Glaciers don’t just form in the Antarctica or Arctic. So where do glaciers form? They can form anywhere where cold air remains most of the year. This includes mountain areas near the equator. Mountain areas are always colder than areas near sea level. Listed below are some of the world’s largest glaciers.
Fun Facts About The World’s Biggest Glaciers for Kids
- Vatnajokull in Iceland is a massive sheet of ice and the biggest glacier in Europe. It covers 3,127 square miles of land – almost one-tenth of Iceland. Volcanoes under the ice erupt and melt the ice, sometimes causing severe flooding. This glacial ice is 1,300 feet deep in some places!
- The Vatnajokull glacier is the setting for the opening scene in A View to a Kill, the James Bond movie from 1985. It also served as a shooting location during season 2 of the Game of Thrones HBO television series in 2011.
- The Perito Moreno Glacier in the Southern Andes Mountains in South America is part of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. You’ll find dozens of glaciers in this cold wilderness, but the Perito Moreno is the most spectacular glacier. The glacier is 18.6 miles long and covers 99.6 square miles of land.
- The Perito Moreno Glacier is one of the glaciers that is growing in size. Scientists (glaciologists) have not agreed on why that is happening.
- The Aletsch Glacier in the Bernese Alps in Switzerland is 15.3 miles long and covers 33.5 square miles of land.
- The Khumbu Glacier of the Himalayas in Nepal is part of the route to Mount Everest. Climbers must climb its steep path to reach the mountain’s summit. Khumbu Glacier is 7.5 miles long covers 18 square miles of land.
- The Khumbu Glacier is the highest glacier in the world.
- Ever think you could see a glacier in a rainforest? On the west coast of New Zealand’s South Island is Franz Josef glacier and it descends to within 1,000 feet above sea level.
- Franz Josef Glacier has been melting quickly since 2008. It is currently 12.6 square miles and 6.4 miles long.
- Glaciers, all of them, form only on land.
- Every continent except Australia hosts glaciers within its mountain ranges.
- The largest reservoir of fresh water on Earth is held in glaciers.
The World’s Biggest Glaciers Vocabulary
- Equator: imaginary line stretching around the middle of the Earth
- Massive: huge
- Erupt: burst forth
- Spectacular: amazing
- Steep: almost vertical
All About The World’s Biggest Glaciers Video for Kids
Here’s a great video for kids on the World’s Biggest Glacier:
The World’s Biggest Glaciers Q&A
Question: Are glaciers dangerous?
Answer: Most glaciers are in remote places, but they can be dangerous. Glaciers can cause avalanches that can kill hikers or anyone living nearby. Glacial melt can cause flooding. One such flood killed 6,000 people in Peru. Since then, workers have created canals to control the flooding here.
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