Top 10 Highest Mountains In The World | Planet’s Tallest Mountains
A mountain is an elevated portion of Earth’s crust above sea level, usually has steep slopes and sharp or round peaks, being more significant than hill and plateau. They cover about 27% of the world’s land surface.
How Are Mountains Formed?
The Earth’s crust is made up of many tectonic plates, and they move continuously because of geological activity below the surface of Earth. When two tectonic plates collide, vast slabs of rock are pushed, resulting in the formation of mountains.
For example, the tectonic plates under the surface of India and Asia collided about 25 million years ago, as a result of which the Himalayas were formed.
Mount Everest, being the most significant mountain, lies in the Himalayan range. Surprisingly, the tectonic plates beneath the Himalayas are still moving and pushing against each other, and thus the height of the Himalayas is still increasing slowly and steadily.
Volcanos are also formed because of the pushing of tectonic plates, where plate are pushed below the other.
Mountains are a great source of fresh water and provide about 60-80% of it, which are used for domestic purposes, drinking, industry, and hydroelectric production. They are a great tourists attraction, and nearly 20 percent of the global population visit the mountains.
Mountains are home to various flora and fauna like gorillas, snow leopards, orchids, lobelias, etc. Research has shown that about half of the world’s biodiversity is concentrated in the mountains. They are centers of agricultural biodiversity like rice, tomatoes, potatoes, etc., and provide resilience against climate change.
Have you ever wondered about the tallest mountains in the world? Here is a list of the top 10 highest mountains in the world that will amaze you.
Annapurna, a massif, also known as Annapurna Himal, is situated in the Himalayas. The main peak is known as Annapurna, which is located at the height of 8,091 meters (26,545 ft) above sea level. The name is a Sanskrit word meaning “Goddess of Harvest” or “who(she) is abundant of food.”
It is prominent for treks such as the Annapurna Circuit trek and Base Camp trek. The first ascent was made by Maurice Herzog and the group as a part of the French expedition on 3rd June 1950.
The Annapurna Conservation Area is the largest and first conservation area in Nepal, and it even includes the Annapurna Sanctuary. The summit climb is considered to be one of the most difficult in the world, having the highest fatality-to-summit ratio among any of the eight-thousanders.
9. Nanga Parbat
Nanga Parbat is popularly known as Diamir, meaning “king of mountains,” and is situated in the Gilgit- Baltistan region of Pakistan-administered Kashmir, India, at the height of 8,126 meters (26,660 ft) above sea level.
The mountain has been named “Killer Mountain” because its climb is considered the third hardest, and the high number of climber casualties have been seen, with the death rate being 22.3%.
The first attempt to climb was made by Alfred Mummery and the group in 1895. However, Mummery and two Gurkha climbed lost their lives in an avalanche during the expedition. On 3rd July 1953, a solo ascent to the summit was made by Austrian climber Herman Buhl.
Situated in Mansiri Himal, Manaslu is a part of the Nepalese Himalayas at 8,163 meters (26,781 ft) above sea level. Due to its unique cultural heritage, the mountain has become a popular trekking destination and offers routes like the Manaslu circuit, Tsum Valley, etc.
The name is derived from Sanskrit, meaning “Mountain of the spirit,” People living there believe the mountain is sacred and home to spiritual deities. The first successful ascent at the peak took place on 9th May 1956 as a part of a Japanese expedition led by Toshio Imanishi and Gyalzen Norbu.
The regions around Manaslu are home to endangered animals like snow leopards, red pandas, Asian black bears, grey wolves, lynx, Assam macaque, etc.
Located in Nepal, the snow-covered Mount Dhaulagiri is a part of the Dhaulagiri Mountain range at 8,167 meters (26,795 ft) above sea level.
The name comes from Sanskrit and means’ white beautiful mountain.’ The summit was successfully climbed on 13th May 1960 by a Swiss-Austrian expedition team led by Max Eiselin via the mountain’s northeast side.
When Dhaulagiri was discovered in 1808, it was considered the highest peak globally, leaving behind Mount Chimborazo, Ecuador. The mountain has become a popular tourist and mountaineer attraction though the ascent is not easy because of frequently occurring avalanches.
