Crunching home through snow after a winter walk, we found ourselves on such wind-slabs, albeit more modest in scale, Swiss not Arctic. They held your weight up to a point, though you could suddenly find your foot sink into a slab, and the slabs had fissures between them like islands.

‘The front hooves, which are larger, are used in winter to break and paw through wind-slabbed snow and groundfast ice. The muskox also uses its chin for this purpose.’

Source: Barry Lopez, Arctic Dreams, 59

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