The entry to the Fire Command Post at Triangle Mountain in 1943. It has been heavily camouflaged. (Photo courtesy of Parks Canada, Fort Rodd Hill National Historic Site Collection)

How Triangle Mountain got its name

It was used as a navigational aid as a point of triangulation for ships

Colwood’s Triangle Mountain is now home to several residents as the area has developed over the years. But many of them don’t know where it got its name.

According to Kate Humble, curator at Fort Rodd Hill, the area was originally called triangular hill. Humble said it was used as a navigational aid as a point of triangulation for ships that were entering the harbours.

During the Second World War, the area was turned into a command post and was part of a coastal defense system.

“There were 20 locations across the entrances to the Victoria and Esquimalt harbours,” Humble said. “They were like studs on a belt and they all had different purposes…some were gun batteries, some were observation posts and all of them working together was called a fortress defense system.”

Humble said the different posts served as a wall of defense for the harbours and many of them had been in place since the mid to late-1800s.

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But in the Second World War, threats from air and sea became even greater as technology advanced and so the Fire Command Post was built on Triangle Mountain.

“It was the nerve centre of the whole operation,” Humble said. “All of the batteries and so on acted as the limbs of a body and Triangle Mountain was like a brain sending signals and instruction to all of the different pieces of the body.”

Humble said the command post on Triangle Mountain instructed batteries on where and when to fire at enemy ships, which is why it was called the Fire Command Post.

Now, Humble said the remnants of the command post are long gone along with the others that were part of the fortress defense system. Fort Rodd Hill stands as an example of how the others functioned.

Triangle Mountain is now filled with homes, as opposed to soldiers.

“Most people have no idea what used to go on up there, all those soldiers crawling around,” Humble said.

shalu.mehta@goldstreamgazette.com


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An aerial shot of Triangle Mountain from 1943. The Fortress Command Post is camouflaged, but the supporting buildings can be seen on the right hand side. (Photo courtesy of Parks Canada, Fort Rodd Hill National Historic Site Collection)

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