Orazio Marucchi discovered the opening to this pyramid in 1831, not in the north wall, but rather in the pavement of the courtyard. The interior was not entered until 1839, when Perring explored the lowest chambers by entering through a
Today, the causeway leading to the mortuary temple and Userkaf's valley temple remain uninvestigated and unexcavated. The mortuary temple and the pyramid itself were protected by a large enclosure wall.
Strangely, the mortuary temple was built on the south side of the pyramid. 4th Dynasty rulers built theirs on the east side, as did most of the other rulers of the 5th Dynasty. 3rd Dynasty rulers built their mortuary temples on the north side of their pyramids. Every Egyptologist seems to have a different explanation for the mortuary temple's location. Perhaps the most likely is that there simply wasn't enough space, as the pyramid was likely located between Djoser's Step Pyramid and a great trench, leaving room only on the south side for the temple. Another explanation, given the 5th Dynasty's occupation with the sun cult, is that on the south side of the pyramid the mortuary temple could be bathed in sunlight all day.
It is very difficult to arrive at details of the mortuary temple. Not only was it subject to stone thieves over the years, but during the Saite period a large shaft tomb was built in its midst.