Where are glaciers located?

Most of the world's glacial ice is found in Antarctica and Greenland, but glaciers are found on nearly every continent, even Africa. Because certain climatic and geographic conditions must be present for glaciers to exist, they are most commonly found above snow line: regions of high snowfall in winter, and cool temperatures in summer. This condition allows more snow to accumulate on the glacier in the winter than will melt from it in the summer. This is why most glaciers are found either in mountainous areas or the polar regions. However, snow line occurs at different altitudes: in Washington State the snow line is around 1600 meters or 5,500 feet), while in Africa it is over 5100 meters, and in Antarctica it is at sea level. The amount of snowfall a glacier can transform into ice is very important to its survival, which is why even a cold region like Siberia experiences almost no glaciation—there is not enough snowfall.

Approximate Worldwide Area Covered by Glaciers square kilometers)

Antarctica 11,965,000
(without iceshelves and ice rises)
Total glacier coverage is nearly 15,000,000 square kilometers, or a little less than the total area of the South American continent. The numbers listed do not include smaller glaciated polar islands or other small glaciated areas, which is why they do not add up to 15,000,000.)
Greenland 1,784,000
Canada 200,000
Central Asia 109,000
Russia 82,000
United States 75,000 (including Alaska)
China and Tibet 33,000
South America 25,000
Iceland 11,260
Scandinavia 2,909
Alps 2,900
New Zealand 1,159
Mexico 11
Indonesia 7.5
Africa 10