Thursday, January 3, 2013

Himalaya Mountains

Himalaya Mountains

US National Aeronautics and Space Administration Landsat-7 imagery of Himalayas Mountain Range

This  is the highest mountain system on earth, the name Himalaya means the House of Snow and it consists of several parallel mountain ranges. 30 to 50 million years in different stages the Indian Plate has collided with the Eurasian Continental Plate to form the Himalaya Mountains.  The Himalaya system is the most common type of mountain formation, folded. They are created by tectonic plates pushing against each other and the only direction for these earth to move is up.

The mountains nearly extend 1,600-miles in an ellipse across southern Asia from the bend of the Indus River in the northwest to the Brahmapytra in the east. They form a barrier that . The Himalaya system, averaging 200 to 250 miles in width, rises sharply from the Indo-Gangetic Plain and separates northern India from the plateau of Tibet, in China. The Himalayas form the earths highest mountain region, containing 9 of the 14 highest peaks in the world. 

IN 1807 a Survey detachment was deputed by the Surveyor General of Bengal to explore the source of the Ganges: this was the first expedition to the Himalaya undertaken for purely geographical purposes. Two hundred years have now elapsed, during which geographical and geological information has been steadily accumulating and we have at length reached a stage where there is danger of losing our way in a maze of unclassified detail: it is therefore desirable to review our present position, to co-ordinate our varied observations and to see how far we have progressed and what directions appear favorable for future lines of advance.

First we look at a  paper that originated in a proposal submitted by the Survey of India to the Board of Scientific Advice at the meeting of the latter in May 1906. The proposal was as follows:

"The number of travelers in the Himalaya and Tibet is "increasing, and a wider interest is being evinced by the public in the geography of "these regions. It is therefore proposed to compile a paper summarizing the geographical position at the present time.''

Subject to the modification that the scope of the paper should be geological as well as geographical, this proposal received the sanction of the Government of India. The paper is intended primarily for the use of the public, and its writers have endeavoured to avoid purely technical details and to present our results in a popular manner. The  subject was fallen naturally into four parts, as follows: 

Part I.—The high peaks of Asia.Part II.—The principal mountain ranges of Asia.Part III.—The rivers of the Himalaya and Tibet.Part IV.—The geology of the Himalaya. 


Though the four parts are essentially interdependent, each has been made as far as possible complete in itself and will be published separately. The first three parts are mainly geographical, the fourth part is wholly geological: the parts are subdivided into sections, and against each section in the table of contents is given the name of the author responsible for it.



 For More Information go to 
America's Four United Republics

The endeavour to render each part complete must be our apology for having repeated ourselves in more places than one: the relations, for instance, of a range to a river have been discussed in Part II, when the range was being described, and have been mentioned again in Part III under the account of the river.

As the mountains of Asia become more accurately surveyed, errors will doubtless be found in what we have written and drawn : it is not possible yet to arrive at correct generalisations and we have to be content with first approximations to truth.

Maps, too large for insertion in such a volume as this, are required for a study of the Himalayan mountains: the titles of maps illustrating the text are given in footnotes and are procurable from the Map Issue Office of the Survey of India in Calcutta. Constable's hand-atlas of India will be found useful.

We are much indebted to Babus Shiv Nath Saha and Ishan Chandra Dev, B.a., for the care with which they have checked our figures and names, and to Mr. J. H. Nichol for the trouble he has taken to ensure the correctness of the charts. Mr. Eccles and Major Lenox Conyngham have been kind enough to examine all proofs, and to give U3 the benefit of their advice and suggestions. Mr. Eccles has also supervised the drawing and printing of the charts, and we have profited greatly by the interest he has shown in them.

Mount Everest.

The elevation of Mount Everest was first observed in 1849, but its height was not computed till 1852. Though half a century has elapsed since its discovery and the mountains of Asia have been continually explored in the interval, no second peak of 29000 feet has been found. There is but little probability now of a higher peak than Mount Everest being discovered and even the prospect of finding new peaks of 27000 or 26000 feet is becoming remote.

