Lake sediments from a closed basin in southern Patagonia (Argentina) provide a continental archive with to reconstruct climate change and to test the interhemispheric synchroneity of abrupt events. High-resolution sub-bottom seismic profiles of Lago Cardiel indicate substantial lake-level changes since the late Pleistocene, which were identified and dated in a series of long piston cores. These data allow the reconstruction of the regional water balance at 49'S since the late glacial. The seismic stratigraphy reveals a dry late glacial climate with a desiccation of the basin around 11 220 yr BP (14C). Lake level rapidly increased by 135 m at the Holocene transition. Following the early Holocene highstand at + 55 m, lake level never dropped significantly below modern level. The palaeoclimate changes implied by the Lago Cardiel record are out-of-phase with those implied by records from tropical South America and demonstrate considerable latitudinal asynchroneity in the climate evolution of this continent.
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