The Pingos of Tuktoyaktuk

A pingo, also called a hydrolaccolith, is a mound of earth with a core of ice found in the Arctic and subarctic regions, that can reach up to 70 meters in height and up to 600 meters in diameter. Pingos are formed as a result of what is called a “closed” system of unfrozen soil developing within an area of permanently frozen ground. Pingos usually grow a few centimeters per year, and the largest take decades or even centuries to form. Pingos eventually break down and collapse. Evidence of collapsed pingos in an area suggests that there was once permafrost.

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