Mt. Everest  
Kala Patthar in Nepal
Elevation: 8,848 m (29,029 ft)
Ranked 1st


Some geographers have held that peaks higher than Mount Everest were standing behind it to the north, but their opinion was not founded on trustworthy observations, and when Major Ryder traversed Tibet along the Brahmaputra in 1904 he passed 80 miles north of Mount Everest and found no peak approaching it in height.

Three panoramas showing the outline of Mount Everest are included in chart vi. Owing to the objections of the Nepalese Government Mount Everest cannot be approached by surveyors from the side of India within 80 miles, and the trigonometrical observations that have been made of the Everest-Makalu group of peaks have been carried out under great disadvantages. The following description of Mount Everest is taken from a report by Colonel Tanner :

"The outline of Everest is rather tame than otherwise; it is fairly sharp and has a long snowy "slope on its north-east flank, the south-east being precipitous. Peaks of 22000 feet and thereabouts "encircle its southern base, and below them are seen many outlines of dark mountain masses which "are without snow.
"From due south, near the Kosi river in the Bhagalpur district, Everest is by no means a marked "feature in the landscape; its southern face has but 190 feet of snow, below which the mountain «' falls for 4000 to 5000 feet in a series of crags of very dark-coloured rock, only here and there dashed "and streaked with snow, below which are snow fields and broken masses of rock intermingled "with snow and neve. When the atmosphere is not very transparent the sharp tip is seen as a "mere floating white speck, the rock below it being almost exactly of the colour of the sky and there"fore invisible.
"The southern face of Everest from a near point of view is doubtless wild, and its cliffs must "be very lofty, but the great distance from which it is viewed renders this aspect of the mountain "uninteresting. In fact, from the south, Everest has all the appearance of a very moderate hill, not "in the least imposing and hardly picturesque. It is interesting only because by trigonometrical "operations its summit has been found to rise up further from the general level of the earth's "surface than that of any other point."

The panoramas from Mahadeo Pokra and Kaulia were drawn by Captain H. Wood, K.E., in 1903: those from Darjecling aDd Sandakphu by Captain Harman, R.E., in 1882. Major Ryder's description of Mount Everest as seen from Tibet will be found in the Geographical Journal, Vol. xxvi. "It stands alone," he wrote, "in magnificent "solitude." There is no doubt, whatever, that the peak observed by Ryder from Tibet was the same peak as had been fixed by the G. T. Survey from Bengal. 


Mt Everest Location
Sagarmatha Zone, Nepal – Tibet, China border
Range: Mahalangur Himal, Himalayas
Coordinates: 27°59′17″N 86°55′31″E  
First Ascent - 29 May 1953 by Tenzing Norgayand Edmund Hillary



Peak K2
The great altitude of peak K2 was first discovered in 1858 by trigonometrical  observations. ''It was across the plains of Deosai," wrote Colonel Montgomerie, " from "Haramukh that I took the first observation to peak K2 at a distance of 137 miles."  

K2
8,611 m (28,251 ft) 
Ranked 2nd (1st in Pakistan)



K2 is described by Colonel Godwin-Austen as follows: "K2 is a conical mass with "sides too steep to allow the snow to rest on them long: it lies therefore only in large "patches and stripes on the fissured surface."   Sir Martin Conway writes that K2 has a double summit, which he has seen on several occasions. Colonel Godwin-Austen, however, believes it to be singlepeaked.*

K2 Location 
 Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan and    Tashkurgan, Xinjiang, China
Range: Karakoram -- Coordinates: 35°52′57″N 76°30′48″E



KlNCHINJUNGA.

K2 has always been supposed to be the second highest mountain on the earth, but its height does not differ much from that of Kinchinjunga, and we cannot yet state with certainty which is the higher of the two. The following extract is from Colonel Tanner's report for 1883-84:



Kangchenjunga 

Chouda Pheri, Sikkim

Elevation: 8,586 m (28,169 ft)
Ranked 3rd

Kinchinjunga is a better known mountain than any in the Himalaya, and it is perhaps, with one exception, the grandest in the whole range. It is regarded by the permanent residents of Darjeeling with admiration that never palls, and although it is constantly, in clear weather, a prominent object in their front, the beholder is never wearied of studying the great snow slopes and ice fields which cover its sides.


