Mount Temple (Alberta)
North face of Mt. Temple from Mt. Fairview
|Elevation||3,544 m (11,627 ft)|
|Prominence||1,544 m (5,066 ft)|
|Listing||List of Ultras in Canada|
|Topo map||NTS 82N/08|
|Type||Quartzite and limestone|
|Age of rock||550 million years|
|First ascent||1894 by Walter Wilcox, Samuel Allen and L.F. Frissel|
|Easiest route||Scramble (SW)|
Mt. Temple is located in the Bow River Valley between Paradise Creek and Moraine Creek and is the highest peak in the Lake Louise area. The peak dominates the western landscape along the Trans-Canada Highway from Castle Junction to Lake Louise.
The mountain was named by George Mercer Dawson in 1884 after Sir Richard Temple who visited the Canadian Rockies in the same year. Mt. Temple was also the first 11,000-foot (3,400 m) peak to be climbed in the Canadian segment of the Rocky Mountains.
On July 11, 1955, in one of Canada's most tragic mountaineering accidents, seven American male teenagers were killed on the southwest ridge route. A warm summer day had caused several nearby avalanches. They finally decided to turn back and during the descent, an avalanche swept 10 members of the party 200 m (656 ft) down the snowfield through a bottleneck of rocks. Unfortunately, the entire party only had one ice axe among them and were not well prepared for the seriousness of the route. The party had also gone up the route without either of their two group leaders.
The mountain offers several routes for climbers and the normal route on the southwest side offers a moderate class scrambling route. See Scrambles in the Canadian Rockies for a description of that route. Climbers must be careful on this "easy" climb due to falling rock and if lost on the route, steep cliffs and avalanches.
- South-West Ridge (Normal Route) (I)
- By late July or early August, the southwest ridge is generally free of snow and is a moderate scramble for experienced parties. An ice axe is recommended for the summit.
- East Ridge (IV 5.7)
- North Face, Elzinga/Miller (IV 5.7)
- North East Buttress, Greenwood/Jones (III, 5.7, A3 or 5.10) One of the most secure route of the north side of the mountain. Free climbed in August 1983, René Boisselle and Bernard Faure, Re: CAJ, 1984, p. 130.
Current route conditions can be obtained from a climbing warden at the park information centre in Lake Louise. A climber's log outside the centre may also provide comments from other climbers.
- 1988 Sphinx Face (VI 5.9 A2) Ward Robinson and Rob Orvig.
- 2004 Sphinx Face (VI 5.9 M6) Raphael Slawinski and Valery Babanov (first winter ascent).
- Mountain peaks of Canada
- Mountain peaks of North America
- Mountain peaks of the Rocky Mountains
- Mountains of Alberta
- "Mount Temple". Bivouac.com. http://www.bivouac.com/MtnPg.asp?MtnId=1584. Retrieved 2012-07-17.
- Mount Temple on the Canadian Mountain Encyclopedia (bivouac.com)
- "Mount Temple". PeakFinder. Retrieved 2003-12-14.
- "1955 Accident Report". Alpine Club of Canada - Edmonton Section. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2003-12-14.
- MacDonald, Dougald (31 March 2004). "Second Winter Route on Temple". Climbing Magazine Hot Flashes. Retrieved 20 June 2009.
- Mt. Temple on Peakware
- Computer-generated virtual panorama from Mount Temple
- Mount Temple on scrambles.ca