols., London, 1841).

    This is the Wrangel for whom the island in the E Arctic Ocean is named, the one with the mini mammoths.

    Have fun with that one!

    4. G. A. Erman, Travels in Siberia (1848) [that is all I have]

    Have fun finding them John!

    For explorations, the older the source the better.

    Steve Garcia

  136. Mr. Cox, it was 10 years from when the KT impactite layer was discovered until the first of the KT impact craters was discovered.

    This impacttite layer in and of itself confirms the accuracy of Aremindian Oral traditions.
    The locations of the survival of the different peoples is confirmed by the archaeological record.

    The Ilturalde crater and the Lloydminster structure await geological dating.

  137. ASSINIBOINE (NAKOTA) IMPACT ACCOUNTS

    I spent some time reading through Adrienne Mayor’s book “Fossil
    Legends of the First Americans” recently. It turns out that the
    Assiniboine (Nakota) may have remembered at least one of those floods.
    Mayor’s book is pretty good, and she nearly succeeds in spanning the
    two worlds, but sadly she did not realize that the peoples remembered
    impacts, and thus failed to entirely grasp fundamental concepts like
    “uktena” and “tlanwa”. Mayor also retells the traditions with her
    intense interest in fossils coloring her retellings, and it is tough
    using her book to locate the original traditions as they were first
    shared. However, that said, it is a pretty good book.

    THE NAKOTA (ASSINIBOINE) ACCOUNTS IN MAYOR’S RETELLING

    Fragment 1:

    “One Assiniboine name for bones of monstrous size was “Wau-wau-kah”.
    This was a “half spirit, half animal” imagined as a great river monster
    with long black[?]hair, scales, and horns like trees.
    “Myth [tradition – epg] tells of its death by the impact of a
    “thunder stone”, a black [“black” due to the ablated surfaces of the
    meteorites which the Nakota later collected. – epg], projectile that
    came whistling out of the west with “terrible velocity”, “defeaning
    noise”, and “a bright flash” – a scenario that seems akin to the modern
    theory of an asteroid impact 65 million years ago [Mayor gets very
    close here – epg]. “My bones may be found”, warned the Water Monster
    Wau-wau-kah, but unless the Assiniboines made offerings to its spirit,
    the monster vowed to create disastrous floods and block their trails
    with its colossal bones.”

    Fragment 2:

    “A tale [tradition – epg] of the antagonism between Thunder and Water
    Monsters was recounted by an Assiniboine story teller [tradition keeper
    – epg] (perhaps Coming Day? – AM) in 1909 at Fort Belknap.
    “Long ago, some Sioux and Assiniboines camping at a big lake
    witnessed a battle between Thunder Bird and a Water Monster on an
    island in the lake.”

    The storyteller’s grandmother had told him that: “as the Thunder Bird
    drew the writhing monster up from the island, the Indians’ hair and
    their horses manes, [a non-temporal insertion – epg] stood on end from
    the electricity.

    [“electricity” is another non-temporal insertion. Perhaps it may also
    be a modern simple telling of a large electrophorenic effect from the
    impactors entries. In regards to the “horses manes”, it needs to be
    noted that a rider on a horse in the plains is a high point that will
    attract lightening, much as a golfer standing on a gold course will,
    and thus it was very important to know the signs of an impending
    lightening strike.]

    “The Thunder Bird’s lightening ignited raging forest fires; then a
    long terrible blizzard followed; and still later the lake bed dried up
    and many kinds of animals perished there.”

    “The raging forest fires” were likely caused by the infrared of
    multiple impacts. “the long terrible blizzard” describes the a standard
    severe climate collapse caused by atmospheric impact dust loading.
    “the Lake” of the Assiniboine is as yet unlocated; but see below.

    Why did that lake dry up? Either its ice damn failed (“disastrous
    floods”, above), or there was a lack of precipitation due to a cooling
    of the temperature of the Pacific Current.

    “The many kinds of animals” likely perished due to lack of food, a
    famine which appears as a common element in many of the First Peoples’
    memories of the Holocene Start Impacts.

    WHERE WAS THE LAKE? and
    WHO WERE THE ASSINIBOINES’ ANCESTORS?

    Here was the problem:
    http://uonews.uoregon.edu/archive/news- … -seafaring

    “The points and crescents are similar to artifacts found in the Great Basin and Columbia Plateau areas, including pre-Clovis levels at Paisley Caves in eastern Oregon.”

    You have maritime cultures moving inland, essentially still living on clams, fish, and marsh birds. The dates are pre-clovis.

    (And thus before the Holocene Start Impacts, which are well evidenced by a global distribution of impact products, including impact products distributed by the atmosphere and recovered from glaciers. (currently estimated ca. 10,750 BCE)

    Now here’s the Great Basin:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Basin

    And here’s the Columbia Plateau:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Columbia_Plateau

    And here’s Paisley Caves, near one dried up ice age lake:

    http://www.donsmaps.com/coproliteevidence.html

    Notice the mt A haplogroup (siouxian) and the mt B haplogroup (asian origin, Assiniboine Nakota)? found there:
    http://archaeology.about.com/b/2008/04/ … an-dna.htm

    Now all I need is a map of all of the western glacial lakes of the late pleistocene, with which I could then compare the distribution of artifacts, if I could get hold of it. But I do not play a geologist on television, nor am I one in real life.

    As you can see, if B mt DNA survives among the Nakota, NAGPRA issues immediately come into play.

  138. feet2thefire says:
    March 13, 2012 at 10:56 am
    ================
    Thanks!!!

    I noticed that Perkatkun Island is also referred to as Wrangel Island and a pygmy species of Mammoth managed to survive until until 4,000 BC. I see why you’re saying have fun with that one and you could very well be correct.

    The interesting question is, how did they get there (probable answer, the last ice age) and how did they survive Arctic winters until 4,000 BC if some extraterrestrial impact occurred.

    Fascinating mysteries, thanks again for the links!!!

  139. feet2thefire says:
    March 13, 2012 at 11:06 am
    @David Middleton10:38 am:

    You pick out ONE and ignore the rest?

    Steve Garcia

    What “rest” am I ignoring?

    Paquay et al. did not find elevated PGE at the YD onset.

    Scott et al. demonstrated that the carbonaceous spherules “have morphologies and internal structures identical to fungal sclerotia (such as Sclerotium and Cenococcum).”

    Melott et al., found YD onset nitrate deposition equivalent to a Tunguska-sized bolide.

    Carlson noted the non-uniqueness of the YD onset nitrate deposition relative to the prior stadial.

    There may very well have been a significant bolide at the YD onset. The paper that is the subject of this post may very well present evidence of such a bolide in central Mexico at the YD onset. We’ll see if it proves to be repeatable (unlike Firestone et al.).

    There just isn’t any evidence of a sufficiently powerful bolide or series of bolides that could have caused the YD stadial. Could such bolides have played a role in the megafaunal extinction? Or the demise of the Clovis culture? Sure. “An absence of evidence is not an evidence of absence.” It’s just an absence of evidence.

  140. Younger Dryas – a super interesting period…..but, today, still much speculation…..
    (1) one of the sick aspects of it all is, that, let me call them : “ocean flowlers”, succeeded,
    after Dalton and Broecker in the 80’th, to grab the glacial paleotime as an ocean flowler turf
    and even succeeded to name glacial temp spikes, which have nothing to do ocean flow,
    according to their fellow breed (“Dansgaard” & “Oeschger” events…..).
    These regular temp spikes are ASTRONOMICAL cycles– obviously clear — see the exact
    calculation method for cycle periods and amplitudes given in “ISBN 978-3-86805-604-4″
    on the German Amazon.de. These “events” should therefore be renamed to get the
    astronomical cause clear….
    (2) Today, we are as well in the midst of an astronomical cycle, because these do not
    go away, they permanently stay with us and therefore can be clearly detected today….
    The present cycle in force caused global warming to the year 2000, folloowed
    thereafter by the present temp plateau as the top spike
    from which temps will only go downward after 2060…..
    The CYCLE MECHANISM, parameters used and calculation procedures are
    all identical for paleotimes as today……whereas CO2-AGW-Warmism only refers
    to a minuscule time span of 250 years (1750-2010) …..
    (3) To the Younger Dryas: Here, clearly: the astronomic cyclic curves deviates
    substantially from field observations….BECAUSE THEY MUST: The dents, hits,
    alterations of the harmonic cycle curve shape are clearly a product of other
    astronomic events such as ET comet impacts…. just by checking the glacial time
    temp distribution curve, one can clearly detect a variety of cosmic impacts in varying
    impact strengths….
    The Clovis impact one of the strongest, there are some more of the same strength
    visible in longer glacial graphs…..
    (4) The noticed “Flash cooling” which set in after the impact, has nothing to do
    with 4.1: “ocean flowlerdom” and
    4.2 “sulfur” in the comet (as in a recent comet IMPACT movie, where
    here, not the Flowlers, but the Warmists told the movie-maker that
    sulfur in the atmosphere brings about glacial cooling (see the
    IMPACT movie yourself and the scare whether there were sulfur on
    it (But not: My god, are we lucky….)
    Both variants demonstrate nothing less than present Sickness in Science.
    ——– The truth is different: The flash cooling is again an astronomical
    phenomenon: In order that a heavily impacted planet from a sideward hitting
    comet does get catapulted out of its orbit, the elliptic orbit shape has to
    compensate the impact and the orbit moves within second in its flexible part
    (ends of MINOR axis) a substantial distance further from the SUN, thus
    producing a flash fall in temps while those poor mammoths did not even
    have time to finish their meal and as excavations showed, still had the
    flowers hanging out of their mouth….
    JS

  141. <Ed Grondine said:

    "This impacttite layer in and of itself confirms the accuracy of Aremindian Oral traditions."

    No, it doesn’t. It also doesn’t confirm the ancient biblical accounts of Sodom and Gomorrah, and the other ‘cities of the plain’. being destroyed by a fiery rain of stones.

    We are talking about honest to Phd, peer reviewed science here. Not your own subjective opinion of a story you heard from chief ‘Farts-in-his-tent’. You claim to be a without peers. But this is the 21st century after all. And there are many highly educated American Indians nowadays who are Phd level archeologists, who take their tribal histories very seriously, and are more than up to the task of doing so. Why don’t we hear any of them claiming that those stories pertain to impact events more than 13,000 YA?

    If you are going to cite those oral traditions, you should also be prepared to quote them verbatim, and cite your peer reviewed sources.

    And since you posses no academic credentials whatsoever, I’m afraid your own self published book isn’t going to measure up in that instance.

    P.S. It would also help if you checked your spelling before hitting the ‘Post Comment’ button.

  142. Dennis and Ed –

    You two behave yourselves here. You each think the other is an idiot, but take your fight elsewhere if you are going to have one. We don’t need you bitching at each other on two sites.

    Steve Garcia

  143. “We are talking about honest to Phd, peer reviewed science here.”

    Yes, Dennis, and I am simply pointing out that those results match with both the different nations memories and with the hard data of archaeology.
    .

  144. Hi David –

    What we’re talking about here is a large cometary impact, not an asteroid impact nor a carbonaceous asteroid impact, nor a simple bollide.

    The global impactite layer is proven, a global dust layer large enough to cause a climate collapse for several years, which explains the megafauana extinction and the culture changes (by the survivors)..

    Impact also neatly explains the peak in mammoth deaths ca. 10,900 BCE (op.cit.)

    Hi JH –
    Sorry, but your hypothesis as to Earth movement does not survive physics, such as we know it.
    The same thing goes for the “Electric Universe) model.

  145. beng says:
    March 12, 2012 at 7:10 am


    The climate change that would occur after this event would also be hard to imagine, but yet perhaps we have the evidence right in front — the YD.

    Hard to imagine, but easy to model :-)

  146. Joachim Seifert says:
    March 13, 2012 at 11:52 am
    Younger Dryas – a super interesting period…..but, today, still much speculation…..
    ===========
    I completely agree Joachim, still much speculation.

    For instance, if an extraterrestrial impact of sufficient size for “earth’s orbit to move within a second in its flexible part (ends of MINOR axis) a substantial distance further from the SUN, thus producing a flash fall in temps while those poor mammoths did not even have time to finish their meal” would have other impacts.

    If this occurred, sea level, as a result of the cooling, would drop and instead the rise appears to have accelerated during this period.

    Sea level rise: “jumpy” after last ice age

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/01/sea-level-rise-jumpy-after-last-ice-age/

    Their analyses indicate that the gradual rise at an average rate of 1 metre per century was interrupted by two periods with rates of rise up to 2.5 metres per century, between 15 and 13 thousand years ago, and between 11 and 9 thousand years ago.

    The first of these jumps in the amount of ice-sheet meltwater entering the world ocean coincides with the beginning of a period of global climate warming called the Bølling-Allerød period. The second jump appears to have happened shortly after the end the ‘big freeze’ called the Younger Dryas that brought the Bølling-Allerød period to an abrupt end.

    • To John from Cal.:
      Good thought to relate the Hiatus temp drop to sea level studies……
      The planet got struck and the flexible self-aligning process of the orbit took
      about 1,000 years…. if you have the temp values in a good graph you see
      an interesting spike upward halfway…..for the rotation mechanism could not
      make it up the full height into the Holocene, took a rotation pause, went a bit,
      backward, adjusted the orbital geometrics and then moved up the 2 piece toward
      10,000 BP…..
      To the ocean level: The studies need 100-300 year level accuracy to see
      how levels follow GMT,
      I hate smallish graphs with 1000 years on half an inch graph length…….
      Worst of all are astronomic/climate graphs…..Milankovitch, Milankovitch
      …..but which temp spike is caused by Milankovitch? They always
      present the smallest temp graphs in literature NEVER indicating in which
      of all millenia Milankovitch’s THREE cycles can be detected/followed….
      Cheers into the CA cold
      JS

  147. Ed Grondine said:

    “Yes, Dennis, and I am simply pointing out that those results match with both the different nations memories and with the hard data of archaeology.”