The aspect of the mountain has many phases which constantly alter its appearance from day "to day. It is seen to best advantage when its base is veiled in a delicate curtain of clouds, so that "the imagination is allowed to magnify the part which is hidden from view. From Darjeeling and from Sandakphu Kabruf appears as a straight-topped and uninteresting ridge of snow, standing slightly away from the central peaks of Kinchinjunga, but at a distance of 100 miles from points in the Purnea district of Bengal a telescope reveals the fact that "the face of Kabru presented towards Darjeeling is only one side of a huge snow-clad tableland "(24000 feet), quite smooth at the top with a very slight slope down to the westward. Kabru is "connected with the second highest peak of Kinchinjunga (27803 feet) by a ridge, the very lowest "depression of which has an altitude of 22100 feet.

In 1883 Mr. W. W. Graham claimed to have climbed Kabru, but his claim has been disputed by many authorities, though recognized by others. Colonel Tanner thought that Graham had mistaken a lower peak for Kabru.

Although the snow-line in Sikkim is lower than in the Western Himalaya and Karakoram, there are more naked spots on the slopes of Kinchinjunga than at similar altitudes on K2 and Nanga Parbat. 

Kangchenjunga 
Location:  Nepal and India border 
Range: Himalayas
Coordinates: 27°42′09″N 88°08′54″E  
First ascent: May 25, 1955- Joe Brown and George Band




Makalu.


A rock basin filled with glacier-ice is situated near the summit of Makalu and gives a striking appearance to the peak. In 1853 before trigonometrical observations had been taken Captain Sherwill wrote of Makalu:

One mountain in the Nepal range is a most remarkable object, both for its curious shape and for its immense height: its name none of my party knew, nor have I yet succeeded in obtaining the "name. The peak is a hollow crater-like mountain probably 27000 feet in height with a long table"mountain attached to it, both covered with glaciers.

 Makalu 
Elevation: 8,463 m (27,766 ft)
Ranked 5th


In 1884 Colonel Tanner wrote: 

With the exception of the Kinchinjunga peak, Makalu is the finest yet fixed in the eastern Himalaya. It stands apart from the Everest group and exposes a great mass of snow towards the Sandakphu ridge. From the south, in the plains of Bhagalpur and Purnea, it is the most striking object in the panorama of snow. It has a remarkable cup or hollow, which extends for about one third down its slope, by which it may be recognized  When examined with a high-power telescope great masses of glacier-ice may be seen finding their way over the edge of the cup. This ice has been collected round the sides of the amphitheatre-like hollow. The upper half of the mountain is composed of a very light colored rock, but the southern spur is dark like the cliffs, which are seen on the southern face of Everest. The white color of the rock lends it a softness, which is absent in the appearance of its higher neighbor  The southern and eastern faces are fully snow-clad, but "on the west are much bare rock and extensive streaks and patches which are too steep to retain "snow on their slopes. No northern spur of this mountain has been seen, but I have traced one "of about 19000 feet elevation towards the east, until it dips into the Arun valley. To the south two picturesque branches fully clad with snow are thrown off, but I cannot say that I have detected "any saddle or ridge connecting Makalu with Everest.

Makalu is remarkable for its sharp-edged buttresses, one of which is a magnificent specimen of the spiral type. These spiral buttresses conveying the idea of torsion are to be seen in all parts of the Himalaya: Rakaposhi in Hunza has one, Simvo (22360 feet) in Sikkim has one, and to residents of Mussooree the curvature of the eastern buttress of Banog (7433 feet), a small peak in the vicinity, is a permanent object of beauty.

Hermann de Schlagintweit, when observing Makalu from Phallut in 1855, mistook it for Mount Everest,  and the same mistake has been made by other travelers  Sandakphu, situated 38 miles from Darjeeling and on the Singalila ridge, commands a fine view of Makalu: from there the peak is 78 miles distant and is a more striking feature than Mount Everest, which stands 12 miles in rear.




Makalu
Location: Nepal (Khumbu) & China (Tibet) border
Range: Himalayas
Coordinates: 27°53′21″N 87°05′19″E
First ascent: May 15, 1955 by Lionel Terray and Jean Couzy





Nanga Paebat.


