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Posts tagged Lake Tekapo

Bright Blue Glacial Lakes of New Zealand’s South Island

44S 170.1E

January 11th, 2012 Category: Lakes

New Zealand - January 10th, 2012

The three bright blue, roughly parallel lakes in this image of New Zealand’s South Island are (from left to right): Lake Oahu, Lake Pukaki and Lake Tekapo. They are all alpine glacial lakes in the Mackenzie Basin, near the Southern Alps. The bright blue color comes from “glacial flour”, the extremely finely ground rock particles from glaciers feeding into the lakes.

Lake Oahu is the smallest of the three, with a surface area of 60 km². Lake Tekapo is the second-largest, covering an area of 83 km². Lake Pukaki is the largest of the three, covering an area of 178.7 km². Visible at the lake’s northern end is the Tasman River.

 

Glacial Lakes Near Southern Alps, New Zealand – December 10th, 2011

44S 170.1E

December 10th, 2011 Category: Image of the day, Lakes, Rivers

New Zealand - November 25th, 2011

Three roughly parallel alpine glacial lakes in the Mackenzie Basin of New Zealand’s South Island appear bright hues of blue and green in this image (from left to right): Lake Oahu, Lake Pukaki and Lake Tekapo.

All three lakes were created when the terminal moraines of receding glaciers blocked their respective valleys, forming moraine-dammed lakes. The glacial feed to the lakes gives them a distinctive blue colour, created by glacial flour, the extremely finely ground rock particles from the glaciers.

Lake Oahu is fed by the Hopkins and Dobson rivers, which have their headwaters in the Southern Alps. It is the smallest of the three, with a surface area of 60 km².

Lake Pukaki is the largest of the three, covering an area of 178.7 km². The lake is fed at its northern end by the braided Tasman River, which has its source in the Tasman and Hooker Glaciers, close to Aoraki/Mount Cook.

Lake Tekapo is the second-largest, covering an area of 83 km2. The lake is fed at its northern end by the braided Godley River, which has its source in the Southern Alps to the north.

Lakes by the Southern Alps on New Zealand’s South Island – December 9th, 2010

44.6S 169.2E

December 9th, 2010 Category: Image of the day, Lakes

New Zealand - December 8th, 2010

Various lakes of different colors can be observed near the Southern Alps in this image of New Zealand’s South Island. The bright blue lakes in the upper right quadrant are located in the Mackenzie Basin.

Here, moving diagonally downward from the  upper right is the bright blue Lake Tekapo, followed by bright turquoise Lake Pukaki and finally by the medium blue Lake Ohau. South of these three is the artificial Lake Benmore (best observed in the full image).

Continuing to the southwest beyond the limits of the basin, the dark blue Lakes Hawea (right) and Wanaka (left) can be observed. Southwest of those two is Lake Wakatipu, medium blue with a reverse “N” shape.

Sediments Spilling from Waitaki River, New Zealand

44.9S 171.1E

June 23rd, 2010 Category: Lakes, Mountains, Rivers, Sediments

New Zealand - June 2nd, 2010

New Zealand - June 2nd, 2010

Rivers flowing down from the Southern Alps of New Zealand’s South Island release sediments into the Pacific Ocean. One of the most noticeable of these is the Waitaki River (center of coastline), fed by streams issuing from Lakes Ohau, Pukaki, and Tekapo (left to right) in the Mackenzie Basin. Here, those lakes appear bright blue amidst the snow-capped peaks of the Alps.

The Waitaki River drains a 4,565-square-mile (11,823-square-kilometre) basin, flowing southeast for 130 miles (209 km) to enter the Pacific at Glenavy, about 70 miles (113 km) north of Dunedin. The Waitaki River Power Development, which includes several large dams, is one of the largest hydroelectric projects in the nation.

Lakes Connected to the Waitaki River, New Zealand – March 16th, 2010

44.4S 170.2E

March 16th, 2010 Category: Lakes, Rivers, Sediments

New Zealand - February 23rd, 2010

New Zealand - February 23rd, 2010

The Waitaki River is a large river in the South Island of New Zealand, some 110 km long. It passes Kurow and Glenavy before entering the Pacific Ocean between Timaru and Oamaru on the east coast of the South Island. The rivermouth can be seen towards the bottom of this image, releasing sediments into the ocean. The median flow of the Waitaki River at Kurow is 356 cubic metres per second.

The Waitaki is the major river of the Mackenzie Basin. It is a braided river which flows through Lake Benmore, Lake Aviemore and Lake Waitaki (visible in reverse order upon tracing the river’s path upstream). These are ultimately fed by three large glacial lakes, Tekapo, Pukaki and Ohau (upper right quadrant, from northeast to southwest).