Peak Finder

Photo: Looking northwest to Mist Mountain from Highway #40

Mist Mountain

  • 3140 m (10,302ft)
  • First Ascent
  • Naming History
50.5542N -114.910W
Located between Storm Creek Valley and Mist Creek Valley

Range: Misty
Province: Alberta
Park: Kananaskis
Headwater: Bow
Major Valley: Highwood
Visible from Highway: 40S, 546
Ascent Date: 1946
Ascent Party: Donald King, Alan Blayney, Len Blayney, York Blayney
Year Named: 1884
Named by: George Dawson
Named for: Mist; The range and the mountain were named by George Dawson in 1884 after he experienced a prolonged period of bad weather below the western slopes of the range.

The spectacular cliffs of Mist Mountain are most attractive both from the Sheep River and from the prairies to the east. The steep, ribbed, vertical ridges of the east face often hold snow well into the early summer when it has melted off the nearer and lower mountains. Even without the snow-highlighting the ribs often cast interesting shadows across the face. The mountain is at the southern end of the Misty Range.

During the 1940's Don King and a group of friends from High River explored and climbed in the Highwood and Sheep Valleys. They began a tradition, which lasted for several summers, of camping on the summit of a mountain west of their home town and, at a pre-arranged time and date, shooting flares into the night sky. Hundreds of people in the area would assemble on hilltops and other suitable sites to watch the show which occurred precisely on the second as planned. At 11:00 pm on July 7th, 1946, the launch site was the summit of Mist Mountain - the first recorded ascent of the mountain.

"Beyond the Hills," is a book of poetry written by Donald King and based on his group's explorations and climbs. The following was inspired by his experiences on Mist Mountain.

ON MISTY MOUNTAIN

I climbed to the top of a mountain,

Mounted God's stair to the skies;

I looked to the east with amazement,

Westward I stared in surprise;

I stood on the spire of a nation,

Held half a world in my eyes.

When suddenly a cloud settled over,

Quickly the vapours rolled in

So silent, and eerily soundless,

Setting directions a-spin;

The sun was a full moon of crimson

Bright where the curtain held thin.

Somewhere to the east sprawled the prairies,

Westward a peak-studded wall;

As shroudlike the white mists enveloped

My world in their foggy, wet pall;

I stood in the middle of nowhere,

Gazing at nothing at all.

*A hiking route to the summit is described in Gillean Daffern?s Kananaskis Country Trail Guide Volume 2.

Photo: Looking southwest to Mist Mountain from Highway #546 in the Sheep River Valley

Looking northwest to Mist Mountain

Looking southwest to Mist Mountain from Highway #546 in the Sheep River Valley

Looking northwest to Mist Mountain from Highway #40

Looking northwest to the Misty Range from Highway #40

Looking northwest to the Misty Range (Mist Mountain at left) (courtesy Sonny Bou)

Looking northwest to Mist Mountain from Highway #40

Looking southwest to Mist Mountain from Highway #546 in the Sheep River Valley

Looking south to Mist Mountain from Cougar Mountain (courtesy Sonny Bou)