Mount Murphy

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Aerial view of Mt. Murphy

Mount Murphy is a massive, snow-covered and highly eroded shield volcano with steep, rocky slopes. It is directly south of the Bear Peninsula in Westarctica. The mountain is bounded by the Smith, Pope, and Haynes Glaciers. Its lower slopes terminate at the Crosson Ice Shelf.

Discovery and name

Mount Murphy was delineated from aerial photographs taken by U.S. Navy Operation Highjump in January 1947. Named by US-ACAN for Robert Cushman Murphy of the American Museum of Natural History, noted authority on Antarctic and sub-Antarctic bird life. While serving on a whaling ship, he charted the Bay of Isles region of South Georgia.


During a 1968 biological survey of Marie Byrd Land, Mount Murphy was one of the few locations where snow petrels were discovered. In addition to the petrels, the survey team also found algae.


  • Bucher Peak (75°20′S 110°52′W) at 2,445 meters (8,020 ft), is one of the highest peaks in the west-central summit area of the Mount Murphy massif.
  • Buettner Peak is a sharp peak rising midway along the north wall of Roos Glacier in the northwest part of the Mount Murphy massif.
  • Dorrel Rock