    Do they? I don’t believe that for even a minute.

    What are your sources? Since you’re a white guy who didn’t grow up on a reservation, who posses no academic credentials whatsoever, and since you can provide no independent reference that recounts those "different nations memories" verbatim for us. Or even a single page of refereed text to support your subjective interpretation of those "memories". And since you don’t even introduce us to the person, or person, who passed those stories on to you, there is no way to confirm, or deny, that the "different nations memories" you speak of are anything more than a figment of your own fertile imagination.

    Please be so kind as to back up your claims that oral traditions contain accurate verifiable memories 13,000 years old  with valid references to peer reviewed literature.

  148. Joachim Seifert says:
    March 13, 2012 at 11:52 am
    Younger Dryas – a super interesting period…..but, today, still much speculation…..
    =======
    Sorry Seifert, I stated that incorrectly. if you click the link and look at the chart you’ll find that at best sea level slightly rose during the Younger Dryas but didn’t fall as one would expect from a deep freeze event. The 2.5 metres per century jump occurred at the end of the Younger Dryas.

    Is it possible the Mammoth were Freeze Dried due to an extreme pressure drop instead of Flash Frozen?

  149. John from CA-

    Thanks for the papers, they were an interesting read! I’ve been looking at oxygen 18 records and it has been informative to say the least. I’ve enjoyed reading everybodies comments as they are all fascinating speculations. Personally, I think that the problem is that while there is certainly some evidence an impact could have occurred, there is not as much evidence to suggest it induced the YD. There is still, I think, a lot to be understood about the THC, the so called N Atlantic Gyre and how all these affect our climate. Again, I’m not an expert at all I’m just guessing really. I know that lake agassiz has been ruled out of the picture, as have other lakes that could input fresh water. I do have a few questions though. Why is the YD so unique? Is it because of the black mats found, its abruptness and the extinctions that coincide? I’m also still curious about the paleoindians, whether they migrated or became extinct. I realise a large amount megafauna became extinct but what about smaller species? Some became extinct at 14,000 years (I have to confess I can’t remember which article this was in, I’ll try to find it!) Do you think some could have survived an impact and died out later because of the changing climate and their inability to adapt perhaps? Finally, i know evidence of cosmic material was found in Belgium, is anywhere else? Other than the Clovis sites in N. America?

  150. @John from CA2:02 pm:
    “Is it possible the Mammoth were Freeze Dried due to an extreme pressure drop instead of Flash Frozen?”
    Others here argue that flash freezing was not necessary. Perhaps. James|D. Dana, the American equivalent of Darwin and who wrote the Textbook of Mineralogy, the standard college textbook for over a century, said this in his Manual of Geology (1894) “The encasing in ice of huge elephants, and the perfect preservation of the flesh, shows that the cold finally became suddenly extreme, as of a single winter’s night, and knew no relenting afterward.” [emphasis in the original]

    That we can’t figure it out is not surprising. Darwin said that for him the extinction of the mammoths in Siberia was an insoluble problem. (Letter to Sir Henry Howorth, date unknown)

    So, people have been speculating on it for about 200 years now, with no solution in sight – unless the YD impact event solves it. Which I honestly think it won’t quite do. It still will not explain what the mammoths were doing up there, John, just like you are puzzling on. And the buttercups that were reported in the Berezovka mammoth’s mouth or stomach – they weren’t shipped air freight.

    Steve Garcia

  151. The astronomers’ discussion of the Taurid Complex progenitor has some (Fred Whipple) theorizing a body 50 – 100km across that fragmented a couple tens of thousands of years ago and remained in the inner solar system in an earth-crossing orbit. This significant mass. It is not a single comet or bolide. It is a barrage. Two recent examples are Comet Linear and Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann. Links to Hubble images follow. Cheers –

    http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2000/27/image/

    http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2006/18/image/

  152. E.P. Grondine says:
    March 13, 2012 at 1:28 pm
    Hi David –

    What we’re talking about here is a large cometary impact, not an asteroid impact nor a carbonaceous asteroid impact, nor a simple bollide.

    If it was an impact, cometary or otherwise, it would have left a big crater and an obvious and global PGE anomaly.

    A bolide of sufficient magnitude to cause the Younger Dryas might not have left a crater; but it would have produced a much larger nitrate anomaly than indicated in the GISP2 ice cores and it should also have left behind an obvious and global PGE anomaly.

    E.P. Grondine says: The global impactite layer is proven, a global dust layer large enough to cause a climate collapse for several years, which explains the megafauana extinction and the culture changes (by the survivors)..

    There is no “global impactite layer.” And there’s no evidence of a climatic collapse in the Younger Dryas glacial stadial. It was climatologically indistinct from numerous previous glacial stadials.

    E.P. Grondine says: Impact also neatly explains the peak in mammoth deaths ca. 10,900 BCE (op.cit.)

    What “peak in mammoth deaths”? Well-preserved mammoth carcasses fall into two groups. The largest group dates between 45 to 30 kya and a smaller group dates from 14-11 kya. 10,900 BCE and the Younger Dryas fall into the second, smaller, grouping.

  153. I think some are jumping to an unwarranted conclusion when they assert that the mammoths must have been flash frozen. They only needed to be quickly cooled to about 40 deg F or below (refrigerator temperature) then they could have been slowly frozen over hours or days. One core body temperatures chill to near refrigerator temperatures, decomposition slows dramatically to near zero. There is plenty of time for a sudden cold snap or strong cold winds to then freeze the animal in place. If this happens at a time of major climatic change where that location becomes a year around snow field the animal could gradually sink to the bottom of the snow, then over time sink into the underlying muck as the ground undergoes brief partial thawing during the summer melt.

    Possible explanations would include, an animal browsing in a wind blown clear area right next to a large snow drift and having the snow drift suddenly slump (small avalanche) instantly burying the animal in soft snow, then the rapidly chilled animal slowly freezing over the next few days as another storm moves in. Wet snow avalanches set like concrete when the snow stops moving, the animal would suffocate in a matter of minutes then freeze.

    Similar, to the above the animal browsing near a frozen over melt water pond and breaking through the ice into several feet of ice cold water and muck, to be slowly frozen and buried as the winter progressed.

    A browsing animal moving from wind blown clear areas across a deep snow drift with a strong frozen snow crust breaks through the crust and sinks into very deep snow and is instantly buried when his trashing motions cause the snow to collapse in on him.

    For similar examples look no further than spring cross country skiers who venture onto unstable slope after a wind storm and trigger a small avalanche to be buried and not found until the spring thaw weeks or months later.

    An animal does not need to be buried deeply to be killed by a snow slump. A boy I went to high school with was killed in a small avalanche my junior year, he was knocked down by a small avalanche and buried face down under only 6 inches of snow.

    A small child was killed in a small avalanche in his own driveway here in Colorado years ago, while playing when a large pile of snow slumped and buried him.

    Lets not look for circumstances that defy logic when very mundane possibilities could easily explain the situation.

    Larry

  154. Alexandra Cairns says:
    March 13, 2012 at 2:13 pm
    ==========
    You’re welcome Alexandra, glad I could be of some help.

    If you run a few searches on WUWT related to specific topics you’ll find a treasure trove of information and references.

    I tend to agree, though extraterrestrial impact likely occurred 65 million years ago, see Luis Walter Alvarez 1980 work on the end of the dinosaurs, its difficult to find a smoking gun for the Younger Dryas.

    The theory I find most logical for the end of the last ice age is a combination of interrelated events. Milankovitch cycles, the reopening of the Bering Strait (fresh water input to the Arctic circulation and the Atlantic), Natural cycles, and the related changes to the Atlantic currents.

    Cyclic Climate Changes and Fish Productivity by L. B. Klyashtorin and A, A, Lyubushin (one of the most logical and pragmatic looks at natural cycles I’ve found so far)

    Influence of Bering Strait flow and North Atlantic circulation on glacial sea-level changes by Aixue Hu, Gerald A. Meehl, Bette L. Otto-Bliesner, ClaireWaelbroeck,Weiqing Han, Marie-France Loutre, Kurt Lambeck, Jerry X. Mitrovica and Nan Rosenbloom

    “The opening of the Bering Strait may also have wider implications on climate. For example, a recent study23 suggests that abrupt climate change events evident in the Greenland ice core
    record between 70 and 11 kyr bp (ref. 30) may be related to the closing of the Bering Strait. Although the Bering Strait itself may not directly control the surface climate change, the effect of the strait on the transport of the fresh Pacific water into the Arctic and North Atlantic does influence the MOC strength, and consequently can modulate Earth’s climate. Therefore, climate changes and the Bering Strait may well have been intimately linked throughout the Late Pleistocene ice age.”

    Meteor impacts are common, we get meteor showers every year. Big ones causing Shock metamorphism are not common and leave a signature on impact and a record. A “nanodiamond-rich layer is consistent with the Younger Dryas boundary layer found at numerous sites across North America, Greenland, and Western Europe” is evidence that something occurred but isn’t evidence it caused the Younger Dryas.

    The reason, in my opinion, the Younger Dryas is so interesting is because its an abrupt change in direction during the rapid deglaciation at the end of last Ice Age. Why it occurred is still unknown but likely to be a combination of events and not a single cause.

  155. feet2thefire says:
    March 13, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    And the buttercups that were reported in the Berezovka mammoth’s mouth or stomach – they weren’t shipped air freight.
    ==========
    LMAO — great sense of humor!

    It was a very different climate up there due to the Ice Age which is part of the mystery. One can only speculate given the anti-cyclone off Greenland, the snow blower system off the west coast of North America, a highly saline Arctic Ocean due to the lack of Pacific input, Siberia with very dry conditions, Mammoths running around with buttercups hanging out of their mouths, etc.

  156. @Alexandra Cairns 2:13 pm:
    “Personally, I think that the problem is that while there is certainly some evidence an impact could have occurred, there is not as much evidence to suggest it induced the YD.”

    A valid question. The black mat is the key element at this time. If 10 cm of black mat exists in Holland, Belgium, Mexico and Arizona – and other places – and all the black mats are dated the same, what does that tell us? A common cause? If not, someone has to explain why not. Black mats do not just grow on trees – burning or otherwise.

    But so what? There is a black mat. What does it mean? A conflagration? There really seems to be little doubt about that, though some do argue against that. It is the makeup of the black mat, then that tells us something. Certainly stuff burned, but by some of the Holiday/Daulton crowd argue that too, that it is some form of rotted material, but I can’t recall their exact term. There are plenty of markers showing burning went on, including, as I recall the newly discovered graphene. Now what kind of burning happens that stretches from Mexico to Belgium? None that we know of.

    We should take this to mean we are out of the box already. A fire that stretches across the Atlantic sounds as incredible as the legnedary country that gave that ocean its name. But the evidence is there, plain to see. One thing I’d like to see is a comparison of the black mat across the different sites. That is something you could do, Alexandr, for your next class project.

    If the black mats are considerably different it will complicated things, won’t it? Let’s go for the uncomplicated, though, and assume for the moment that they are all essentially the same. Ho on Earth (literally) could such a fire exist? Cinders over the sea? Burning boats? Multiple impacts? One really BIG impact? Multiple airbursts? One big airburst over a really big area like the N Atlantic?

    Some of those have flaws that make them untenable. The one I would suspect most is the multiple airbursts. First ofa all, we have seen a multiple impact on a planet in our lifetimes, so that is possible. Then we have also seen Tunguska’s effects from 104 years ago. So muiple Tunguskasa make some sense. But as Dave Middleton has pointed out, Melott says that the his math on the needed size is one million times (energy-wise) as big as Tunguska.

    So, let us ask: Was Tunguska a typical cometary air burst? Was it a big one? A small one?

    I go back to the SL/9 impacts on Jupiter. Each impact was only about 1/20th of the size of the orginal comet (19 or 20 fragments). Yet the mushroom clouds – even in Jupiter’s 8G gravity – were as big as our whole planet. Certainly each of those mushroom clouds would have been NO SMALLER if Earth was the victim. I think they would have been much larger, but we will go for the conservative line. We will say they would have been the same size if SL/9 had hit Earth.

    Tunguska lit up the sky in St Petersburg about 3,000 miles away. But that is just light. How far out did its ‘mushroom cloud” extend? If we take its reported area of damage (2,150 sq km), it would be about a radius of 16.2 km or a diameter of let’s say 32 miles. The Earth is just under 8,000 miles in diameter, so the blasts from SL/9 represent a blast diameter of about 250 Tunguskas. That is conservative. That would be 2,000 Tunguskas blast diameters if we did a quick equivalent allowing for Jupiter’s gravity.

    Now that is only ONE of the SL/9 impactors. There were about 20.

    The bottom line is if SL/9 had hit the Earth (WHY hasn’t anyone ever published on that?), we’d have had 20 impacts 2,000 times bigger than Tunguska.

    And if the comet – which broke up in Jupiter’s gravity – had not broken up in the lesser gravity of Earth? How big would that airburst have been?

    (Wiki)[Tunguska] “Different studies have yielded varying estimates of the object’s size, with general agreement that it was a few tens of metres across.”

