Pollen assemblages, diatom assemblages, and sedimentology, from Cumbres Bog in the southeastern San Juan Mountains of Colorado, provide a record of climate and environmental change since the end of the last glacial maximum (LGM). Cumbres Bog is unusually deep (basal sediments extend 12 m below the surface) for its altitude (~3050 m a.s.l.) and we extracted 7 m core of continuous sediment below ~5 m of water and peat. The resulting record provides strong evidence of: a period of warming immediately after the LGM (~18-13 cal. kyr BP), a cool interval coinciding with the Younger Dryas (~12.8-11.5 cal. kyr BP), a warm stable period from 10 to 6 cal. kyr BP, and a cooler and highly variable climate interval after 6 cal. kyr BP. More specifically, pollen ratios and fossil diatoms indicate that cold periods generally match with previously identified periods of rapid climate change that occurred at 10.6, 8.7-7.9, 7.0-6.9, 5.4-5.2, 3.3-3.0, 2.3, 2.0 and 1.5 cal. kyr BP. This record also adds resolution to previous regional records and indicates that the periodicity of climate variability changed from 2000-3000 years to 700-1100 years around 6 cal. kyr BP and to <500 years after 3.5 cal. kyr BP. Overall, our record provides important, relatively high-resolution paleoclimatic information for this remote region of the southern Rockies.
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- Cumbres Bog core
- El Niño-Southern Oscillation
- Holocene climate
- San Juan Mountains
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