This landscape was originally interpreted as loess mixed with underlying sands. This paper re-evaluates this landscape through a spatial analysis of data from auger samples and soil pits. To better estimate the loamy sediment’s initial textures, we utilized “filtered” laser diffraction data, which remove much of the coarser sand data. Our new model for the origin of the loamy mantle suggests that the sands on the uplands were generated from eroding gullies and saltated onto the uplands along with loess that fell more widely.
Simulation of late glacial atmospheric conditions with atmospheric general circulation models suggest a strong anticyclone over the Laurentide Ice Sheet and associated easterly winds along the glacial margin. In the upper Midwest of North America, evidence supporting this modeled air flow exists in the orientation of paleospits in northeastern Lower Michigan that formed ∼13 ka in association with glacial Lake Algonquin. Conversely, parabolic dunes that developed between 15 and 10 ka in central Wisconsin, northwestern Indiana, and northwestern Ohio resulted from westerly winds, suggesting that the wind gradient was indeed tight.
DTA has not been field tested to the extent that traditional field metrics of topography have been. Human assessment of topography synthesizes multiple parameters at multiple scales to characterize a landscape, based on field experience. In order to capture the analysis scale used by field scientists, this study introduces a method for calibrating the analysis scale of DTA to field assessments.
County soil surveys document thin loess deposits across large tracts of Michigan’s western Upper Peninsula (UP), which we informally call the Peshekee loess. Our study is the first to examine the distribution, thickness and textural characteristics of these loess deposits, and speculate as to their origins. We introduce and describe a method by which the mixed sand data are removed, or “filtered out,” of the original particle size data, to better reflect the original textural characteristics of the loess.