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Mount Murchison (Possible 11,000er?)
Timestamp Free: 2018.06.17 - 16:18:39
Ranges: North America Ranges / Rocky Mountains / Canadian Rockies / Continental Ranges / Front Ranges / Murchison Group
  (1 days)     Elevation Gain: 1800m
Participants: Raf K, Vern D
Difficulty: 4: Difficult scrambling to 5.2 depending on route, if dry.
A one day ascent of Mount Murchison's highest peak.
Mount Murchison has been tempting Raf and I ever since we first got a really good look at her summit from across highway 93 while enjoying our ascent on Mount Sarbach in 2009. Already in 2008 my appetite for this mountain was wet by Andrew Nugara's trip report of him and his brother's 23 hour ascent of the true (SE) summit where they discovered a scrambling route but didn't provide very many details of it.

Murchison is a huge massif, covering a main mountain with two summits plus 7 other towers which are adjacent to the main summits. Something else that is fascinating about Murchison is that it's listed height (3333m) is actually not the true height of her highest (SE) summit. The first ascent party didn't actually summit the highest point and the first officially recorded summit of the highest point on Murchison wasn't until Rick Collier did it in 1996 and built the first cairn / register on top of it - see Murchison - Approach and Climb both Summits. (Collier tentatively claimed the FA but later learned that John Martin had summited previously but left no cairn so Collier's group was probably the 2nd summit party.) The amazing thing is that this huge brooding mountain is right by a major set of highways (93 and 11) and is photographed and gazed at by hundreds of people every day from the Saskatchewan River Crossing and yet it's only been ascended a handful of times - literally. Why? Because it's only 3333 meters high and with no published routes it sits in mountaineering obscurity (for now). But it's not 3333m high. It's higher than that. And it might just be high enough to enter into a magical height category which would dramatically increase its traffic if ever proven - 3353m or 11,000 feet.

This trip was very last minute - just like our Sarbach...

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