Magazine article Geographical

Mountain Confusion. (Exploration & Discovery)

Magazine article Geographical

Mountain Confusion. (Exploration & Discovery)

Article excerpt

John Shipton, son of the late mountaineer and explorer Eric Shipton, has mounted a campaign to clear up confusion surrounding the name of the highest peak of Patagonia's Cordillera Darwin mountain range.

The 2,469-metre peak, first climbed by Eric Shipton and a team of three Chileans in 1962, was named Monte Darwin by the expedition, in honour of its status as the highest peak in the range. As Shipton's team acknowledged, however, another Monte Darwin, farther south and 40 metres shorter already existed. This diminutive Monte Darwin, originally thought the taller of the two, had been named during the voyage of HMS Beagle in the 1820s.

To add to the confusion, the higher mountain is also known as Cerro Luis de Saboya, a name given to it by the priest and explorer Alberto de Agostini earlier in the 20th century. In 1970, a New Zealand expedition tried to settle the matter by referring to the higher peak as Monte Shipton and the lower by its original appellation of Monte Darwin, but current opinion is divided, with modern maps referring to the mountain variously by all three names. …

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