Alberta has a varied topography, from mountain peaks along the western border, to lowland areas in northeastern Alberta. These topographical features influence rivers, climate, vegetation, soils, land use and where people live.
In general, Alberta slopes gently downward from the southwest to the northeast. At 3,747 m above sea level, the summit of Mount Columbia is the highest point in Alberta and the second highest point in the Canadian Rockies. In contrast, the lowest area in the province -- where the Slave River leaves Alberta for the Arctic Ocean -- is only 150 m above sea level.