Peak Finder

Photo: The Twins (left) and Snow Dome from the southeast on Castleguard Shoulder

Snow Dome

  • 3456 m (11,339ft)
  • First Ascent
  • Naming History
52.1872N -117.317W
Located on the continental divide on the Columbia Icefield between Dome Glacier and Athabasca Glacier

Range: Winston Churchill
Province: Alberta/BC
Park: Banff/Jasper
Headwater: Saskatchewan/Athabasca/Columbia
Visible from Highway: 93N
Ascent Date: 1898
Ascent Party: J. Norman Collie, H.E.M. Stutfield, H. Woolley
Year Named: 1898
Named by: J. Norman Collie
Named for: The mountain is dome shaped and covered by the Columbia Icefield.

Norman Collie named the mountain "The Dome" in 1898. In 1919 the name was modified to "Snow Dome." The day after climbing Mount Athabasca, Norman Collie and his party ascended the right side of the Athabasca Glacier and bivouaced for the night. Setting off at 1:30 the next morning they headed for the chisel shaped, glacier draped mountain (Mount Columbia) they had seen towering above the opposite side of the icefield. At noon, when they seemed no closer to their goal, they turned back, more aware now of the size of the icefield they had discovered. Collie and Hugh Stutfield later wrote, "To the eastward of where we stood, and almost on our way home, rose a great white dome, and we determined to ascend it. After a hot and very tiring climb through snow that broke under our feet at every step, we finally reached the summit at 3:15. We have named this peak The Dome." The broad, smooth summit of what is now called the Snow Dome is the hydrographic apex of North America. This means that water from this point flows to three Oceans; through the Saskatchewan and Nelson Rivers to the Atlantic, through the Columbia to the Pacific, and through the Athabasca, and eventually the Mackenzie to the Arctic.

Photo: Looking west to Snow Dome and Dome Glacier from the Icefields Parkway