Selkirk Mountains: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Selkirk Mountains
Countries Canada, United States
Provinces/States British Columbia, Idaho, Washington
Part of Columbia Mountains
Borders on Monashee Mountains, Purcell Mountains, Cariboo Mountains
Highest point Mount Sir Sandford
 - elevation 3,519 m (11,545 ft)
 - coordinates 51°39′24″N 117°52′03″W / 51.65667°N 117.8675°W / 51.65667; -117.8675
Length 525 km (326 mi), NS
Width 175 km (109 mi), EW
Geology Metamorphic rock
Period Mesozoic
Location map of the Selkirk Mountains

The Selkirk Mountains are a mountain range spanning the northern portion of the Idaho Panhandle, eastern Washington, and southeastern British Columbia. They begin at Mica Peak near Coeur d'Alene, Idaho and extend approximately 320 km north (200 miles) from the border. The range is bounded on its west, northeast and at its northern extremity by the Columbia River. From the Columbia's confluence with the Beaver River, they are bounded on their east by the Purcell Trench, which contains the Beaver River, Duncan River, Duncan Lake, Kootenay Lake and the Kootenay River. The Selkirks are distinct from, and geologically older than, the Rocky Mountains. Together with the neighbouring Monashee and Purcell Mountains, and sometimes including the Cariboo Mountains to the northwest, the Selkirks are part of a larger grouping known as the Columbia Mountains.

The Selkirks were named after Thomas Douglas, 5th Earl of Selkirk.



During the development of Western Canada, the Selkirks presented a formidable barrier to the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway, until A.B. Rogers discovered the mountain pass that bears his name in 18811882. As a result of the railway's construction via that route, Mount Revelstoke and Glacier National Parks (Canada) in the heart of the Selkirks were among the first national parks created in Canada, along with Yoho, and Banff National Parks. Until the completion of the Trans-Canada Highway via the Rogers Pass, automotive traffic between most of British Columbia and the rest of Canada necessarily was forced to follow the path of the Columbia River via its Big Bend, around the north end of the Selkirks.


The southern end of these mountains are home to the only extant woodland caribou population in the contiguous United States.[1] This area, some of it protected in Washington's Salmo-Priest Wilderness, is also home to mule deer and white-tailed deer, elk, black bears, cougars, bobcats, red fox, bald eagles, golden eagles, osprey, blue heron, porcupine, badgers, coyote, pine martens, bighorn sheep, and moose. Although rarely seen, grizzly bears and gray wolves are also known to roam through this region.[2]


External links


Coordinates: 49°47′N 117°30′W / 49.78°N 117.5°W / 49.78; -117.5


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

SELKIRK MOUNTAINS, a range in the S.E. of British Columbia, Canada, extending N. for about 200 m. from the American frontier with a breadth of about 80 m. and bounded E., W. and N. by the Columbia river. Though often spoken of as part of the Rocky Mountain system, they are really distinct, and belong to an older geological epoch, consisting mainly of crystalline or highly metamorphosed rocks, granites,, gneiss, schists; their outline too is rounder and less serrated than that of the Rockies.

On the S.E. is the Purcell range, with the main chain of the Rockies still farther E., and on the W. the Gold range, prolonged northward as the Cariboo Mountains. They do not rise much above io,000 ft., the highest peaks being Sir Donald (named after Lord Strathcona), 10,645 ft.; Macdonald (named after Sir John Macdonald), 9440 ft.; and Mount Tupper (after Sir Charles Tupper), 9030 ft. The scenery is wild and magnificent; below the snow-line, especially on the western side, the slopes are densely wooded, and enormous glaciers fill the upper valleys; of these the most celebrated is that of the Illecillewaet, near Glacier House, on the Canadian Pacific railway. The Selkirks are crossed by the railway at Rogers Pass, discovered in 1883. The engineering difficulties overcome are greater than at any other portion of the line, and the grades are in places very steep. A magnificent series of caverns, called the Nakimu Caves, occur in the Glacier Park Reserve not far from Glacier on the Canadian, Pacific railway. These caves are formed by the Cougar Creek, and were first comprehensively surveyed in1905-1906(see the Canadian Surveyor-General's Report for that year).

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