Nanga Parbat is the most isolated and perhaps the most imposing of all the peaks of Asia. With the exception of subordinate pinnacles rising from its own buttresses, no peak within 60 miles of Nanga Parbat attains an altitude of more than 17000 feet. Throughout a circle of 120 miles diameter Nanga Parbat surpasses all other summits by more than 9000 feet. Its upper 5000 feet are precipitous.

"Perhaps in describing mountains," wrote John Ruskin in Modern Painters, "with any effort to give some idea of their sublime forms, no expression comes oftener "to the lips than the word ' peak,' and yet it is curious, how rarely even among the "grandest ranges an instance can be found of a mountain ascertainably peaked in the "true sense of the word,—pointed at the top and sloping steeply on all sides."

Nanga Parbat 
Fairy Meadows in Pakistan
Elevation: 8,126 m (26,660 ft)
Ranked 9th


A traveler in the Himalaya, who has studied the writings of Ruskin, must constantly be impressed with the accuracy of his observations. How often do we see a high peak towering above us, only to find on ascending that it is but an obtuse angle in the slope of a buttress? How often is a needle discovered to be but the end of a sharp edged ridge?  

But no one can question the claims of Nanga Parbat: its form and its solitude render it a "peak," however we define the word.

"Nanga Parbat's summit," wrote Colonel Tanner, 

"Is 26620 feet above the sea, and its base stands on the left side of the Indus valley, which at that point is but 3500 feet: it therefore exposes 23120 feet of its side to an observer, who, standing as near as he may dare to the edge of perhaps the most lofty cliff in the world with the Indus valley 12000 feet below him, may regard at the distance of less than 40 miles the unparalleled view presented by the vast snow fields, glaciers, and crags of this King of Mountains. It is a scene that is not grasped or taken in at once, but after a while the stupendous grandeur of the view is appreciated. It is quite overwhelming in its magnitude; it is in fact one of the grandest spectacles that nature offers to the gaze of man."

Nanga Parbat 
Location: Gilgit–Baltistan, Pakistan
Range: Himalayas
Coordinates: 35°14′15″N 74°35′21″E
First ascent{ July 3, 1953 by Hermann Buhl


Until the height of Nanga Parbat had been determined by the Great Trigonometrical Survey, it was given on maps as 19000 feet. An error amounting to 7600 feet in defect in the case of a solitary impressive peak shows how worthless are over estimations of height.


Masherbrum Or K1.

The Masherbrum peaks are two well-defined points connected by a saddle: they are 1000 feet apart and differ by 50 feet in altitude.


Masherbrum (also known as K1)
Gilgit Baltistan of Pakistan.
At 7,821 metres (25,659 ft)
22nd highest mountain in the world and the
9th highest in Pakistan.

 
Masherbrum was the first mapped peak in the Karakoram mountain range, hence its name.



Masherbrum (also known as K1) 
Location: Gilgit Baltistan, Pakistan
Range: Karakoram
Coordinates: 35°38′33″N 76°18′39″E
First ascent: 1960 by George Bell and Willi Unsoeld




Rakaposhi.

Rakaposhi, is a mountain in the Karakoram mountain range in Pakistan. It is situated in the Nagar Valley approximately 100 km north of the city of Gilgit in the Gilgit District of the Gilgit–Baltistan province of Pakistan. Of Rakaposhi Colonel Tanner wrote as follows: 

The mighty Rakaposhi or devil's tail of Gilgit, rising from ground which is 7000 or 8000 feet above the sea, may be viewed from a distance of less than 40 miles by any one bold enough to make the journey over the dreadful Saichar pass to Chaprot and thence up to the grassy downs above that place, and the splendid appearance of Rakaposhi will be a sufficient reward for his trouble. It is a vast clean-cut 'brilliant snow needle, absolutely sharp, rising thousands of feet above a mass of broken snows, below which are "the wild precipices and serrated ridges peculiar to the Gilgit mountains.

Rakaposhi Peak 
Taghafari Base Camp
Elevation: 7,788 m (25,551 ft)[1]
Ranked 27th




Rakaposhi Peak 
Location: Nagar Valley, Gilgit–Baltistan, Pakistan
Range: Rakaposhi-Haramosh Mountains, Karakoram
Coordinates: 36°08′33″N 74°29′21″E
First ascent: 1958 by Mike Banks and Tom Patey 



Kamet.

