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Photo: Mount Bosworth from the east on the Trans-Canada Highway near Lake Louise

Mount Bosworth

  • 2771 m (9092ft)
  • First Ascent
  • Naming History
51.4636N -116.333W
Located on the continental divide south and west of lower Bath Creek; north buttress of Kicking Horse Pass;

Province: Alberta/BC
Park: Banff/Yoho
Headwater: Bow/Columbia
Visible from Highway: 1, 93N
Ascent Date: 1903
Ascent Party: Topographical Survey
Year Named: 1903
Named for: Bosworth, G.M. (Mr. Bosworth was a freight manager and the fourth Vice President of the CPR.)

The southern slopes of this mountain feature a huge avalanche chute that threatens the Trans-Canada Highway in years of heavy snow.

1971 was said to be the, "Year of the Hundred Year Avalanches" and was the first time that the slope was bombed to release the snowpack. A slide down a minor chute caused worry amongst the park staff and Peter Fuhrmann, the Alpine Specialist for Parks Canada at the time, set off in a helicopter to bomb the slope.

When the charge hit the snow the avalanche began, even before the charge went off. As quoted in the Winter 2000-2001 issue of Mountain Heritage Magazine, Furhmann recalls, "The slide created a huge fracture line all the way across the mountain and [the slide] started to move very, very slowly. It was awe inspiring. Then the explosive charge went off and the slide started to pick up momentum. It was the only time I had ever seen a slide turn from white into complete black. The reason was that he slide was ripping out major timber and the soil with it. The timber and the soil were mixing with the snow to create a black cloud. Massive spears of timber were flying in all directions. When the slide hit the highway it took out everything. It went right across the highway, across Sink Lake and across the valley to the old 1A Highway. All the telecommunications to the west were wiped out and the impact was so great that it moved the bed of the railway."

Looking west to Mount Bosworth from Herbert Lake

Photo: Avalanche slopes on Mount Bosworth from the south on the Lake O'Hara Road

Looking east-northeast to Paget Peak (left) and Mount Bosworth from the Kicking Horse gravel flats

Photo: Mount Bosworth from the east on the Trans-Canada Highway near Lake Louise