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Pilgrimstad revisited - a multi-proxy reconstruction of Early/Middle Weichselian climate and environment at a key site in central Sweden

  • Barbara Wohlfarth
  • Helena Alexanderson
  • Linda Ampel
  • Ole Bennike
  • Stefan Engels
  • Timothy Johnsen
  • Jan Lundqvist
  • Paula Reimer
Publishing year: 2011
Language: English
Pages: 211-230
Publication/Series: Boreas
Volume: 40
Issue: 2
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Taylor & Francis

Abstract english

The site Pilgrimstad in central Sweden has often been cited as a key locality for discussions of ice-free/ice-covered intervals during the Early and Middle Weichselian. Multi-proxy investigations of a recently excavated section at Pilgrimstad now provide a revised picture of the climatic and environmental development between similar to 80 and 36 ka ago. The combination of sedimentology, geochemistry, OSL and 14C dating, and macrofossil, siliceous microfossil and chironomid analyses shows: (i) a lower succession of glaciofluvial/fluvial, lacustrine and glaciolacustrine sediments; (ii) an upper lacustrine sediment sequence; and (iii) Last Glacial Maximum till cover. Microfossils in the upper lacustrine sediments are initially characteristic for oligo- to mesotrophic lakes, and macrofossils indicate arctic/sub-arctic environments and mean July temperatures > 8 degrees C. These conditions were, however, followed by a return to a low-nutrient lake and a cold and dry climate. The sequence contains several hiatuses, as shown by the often sharp contacts between individual units, which suggests that ice-free intervals alternated with possible ice advances during certain parts of the Early and Middle Weichselian.


  • Geology


  • ISSN: 1502-3885
Helena Alexandersson
E-mail: helena [dot] alexanderson [at] geol [dot] lu [dot] se


Quaternary Sciences

+46 46 222 44 83



Aeolian sand project

Project members
Members of the aeolian sand project: Martin Bernhardson, Sara Florén, Edyta Kalińska-Nartiša and Helena Alexanderson.

Read more about the project here.