The Finger Lakes
License: CC BY-NC 3.0
The Finger Lakes in upstate New York are what is left from fingers of ice from a large Pleistocene glacier.
Amazing But True!
- The Finger Lakes are deep. At its deepest, Cayuga Lake is 435’ deep, 53’ below sea level.
- The lakes contain a lot of glacial sediment.
- The lakes were carved by glaciers during several glacial advances.
- During the glacial advances, ice covered all of New York and much of Pennsylvania.
With the links below, learn more about the Finger Lakes. Then answer the following questions.
- PRI1932, Glacial Ice Sculpted Our Finger Lakes Region (video): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91kk9AuHGYU
- Paleontological Research Institution, Formation of the Finger Lakes (webpage): http://www.priweb.org/ed/finger_lakes/nystate_geo3.html
- What was the landscape like before the fingers of ice carved out the lake beds?
- What is the glacial history of the region?
- Why did the ice flow in the opposite direction from the way the rivers had flowed?
- What was happening beneath the glacier that led to the features that are now seen in the Finger Lakes region?
- Describe the processes that create glacial moraines.
- Why is there water in these old glacial basins?