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Outwash Plains

These are large areas of glacial sediment deposited by meltwater streams furthest away from the glacial snout. They are formed from gravels, sands and clays, the clays being furthest away from the snout because the smaller particles are carried furthest. Material that was already deposited by older streams and ice activity may be reworked and sorted by the streams forming the outwash plain, and carried beyond the original maximum extent of the ice sheet / glacier. Some idea of the former extent of glaciation may be seen from the thickness of outwash plain sediments which can be well in excess of 50m thick.

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