    (Wiki)[SL/9] “Astronomers estimated that the visible fragments of SL9 ranged in size from a few hundred metres to at most a couple of kilometres across, suggesting that the original comet may have had a nucleus up to 5 km (3.1 mi) across”

    Wow. Think about it. The smallest SL/9 fragment was a “few hundred meters across” while Tunguska is estimated at a few tens of meters across. The largest SL/9 fragment was FIVE THOUSAND meters across.

    Melott was doubtful that anything could impact Earth with one million times the energy of Tunguska. I am really rusty on my physics or I’d have given fairly accurate energy values, but any that I plop in here will be wrong.

    All I have to say is that it is certain that ONE SL/9 impactor would have a blast radius that would reach around the world, in our light gravity. If not, damned close. But Earth does not have the gravity well to fragment a comet like Jupiter did to SL/9. We would face the whole comet. It wouldn’t break up until it was in our atmosphere – and maybe not even then.

    What would that whole comet do to our atmosphere and our climate? Using any Earth-based estimating, we think it is impossible for something to be tremendously bigger than Tunguska. But I don’t think we can use Earth.based thinking. I think we have to take SL/9 – not Tunguska – as a representative body that might impact Earth.

    That should give us SOME idea of what we might be facing. If I am ten times too high and the YD impactor was ten times smaller than SL/9, it would still be twice the average size of the SL/9 fragments.

    Would it wipe out mammoths? I’d think so. Even on the other side of the Earth? So fast they couldn’t digest their last meal? Something happened, and not just to Darwin’s Siberian mammoths, but to all large mammoths, even on Kotelnoi Island.

    Steve Garcia

    Clovis man? Unless he was in a cave, and maybe even then. He has to find food afterward.

  157. @Larry Ledwick (hotrod ) 2:40 pm:

    Larry, your scenarios sound okay for a single isolated circumstance. I don’t agree that they make sense for multiple mammoth freezings.

    Steve Garcia

  158. David Middleton said:

    “If it was an impact, cometary or otherwise, it would have left a big crater and an obvious and global PGE anomaly.”

    There are two things wrong with that assumption. The first error is the unquestioned assumption that all catastrophic impact events consist of a ballistic impact, and the direct transfer of kinetic energy to the ground.  And that the only kind of planetary scarring from impact events involves a resulting crater.

    There a quite a few places that would argue against that unfounded assumption. One of them is in the Libyan Desert. And it produced the Libyan Desert Glass without making a crater. The evidence there indicates a very large airburst event was the cause.

    See Large Aerial Bursts and the Impact Threat 

    Or, Impact melt formation of low-altitude airburst processes, evidence from small terrestrial craters and numerical modeling.

    Or, The Nature of Airbursts and their Contribution to the Impact Threat

    The astronomical model given in the paper is the progressive breakup of the Taurid progenitor. And since as Bill Napier points out “The breakup of comets is now recognized as a common path to their destruction”  I might be a good time to see images of heavily fragmented comet like linear Linear or Scwassmann Wachmann-3

    You assumption that the event must have been a lone bolide and that it must have made a crater somewhere is almost childishly naïve.

    Your second assumptive error is that the object was rich in platinum group elements. When there is no valid reason at all to assume that all ET objects, regardless of composition, are.

    But in point of fact the only other stratigraphic horizon that bares any resemblance at all to the YD layer is the KT boundary layer.

    Whatever happened back then, it is most certainly something that has never been studied before. And it is becoming more and more obvious that it was something different from anything ever imagined before as well.

    Welcome to the outside of the box boys and girls.

     

     

    .

  159. BTW, everyone, freezing doesn’t explain why mammoths in N.A. died out.

    There was a die off, more or less at the same time in both halves of the NH. Having two populations – Siberia and N.A. – die from different causes is maybe the least likely possibility of anything that might be mentioned on this post. So, whatever we assign to Siberia we have to assign to N.A., too. And vice versa. How anyone can assign it to climate change is beyond me – Mexico and Siberia – some of them would have survived. And Clovis man did not kill the mammoths in Siberia.

    More empirical evidence is needed. C14 of the Arctic island mammoths would be a start, so we can know if they even made it to 12.9 kya,

    Steve Garcia

  160. Joachim Seifert,
    Thanks and I completely agree about the graphs. The sea level study made an attempt to define the average change which was interesting. A 1 meter average rise per century helps to isolate the timeframe when the Bering Strait opened although the degree of sea level drop is still in dispute.

    Generally, it looks like the Bering Strait reopened around the Younger Dryas. Its impact, during an ice age, implies a global cooling effect so it may have played a role in the Younger Dryas until earth alignments overpowered the trend.

    Your point about the flexible self-aligning process of the orbit took about 1,000 years is interesting. Where can I find some additional information?

    • To John: Please read the most important reply from mate Myrrh, Mar 12, 4,39 pm,
      which is further up the page…..and click to the Graham Kendall files……
      this is the grand perl of this post….. how the mammoths died with the flowers in
      their mouth before the frozen “muck” come down flying on them, they could not even
      quickly pull the penis in so quickly came the 150 F cold …….but they breathed a bit
      of the flying muck, some was in their lungs but that was the end……
      I hope we will do better…..
      The paleoclimate problem today still is that, I will call them “Ocean streamlers”,
      grabbed the glacial issue as their backyard…..and fight with the greatest Warmist
      BS against the cosmic/astronomic truth…. still only guessing/wasting money….
      Another case is the STAROGGA event, where 300 km of Norwegian coastline was hit
      in 8200 BP…..initiating a 50 m high Tsunami rolling toward Scotlands coast…..
      (this was an pure Ice comet as the Siberian comet in 1906….. therefore no remains….)
      Here you can see that the Ocean streamlers grabbed this event AS WELL and the
      displacement of the planet….is kept under the table and the resulting cooling
      is added to the turf (and research funds flowing) into the pockets of the streamlers:
      A Agassi lake overflowed in 8200 BP, changed the GULF Stream towards Southpole
      (so-called see-saw of the streamler flow -see Warmist Broecker & Dalton)…..all
      absolute nonsense and dismantled piecemeal by now, of cause no apologies
      (turning of the Golfstream around movie how NY city got frozen)……
      …. For literature of the astronomic events: I can calculate every temp spike of
      the glacials, found the formulas….. wait 2 more years and you will get the
      full paleo- and todays climate picture…..
      Cheers
      JS

  161. Hi David –

    In cometary impact, the PGE concentrations depend on which part(s) of a parent comet hit, and its (their) size(s).

    There are a number of astroblemes which have not been dated yet, including Ilturalde Crater and the LLoydminster structure. Others no doubt are yet to be found.

    The impactite layer is what it is, and it is global.

    The simultaneous extinctions globally are prima facie evidence of a climate collapse caused by that dust load. Its source was not volcanic.

    Global death by starvation.

    You may want to reexamine the 14C calibrations used for dating remains, as well as the impact record for the earlier period of clustering you mentioned.

    I can’t really speak as to nitrate production levels in this event, or in other impact events, at least not at the present time.

  162. feet2thefire says:
    March 13, 2012 at 4:21 pm
    ==========
    You’re making a good case but this just occurred to me.

    Do the black mat studies include adjusted carbon dating? Are you certain they are in and around exactly the same time frame?

  163. John from CA –
    I assume two things: That YD authors do not do their own C14 lab tests, and that the labs they use are using the current calibration curves, which have been from IntCal09 since June of 2009, as far as I know.

    I have NOT myself compared the C14 dates of the various black mats, not even as reported. That is something I have not gone into detail about. Good question.

    It may be pertinent to show this following from IntCal09, since it mentions the YD. It seems to actually be part of MarineCal09, since it talks of marine dating.

    OTHER NEW DEVELOPMENTS
    There is growing evidence that the western subtropical Atlantic reservoir age was much less than the modern ~420-yr offset during the early Younger Dryas (~12,550–12,900 cal BP) (Kromer et al. 2004; Muscheler et al. 2008; Singarayer et al. 2008). This is consistent with model results showing the response of the ocean surface age to a reduction or shutdown of North Atlantic Deep Water formation (Meissner 2007; Ritz et al. 2008; Singarayer et al. 2008). Most recently, Hua et al. (2009) used a 14C wiggle-match between the absolutely dated tree rings and the Huon pine chronology with a Southern Hemisphere offset of 40 14C yr to derive a timescale for the floating European chronologies (Schaub et al. 2008a). Using this derived timescale for the floating tree rings, the subtropical Atlantic coral (Fairbanks et al. 2005) and foraminifera data (Hughen et al. 2004a) with an assumed constant reservoir age are too young in the period ~12,550–12,900 cal BP, whereas the Pacific corals agree with the wiggle-matched tree-ring data. While we could, in theory, calculate a time-dependent reservoir correction for the marine data, it was decided instead to exclude the western subtropical Atlantic marine data for the early Younger Dryas period ~12,550–12,900 cal BP. Similar shifts in reservoir ages may have occurred during Heinrich events and the cold, stadial phases of the Dansgaard-Oeschger events (Bond and Lotti 1995; Clark et al. 2002). Indeed, the Bahamas speleothem record (Beck et al. 2001) and reservoir-corrected Cariaco data appear to disagree in the interval 16–17 ka BP, within Heinrich event 1, although other effects such as DCF changes (Bahamas) or problems with the correlation to Hulu (Cariaco) could also contribute to this offset. A reservoir age discrepancy within Heinrich event 1 is also suggested by foraminifera data from the Iberian and Pakistan Margin cores (Bard et al. 2004c, 2009). Thus, it is prudent to treat calibration during Heinrich and Dansgaard-Oeschger events with caution until further information becomes available.

    No other YD mentinos are in the standard.

    Steve Garcia

  164. Ed and all – This is a pretty lively discussion.

    I’d like to invite those interested to drop in and comment at George Howard’s http://www.CosmicTusk.com, which is all about the YD impact event. We could use the input and conversation. Ed Grondine and Dennis Cox are frequent visitors, as well as Rich Murray.

    Everyone who has commented here are welcome. Bring your friends, too!

    Steve Garcia

  165. Otto Muck solved EVERY single problem listed above. I wish someone would just read his work.

  166. Just a little personal theory about the megafauna – many of them would have drowned as the ice age was ending when they were trying to cross rivers which would have been in massive flood stage throughout the summers (lets say starting May until October).

    No megafauna would be able to ford any rivers in the summer which were fed by the melting glaciers (and this includes the Clovis people – they were trapped within river systems throughout much of the year – I imagine they were smart enough to not cross flood-stage rivers 5 times bigger than today’s versions, but they were cut-off).

    All year round, nothing was crossing the Mississippi River, for example, which was fed by Lake Agassiz at the time. North America was cut into regions – east-west – floodplain north and forested south-east.

    Any area within reach of the glacier melt water would be subject to losing every mature animal every few seasons – that would be enough to take down the Mammoth, for example, since they have low reproduction rate.

  167. John from CA on March 13, 2012 at 4:56 pm said:
    feet2thefire says:
    March 13, 2012 at 4:21 pm
    ==========
    You’re making a good case but this just occurred to me.

    Do the black mat studies include adjusted carbon dating? Are you certain they are in and around exactly the same time frame?

    The Younger Dyras black mat facies span the entire interstadial.  This facies is exhibited in about 2/3 of YD sequences.  Black mat formation began before the YD onset and continued beyond the end of the YD.  It’s a paleosol indicative of cool-wet conditions and/or elevated water tables (Haynes, 2008).  It’s simply bizare that the impact fanatics seem to be calling this an impactite.

    Surovell et al., 2009 tested 7 black mat sites, 2 of which were the same sites in Firestone et al., 2007, and found “no distinct peak in magnetic grains or microspherules uniquely associated with the YD.”

  168. Tim Minchin said:

    "Otto Muck solved EVERY single problem listed above. I wish someone would just read his work."

    In the world according to Otto Muck, Atlantis was a continent sized landmass straddling the mid ocean ridge. And which was hit by an impact event, and subsequently sank beneath the waves. without a trace.

    It’s that “without a trace” part that sinks his assumptions. The imagery, and our understanding of the geomorphology along the mid ocean ridge is getting better all the time. And in spite of countless people looking almost obsessively, there is still no geologic evidence whatsoever that any other landmass besides Greenland has ever straddled the mid ocean ridge.

  169. Phew, read all the posts. No nitrate signal, no crater, no sea level change but we have the layer, the millions of dead mammoths , wrong climate, wrong plants and others and an enigma.

    Slow freezing cannot preserve the stomach contents, only maybe seeds and spores.

    Also no mention of the muck, which looks like a vast tsunami spoil heap.

    Low pressure flash freezing sounds interesting.

    Sorry, lol, buttercups in their mouths shows a different climate, sort of reeks of hand waving especially in light of “show us the nitrate spike” demands.

    Thus I conclude, a plasma hit, subsequent pole shift, tsunamis and new circulation. The plasma caused a massive pressure drop freeze concomitant with a mega tsunami.

    Thats where the evidence points, can it be supported?

    Did not the USA think of or have a competition to design a marker for a nuclear waste site that would survive and keep people away for 10,000 years. The efforts and thoughts made in achieving that aim, showed exactly how difficult that is. So the possible marker for this event, the Giza Complex indicates that date and many other mathematical correlations. Pure coincidence!!!!!!!!

  170. It was problems with 14C dating around this period that started Firestone on his quest.

    My hypothesis is that protons and neutons are released in hypervelocity impadts. As one example, another spike in 14C occurs at the time of the Barringer Impact.

    Thus dating the mat material itself is likely to give misleading results; instead the dates have to be from above or below it.

  171. Bill, while your conjecture about flooding and fording is fascinating, it does not explain the simultaneous global extinctions in the Northern and Southern hemispheres.

