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Glacial change

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"I’ve been watching the glacier for more than 20 years and I’ve seen it in worse shape," says DeJong.

But according to Slaymaker, Horstman Glacier is not studied as carefully as it should be, especially since it sees year-round use.

"There is a need for more careful measurement," he says, noting that two of his graduate students are studying two other Whistler-area glaciers – Fitzsimmons and Joffre – this summer. "We’re not totally sure what’s going on."

DeJong and Slaymaker both sum up the local debate slowly but surely, just like the glaciers they’re talking about.

"We’re all in this together," DeJong says.

"It’s rather simple, but it’s important," concludes Slaymaker. "It’s all interconnected."