6. Cho Oyu
Cho Oyu is located in Mahalangur Himal, on the border of Nepal and the Tibet Autonomous Region, China, at the height of 8,188 meters (26,864 ft) above sea level is located 20 kilometers west of Mount Everest.
It is considered the most leisurely climb of 8000 meters and thus is a significant attraction for many tourists and mountaineers.
The name means “Turquoise Goddess” in Tibetan. The death rate of the summit is the lowest, and thus it is also commonly referred to as a “trekking peak.”
The summit climbing was first attempted by the Joint Himalayan Committee. Still, the mountain was first climbed on 19th October 1954 by Herbert Tichy, Joseph Jöchler, and Sherpa Pasang Dawa Lama as a part of an Austrian expedition. Towards the west and close to the mountain, there is 5,500 meters long Nangpa La glacier pass.
Makalu is located on the border of Nepal and the Tibet Autonomous Region, China, at a height of 8,485 meters (27,838 ft) above sea level. It is located 19 kilometers southeast of Mount Everest.
The word Makalu comes from the Sanskrit word “Maha Kala,” representing the name of Hindu God Lord Shiva. It is called so due to its dark appearance; the shape of the mountain resembles that of a pyramid having four sides.
There is also a National Park named Makalu-Barun National Park that is home to unique flora and fauna. The American team made the first attempt in 1954, but the first ascent was made by French climbers Lionel Terray and Jean Couzy on 15th May 1955.
Lhtose lies on the border of Nepal and the Tibet Autonomous Region, China, at the height of 8,516 meters (27,490 ft) above sea level. It is located 3 kilometers south of Mount Everest, and the name itself means “south peak” in the Tibetan language.
The first ascent was made on 18th May 1956 by two Swiss climbers, Fritz Luchsinger and Ernest Reiss. Lhotse Middle, one of the minor peaks of Lhotse other than Lhotse Shar, remained unclimbed until Eugeny Vinogradsky made her first ascent on 23rd May 2001.
Kanchenjunga lies partly in Nepal and partly in Sikkim, India, at the height of 8,586 meters (28,169 ft) above sea level, and it lies in the Himalayan Mountain range consists of 5 peaks. The name itself means “Five Treasures of Snow” in the Tibetan language.
It is surprising to know that before 1852, Kanchenjunga was considered the world’s tallest mountain, but in 1849, based on calculations, Mount Everest was concluded as the highest mountain in the world.
On 25th May 1955, Kanchenjunga was first climbed by Joe Brown and George Band as a part of the British expedition. People of Sikkim consider the summit as sacred, and so in the early expedition, mountaineers respected their belief and stopped a few feet from the top.
There is also a National Park and Biosphere Reserve in Sikkim known as Khangchendzonga National Park, also declared as World Heritage Site by UNESCO on 17th July 2016.
K2 lies on the border of Pakistan and China at the height of 8,611 meters (28,251 ft) above sea level. The peak got its name in 1856 by a British officer who reached a small mountain in Kashmir, and he saw two peaks more than 200 km away.
The “K” in the names is a reference as it lies in the Karakoram Mountain range, and “2” stands for the fact that it is the second-highest peak in the world. K2 was first climbed in 1954 by Italian climbers Lino Lacedelli and Achille Compagnoni.
Surprisingly, the death rate of K2 is 25% which is more than the death rate of Mt Everest, 4% only. Thus, it is also known as the Savage Mountain. The climb is so complex that it is said that one out of every four mountaineer dies during the expedition.
1. Mount Everest
Mount Everest lies on the border of China and Nepal and is the highest peak in the world at the height of 8,849 meters (29,032 ft) above sea level. It was named in 1865 after it was discovered as the tallest peak globally by a British team led by Sir George Everest.
Mount Everest was first climbed by Edmund Hillary and his Tibetan guide Tenzing Norgay in 1953. Mount Everest lies in the Himalayan Mountain ranges and is home to indigenous people like Sherpa. They have high knowledge about the peak and are accustomed to surviving to low oxygen levels.
Mount Everest is one of the deadliest mountains because of its high altitude, and the snow creates hazards like avalanches. Still, many mountain climbers take the challenge, and there have been around 4000 people who have climbed Mount Everest successfully.
Nature amazes us many times with its beauty, and the above top 10 highest mountains in the world are an example of that.