The seasonally thawed surface layer above permafrost.
- A bear can dig an entrance in a peat bank up to 120 cm deep by digging through the active layer into the permafrost and then digging to excavate the main body of the den.
- In streams of both regions, flows peak rapidly for several days as snow and ice melt in late May; then, stream discharge attenuates slowly as the active layer thaws.
- The larger and larger trees indicate that the active layer, which thaws each summer, is deeper and deeper, giving roots of large trees room to grow down.
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Syllabification: ac·tive lay·er
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