Saint Elias is the second-highest mountain within both Canada and the United
States. It is second to Mt. Logan in Canada. Denali is the highest peak in the
United States, followed by Mt. Logan for the highest mountains in North
America. It is found in Alaska.
Why Is It Famous?
became known for its tremendous height, dramatic views, and diverse wildlife.
The notable vertical relief is immense, rising over 18,008 feet in only 10
miles from Icy Bay to Taan Fjord.
Mount Saint Elias is 70 miles northwest of
Yakutat City, Alaska. The closest airport is Yakutat Airport in the city of the
It is the
closest mountain of its size to the ocean, being only 35 miles away. The Saint
Elias National Park spans 8,323,147 acres and includes several volcanoes, some
that are active like Mount Churchill and Mount Wrangell. Mt. Saint Elias is
part of a larger mountain chain covering many acres. The range is home to
Malaspina, which is the biggest single field of ice in Alaska. It is the ninth tallest
mountain in America.
Elias’ first recorded sighting was July 16, 1741. This was from the Russian Vicus
Bering. The first ascent was made by the Duke of the Abruzzi in 1897. He was
the famous explorer Prince Luigi Amedeo.
1946 marked the second
ascent from the Harvard Mountaineering Club, with Dee Molenaar, a noted
historian. It was a large party and included a woman, Betty Kauffman, among
several men. Their climb took 11 camps, three on the mountain and the rest on
Icy Bay. Airlift food drops supported them along the way.
In 2007, the
documentary “Mount St. Elias” from Austria about skiers on a mission to make the
longest descent was made. It had a limited release in 2009.
Mount Saint Elias has an impressive summit and is very close to the Gulf of Alaska. It is known for its steep ascent.
Image courtesy of fineartamerica.com.