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Free Images of Chimney Bluffs State Park - NY

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Lake Ontario is one of the five Great Lakes in North America .  To the north, west and southwest, it is surrounded by the Canadian province of Ontario .  To the south and east, its shores are along the American state of New York .  The border of these two nations meet in the middle of the lake.  The shores of the lake allow many opportunities for nature sighting and geological features.  

 

Great Lakes Drainage Basin

Great Lakes Drainage Basin © Environment Canada
Source:  http://www.ec.gc.ca/grandslacs-greatlakes/default.asp?lang=En&n=03B3F448
This reproduction is a copy of an official work that is published by the Government of Canada.  
This reproduction has not been produced in affiliation with or with the endorsement 
of the Government of Canada.

Located about 45 miles east of the city of Rochester in New York State , on the east side of Sodus Bay , one has a marvelous opportunity to see erosion in action.  Acquired by the State in 1963, New York State ’s Chimney Bluffs State Park provides walking trails for visitors to witness an ever-changing landscape. 

 Chimney Bluffs State Park pinnacles.

Chimney Bluffs - 7

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Eroded glacial till Chimney Bluffs State Park

Chimney Bluffs - 22

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What are Drumlins?

Let’s begin with a discussion about drumlins.   Drumlins are tear-shaped, elongated hills that have a gentle slope at one end and a higher height at the other.  The generally accepted thought is that as glaciers moved across the land during the ice age, they picked up sediments and pushed them along.  (Note:  Glaciologists still disagree as to exactly how drumlins were formed.)  When the sediment pile grew to be a size that the ice could no longer push, the ice moved up and over the sediment pile.  What was left behind is a oval hill made up of compacted till - clay, sand, gravel and various sizes of pebbles, rocks and stones.

Drumlins have an average length/width ratio of 2 or 3 to 1.  They often occur in groups called a “drumlin swarm” or “basket of eggs”.   They are blunt on the upglacier end and taper into an elongated tail on the downglacier end.  They form parallel to the direction of the movement of the ice.

 

Eroding sandy cliffs.

Chimney Bluffs - 1

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It is estimated that there are roughly 10,000 drumlins located south and east of Lake Ontario .  One such drumlin can be found at Chimney Bluffs State Park.  As the lake grew, it began eroding away the northern end of the drumlin, exposing the cliffs. Visiting the Park is an excellent opportunity to see the erosion process in action as the drumlin erodes into the lake.  The erosive power of wind, rain, snow and waves upon this drumlin has sculpted the shoreline landscape into earthen spires and sharp pinnacles resembling chimney stacks. You can walk along trails through Beech and Sugar Maple forests and take note of mudslides that have taken whole trees and sections of the trail down the slopes.  Note how the woodland is slowly falling away into the lake. 

 

Dirt pathway at Chimney Bluffs Park NY

Bluff Trail (Forest Path -37)
Begin your cliff exploration with a walk through a deciduous forest.

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Wooden boardwalk at Chimney Bluffs Park New York

Bluff Trail (Wood Boardwalk - 6)
Crossing the wooden boardwalk on the Bluffs Trail.

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Eroding drumlin beside Lake Ontario.

Chimney Bluffs - 2

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Eroding drumlin beside Lake Ontario.

Chimney Bluffs - 3

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Mudslides at Chimney Bluffs Park New York

Chimney Bluffs - 4
Mud slides transport trees down the cliff to the shore.

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Intact trees that have moved down the cliff landing on shore.

Chimney Bluffs - 5

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Eroding till from glacial drumlin Chimney Bluffs State Park NY

Chimney Bluffs - 6

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Tall pinnacle spires at Chimney Bluffs State Park NY

Chimney Bluffs - 8

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Chimney Bluffs  State Park Image Pages    [1]    [2] 

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