Weekly Photo Challenge: Forces Of Nature

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Forces of Nature.”

When I read the title of this week’s Photo Challenge, I immediately thought of some stormy sea pictures I’ve taken in Ireland, but the request is to share something from “our corner” of the world. With Switzerland being “my corner”, most people might assume I’d be posting some pictures of the Matterhorn (or any other mountain), snow avalanches or any well-known-Swiss-thing, but the fun thing about sharing stuff from your corner is to share some less known stuff from your corner, right?

So let me tell you about the Gletschergarten (which means “garden of glaciers”), one of my favourite places here since I was a child.

After the Ice Age, apparently the melting water of the glaciers has been rotating some big rocks and hence created huge potholes. But let me quote some information of the home page of the Glacier Garden as it is much better explained:

This model of a ‘glacial mill’ from 1896 illustrates the outdated first theory of how potholes were formed. It was believed that big rocks, rotated by meltwater, similar to a flour mill, had ground the holes into the bedrock. 

Contrary to those beliefs, we now know that glacial potholes were formed at the base of a glacier by the force of pressurized meltwater carrying sand and gravel, forming vortices with high speeds. This process can erode large holes within only a few years.

The rock in the model can only be rotated by the low-flowing water because it is hollow and light. The model is being conserved for its value to the history of science.

The first picture is my contribution to this week’s challenge, and shows the man made model of the glacial mill. The others are just so you can get an idea of what the potholes look like and how deep they are.

watermarked-forces of nature 1

tn_watermarked-forces of nature 2 tn_watermarked-forces of nature 3 tn_watermarked-forces of nature 4 tn_watermarked-forces of nature 5

The holes are truly massive! I’ve always been absolutely amazed by the way they were created. In fact, I still am. Actually, I should go back and visit that place again…^^

Visit www.gletschergarten.ch for more information on the place 🙂

Forces of Nature

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