Kamet is a conspicuous landmark from all the elevated parts of Nari Khorsam; it is also visible from Almora on the Indian side, "where, however, its appearance is  so modest that, till 1849, it remained unnoticed and unmeasured, though but 250 feet lower than the King of the western Himalaya, Nanda Devi."

Kamet Peak 
Location: in northern India
Elevation: 7,756 m (25,446 ft)
Ranked 29th


Kamet stands behind the Great Himalaya range and its height was first determined by Richard Strachey.  Snow forms a thick unbroken covering over Tirich Mir, and gives to the peak a rounded rather than a pointed top. The patches of naked rock, that are to be seen on all the slopes of the great peaks of the Himalaya, are absent from the flanks of Tirich Mir.

Kamet Peak 
Location: Uttarakhand, India
Range: Zaskar Range (Himalayas)
Coordinates: 30°55′13″N 79°35′37″ECoordinates: 30°55′13″N 79°35′37″E
First ascent: June 21, 1931 by Frank Smythe, Eric Shipton, R.L. Holdsworth and Lewa Sherpa



GURLA MANDHATA.

Dr. T. G. Longstaff made an attempt to climb Gurla Mandhata in 1905, and attained a great height, possibly exceeding 23000 feet, but failed to reach the summit.   Gurla Mandhata, or Naimona'nyi or Memo Nani is the highest peak of the Nalakankar Himal, a small subrange of the Himalaya. It lies in Burang County of the Ngari Prefecture in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China, near the northwest corner of Nepal.


GURLA MANDHATA
Elevation: 7,694 m (25,243 ft)
Ranked 34th



In 1878 Mr. Ryall wrote of this mountain as follows:

Gurla Mandhata, which is 3500 feet higher than Kailas, is held in comparatively little religious esteem among the Buddhists and Hindus. Owing to its immense bulk and height—3000 feet above any peak within a radius of 40 miles—it is perhaps the most impressive sight in the whole of the Himalaya, the celebrated mountain of Nanga Parbat alone excepted. 
GURLA MANDHATA
Location: Tibet, China
Range: Nalakankar Himal, Himalaya
Coordinates: 30°26′18″N 81°17′57″E
First ascent: 1985 by Cirenuoji, Jiabu, Jin Junxi, K. Matsubayashi, Song Zhiyu, K. Suita, Y. Suita, T. Wada



Kongur and Muztagh Ata 

The peaks of Kongur and Muztagh Ata have been mistaken for one another by many travellers. Captain Trotter was the first trigonometrical observer of Kungur, and from the plains of Kashgar he determined its height at 25350 feet; he named the peak "Tagharma."
Muztagh Ata is 26 miles south of Kungur and is not visible from Kashgar. Travellers have frequently thought that they have seen Muztagh Ata from Kashgar: but they have been misled by the natives, who believe Kungur and Muztagh Ata to be one summit. Colonel Wahab called the Muztagh Ata peak " Tagharma."


The fact that both Kungur and Muztagh Ata were named "Tagharma'  by surveyors has tended to increase the confusion. The name Tagharma is given by natives to the peak of Muztagh Ata because it towers above the town of Tagharma in the Sarikol valley, and Wahab was correct in his application of the name. But Trotter made a mistake in adopting the assumption of Kashgarians, that the great snow peak they see to the south-west is the same peak as seen from Tagharma.

There has not only been a confusion of names, but differences of opinion have existed as to which of the two peaks is the higher, Kungur, the northern, or Muztagh Ata, the southern. The values of height entered in tables iv and v are those derived from the data at the disposal of the Survey of India, but it has to be acknowledged that the observations are less reliable than those of the Himalayan and Karakoram peaks. In the case of observations taken to peaks from stations in India the height of the place of observation is accurately known, but the same cannot be said of the points from which Kungur and Muztagh Ata were observed. Though all our information goes to show that Kungur is higher than Muztagh Ata, by about 758 feet, the great weight of Sven Hedin's authority is on the side of Muztagh Ata. "Muztagh Ata," he writes, "the loftiest mountain of the Pamirs and one of the "loftiest mountains in the world, towers up to the height of 25600 feet, and like a "mighty bastion overlooks the barren wastes of Central Asia. It is the culminating point "in a meridional chain. The unchallenged pre-eminence of Muztagh Ata over the peaks "which cluster around it is proved by its name, which means the Father of the Ice "Mountains."

