The Earth consists of many diverse geological features and mountains are some of the most fascinating of these. Usually formed by volcanic or tectonic activity, mountains reduce in height due to the erosion by wing as they get older. It is no wonder that the tallest mountains in the world, The Himalayas are also the youngest. All of the ten highest peaks are located in the Himalayan mountain range and here is a list of the ten tallest mountains in the world.
1. Mount Everest- 8,848 meters
Undoubtedly the most famous mountain in the world, the Mount Everest is a favourite with adventurous climbers all over the world since it is the highest mountain in the world. At 8848 meters, it is, however, the fifth tallest mountain measured from the Earth’s centre since there are taller undersea mountains not visible from outside the water. Many experienced climbers are of the opinion that despite being the highest mountain in the world, it is not very difficult to scale. This mountain is located in Nepal near its border with China.
It is believed that the Everest is 60 million years old and formed by the movement of the Indian tectonic plate pushing up against the Asian plate. The Everest grows by a quarter of an inch(0.25″) every year. It is covered with deep snow throughout the year with an average wind speed of 200 mph and the temperature is as low as -80F. Nepal government has started to remeasure Everest in 2017 because of 2015 earthquake and the activity will get finished in 2020.
2. K2- 8,611 meters
Located in Pakistan near its border with China and Tajikistan, this is the second highest mountain in the world and is also one of the most difficult to scale. It has a height of 8611 meters and belongs to the ‘eight thousand’ club, which can be climbed only by the most skilled mountaineers. According to recent statistics, this mountain has the second highest fatality rate in the world and for every four people who reach the peak, one dies to try. This has earned the mountain the name ‘Savage Mountain”.
The name of one of the tallest mountains in the world has been given by British surveyor T.G. Montgomerie with “K” designating the Karakoram Range and “2” because it was 2nd peak listed. It is also known as Savage Mountain because of extreme difficulty terrain. The mountain is prone to extreme and prone severe storms that make it quite difficult to climb. The base camp is located on the Pakistani side from where all the climbing will begin.
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3. Kanchenjunga- 8,586 meters
This mountain is the highest in India and the third highest in the world with a height of 8586 meters above sea level. It is located in the state of Sikkim close to the border with Nepal. According to Hindu mythology, the area around Kanchenjunga is believed to hold the five treasures of God – gold, silver, gems, holy books and grains. This mountaintop is one of the most difficult to scale because of the high ice walls that need to be climbed before reaching the peak.
The name Kangchenjunga means “Five Treasures of Snow,” that refers to the mountains five peaks. The five peaks are named as Kangchenjunga Main, Kangchenjunga West, Kangchenjunga Central, Kangchenjunga South and Kangbachen. It was first climbed by Joe Brown and George Band, on 25 May 1955 and they both are part of a British expedition. The threat of avalanche makes the route of the mountain quite difficult.
4. Lhotse- 8,516 meters
This mountain in Tibet is the fourth highest mountain in the world and is connected to the Mount Everest by a narrow corridor passing along the Himalayan mountain range called South Col. In Tibetan, Lhotse means South Peak and this mountain has multiple peaks of differing height, all in the 8000+ club. The main peak is 8,516 meters high, Lhotse Middle (East) is 8,414 meters and Lhotse Shar is 8,383 meters above sea level. This mountain is located near the Tibet-Nepal border and is very popular with climbers all over the world.
The mountain was first climbed by the Fritz Luchsinger and Ernst Reiss from Switzerland on May 18, 1956. The south face of the mountain is one of the largest mountain faces in the world and after various unsuccessful attempts, it was successfully climbed in the year 1984. The base camp was located on the moving glacier and have the smallest topographic prominence value of any mountain more than 8,000 meters.
5. Makalu- 8,485 meters
This mountain is located close to Mount Everest in Nepal and 19 kilometres southeast of the highest mountain in the world. This Mountain is an isolated peak and has the shape of a four-sided pyramid. The peak stands at a height of 8481 meters above sea level making it the fifth highest mountain in the world. Though this peak is not as well known as Mount Everest, it is a very challenging climb only attempted by the very best. You will also love reading about dangerous active volcanoes.
