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Athabasca Pass Canadian National Historic Site - Research Paper Example

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It is located at GPS coordinates of N 52.3833 and W -118.1889. It encompasses immense beauty which includes rivers, lakes, trees, meadows and rock formations. The characteristics of Athabasca Pass change…
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Athabasca Pass Canadian National Historic Site Paper
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Athabaska Pass Athabaska Pass is a crossing through the rocky mountains of western Canada. It is located at GPS coordinates of N 52.3833 and W -118.1889. It encompasses immense beauty which includes rivers, lakes, trees, meadows and rock formations. The characteristics of Athabasca Pass change with seasons. The Rocky Mountains, through which Athabasca Pass traverses, form the boundary between two provinces that are British Columbia and Alberta. The crossing route i.e. Athabaska Pass falls in both these provinces. “The Alberta side of the pass falls entirely within Jasper National Park of Canada and is administered by Parks Canada. The British Columbia side of the site is provincial crown land administered by the British Columbia Ministry of Forests” ("Athabasca pass national," ). Athabasca mean “where the reeds are” in Cree which is the description of the delta where Athabasca river enters into Athabasca lake. Apart from the exotic beauty that Athabasca Pass embraces, the site holds archaeological remains that include artifacts relating to the fur trade from the nineteenth century.
The historical geographical importance of Athabasca pass relates to it being a link between the east and the west. The natives of this area have always used this land as a transportation route. Between 1811 and 1850, Athabaska Pass was an important trade route for fur. David Thompson first searched for this route in order to get around the barrier mounted by the Piegan Indians at Howse Pass. Until the mid 1850’s; both the British and American barters used this route for their commercial activities due to its strategic location on the Continental divide. Later on due to certain conflicts between the British and American traders, Hudson’s Bay Company which was a pioneer in the fur trade industry withdrew from the profession. This incident rendered the Athabasca Pass idle. However, later on in 1848, a new mail service emerged which started using this route. This new mail service used to bring mail from New York to Panama by steamboats and then transported these mails to the Oregon Coast by another boat. This path made the mail service quite efficient. In 1855, the mail service suspended their use of this route, after which the pass was used occasionally.
George Simpson, Governor of the Hudsons Bay Company, named the pond at the top of the pass as "Committees Punch Bowl" in 1824. In 1826, Botanist Thomas Drummond studied the diverse flora and fauna of this region for the first time. Later in 1827, a Scottish botanist named “David Douglas mistakenly recorded Mount Brown and Mount Hooker to be over 5,000 meters high after crossing Athabasca Pass” ("Jasper national park," 2009). This discovery incorrectly labeled these mountains as the highest peaks in the Canadian rock formations. But this misconception was later rectified in 1892 by Dr. A.P. Coleman, a geology professor, who discovered the aforementioned peaks to be far smaller than the heights measured by David Douglas. “Athabaska Pass was designated a national historic site of Canada in 1971 because:
- the Athabaska Pass was, for almost half a century, part of the main fur trade route between Canada and the Oregon country.” ("Athabasca pass national," ).
Works Cited
Athabasca pass 1753 m 5750 ft. (n.d.). Retrieved from pass
Athabasca pass. (2002, September 22). Retrieved from
Athabasca pass national historic site of canada. (n.d.). Retrieved from
Athabasca pass national historic site of Canada natural resources Canada Athabasca pass quad, Alberta, topographic map. (n.d.). Retrieved from
Jasper national park of Canada. (2009, November 19). Retrieved from
National historic sites in the mountain national parks. (2010, January 25). Retrieved from Read More
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