Nepal occupies the central part of the Himalayan arc (2,400 km), the highest mountain range in the world that lies in south-East-Asia. The Himalaya ‘the Abode of snow’ in Sanskrit, is a vivid record of the most dramatic and visible creations of tectonic forces in modern times. As the strong Indian continental self-sub ducts beneath the relatively weak Tibetan highest peaks in the world. Eight of the fourteen eight thousanders are located in Nepal.
|Mt. Everest (8,848 m)|
In March 1856, the peak was declared as the highest on the earth following several years of field surveys and calculations. It has been a source of adventures, mountaineers, explorers, trekkers and nature lovers ever since it has been identified as the highest peak.
The first successful ascent of the peak was made by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa on May 29, 1953. By 2007, there had been 3,679 ascents to summit by 2,436 individuals with 210 casualties.
|Mt. Everest Peak|
For its stunning topography including the other eight thousanders, the Sagarmatha National Park has been inscribed in UNESCO’s list of the world heritage.
Mountain flights operating from Kathmandu are very popular among visitors for aerial views of the world’s highest peaks. A continent means of reaching the Khumbu region is to take a 25 minutes flight from Kathmandu to Lukla airport.
Kanchenjunga (8,586 m.), the third highest mountain peak in the world lie on the border between Nepal’s Taplejung district and the Indian state of Sikkim. Kanchenjunga means a snowy land containing mines of five precious materials namely Kang (Snow), Chen (Big), Ju ( Store), Nga (five) materials such as salt , gold / coral, religious book/ property, weapons / bones and cereals/ medicinal herbs (Tibetan).
The five peaks of the Kanchenjunga range are Knachenjunga main (8,586 m.), Kanchenjunga West (8,505 m.), Kanchenjunga Central (8,482 m.), Kanchenjunga South (8,494 m.), and Kanbachen (7,903 m.).
In 1854, Joseph Dalton Hooker, the famous British botanist, explored the surrounding of Kanchenjunga region. The first ascent to the peak was made by Joe Brown and George Bond on May 25, followed by Norman Hardoe and Tony Streather on May 26.
Kanchenjunga is accessible form the Suketar airstrip and the road head at Phungling Bazar in Taplejung District. Because of its remote location in the three countries, the Kanchenjunga region has remained largely unexplored by conventional trekkers and thus, has retained much of its pristine beauty.
Lhotse (8,516 m.), the fourth highest mountain peak in the world, is connected to Mount Everest at the south col. lying at the border between Tibet (China) and Nepal. Its range also includes Lhotse middle (8,414 m.), and Lhotse Shar (8,383 m.). Best known for its proximity to Mount Everest, it is a dramatic peak having the steepest south face that rises 3.2 km in only 2.25 km of Lhotse, also known as the Lhotse Face, is a 1125 m high wall of glacial blue ice. This face rises at 40 and 50 degree pitches with the occasional 80 degree bulges.
Among the eight thousanders, Makalu is one of the tougher ones to climb, and is considered one of the most difficult climbs in the world. Its first ascent was made by Lionel Terray and Jean couzy of a French expedition on May 15, 1955 led by Jean Franco.
The mountain peak is a major landmark of the Makalu Barun National Park. It’s accessible from Tumlingtar airport.
Cho Oyu (8,201 m), (Turqurise Goddess” in Tibetan) is the sixth highest mountain peak in the world and lies 20 km west of Mount Everest at the border between China and Nepal. It is hust a few km east of Nagla la (5,716 m, a glaciated pass that serves as the main trading route between the Tibetans and Sherpa’s. Due to its proximity to the pass and the generally moderate slopes of the standard north-west ridge route, some climbers, considers Cho Oyu to be the easiest 8,000 meter peaks to be climb, and it is a popular objective for professionally guided expeditions. The first ascent was made by Austrians Joseph Jochler and Herbert Tichy along with Passang Dawa Lama (Nepal) on October 19, 1954.
Dhaulagiri (8,167 m) (meaning ‘white mountain’ in Nepali) is the seventh highest mountain in the world. It is located north-west of Pokhara.
Manslu (8,163 m) (meaning ‘Mountain of spirit’ in Sanskrit) is the eighth highest mountain peak in the work and is located in the Gorkha district of Nepal. It is linked to the long ridges and valley glaciers offering feasible approaches from all directions. It towers steeply above the surrounding landscape. And is a dominant feature when viewed from afar.
Manaslu was first climbed on May9, 1956 by Toshio Imanishi and Gyalzen Norbu, members of a Japanese expedition.
Annapurna (8,091 m) is the tenth highest mountain peak in the world. The Annapurna range is a 55 km long massif with its highest peak, the Annapurna I (8,091 m). the five other prominent peaks are Annapurna II (7,937 m), Annapurna III (7,555 m), Annapurna IV (7,525 m), Gangapurna (7,455 m), and Annapurna south (7,219 m). The word ‘Anna’ means paddy or grains and ‘Purna’ means mound in Sanskrit.
Annapurna I was the first eight-thousander to be climbed. Maurice Herzong and Louis Lachenal of a French expedition reached the summit on June 3, 1950. It was the highest summit attained on earth for three years, until the first successful ascent of Mount Everest.
Machhapurchhare (6,993 m), also popularly known as the ‘Fishtail Mountain’ for its unique shape, is an important peak of the Annapurna range, though it is just below 7,000 m.
List of more than 8000m highest Peaks in the world
List of 7000m to 8000m peaks in the world
List of 6100m to 7000m peaks in the world
Ref: NTB, Infoplease.com