    PS – Elephants have been observed to swim 10’s of kilometers to get to food.
    They use their trunks as snorkels.

  172. Ah, here is some things. Buttercups grow from Alaska & Canada to the Mexican border. Whenever I get time I will be back. Really, really busy.

    http://www.yellowstonenationalpark.com/buttercup.htm

    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/mammoths.html#bishop

    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/mammoths.html#burns

    We should start by asking: what kind of animals were these woolly mammoths which inhabited the Siberian steppes? Were they suited to living in a cold climate?

    Yes. We determine this by examining preserved mammoth specimens. We begin by comparing the bodies of mammoths of those of existing members of the Elephantidae (the African Loxodonta and Asian Elephas). In comparison to those of modern elephants,the bodies of mammoths were compressed lengthwise. Mammoth trunks were shorter than those of modern elephants. Mammoth ears were small,even compared to the smaller ears of today Asian elephants (the ears of African Loxodonts are much larger). Mammoth tails were much shorter than those of elephants.

    Modern elephants do not have a thick covering of hair. Woolly mammoths were covered with the same kind of double fur coat as we find on other large mammals in northern climates today. The dense insulating inner coat consisted of a fine wool. The long,shaggy outer coat (some hairs as long as 50 cm) was composed of guard hairs. It appears that the mammoth changed its hair at the beginning of summer. This happens in many other arctic mammals today.

    In addition to the fur coat,woolly mammoths also possessed a three-inch-thick layer of fat underneath their skin as well as an additional fat reserve stored in a hump above the shoulders.

    Most mammoths,including the Siberian varieties,were about the same size as modern elephants or slightly smaller. Some were larger,such as the North American Imperial Mammoth,which reached a height of fourteen to fifteen feet (4.5 to 5 m) at the shoulder. The Siberian mammoths were smaller; about 9 feet (3 m) at the shoulder for males and 7 1/2 feet (2.5 m) for females.

    Mammoth tusks also differed from those of modern elephants. Mammoth tusks curved down to form a broad bow close to the ground. This answers the question of how mammoths could break through ice-covered ground to look for forage. Even assuming that the Siberian ground was frozen — it usually was NOT so frozen in the Pleistocene — the mammoth could use its tusks to break through the ice and snow. Is there any evidence that mammoths actually did this? Yes. Wear patterns on mammoth tusks suggest that the mammoths used their tusks as excavation tools.

    All of these items indicate that the woolly mammoth was well adapted to surviving in a cold climate. They illustrate adaptation typical of those seen in other mammals which extend their ranges into colder climates. The body increases in bulk while the total amount of exposed body surface decreases (compressed body length of mammoths,short tails and trunks,dense fur coat). There is no reason to doubt that mammoths could live in cold climates as long there was adequate forage.

    (Incidentally,even modern Asian elephants tolerate cold fairly well. Elephants lived as far north as the Honan province in China into early historical times (1500 B.C.). Asian elephants also lived in what is now Syria,Iraq,and Iran. African loxodonts used to inhabit the whole of the African continent into historic times.)

    Was there adequate forage for animals the size of mammoths in the steppes? The current climate of the subarctic Siberian steppes could not support large herds of mammoths assuming they required a similar volume of food as modern elephants. Much of Siberia today is covered by deeply and permanently frozen ground known as permafrost. The existing tundra vegetation is tough,low,slow-growing,and laced with bitter chemicals. These chemicals may have evolved as a defense against foraging.

    However,the Siberian steppes during the last ice age were not covered in ice and snow as they are now,nor was the ground frozen. The reason is that so much of the available water was locked up in the arctic ice pack — primarily in North America — that the subarctic steppes were much drier than today. As a result,the Siberian soil thawed to a greater depth and supported a richer variety of plant life. This included nutritious grasses. The stomach contents of preserved mammoths indicate that they fed on such grasses,as well as mosses,sedges,herbaceous pollens and spores,and fragments of willow and bilberry. Some rare poppies and buttercups have also been found in addition to small amounts of arboreal material such as larch needles,willows,and tree bark. Such variety indicates the mammoths lived in a variety of climates in Siberia. These ranged from dry and steppe-like to slightly wet to swampy to arctic/alpine.

    Mammoth trunk tips were bi-lobed,useful for collecting herbaceous food. Relatively little arboreal material has been found in mammoth stomachs. Modern elephants,in contrast,prefer an arboreal diet, and their trunk tips are of unequal size.

    The greater abundance and variety of steppe vegetation during the ice ages explains how the steppes could support large grazing animals like mammoths. The mammoths may also have migrated south in the winter and north in the summer. Modern elephants are great travellers,so possibly mammoths were too.

    How old are the frozen mammoth remains from Siberia? They fall into two main groups,one dating from about 45,000 BP to 30,000 BP and the other from 14,000 to 11,000 BP. This does not mean that mammoths were not present in Siberia from 30,000 BP to 14,000 BP. Instead,this indicates the climatic conditions were not right for the formation of frozen carcasses. There are plenty of fossil bones of mammoths from 30,000 to 14,000 BP. This was a period of massive glacial advance,resulting in extremely dry conditions in Siberia. In these dry conditions,mammoth carcasses would tend to rot on the surface and/or be eaten by predators. In times of glacial retreat,when the climate was moister, summer mudflows and floods could rapidly cover carcasses. These covered carcasses would then become permanently frozen as the permafrost layer closed in above them during the following winter.

    Was the climate warmer or colder in Siberia at the time the mammoths lived there? Well,both. It appears that at some periods the climate was warmer,at others it was colder. This is inferred by comparing the modern ranges of the plants found in mammoth stomachs as well as by astronomical calculations of temperature similar to those presented at various times in the past in this news group. The mammoths thrived in either case. The determinative factor was the decreased moisture so that the ground did not become permanently frozen as it is today. As a result,the “mammoth steppe” biome, comprised of grasses,succulent herbs,and wormwood,thrived. This biome disappeared around 9000 BP except for some small patches. It was replaced by the current boggy tundra vegetation and permafrost. The mammoths,having lost their source of food,disappeared in Siberia at about the same time. It is possible that predation by man was also partly responsible. The earliest human remains in Siberia date from the end of the last ice age.

  173. Hang on folks, no humans inhabited North America until about 11000 years ago maximum. As North American Indians have Asian race genetic pool ancestors, how would you explain how they got there. They didn’t canoe across so had to walk over the Bering Straits, where there was a land bridge. The Toba eruption happened about 70,000 years ago and did bring on a nuclear winter but for how long we can’t say nor what parts of the globe it effected. The common theory was that it almost wiped out humanity who was replaced by humans coming up from Africa. The Hobbit Homo floresiensis, was living in Flores then, they didn’t die out until approx 18,000 BP from a volcanic explosion it seems. Then we have the Neaderthals living in Southern Europe until the wave of immigrants Homo sapien sapien arrived from Africa. The Australian Aborigines have been here for at least 60,000 years. Certainly the sudden deaths of the megafauna or their evolutionary trend to either die out completely or evolve into smaller mammals seems to suggest a progressive and sustaining change in habitat and food availability and breeding cycles, i.e., larger animals have longer gestation periods and single births, this might effect their numbers survival plus habitat changes. In other words, the change occurred over many generations so they adapted or died out. Maybe it was for some species a sudden event but not for all, some lived and adapted. The two frozen Mammoths are interesting, they seemed to have been frozen in situ. They could have been caught in an avalanche that eventually froze over. But why not other animals in the area? Interesting though, keep scribbling.

    • bushbunny said:

      “Hang on folks, no humans inhabited North America until about 11000 years ago maximum.”

      From Wikipedia:

      The Clovis culture (sometimes referred to as the Llano culture) is a prehistoric Paleo-Indian culture that first appears 11,500 RCYBP (radiocarbon years before present), at the end of the last glacial period, characterized by the manufacture of "Clovis points" and distinctive bone and ivory tools. Archaeologists’ most precise determinations at present suggest that this radiocarbon age is equal to roughly 13,500 to 13,000 calendar years ago.

      I’ll grant that Wikipedia isn’t the most reliable reference in the world. And you didn’t say what you source for that statement was. But there are Clovis sites that date to well before 12,900 YA

    • I’m reading an awful lot of back an’ forth about the Carolina Bays in this thread. And, while the mechanism of their formation remains a mystery, and granted it was proposed in the original 2007 Firestone paper that they might be related to whatever the event was that was the trigger for the Younger Dryas cooling, and the megafaunal extinctions 12,900 YA, their possible connection to the Holocene Start Impacts has long since been discounted.

      The specific topic of this thread is Evidence from central Mexico supporting the Younger Dryas extraterrestrial impact hypothesis by Isabel Israde-Alcántara et al. And it stands today as the most recent update, or iteration, of the Younger Dryas Impact Hypothesis. It pointedly removes the CB’s from the discussion. So arguments about whether or not they were involved are moot.

      Almost all of the arguments of past skeptics have been addressed in this new work as well. Including the shoddy stratigraphic work of Dalton, Pinter, and Scott that was presented in No evidence of nanodiamonds in Younger–Dryas sediments to support an impact event

      But regarding the search for any potential planetary scarring; in point of fact, the original paper was not working from a valid astronomical model at all. They pointed out that the assemblage of materials they had found in the stratigraphic record could only have been caused by by an extra-terrestrial event. But they also pointed out that it must have been something far different from anything ever studied before.

      That statement that it whatever it was, it was something different from anything ever studied before should have been seen as an invitation to start thinking outside of the box from the very beginning. But since their proposal that it was a 4 mile wide bolide grew out of Toon et al’s work, and the unquestioned mainstream assumption at that all major impact events must the work of a single lone bolide, they were still thinking from ‘inside the box’.

      But as Physicist Mark Boslough pointed out, it really is impossible for a four mile wide bolide to have enough time in the atmosphere to break up completely without making a good sized crater somewhere.

      Without a valid, and viable, astronomical model to work from, R.B. Firestone et al could only speculate on what that ‘something different’ might have been. And in fact at the time they were just as clueless as anyone else on that score on what could have created the impact layer they had found.

      Well, not everyone. Victor Clube, and W. M. Napier had been talking about something they called Coherent Catastrophism since 1982 when they published their book ‘The Cosmic Serpent’. Clube and Napier identified the progenitor of the Taurid complex as a giant comet whose injection into a short-period (about 3.3 year) orbit occurred sometime in the last twenty to thirty thousand years. In that book they also predicted that the effects of the disintegration of the Taurid progenitor object in an Earth-crossing orbit should appear somewhere in the geological and climatological record.

      Most folks are still under the impression that this story begins with Firestone et al in 2007. But they were only the first to turn up evidence in the geological record. The astronomers had been already been talking about it for decades. And since this new paper corrects the lack of a viable astronomical model for the Younger Dryas Impact hypothesis by citing W.M. Napier’s Palaeolithic extinctions and the Taurid Complex, now would be a good time for folks to begin reading everything Clube, and Napier have ever written on the subject of the Taurid Complex; beginning with that paper.

      If you can describe a beast you have a much better chance of predicting what it’s footprints should look like. And the more people understand just exactly what kind of heavily fragmented beast we’re talking about now, the better it will be for the search for relevant planetary scarring. But it will help to realize that those scars probably don’t consist of craters, or anything else in the standard impact science, or geologic toolbox.

      We are looking for something no one has ever studied before.

      One of my favorite books is Clube and Napier’s ‘The Cosmic Winter’. But there are some pretty good essays out there too. Here’s a few good links.

      An Overview by Bob Kobres

      Comets, Catastrophes, and Earth’s History by W. M. Napier

      Giant Comets — Messengers of Life and Death by W. M. Napier

      And while you’re at it Bob Kobres’s ‘A Nickle Pickle’ is a great read.

      As

  174. David Middleton Said:

    “The Younger Dyras black mat facies span the entire interstadial. This facies is exhibited in about 2/3 of YD sequences. Black mat formation began before the YD onset and continued beyond the end of the YD. It’s a paleosol indicative of cool-wet conditions and/or elevated water tables (Haynes, 2008). It’s simply bizare that the impact fanatics seem to be calling this an impactite.”

    We are talking about the significance of new data, presented in a new paper, relating to a rapidly evolving hypothesis that’s changing so fast that anything more than two years old is almost outdated. Including the original 2007 Firestone paper that started it all. You are citing a work from 2008. And debating the hypothesis as if nothing has changed since 2007.  Did you even bother to read Evidence from central Mexico supporting the Younger Dryas extraterrestrial impact hypothesis?

    For a recap here’s the abstract again:

    Abstract

    We report the discovery in Lake Cuitzeo in central Mexico of a black, carbon-rich, lacustrine layer, containing nanodiamonds, microspherules, and other unusual materials that date to the early
    Younger Dryas and are interpreted to result from an extraterrestrial impact. These proxies were found in a 27-m-long core as part of an interdisciplinary effort to extract a paleoclimate record back through the previous interglacial. Our attention focused early on an anomalous, 10-cm-thick, carbon-rich layer at a depth of 2.8 m that dates to 12.9 ka and coincides with a suite of anomalous coeval environmental and biotic changes independently recognized in other regional lake sequences. Collectively, these changes have produced the most distinctive boundary layer in the late Quaternary record. This layer contains a diverse, abundant assemblage of impact-related markers, including nanodiamonds, carbon spherules, and magnetic spherules with rapid melting/quenching textures, all reaching synchronous peaks immediately beneath a layer containing the largest peak of charcoal in the core. Analyses by multiple methods demonstrate the presence of three allotropes of nanodiamond: n-diamond, i-carbon, and hexagonal nanodiamond (lonsdaleite), in order of estimated relative abundance. This nanodiamond-rich layer is consistent with the Younger Dryas boundary layer found at numerous sites across North America, Greenland, and Western Europe. We have examined multiple hypotheses to account for these observations and find the evidence cannot be explained by any known terrestrial mechanism. It is, however, consistent with the Younger Dryas boundary impact hypothesis postulating a major extraterrestrial impact involving multiple airburst(s) and and/or ground impact(s) at 12.9 ka

    The 10-cm thick, carbon rich layer that’s at the heart of that paper most certainly does not “span the entire interstadial”. And it is “simply bizarre” that impact denialists would suggest that the materials that were found in that layer by Isabel Israde-Alcántara et al could be anything else but an impact layer.

