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Scree, Wastwater, Cumbria

These chutes of loose stones, known as scree, formed as a result of freeze-thaw weathering.

Water seeps into cracks in the rock, expanding when it freezes and seeping in deeper when it melts, gradually splitting the rock apart. The loose fragments are removed by gravity and fall onto the scree slopes beneath. The scree fragments move downhill under gravity, with new pebbles and boulders being added each year. The scree slopes extend out beneath the lake (England’s deepest), which was itself formed by glacial erosion during the Ice Ages that ended about 10,000 years ago.

The rocks here are volcanic – ancient lavas and ash-flows that erupted almost 500 million years ago.

Wastwater Scree, Lake District

Wastwater scree
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