Glaciation has had a huge impact on the shape of the New Zealand landscape. Enormous rivers of ice once flowed out onto the Canterbury Plains, stretched beyond the current West Coast shore of Te Waipounamu/ South Island, and spread down the slopes of the volcanoes in central Te Ika-a-Maui/North Island. These glaciers of past ice-ages built plains and vast rocky moraines, sculpted fiords and valleys, and carved out deep lakes.
This book tells the stories of our glaciers though the lens of human interaction, with chapters moving through time from first Maori discoverers to colonial explorers, mountaineers and modern glaciologists. In the process, the book investigates the way nature, science and culture interact and sometimes collide, while providing a fascinating insight into the way New Zealand’s glaciers work.
As the world warms, our glaciers are disappearing at an unprecedented rate, which gives ‘Vanishing Ice’ an important, if not poignant, place in the books about Aotearoa’s natural world. It deserves to be widely read.