Western Arctic

Although large areas of the Yukon remained ice-free during the Pleistocene, the remainder of the western Canadian arctic was glaciated. Many of the deeper lakes (> 20 m) were created by glacial scour or morainal damming of mountain valleys. Kettle lakes and oxbow lakes are common in areas of low relief such as on the Mackenzie River Delta. The formation of thermokarst lakes is most active in the ice-rich soils of the arctic coastal plain. Most western arctic aquatic habitats have low conductivities, but saline lakes do occur in coastal regions.