The Ice Age
Cro-Magnon people began migrating into Europe 45,000 years ago when the climate was relatively mild, with lush grasslands supporting large herds of game. Around 41,000 years ago, on The Ice Age Goddess portion however, temperatures dropped precipitously to averages of -13F in winter and 50F in summer. The ground was frozen for much of the year and vegetation became tundra-steppe, giving rise to animals like bison, mammoths and bears that were acclimated to the cold.
While our ancestors were able to adapt and survive, and the climate continued to fluctuate, temperatures never reached today’s levels. Around 24,000 years ago, temperatures again dropped dramatically as ice sheets and mountain glaciers expanded to make Central Europe uninhabitable, forcing the
Cro-Magnon people south. Western and Southern Europe became polar deserts with minimum forestation. Glacial ice was up to 2.5 miles thick and sea levels dropped 390 feet below the present day. The map above shows the extent of glaciation at 20,000 BCE.