Glacier Features: Crevasses

Crevasses are cracks in glacier ice caused by changing stresses as ice moves. Crevasses may form on the glacier surface, on its underbelly, or on the sides. During fieldwork, crevasses can pose a safety hazard to researchers.

H.F. Reid photo of crevasse on Stockje GlacierAn explorer nears a crevasse on Stockje Glacier in the Pennine Alps, Europe. —Credit: Photograph by Harry Fielding Reid. 1894. Stockje Glacier: From the Glacier Photograph Collection. Boulder, Colorado USA: National Snow and Ice Data Center.

Crevasses can form under the surface, such as this Antarctic crevasse named Mongo. —Credit: Photograph by Russ Alger, Cold Regions Research and Environmental Laboratory.

Last updated: 16 March 2020