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Columbia Icefield: Big but Getting Smaller


Columbia Icefield courtesy Athatbasca Glacier Icewalks

The Columbia Icefield covers 215 sq km (83 sq mi) and is up to 365 m (1200 ft) deep—it’s the largest accumulation of ice in the Rockies. Icefield meltwaters feed the Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic oceans (plus people and crops) making it one of two triple continental divides in the world (the other is in Siberia). But this popular attraction is getting smaller due to global warming. Athabasca Glacier markers note that the ice recedes up to 10 m (33 ft) annually. So take an Ice Explorer ride or icewalk while you can. — JN

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