    Perhaps Mr Middleton would be so kind as to come out of the past, join as all in present time, discuss the new data from Lake Cuitzeo, and talk about the Younger Dryas impact hypothesis in it’s present state.

  175. Dennis –

    I said the same thing to Middleton yesterday. I am certain he either hasn’t read it or can’t get the 2007-2008 Holliday/Paquay/Daulton papers off the pedestal he raised them upon.

    The guy doesn’t hear anything that is not Holiday/Paquay/Dalton. He seems to have no idea that anyone else has done any work on the non-anti-YDB side since Firestone 2007.

    Here at WUWT folks are familiar with the term “Confirmation bias.” That is when you accept anything your side says and are deaf to anything that doesn’t agree. Middleton has a terminal case of it.

    The rest of the people are here to learn some new stuff, to hear what else is out there, and he keeps spewing out the ancient 2008-9 stuff that has been superseded long ago.

    Steve Garcia

  176. The more I ponder a significantly larger Taurids core stream. Would it not be possible that it could take many years for Earth orbit to stop repeatedly impacting that collection of larger objects? Possibly explaining the length of the YD?

    NASA ADS: Palaeolithic extinctions and the Taurid Complex

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2010MNRAS.405.1901N

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1991MNRAS.251..632S

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1993MNRAS.264…93A

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1991PhDT………8A

  177. Ah, for ‘lost links’….

    About 6 months ago I stumbled on a great page that talked about just this proposed impact event. Then I lost the link and have been unable to find it again. ( Three computers and 3 browsers each means a lot of potential bookmarks, if I even remembered to bookmark it…)

    Had lots of photos of geography. Traced impacts from Mexico, cross Texas to Canada (where despite mostly hitting ice, there’s an area of ‘scrubbed’ surface rather like one would get from an ice shield being moved). Secondary ejecta from that impact ends up in the Carolina field. All neatly dated, vectors mapped et. al.

    IMHO it’s the Taurids. Original large comet broke up some 10s of Thousands of years back. Most of the remnants in an orbit where we drift in and out of the core stream on one periodicity and the “main mass” is on another period. But intersect (main mass and center stream) to give our cyclical DO / Bond Events. Sometimes we hit a larger chunk…. Over time the magnitude drops some, as we’ve had some taken out in prior hits. (Good news is that right now we’re not center of the main density… but soon…)

    I suspect that the wallop slightly shifted the rotational pole. (Colder Siberia, warmer Canada, explaining why ice sheets were further south in the USA than in Europe…) Tap a gyro near a pole and it ‘wobbles’ to a new tilt…

    Don’t know how the animals got flash frozen. Even ice balls have the power of nukes on impact. That’s a lot of heat. But maybe there’s some way some of the ice gets ejected and not melted… Miles of ice absorb a lot of heat… That Siberia is just a ways over the pole would let a ‘slushy’ super tidal wave deposit quite a load of ice slush… and muck.

    Oh, and IMHO it’s why THIS interglacial has a flat top. Most of the others spike higher and warmer, then start an immediate about face to colder. Look like a dunce cap with point on top. Ours is flattened. I think the impact ‘chopped off the peak’ (and possibly allowed civilization in the process…) for about 10,000 years of ‘more stable’. But now we’re back about at the point where the downturn of prior events intersects our time… One can only hope ‘this time is different’…

    One other comment:

    Our early nuclear bomb testing observation satellites where giving ‘false positives’ a couple of times a year from ‘nuke sized flashes’. They figure out they were rock falls from space… so put in place a filter to look for the unique ‘double flash’ of nukes. So think about it… roughly twice a year, somewhere, a ‘nuke sized event’. But mostly over unpopulated empty and high in the air, so no ground damage. The ocean and ice is big, and mostly empty…

    Any explanation of past evolution and climate events that does not allow for rocks falls from space is incomplete.

    Oh, and at about the proposed impact site in Canada is one of the largest Platinum mines in the world… A rather geologically odd deposit… Iridium is one of the “Platinum group metals” and the two are often found together… even in meteors…

  178. Ah! Found it! (Having good “Google Foo” tonight, or rather, “Duckduckgo Foo” as I’m using their ‘non-spying’ search engine lately ;-)

    http://cometstorm.wordpress.com/2011/04/27/a-different-kind-of-climate-catastrophe-2/

    The search actually turned up a discussion of it at Tallbloke’s place:

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2011/06/24/comet-storm-a-hypothesis-explaining-megafauna-extinction-and-the-younger-dryas/

    that had the link in it.

    At any rate, it is a pretty good geology oriented look at the ‘facts in the ground’… and answers a lot of the issues folks here raised about things like the Carolina Bays. ( BTW, per carbon dating them: what happens if a rock fall brings with it some anomalous carbon?…)

  179. Bill Illis on March 13, 2012 at 6:29 pm said:
    Just a little personal theory about the megafauna – many of them would have drowned as the ice age was ending when they were trying to cross rivers which would have been in massive flood stage throughout the summers (lets say starting May until October).

    No megafauna would be able to ford any rivers in the summer which were fed by the melting glaciers (and this includes the Clovis people – they were trapped within river systems throughout much of the year – I imagine they were smart enough to not cross flood-stage rivers 5 times bigger than today’s versions, but they were cut-off).

    All year round, nothing was crossing the Mississippi River, for example, which was fed by Lake Agassiz at the time. North America was cut into regions – east-west – floodplain north and forested south-east.

    Any area within reach of the glacier melt water would be subject to losing every mature animal every few seasons – that would be enough to take down the Mammoth, for example, since they have low reproduction rate.

    Bill,

    That flooding occurred during every major glacial interstadial throughout the Pleistocene.  The Pleistocene section is more than 20,000′ thick in parts of Garden Banks and Green Canyon.  The section is loaded with massive turbidite, basin floor fan and other high energy low stand sequences.  Thick (>200′), blocky sand units with 30% porosity and >1 Darcy of perm are common in ecological zone 5 (outer slope) settings. Unless that was all comet dust, it came from glacial outwash during glacial stages via the Mississippi River drainage system.

    Prior to the BA-YD and the Holocene transgression, the megafauna didn’t have to deal with the floods and humans at the same time.

  180. E. M. Smith […]

    At any rate, it is a pretty good geology oriented look at the ‘facts in the ground’… and answers a lot of the issues folks here raised about things like the Carolina Bays. ( BTW, per carbon dating them: what happens if a rock fall brings with it some anomalous carbon?…)

    Optically stimulated luminecsence dating is fairly accurate (+/-5%) for sediments subaerially deposited from ~300 to ~100,000.  Carolina Bay features are often dated with OSL.

  181. Dennis Cox says:
    March 13, 2012 at 9:04 pm & 5.50pm
    =============
    No question that these are obvious signatures of an impact event. The unanswered question relates to the extent of their contribution to the Younger Dryas climate shift.

    Ed Mertin says:
    March 13, 2012 at 8:40 pm
    =============
    Great comment, thanks and I’m looking forward to reading more.

    feet2thefire says:
    March 13, 2012 at 5:45 pm
    =============
    Thanks, I’m going to take you up on the offer to join in the chat at George Howard’s http://www.CosmicTusk.com, which is all about the YD impact event.

  182. Alexandra Cairns says:
    March 13, 2012 at 2:13 pm
    ==========
    One of your questions related to the frequency of meteor strikes. You’ll find a partial answer beginning on page 8 of the study cited in the original post.

    Evidence from central Mexico supporting the Younger Dryas extraterrestrial impact hypothesis

    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/2268163/Mexico%20YD%20Paper.pdf

    excerpt from the summary:
    Although the origin of these YDB markers remains specula- tive, any viable hypothesis must account for coeval abundance peaks in NDs, magnetic impact spherules, CSps, and charcoal in Lake Cuitzeo, along with apparently synchronous peaks at other sites, spanning a wide area of Earth’s surface. Multiple hypotheses have been proposed to explain these YDB peaks in markers, and all but one can be rejected. For example, the mag- netic impact spherules and NDs cannot result from the influx of cosmic material or from any known regular terrestrial mechan- ism, including wildfires, volcanism, anthropogenesis, or alterna- tively, misidentification of proxies. Currently, only one known event, a cosmic impact, can explain the diverse, widely distributed assemblage of proxies. In the entire geologic record, there are only two known continent-wide layers with abundance peaks in NDs, impact spherules, CSps, and aciniform soot, and those are the KPg impact boundary at 65 Ma and the YDB boundary at 12.9 ka.

  183. Continuing with the extinction of megafauna. This started in Euurope, so that by the time our cousins the Neandertals vanished, so to had the European elephant, rhino and hippo. The wooly rhino lasted longer as did the giant deer, and the iconic cave bear, but they too disappeared. The last stand of megafauna in Eurasia was in Siberia where the mammoth survived until about the same time as the N.A. mammoth. Oddly enough these extinctions seem to coincide with the arrival of well adapted stone age hunters.

    In Australia, where the climate was rather nice, the arrival some 50,000 years ago of humans led to the rapid demise of many large animals previously present there. Same with the giant Moa of New Zealand and the arrival of humans.

  184. Hi Ed Mertin –

    Ah yes, the Mammoth (and Mastodon) – grandfather of the Buffalo. You left out that Elephants migrate annually, with their routes favoring mucks (for insect control and cooling in heat) and salt licks. The key here is adequate fodder – thanks for the note on Mammoth fat storage, as the climate collapse from the dust load had to span several years. And their fodder was multiple plants and trees, and none of them grew – the climate collapse was that bad.

    My current thinking is that as the food supply was so bad they would venture into dangerous grounds, hence the peaks in preserved carcases.

  185. Hi once again Ed, for when you return –

    In this case you have multiple speices going extinct at exactly the same time everywhere all around the Earth, including South America. For those animals of large size, it must be quantities of food they require. For the smaller animals, it must the lack of specific kinds of food. There were also other predators besides man at the time. Why did Buffalo survive? They are quite tasty. But the horse died off in North America at the same time.

    You need to restate your observations on the appearance of man in Siberia, since its more than likely that earlier remains have simply not been found yet, rather than that they don’t exist. “bushbabbty”‘s comments about the time of appearance of boats in hominid evolution are now known to be “off”.

  186. @bushbunny 8:55 pm:
    “Hang on folks, no humans inhabited North America until about 11000 years ago maximum.”

    bushbunny, you stepped in it that time. You happen to be talking to people who know a bit more than you apparently do. And you kind of blow all your cred when you say something like that, especially in that way.

    You are about 15 years behind the times.
    Never heard of Monte Verde in Chile?
    Topper in SC?
    Meadowcroft in PA?
    Buttermilk Creek, TX?
    Cactus Hill, VA?
    Taima Taima in Venezuela?

    And there are more… All older than Clovis.

    De ice-free corridor jes’ ain’t true no mo’. Clovis First died in 1997. I hate to tell ya.

    And you also missed the new finds on the Delmarva Peninsula, some of it under water, that pushes back humans in the Americas to about 21,000 to 25,000 years ago. Last I looked 21,000 years ago is longer ago than your 11,000 years ago maximum.

    Also, ever heard of mitochondrial DNA? According to mtDNA there were no fewer than FIVE human incursions into the New World, with Clovis being the last. The first? As I recall it was Polynesian, but I might be wrong on that. After that I think it was Solutreans from France/Spain.

    After what you said in your opener, it is kind of hard to take what else you say seriously. Honestly, you should actually look stuff up before you come in with guns ablazing spouting Clovis First dogma that is way, WAY out of date. But look it up on an internet newer than 1996.

    Steve Garcia

  187. I recommend that everybody scrolls up to “”Myrrh Mar12, 4:39 pm and read
    first the Kendall files on how the flash frozen mammoths with buttercups in the
    mouths and penis up were discovered……
    That was flash freezing, as comets are able to….
    ….. Bear in mind, we want the real truth ….. but there are bad guys out there
    [CAGW: “Catastrophic AGW] clinging to false ocean stream assertions, such
    as Rahmstorf, Broecker, Dalton. a.s f……trying to BS that rapid/flash temperature
    swings are caused by ocean flowing North or South in “SEE SAW”-
    style to the Southpole and the Gulfstream turns around its belt conveyor flow
    and instantly freezes the Mammoths, as well as the city of New York (see the big freeze movie
    some years ago, inspired by the “Streamlers”, who, of cause, will deny any
    authorship and responsibility)
    ……. Fact is: The discussion about YD can be described as:
    “(1) Cosmic impact pitted vs. (2) Streamler reversed flow BS”
    and if we win, research money would go to (1) , and (2) would loose …..
    this is the reason why persons as Middleton [scroll up] remain obstinate
    to any new/latest YD reseach results……
    JS

  188. Dennis, your southern “impact features” have been looked at by professional geologists, by Richard at Tallboys, and by Paul on the meteorite list. They tried to explain to you why they are not impact features.