The mountain looks like a perfect pyramid with our sharp ridges and known for its beauty across the globe. It has a beautiful valley at the base known as Makalu-Barun valley. The mountain range is known for its high waterfalls and deep gorges rare types of plants and animals that are visible only in this region. It is believed that it is one of the most difficult mountains to climb because of the combination of rock and ice.
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6. Cho Oyu- 8,188 meters
This is the sixth highest mountain in the world and like all the other mountains higher than it; it is located in the Himalayas in Tibet. It has a height of 8201 meters above sea level. The name of the mountain means Turquoise Goddess in Tibetan and stands for the beautiful colours of the mountain ice. It is in the Khumbu sub-section of the Mahalangur Himalaya 20 km west of Mount Everest. The name Cho Oyu translates to “the Turquoise Goddess”.
Image Source: Wikimedia
7. Dhaulagiri- 8,167 meters
Dhaulagiri, literally meaning White Mountain, is located just outside Central Nepal and is the seventh highest mountain in the world with a height of 8167 meters above sea level. It is separated from the Annapurna, one of the highest mountains in the world by a valley and the sheer cliffs on the side of these two mountains stand to face each other. These ice-clad cliffs drop vertically to a height of almost 4000 meters and are a very challenging climb. For about 30 years, this mountain was thought to be the tallest in the world because it appears so daunting. The beautiful white mountain was the first ascent by Kurt Diemberger, Peter Diener, Albin Schelbert (Austria), Nawang Dorje and Nima Dorje (Nepal) on May 13, 1960. The Nepalese name originates from Sanskrit name dhawala giri that means “beautiful white mountain,” which is quite adapt to the mountain peak.
8. Manaslu- 8,163 meters
This is one of the highest mountains in the world and is located in the Nepalese Himalayas, towards the west of Nepal. Its name comes from the Sanskrit word “Manasa” meaning soul or spirit and so this mountain is called the Mountain of the Spirit. This mountain was first scaled by a Japanese expedition in 1956 and since then has been a favourite with Japanese climbers just as the Mount Everest is popular amongst British climbers.
The region is famous for small teahouses along the Manaslu trek and “Manaslu” means ‘the mountains of spirit.’ The word “Manaslu” came from Sanskrit word ‘Manasa’ that means intellectual or soul. The trekkers experience a beautiful blend of nature and breathtaking views of the mountain ranges. The 8th tallest mountain in the world located in the Mansiri Himal, part of Nepalese Himalaya region, in the west-central of Nepal.
Image Source: Wikimedia
9. Nanga Parbat- 8,126 meters
This oddly named Mountain is located in Pakistan and the name translates to mean “Naked Mountain”. This is one of the highest peaks in the world and rises to 8126 meters above sea level. Since it is one of the most difficult peaks to scale and could not be climbed for many years after its discovery, it has earned the name “Killer Mountain”. For a long time, this was the most difficult peaks to climb with a very high fatality rate and though the fatality rate is now lower, it remains one of the most difficult mountains to climb.
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10. Annapurna- 8,096 meters
This peak is a part of the Nepalese Himalayas and is located in the North Central region. There are two Annapurna Peaks of which Annapurna I is the tallest, with a height of 8091 meters. This mountain is also one of the most dangerous climbs in the world and has a record fatality rate of 40%. Of the people who do manage to scale the peak, several suffer injuries and loss of limbs because of frostbite and other climate and oxygen-related conditions.
The 10th tallest mountain in the world was first ascended by Maurice Herzog and Louis Lachenal (France) on June 3, 1950. Also, Maurice Herzog has written a book Annapurna about his experience on the 1950 expedition that was sold over 11 million copies making it one of the best selling books in the world. The name Annapurna derived from the Sanskrit word that means “full of food”. Annapurna is a Hindu fertility goddess.
Mountaineering is a very challenging and rewarding experience and while most people can climb smaller peaks, climbing mountains in the 8000+ club require immense physical stamina, mental strength, years of training and the right equipment. Have you ever dreamed of climbing Mount Everest? If you really do want to, it is time to start preparing and maybe after hard work and training, you will be one of those star climbers who has conquered the peak of tallest mountains in the world.