Mount Logan, which is part of the St. Elias Mountains and located in Kluane National Park, Yukon, is Canada’s highest mountain. It is named in honour of the Geological Survey of Canada’s founder William Logan. In 1992, the Royal Canadian Geographical Society mounted a major expedition to climb Mount Logan in celebration of the Survey’s 150th anniversary and Canada’s 125th.
While ubiquitous today, GPS was not fully operational in 1992. As the precise height of Mount Logan had not been measured accurately, it seemed appropriate to use this emerging technology to get a precise height.
The 13-person expedition, led by the Survey’s Michael Schmidt, included members from Survey, the Geodetic Survey, and Parks Canada, with a support team at the Arctic Institute of North America’s Kluane Lake Research Station. The climbers reached the summit on June 6 and again on June 8, obtaining two independent measurements of its elevation, despite there being only four-hour windows daily with sufficient GPS satellites. The expedition announced the new official height of 5959 meters on Canada Day 1992.
The expedition’s legacy continues today, ranging from public and school presentations to current research programs tackling the tectonics of the St. Elias Mountains.
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