    The multiple craters surrounding the main crater at Odessa are well known in the meteorite collecting community. Their dates are pretty well known as well, though of course more work needs to be done They are not from the Holocene Start Impact Event.

    Two possible impact structures, Ilturalde Crater and the Llyodminster structure, await confirmation and dating. It is possible that neither of them dates to the HSI.

    While we know that the HSI was cometary, we do not know with any certainty which comet was responsible yet It may be possible that the progenitor of the Draconid meteor stream was involved.

    • @Grondine:

      The crater search is just one possibility, even the search for ET materials….
      There can be Ice/CO2 comets which do not leave craters such as the 1906
      Siberian comet or the Starogga comet, where 300 miles of Norwegian coastline
      was hit….8,200 BP….. it the comet goes fully/partially into the ocean, then an
      overdimensional tsunami wave would be what we have to look for in history…..then
      there would not be dust in the air, but water vapour…….
      In any case, the ocean stream guys today still occupy the paleoscene with their
      vexed interests,
      once again only for not repeating myself too often….

      Sufficient is the following, this is what I did: looking at the ice core diagrams
      for spotting unusual broken/missing/damaged temp spikes (not all oscillations
      are broken, damaged.)….but the obviously faulty ones are the ones and here
      you can discover the impacts, large or small, depending…..The impact type can
      also vary: ….single, double, multiple, shotgun effects….the planet Earth may fly
      through a comet containing celestial section…..

      The geological proof of the dates in field studies AFTERWARDS [concerning me],
      without knowing beforehand, makes a good feeling to be on the right track…..
      JS

  189. It seemed to me that I had seen some time ago the original report of the contents of the Berezovka mammoth’s stomach. A search today found it once more at http://tiny.cc/49g6aw.

    Translated and described in a Paper read before

    Natural History

    BY

    HUGH R. WATKIN,
    June 14th, 1905.

    [page 16]
    …From the standing position of the animal we can conclude that he was discovered in the exact position that death found it, that the catastrophe occurred on this spot and that the body had not been carried by flood. The thick covering of hair shows capability of withstanding cold climate. The young of the Asiatic elephant are to this day born with a covering of hair which they afterwards lose. In the Zoological Gardens at Basle (Bale) there is an elephant with such a thick growth of hair that at the Congress of Zoologists held at Berne in August 1904, the remark was made of course in jest that the animal was really a mamoth. The Asiatic elephant is rather a cousin than a descendant of the Mamoth. The African elephant belonging to another stock, the Stegodon.

    The head of the Mamoth faced south. It had evidently not died of starvation. Everywhere about lay bones of reindeer and broken pieces of bone of the short horned stag. They could find no sign of missing trunk which had evidently long since decomposed or been eaten by wolves, made most careful search but only found about six feet to the south of right socket part of the scull of a reindeer. A curious find in removing the earth to get at hind legs was the end of a bison’s tail thickly covered with hair.

    Hertz made a careful collection of the flora of the tundra for comparison with the remains of food taken from the mouth and stomach of the Mamoth. When I last visited the Museum some nine months ago, the mass of what looked like very coarse dried grass, no less than 27 Lbs. of which were taken from the stomach of the Mamoth and preserved in spirit, had been removed from the cases, I concluded, for careful examination.

    Although I have sent twice to St. Petersburg, and a friend called upon Professor Hertz and obtained photographs for me, I have been unable to get any description of the food found in the animal. I cannot help thinking that every particle will be most carefully examined and probably a full report given of such an interesting subject. Hertz notes that the food consists only of grasses, no pine needles or leaves being noticeable.

    Hertz came to the conclusion from an examination of the pit out of which they dug the Mamoth that the creature must have fallen with great violence into a crevasse in a glacier, breaking the pelvis, right shoulder blade broken across centre, and other bones ; several ribs were afterwards found to be broken. He also concluded from finding solid glacial ice under the animal which he excavated for 7 feet, that the remnants of the glacier extend right under the bed of the Berezovka, in other words that the river flows on its surface.

    No mention of buttercups. It makes one wonder where such an assertion began.

    This is not the last word, because it does not include the lab report (which Watkin endeavored to obtain without luck), but I will attempt to find it.

    An interesting note in the report about “mamoth” having only one “m”:

    In the Yakutsk language the Mamoth is called Ookyila (water monster) ; in the Lamoot dialect, Agdian Kaymyi (big monster). The word mamoth is supposed to be of Tartar origin, in Russian, mamont, and therefore is incorrectly spelt according to the dictionary custom with two “m’s.” The error doubtless crept in from confusion with the word “mammal,” of quite different origin.

    Steve Garcia

  190. Ed Grondine said:

    "Dennis, your southern “impact features” have been looked at by professional geologists, by Richard at Tallboys, and by Paul on the meteorite list. They tried to explain to you why they are not impact features. The multiple craters surrounding the main crater at Odessa are well known in the meteorite collecting community. Their dates are pretty well known as well, though of course more work needs to be done They are not from the Holocene Start Impact Event."

    Please note that I have not mentioned my theories of ablative airburst geomorphology in this thread. To do so would be off topic. And outside the range of this discussion. Also, since those extremely radical theories of mine remain unproven, this is not the time or place to bring them up anyway.

    But I am well aware that what I think the planetary scarring of a very large, multiple geo-ablative airburst impact event looks like is completely outside the realm of anything in the standard uniformitarian/gradualist paradigm. And I am also well aware that what I interpret as multiple geo-ablative impact topography has been interpreted by generations of geologists in the past as ordinary basin and range topography. I happen to disagree with them.

    I am also well aware that many mainstream geologists were still saying that Barringer Crater in Arizona was volcanogenic until Gene Shoemaker proved conclusively that it was caused by an impact event back in the ‘60s.

    It is my opinion that the 19th century view of the geo-history of this world world as expressed in Sir Charles Lyell’s ‘The principles of Geology’ and that he wrote back in the 1830s is horribly outdated. And on many points, especially anything related to sudden catastrophic events it is just plain wrong.

    The simple fact is that with regards to the events of the Pleistocene/Holocene transition, understanding the present is not the key to understanding the past at all.

    I also think that the standard assumptions that impact events only happen one fragment at a time, and that the only possible planetary scarring for an impact event is a ballistic-kinetic impact crater is as naïve as a children’s bedtime story.

    That I am in almost complete disagreement with mainstream geologists about the potential geo-ablative properties of very large airbursts, and the nature of the resulting planetary scarring is not news to me Ed. I’ve lived outside the box all my life.

    And while you are using the members of the meteorite list as the final authority on impact science, I’m not.

    I happen to be in the camp of people like Bob Kobres who are of the opinion that since impact research is only just beginning to be taken seriously by mainstream science, there are no real impact ‘experts’ anywhere.

    On the subject of geochronology:

    Thinking that the USGS should represent the state of the science, I downloaded a copy of the USGSs geochronological database. What I got was a huge spreadsheet in MS Excel format that would cover a whole wall if printed out. But with most of the cells left empty. And with no entries for anywhere at all in the ‘Age Since Melt’ column.

    They explain all the empty cells with the disclaimer that they haven’t included any of the “anomalous data”. But without any explanation of what they consider anomalous, or why.

    Without such an explanation, we are forced to the conclusion that either 90% of their data is screwy, or 90% of their sample collection/preparation protocols are screwy, or 90% of their assumptions of what constitutes an anomalous age, or date are. Since almost all of the squinty eyed lab folks I know are downright obsessive about the quality of their procedures, and without free access to the whole database, warts and all, my money is on faulty assumptions.

    Either way, geochronology is nowhere near the ‘settled science’ folks are making it out to be.

  191. Dennis, I think that you and Ed do have common ground. Obviously, like you say, the YD impact scenario slaps Lyell and Uniformitarianism upside the head. Ed understands that fully – he has been battering his head against that steel door for a long time. But at the same time, an impact of a comet into a planet – as witnessed in July of 1994 – IS, in fact, now part of ‘what is known now to happen, every bit as much as an avalanche or earthquake are. And anything that is seen to happen in the present must be also allowed to be considered as what might have happened in the past. People like Holliday, Pinter, Paquay and Daulton never got the memo. But you and Ed did.

    The near future of impact studies will have to derive from the evidence on the ground (literally) what kinds of impacts have occurred and might occur – at pretty much any time. There will be false starts, and there will be disputes among the academic researchers and among the non-credentialed researchers, too. Incomplete evidence leads to hypotheses that may not be true, but which need to be considered, even if only fleetingly. Your geo-ablation has some merit and explains some of the evidence better than what is out there now. It may not exactly tie in with YD, but in the big picture that doesn’t matter. Ed will be the first one (maybe besides Bill Napier) to yell and scream that we’ve been hit more than one time, so if yours applies to another air burst all the better. And it really IS important to understand that KT and YD are not the only two times we’ve played planetary billiards. The astronomers’/geologists’ claim of how often we get hit is just not correct. And if we have been hit more often we need to consider if there is anything we can do about keeping it from happening again.

    You both are on the same page there. The whole field is ‘out of the box’. Ed has beaten his head on it so long his head hurts. Ed won’t be the last to give you a hard time. But you have contributions to make, just like he does. If you two would work together it would get things moved along better. Hahaha – like that is gonna happen!…LOL But, hey, I can try!

    Steve Garcia

  192. Sorry Steve, there is no common ground, and I need to make this perfectly clear to anyone who might stumble in here in the future gets confused.

    Several of Mr’s Cox’s “Boslough Impact features” were looked at by professional geologists, and they were proved to be “illusory”

    Just to make it perfectly clear, Mr. Cox was not a member of this team, and their publication of their data in no way indicates any endorsement by them of Mr. Cox’s “hypotheis”. Neither should Mr. Cox’s quotes from Firestone et al be read as an endorsement by them of Mr. Cox’s hypothesis.

    Mr. Cox is not a member of the Holocene Impact Working Group.

    Aside from that, while this is a new field of research, work on the processes cometary impact have been studied for decades, including work on other astroblemes. Mr. Cox does not represent the views of others working on recent impacts, either, despite his mention of their names here.

    The posting of links to that team’s work here in no way implies that they support or deny any hypothesis concerning CO2 warming, or any views on the processes of the end of the last ice age..

    Whether this new data support the First People’s memories of what occurred here then, is a question that the readers will have to judge for themselves.

  193. I need to add that my views are my views, and my work is my work.
    I simply did and do my best to pass on what was passed on earlier by others.

    And while it can be asserted with a fair degree of assurance that what occurred was a comet impact, we are by no means certain that that comet was the progenitor of the Taurid meteors; it can not be excluded yet that it may have been the progenitor of the Dradonic meteors.

    But once again, that is simply my opinion at the present time.

  194. Ed Grondine said:

    “And while it can be asserted with a fair degree of assurance that what occurred was a comet impact, we are by no means certain that that comet was the progenitor of the Taurid meteors; it can not be excluded yet that it may have been the progenitor of the Dradonic meteors.”

    This may be true. But as it stands now, and with Bill Napier’s work on the Taurid complex cited in this new paper as the preferred astronomical model. Then it’s official, the current state of the Younger Dryas Impact hypothesis, as written, is that the culprit in the catastrophic events of the Pleistocene Holocene transition was the progressive breakup over a period thousands of years of the Taurid Progenitor.
    Since the Clube and Napier astronomical model of coherent catastrophism implies annual multiple airburst impact storms over a period of thousands of years both before, and after the YD event, and with the YD event being simply the worst of them, then this new version of the hypothesis would seem to be supportive of almost everything you’ve been saying about multiple events all along.
    So what’re you still fussin’ about Ed?
    But if you can provide references that show a better fit to the hypothesis and the new data at hand, by all means please do!

  195. I believe I have made it abundantly clear that my unproven ideas are my own. I have also made it abundantly clear that I am in almost complete disagreement with the standard model for the geomorphology of this continent; especially the western half. So of course most mainstream geologists disagree with me. I think Sir Charles Lyell was horribly wrong at worst, and childishly naïve at best. Which is about the same as telling a group of Southern Baptist ministers that I think Jesus was a fraud.

    But then again my radical thinking isn’t what this post is about is it? That’s pretty much why I haven’t mentioned a single word of it except to respond to Mr Grondine’s ad hominem attacks.

    I didn’t start participating in this discussion to sell my thinking to anyone. Or to even talk about it for that matter. Nor did I give that tip to Anthony about this new paper with any such agenda in mind. I gave him the tip about this new paper to invite talk about the data in the new paper. That’s all

    I have never mentioned my ideas of planetary scarring in this forum. So Mr Grondine’s persistence in bringing them up, and then trashing me by implying that I make claim to endorsements by the scientists I cite in my work is a classic example of his typically disingenuous ad hominem style of invalidation.

    But since Mr Grondine’s unique style of disingenuous ad hominem is going to color the rest of this discussion, From here on out it’s life in the world according to ED. Any further participation by me is pointless.

