As impressive a mountain as there is, in my opinion, Mount Saint Elias, as seen from Icy Bay, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park.
The mountain is actually on the border of Alaska and the Yukon Territory, Canada, so it’s not only the 2nd highest mountain in the US, it’s also the 2nd highest mountain in Canada. Mt Logan, 25 miles to the north, is the highest mountain in Canada. The peak of Mount Saint Elias is a mere 10 miles from the shores of the Taan Fjord in Icy Bay, which means the vertical relief, which I spoke about yesterday, is huge.
Though the mountain was climbed before either Denali or Mt. Logan, few people climb Mount Saint Elias – the weather can be pretty horrendous, storms a’ plenty, so I’m told. I thought about a quick run up to the summit for snapshot, using the timer on my camera to grab my photo, but the timer is only 20 seconds at the longest, which I didn’t think would give me time to get to the top and in position for the photo.
An enormous glacier spills off the mountain t the south, towards the coast. Can anyone name it?
Oh, as I’ve tried to give the native names for most of the mountains in the park as I’ve posted there photos, I’ll give a little info about Mount Saint Elias. The local native people (the Tlingits, pronounced close to ‘Cling-ite) called the mountain Yaas’eit’aa Shaa – it translates as ‘mountain behind Icy Bay’. I’m fairly sure this is the origin of the name ‘Yahtse’, which is the name of a nearby glacier, river and mountain, though I’m unsure. It’s also the name of a popular board game that was around when I was a kid at least in Australia, I don’t know if it was a game in the US. Shaa Tiéin is another name used by the Yakutat Tlingits for the mountain, which translates, simply, as ‘Big Mountain’. Way cooler than ‘Mount Saint Elias’, in my opinion.
Mount Saint Elias (Yaas’eit’aa Shaa), from Icy Bay, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park, Alaska.