  196. Where to start with the impact search?
    Waiting until some geologist reckons : This is the one? No, this is
    not the right way because some impacts do not leave ET material when the comet is
    made of ice/CO2 mass…..A milleniums tsunami is another indication, see Starogga
    event….or a super dust cloud as of AD 536, when the comet landed, I guess this
    time in the Sahara where there is plenty of sand…..
    ……. The real way is to take glacial temp graphs, put them into an IDEAL regular
    shape, comprizing all natural cycles and then look for impact features along
    the curves….
    All impacts lead to abrupt/instant temp drops and one can detect various forms
    of instant drops depending on size, singularity or shot gun impacts…..
    THe most amazing drop happened in the second to the present interglacial, were
    temps dropped from the interglacial peak almost right down to the glacial bottom
    a larger drop then the Clovis drop…..here we have “impact climate change” at its
    best……
    lets not whine along with Warmist crowd about warming….cooling is the
    enemy….. lets ask a Warmist: How many Hockey sticks (flat millenium temps)
    were there in paleo- history? Plenty of them?
    Meteorite Impacts and consequent cooling …..this is what has to be studied
    …..and here we find the answers for the paleoclimate…..
    JS

  197. Shame that this topic has run off the front page. Its a classic example of the wonder of WUWT.

    A post about the extinction of Mammoths leads to a new understanding of the functioning of the THC and a simple rebuttal of the oft made claim regarding the catastrophic effect of the invasion of fresh water into the North Atlantic from ice melt. One that I will use no doubt often in my own battles with the Watermelons

    Again thanks

    And again, I will put my nuts in the fire. It was a plasma discharge that did the damage. Reading all the above and the links makes it very clear. No other option answers all the questions.

  198. Ed and Dennis –

    Guys will you just STOP IT.

    Ed, you two ARE on the same side. You pissed me off starting all that up again. You didn’t have to point out the differences. On THIS issue – the YDB itself – you both are adherents to it, regardless of which particulars you pick as important or more valid. Most of our particulars will need to be adjusted, anyway, as more evidence comes in – so nobody has all the truth about it.

    Steve Garcia

  199. detailed careful fair critique of most cases of purported impact
    causes of extinctions, Grzegorz Racki, Silesian U., Poland, 64 p:
    Rich Murray 2012.03.13

    http://rmforall.blogspot.com/2012/03/detailed-careful-fair-critique-of-most.html

    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/astrodeep/message/97

    [ I’m grateful to find this posted on

    http://cosmictusk.com/tree-falls-in-forest-and-one-hand-claps-science-press-picks-the-new-mexican-black-mat-study/comment-page-1/#comments

    as a link given in a comment by Thomas Lee Elifritz
    March 8, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    I was impressed by how difficult it is to gather and mobilize evidence
    in this very complex research.

    Really courteous, patient, open-minded, detail oriented collaboration
    is essential.

    Grzegorz Racki, like many experts, in this review accepted the recent
    refutation of the YD impact hypothesis — I wonder how he will respond
    to the new wave of confirming evidence. ]

    http://www.app.pan.pl/archive/published/app57/app20110058_acc.pdf 64 pages

    This manuscript is a part of a special issue titled
    “Thirty odd years after Alvarez’s discovery:
    Faunal evolution and principal bio-events of the
    Cretaceous Period – recent progress and future
    directions” (guest editors: Elena A. Jagt-Yazykowa
    and John W.M. Jagt).

    The Alvarez impact theory of mass extinction; limits to its
    applicability and the ‘great expectations syndrome’
    GRZEGORZ RACKI
    Racki, G. 201X.
    The Alvarez impact theory of mass extinction; limits to its
    applicability and the ‘great expectations syndrome’.
    Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 5X (X): xxx–xxx.

    http://dx.doi.org/10.4202/app.2011.0058

    [ abstract ]

    For the past three decades, the Alvarez impact theory of mass
    extinction, causally related to catastrophic meteorite impacts, has
    been recurrently applied to multiple extinction boundaries.

    However, these multidisciplinary research efforts across the globe
    have been largely unsuccessful to date, with one outstanding
    exception: the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary.

    The unicausal impact scenario as a leading explanation, when applied
    to the complex fossil record, has resulted in force fitting of data
    and interpretations (‘great expectations syndrome’ of Tsujita).

    The misunderstandings can be grouped at three successive levels of the
    testing process, and involve the unreflective application of the
    impact paradigm:

    (i) factual misidentification, i.e., an erroneous or indefinite
    recognition of the extraterrestrial record in sedimentological,
    physical and geochemical contexts,

    (ii) correlative misinterpretation of the adequately documented impact
    signals due to their incorrect dating, and

    (iii) causal overestimation when the proved impact characteristics are
    doubtful as a sufficient trigger of a contemporaneous global cosmic
    catastrophe.

    Examples of uncritical belief in the simple cause-effect scenario for
    the Frasnian–Famennian, Permian–Triassic and Triassic–Jurassic (and
    the Eifelian–Givetian and Paleocene–Eocene as well) global events
    include mostly item-1 pitfalls (factual misidentification), with Ir
    enrichments and shocked minerals frequently misidentified.

    Therefore, these mass extinctions are still at the first test level,
    and only the F–F extinction is potentially seen in the context of
    item-2, the interpretative step, because of the possible causative
    link with the Siljan Ring crater (53 km in diameter).

    The erratically recognized cratering signature is often marked by
    large timing and size uncertainties, and item-3, the advanced causal
    inference, is in fact limited to clustered impacts that clearly
    predate major mass extinctions.

    The multi-impact lag-time pattern is particularly clear in the Late
    Triassic, when the largest (100-km diameter) Manicouagan crater was
    possibly concurrent with the end-Carnian extinction (or with the late
    Norian tetrapod turnover on an alternative time scale).

    The relatively small crater sizes and cratonic (crystalline rock
    basement) setting of these two craters further suggest the strongly
    insufficient extraterrestrial trigger of worldwide environmental
    traumas.

    However, to discuss the kill potential of impact events in a more
    robust fashion, their location and timing, vulnerability factors,
    especially target geology and
    palaeogeography in the context of associated climate-active volatile
    fluxes, should to be rigorously assessed.

    The current lack of conclusive impact evidence synchronous with most
    mass extinctions may still be somewhat misleading due to the predicted
    large set of undiscovered craters, particularly in light of the
    obscured record of oceanic impact events.

    K e y w o r d s: Bolide impacts, extraterrestrial markers, impact
    craters, mass extinctions, Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary,
    Triassic–Jurassic boundary, Frasnian–Famennian boundary.

    Grzegorz Racki [ racki@us.edu.pl ],
    Department of Earth Sciences,
    Silesian University,
    Będzińska Str. 60, PL-41-200 Sosnowiec, Poland.
    Received 9 July 2011, accepted 18 December 2011, available online 24
    February 2012.

    10 m broken rock hill with black glazes, W of Rancho Alegre Road, S of
    Coyote Trail, W of Hwy 14, S of Santa Fe, New Mexico, tour of 50
    photos 1 MB size each via DropBox: Rich Murray 2011.07.28 2011.08.03

    http://rmforall.blogspot.com/2011/08/10-m-broken-rock-hill-with-black-glazes.html

    http://rmforall.blogspot.com/2011/08/35479730-106085926-1865-km-el-top-10-m.html

    photos 3-5 of 50

    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/astrodeep/message/92

  200. (cross-posted at http://www.cosmictusk.com)

    The more things change, the more things stay the same.

    I had cause to go see Luis Alvarez’s 1980 K-T dinosaur killer paper at

    http://www2.coloradocollege.edu/dept/GY/ISES/docs/alvarez_et_al_1980.pdf

    Here is what Alvarez says he had to deal with – what the hypotheses were that weren’t getting the job done in explaining the K-T Extinction:

    . . . two recent meetings on the topic produced no sign of a consensus. Suggested causes include gradual or rapid changes in ocean-ographic, atmospheric, or climatic conditions due to a random or a cyclical coincidence of causative factors; a magnetic reversal, a nearby supernova; and the flooding of the ocean surface by fresh water from a postulated arctic lake. [!!!]

    Even in 1980 the ice dam/Lake Agassiz scenario was in play. Apparently different scientists who read the Alvarez paper in re the YD then picked the one that fit their discipline best – then worked up grant proposals accordingly.

    Steve Garcia

  201. Looks to me like, a body passed close, moving south east from the polar regions. gravity caused the earth to shift and the rotation pole to move north. The resultant close pass caused a massive plasma discharge, region of grand canyon, with subsequent smaller bolts in Mexico.

    The Earths change of rotational pole caused massive tsunamis that deposited up to 2,000 feet of muck and swept all in its path. The gauging of grand Canyon ejecta was deposited over a vast area with the bulk falling in Texas. The shifts caused Niagara falls to open up.

    As the body moved south it caused uplift of the Alto Plano and tilting before returning to deep space.

    Way out, I know but the evidence found supports it. Siberia, 15 degrees further south would have had the plants and animals found in the muck, mammoths and wooly rhinoceros. etc. The subsequent formation in the Andes of glaciers, which we now find have tropical plants under them as they retreat. The massive winds generated blew vast clouds of iron ore dust over the Bahamas and the vacuum left behind the passage, froze solid the dead animal remains.

    The job of scientists is to collate all the data and test the theory, not denigrate it.

  202. What data? Are you going to try to tell us the delusional fantasies of Velikovsky are science? That’s pure balderdash.The high priests of the Church of The Grand Velikovskian Delusion aren’t doing science either.

  203. Important question: How would a temp graph covering an cosmic impact
    look like?
    (1) The comet hits and immediately for the same month/year, you would
    get a clear VERTICAL temp drop line…..
    (2) after having reached the temp bottom, temps would recover again with
    a inclined growing recovery temp line…..
    This would be the graphical IMPACT PATTERN line……first vertical, then
    inclined recovery….
    With (1) and (2) we can search paleotemp. patterns which fit to impacts……..
    Anyone, who proposes other variants than the impact variant, must prove that
    the (1)+(2) impact pattern can/is also produced by other processes….
    for example: Take the ocean reversal stream variant: This must produce a
    vertical temp drop line within the SAME year, as a one-time impact would…..
    ……. The (see Wikipedia ) Dansgaard-Oeschger events are steady cyclic events
    and NOT impacts, since both up and down- graph oscillations are inclined and
    not do not contain the characteristic vertical impact line…..
    JS

  204. Dennis

    MMM. Clovis layer, formation of Niagara Falls, million of dead and frozoen mammoths, piles of rubble in Texas, iron ore deposits in the Bahamas and many such similar.

  205. Greylensman said:

    “MMM. Clovis layer, formation of Niagara Falls, million of dead and frozen mammoths, piles of rubble in Texas, iron ore deposits in the Bahamas and many such similar.”

    Contrary to your uneducated opinion, the actual mechanism for the formation of Niagara falls after the Ice sheets melted at the end of the last ice age is no mystery. You might Google up some actual geologic research on the subject before you try to pretend that it is. Or that no actual science has ever been done there. We see the very same kind of flood topography in the Pacific Northwest in the Glacial flood damaged terrains of the Channeled scablands of eastern Washington. What’s more, in Washington, the flow of water down those ancient channels has long since dried up. So we can study the resulting terrains there in great detail.
    If you’re going to mention “piles of rubble” in Texas you’re going to have to be more specific. Such as giving specific GPSs. And a geologic map of the location that’s got your imagination in such a tizzy, and such a hook in your lip. This is after all the 21st century. Have you ever heard of a thing called Google Earth, or geologic maps? Believe it or not this entire continent has been imaged to a resolution of less than .5 meter per pixel. And that excellent image data is freely available to the public. The image data is all there for all the world to see if you know what you’re looking at. So if you are going to make such a fuss about those places, now would be a good time to begin learning to read a geologic map. And to how to study and interpret terrains in high resolution satellite imagery. But in fact, there’s a lot of places that fit that description on the outskirts of every major city. They’re called “Junk Yards”.
    Your mention of “iron ore deposits in the Bahamas” also implies a mystery that may or may not exist. But again, the lack of specific locational data, or geologic maps of the place you are referring to makes it impossible to have any idea what you’re talking about. Much less form an opinion and speak about it.
    As for the millions of dead, and frozen Mammoths, your use of the word “millions” is a silly and ridiculous over exaggeration. But from Wikipedia:

    Preserved frozen remains of woolly mammoths, with much soft tissue remaining, have been found in the northern parts of Siberia. This is a rare occurrence, essentially requiring the animal to have been buried rapidly in liquid or semi-solids such as silt, mud and icy water, which then froze. This may have occurred in a number of ways. Mammoths may have been trapped in bogs or quicksands and either died of starvation or exposure, or drowning if they sank under the surface. The evidence of undigested food in the stomach and seed pods still in the mouth of many of the specimens suggests neither starvation nor exposure are likely. The maturity of this ingested vegetation places the time period in autumn rather than in spring when flowers would be expected. The animals may have fallen through ice into small ponds or potholes, entombing them. Many are certainly known to have been killed in rivers, perhaps through being swept away by river floods. In one location, by the Berelekh River in Yakutia in Siberia, more than 8,000 bones from at least 140 individual mammoths have been found in a single spot, apparently having been swept there by the current.[

    Yes, the question as to the cause of the Mega faunal extinctions is part of the puzzle of what happened at the start of the Younger Dryas. But the 12,900 year old  “Clovis Layer” while being clear, and inescapable evidence of a major impact related, catastrophic climate change at the Pleistocene Holocene transition is not supportive evidence of Velikovsky’s silly, and delusional “Worlds In Collision” scenario.
    It’s pretty obvious the you’re a Velikovskian Fundamentalist. I wouldn’t want to denigrate anyone’s religion. And it’s probably pointless to argue with a delusional framework. But regarding Velikovsky:

    “The fact is that the whole of the ramshackle edifice of nonsense to be found scattered throughout the Velikovskian corpus is purported to have a historical…foundation, but that it has none.” ~John David North
    “The philosopher David Hume urged that one should always hold it more likely that one had been deceived than that the laws of nature should stand suspended.” ~Frank Close

    Whatever Velikovsky’s delusional take on reality was, it had nothing whatsoever to do with science, or the scientific method.
    Velikovsky was no scientist. And he had no clue of things like physics, or orbital mechanics. He was also no astronomer; not by any stretch of the imagination. He didn’t even have any academic credentials to speak of. But according to him all of the laws of physics, and nature went right out the window 3,500 and 2,700 years ago when he says Venus, and Mars abruptly changed their courses and nearly collided with the Earth. He came to that stupid, and delusional conclusion by assuming that myth could inform science, and even supersede it.
    From An Antidote to Velikovskian Delusions   

    The events in Worlds in Collision are disproved by the complete absence of relevant physical evidence on Earth (such as characteristic debris in the world’s ice caps deposited during and after Earth’s near collisions with Venus and Mars 3,500 and 2,700 years ago, respectively; Ellenberger, 1984 [& Mewhinney, 1998]). If the debris Venus deposited in Earth’s atmosphere was so massive it caused 40 years of darkness after the Exodus, where is it today? There is no sign of it in the world’s ice caps or on the ocean bottoms.

    All the physical evidence in Earth in Upheaval for the recent events in Worlds in Collision can be explained without errant planets in terms of climate change with ensuing habitat degradation, some of which was arguably a consequence of cosmic accretion events, i.e., massive fireball storms, associated with Clube & Napier’s model  for “coherent catastrophism” (Asher, 1994).

    Then again, the topic of this post isn’t Velikovsky’s myth induced delusions is it? But honest to PhD Science. In fact the topic of this post is the new data presented in Evidence from central Mexico supporting the Younger Dryas extraterrestrial impact hypothesis. And since the astronomical model given in that real scientific paper is in fact Clube & Napier’s model for “coherent catastrophism” why not read the actual science in the paper they cited instead of trying to hijack this thread with your Velikovskian delusions? See Palaeolithic extinctions and the Taurid Complex

       

  206. Dennis –

    Would you just STOP?

    This is a place where people talk civilly to each other, even if – especially when – we snarc.

    You were banished from CosmicTusk.com for a week for your insulting behavior. Can’t you control your arrogance at ALL?

    STFU with your insults of what other people think.

    Steve Garcia

  207. Steve, I agree. Dennis and E.P. have seen fit to move their bar brawl from the Tusk to WUWT this week — and pick fights with patrons of the new shop! I am so embarrassed that WUWT has caught my blog’s disease. Their on-line behavior in forums is demonstrably hurtful to the subjects they advocate. What a shame, because they both have a lot to contribute if they would just sit-down, shut-up, and act with some dignity moving forward. I fear that will never happen. George Howard http://www.cosmictusk.com

  208. Great Site! I have some comments regarding the complete disservice by scientists on both sides of the debate in neglecting all the other important features surrounding the Younger Dryas

  209. Hi George –
    Not as long as you allow Dennis to continue instuling me at the Tusk.
    E.P.

    [Reply: Everybody just chill. Discuss facts and conjectures. Keep personalities out of it. Otherwise I’m ready to start snipping. ~dbs, mod.]

  210. Thank you Dennis

    I am not uneducated and as a result, i find fault with a lot of Science mainly because of your type of response. Difficult questions raise silence or ad hominems or vitriol rather than rational debate.

    Yes , I have questions and doubts but I ask them , investigate them, seek supporting data and try to learn. That is what science is about.

    One estimate is that 5 million mammoths alone virtually make up the entire structure of several arctic islands. Something caused that and something massive, outside our experience.

  211. Oh and Dennis, re the Scablands, how long did the massive flood formation in hours take to be accepted and when? And yes re Niagara, my point is that it formed at the same time, not how.
    ( the studied and published data, I am aware of)

    Temperature slopes, good point but an artifact of age and sampling accuracy, possibly. We KNOW something happened.

  212. > The Vostok and EPICA Dome C data are deuterium, not O-18

    Thanks for noticing. I’ve now done what you could have done, and corrected it. That’s the great thing about wiki; it gets better. Unlike this post, which is still wrong.

    I’m sure you’ll all be delighted to know that “The Great Satan” drew the picture you’re relying on.

    > while you are earnestly trying to improve the Wikipedia ointment, we still cannot ignore the myriad carcasses of dead flies

    You never bother to try to improve it. And (as demonstrated in this post, and many other posts at this point) you all use wiki as your reference, whenever it suits you. But you never dare address the arguments on the GW page.

    > Wikipedia is next to useless wherever there is controversy. It is basically a battle of who has the most free time. Since the alarmists have hundreds of millions, billions of dollars in funding for agitprop, they can give communications prizes to fund the spamming of that site

    You have no evidence for that, and as far as I know it isn’t true. I know of no-one paid to edit climate, either “skeptic” or otherwise.

    > Possibly the earth was…

    It is sweet that you want to try and think about these things. But thinking without a body of knowledge will do you know good; you need to start by reading, not writing. Try http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Younger_Dryas#Causes

    > We skeptics would like to correct Wikipedia errors, as well as correct the noted bias where opposing viewpoints on climate issues are deliberately suppressed by Connolley and crew in violation of NPOV. But we cannot…

    How would you know? You never try. You’re happy sitting on the sidelines saying “oh dearie me how terrible the world is”.

    > overturning of the THC back in 2004. The stopping of the Gulf Stream is literally impossible, and I knew exactly what Wunsch was talking about

    Wunsch is patiently trying to explain that when people talk about THC stopping, they don’t mean the gulf stream stopping, they mean something different. Because, yes, the THC isn’t wind-driven, as indeed its very name suggests. The THC isn’t the gulf stream. Saying that the gulf stream will continue tells you nothing at all about the likihood of THC collapse.

    > The YD corresponds with changes in 10Be and 14C production rates

    {{cn}}

  213. Ed Grondine speaks of oral traditions of the Assiniboine that give an account of an impact event that’s associated with the draining of one of the Glacial Lakes in the Pacific Northwest. There three glacial lakes at the foot of the Cordilleran Ice sheet. And only two can be suspects in those tribal memories.  Lake Columbia, and Lake Missoula.

    I don’t know anything about Assiniboine oral traditions. But I do happen to know a fair amount about the Glacial Lakes of the Pacific Northwest. I lived in Spokane Washington for 16 years and am well familiar with the ‘Channeled Scablands’, Otherwise known as the Grand Coulee, of Eastern Washington. I used to spend my weekends flying an ultra light aircraft, and chasing coyotes down in those coulees, pretending I was Luke Skywalker chasing Womprats. It’s an old playground of mine. So I am very familiar with those catastrophic terrains. I am also familiar with the mechanism that caused the sudden drainage of lake Missoula.

    During the ice age Glacial Lake Missoula was impounded behind an "Ice Dam" when a tongue of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet called the Purcell lobe extended down south far enough that it formed and ice damn that blocked the south fork of the Clark Fork River in Northern Idaho. Lake Missoula filled and drained many times during the ice age in a repeating cycle. The Glacier would advance, blocking the river and backing up the waters of Lake Missoula. When the lake level would get high enough that the ice damn couldn’t hold back the pressure of all that water the damn would fail, releasing a catastrophic flood downstream. The glacier would advance again, blocking the river again, and the cycle would repeat. Judging by the number of strand lines from Lake Missoula’s ancient beaches, the cycle may have repeated as many as 40 times during the last ice age. The last time it happened has been dated to about 10,000 years ago.

    We should note here that since this new iteration of the YD impact hypothesis specifically ties the hypothesis to the Taurids. And the progressive breakup over thousands of years of the Taurid progenitor object. So in other words, the severe impact storms of the Pleistocene Holocene transition caused by Taurids may have been an annual event for millennia both before, and after 12,900 YA. And it just may be that the YD trigger event was only the worst of them.

    The last great flood from Lake Missoula has been dated about 10,000 YA. So the Assiniboine memories may be related to that last event. And well after the YD trigger event.

    Another blockage occurred to the west where the Okanogan Lobe of the CIS plugged the Columbia River’s course creating Glacial Lake Columbia; a body of water with a 500 square mile surface area at maximum fill. The same process happened there many times during the ice age as well.

    And the biggest of all of the mega floods of the late Pleistocene can also ruled out as being associated with the Younger Dryas event because it dates to too long ago. The Bonneville flood released nearly 1,000 cubic miles of water. And the volume was twice as large as the biggest Missoula Flood. However, unlike the Missoula Floods, the Bonneville Flood occurred over a period of several weeks approximately 17,400 years ago.

    The geology of the region has been intensely studied. And the mechanism of the repeated formation, and subsequent ice damn failures of the Glacial Lakes of the Pacific Northwest is well understood. Although the story of how geologists came to understand how it all actually did happen is a very exiting read in itself, so far there has been nothing found in the geological record to indicate any of the often repeated great floods of the Channeled Scablands of Eastern Washington were related to an impact event.

    Mr Grondine tells us:

    “The “Great Fire” was seen by other peoples besides the Sioux (I can not share who with you now, nor their accounts), but you have to remember that the Sioux proper were farther north, most likely along the open Cordillera.”

    The  problem with that statement is that any memories of a time when there was water in either Glacial Lakes Missoula, or Columbia must also be memories of a time when anyplace north of either of them was under the Cordilleran Ice Sheet. And Lake Bonneville is off the suspect list of lakes the first peoples may have remembered because at 17,400 YA it was too long ago.

    The use of the term “open Cordillera” is a bit confusing.

    All of the Mountain ranges of the western half of the continent extending from Southern Mexico to Alaska, from the Rockies of Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and Montana to the Sierra Nevada, Cascade, and Olympic Ranges of the Western Coastal states, as well as all of the mountain ranges of Western Canada can be described by the broad term “Open Cordillera”. So it’s not clear which Mountains Mr Grondine is referring to with his use of that term. But the Bitterroot Range formed southwestern shores of Lake Missoula. And every thing north of the lake was under the Cordilleran Ice Sheet untill about 10,000 years ago. All of the Canadian Rockies are sometimes called the Canadian Cordillera. But they were under the CIS during the ice age too. And the mountains west of the Channeled scablands and south of the CIS were the Cascades

    There couldn’t have been any human settlements north of Glacial Lake Missoula at the time. Because the Cordilleran Ice sheet that blanketed the western half of the northern tier of the continent was every bit as thick and extensive as the Laurentide Ice Sheet that blanketed the Northeastern side of the continent. It was up to two miles thick in places. And it blanketed almost all of western Canada all the way to the Pacific

    The CIS extended as far south as the northern shores of glacial Lakes Missoula, and Columbia. The Purcell Trench lobe of the CIS was the lobe that extended still further south to block the Clark Fork River in Northern Idaho with an ice damn impounding the waters of Lake Missoula. And an ice dam formed by the Okanogan lobe of the CIS blocked the Columbia River Channel and impounded the waters of Lake Columbia

    An ice damn was required for a glacial lake to fill up. And that only happened during an ice age. So at any time in the past when there was water in Lake Missoula or lake Columbia there was also an extensive ice sheet that made anywhere north of either of them unfit for human habitation.

    Simply put: No ice sheet=no ice dam. No ice dam=no glacial lake. Or: Glacial lake=ice dam=ice sheet north of lake=unfit for human habitation.

    Unfortunately, even if those oral traditions are accounts of an impact event that’s associated with the draining of one of the Glacial Lakes, the catastrophic damage done to the terrains of the Pacific Northwest by the the great floods was so extensive, and so extreme, that it may have removed all traces of anything but the floods themselves.

  214. @Dennis Cox –

    Mr Grondine tells us:

    “The “Great Fire” was seen by other peoples besides the Sioux (I can not share who with you now, nor their accounts), but you have to remember that the Sioux proper were farther north, most likely along the open Cordillera.”

    The problem with that statement is that any memories of a time when there was water in either Glacial Lakes Missoula, or Columbia must also be memories of a time when anyplace north of either of them was under the Cordilleran Ice Sheet. And Lake Bonneville is off the suspect list of lakes the first peoples may have remembered because at 17,400 YA it was too long ago.

    The use of the term “open Cordillera” is a bit confusing.

    The American Cordillera extends the entire length of the Pacific coast of South America and North America. “Open Cordillera” would therefore apply to what portion was not covered by the CIS.

    As to the Sioux, this from Wikipedia agrees with what I happen to know about the Sioux:

    Wikipedia: “The Lakota [Sioux] were originally referred to as the Dakota when they lived by the Great Lakes. Encroaching European-American settlement in Canada eventually led them to migrate west from the Great Lakes region.”

    The Sioux simply were never in the Cordillera region during that time. They were over 1,000 miles to the east. Ed knows a lot more about tribes than I do, though, so perhaps Ed is aware of something else about their earlier history.

    But all this is off topic, anyway.

    Steve Garcia

  215. I am wondering if the Cayman Trench topography could indicate a ‘blow out’ of enormous proportions? Since the impact trajectory was from NNW going SSE leaving those Carolina impact craters, the Cayman area would seem to be the ‘front’ of the material receiving the shock wave.
    Or perhaps it is antipodal to the actual impact site? It just boggles my mind that such an evident catastrophic site is not speculated upon with determination.

  216. katesisco perhaps you should take a look at: http://cosmictusk.com/davias-presents-to-geological-society-of-america-on-carolina-bays/

    The Carolina Bays may indeed be related to an impact into the Laurentide Ice Sheet. But they are too old to be related to the YD event. If they do have a cosmic origin, since there is no shock-metamorphic materials in them, they are definately not the result of a direct hypervelocity impact. But rather, the ejecta from one.

    Their orientation points to the location of that proposed impact, not the trajectory of the primary impactor.

    If they are related to an impact into the LIS, then they will have formed by secondary impacts of impactites. That being the ejecta consisting of large chunks of ice thrown out from those impacts.

    It is extremely doubtful, if not impossible that the Cayman Trench had anything to do with it.

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