Sven Hedin made three attempts to climb Muztagh Ata, but was not successful. Lord Curzon describing the peaks of Kungur and Muztagh Ata wrote: 

The second and southerly peak, which from Sarikol obscures the first, is the real Muztagh Ata, the height of which is probably a little less than its nameless brother, being calculated at about 25000 feet, but which is a far finer mountain since it is conical and comparatively isolated, whereas the more northerly mountain is the highest crest of an extended ridge.
Kongur Tagh 
Elevation: 7,649 m (25,095 ft)
Ranked 37th


Kongur Tagh is within a range called the Kongur Shan (Chinese: 公格尔山; pinyin: Gōnggé'ěr Shān), located just north of Muztagh Ata and visible from Karakul Lake. Some sources use "Kongur Shan" mistakenly to refer to the peak itself. The Kongur and Muztagh Ata ranges are sometimes considered a subrange of either the Kunlun Mountains or the Pamir Mountains. In either case Kongur Tagh would be the highest summit of those ranges.
Kongur Tagh 
Range: Kongur Shan
Coordinates: 38°35′38″N 75°18′48″ECoordinates: 38°35′38″N 75°18′48″E
First ascent: 1981 by British team




Api and Nampa


The remarkable group of peaks in western Nepal, of which Api and Nampa are the principals, has been imperfectly studied. During the observations of the Great Trigonometrical Survey the cluster was continually obscured by haze, and only one peak was observed. A crowded cluster that is seldom visible in winter, except perhaps on certain days for a few minutes at sunrise, and that is completely hidden by clouds in summer, presents great difficulties to the observer.

Apinampa 
Conservation Area
Mount Api (7132m) and Nampa (6757m) 


If he succeeds in observing the directions of six peaks from both an eastern and a western station, each of the six rays from his eastern station cuts each of the six from "his western, and thirty-six points of intersection are given within a small area. If the peaks have been observed from a third station also, difficulties disappear, but when they have been seen from two only, the true points of intersection have to be determined from a study of the several values of height.

Many map-makers have confused the peaks of Api and Nampa, but their heights differ by 1237 feet. Colonel Tanner's observations show that Api is a double peak, the higher point of which (23399 feet) stands haif a mile north-east of the lower (23287 feet).The observations of Colonel Tanner's assistant Rinzin show another peak called Ningru (23143 feet) rising between the two peaks of Api. It is extremely unlikely that the name of Ningru has been attached by natives to this close companion of Api. and it is more reasonable to assume that Api and Ningru are alternative names employed, perhaps in different localities, for the same snowy mass. According to the observations of Tanner's assistants Nampa is a double peak also, the two summits being 2 miles apart. The higher Nampa is 4 miles east of the higher Api.

The only peak of this cluster observed by the Great Trigonometrical Survey was peak LIII: its position was fixed, but not its height; its position, which was determined from two stations of observation only, is 10 miles south-south-west of Api (23399 feet). The Encyclopedia Britannica shows a peak of this cluster as Mount Humla (24702 feet), but, incomplete as the trigonometrical observations of the Api-Nampa group have been, they are sufficient to indicate that no peak exceeding 24000 feet stands in this region.
"The purity of its unbroken snow and boldness of its outline," wrote Colonel Tanner of the Api peak (23399 feet), 

I have nowhere seen equalled. The ridges that connect the highest with the lower points of Api are perfectly sharp and decided, and for several thousands of feet there is scarcely a splinter of naked rock to mar the unrivalled whiteness of its slopes. The base and lower spurs of Api touch the Kali valley and are clothed with variegated masses of birch and pine except in those places where constantly recurring avalanches admit only of the growth of short grass.

Apinampa Conservation Area was established in the year of 2010 to conserve the natural beauty and ecosystem of the far west Nepal. It is youngest conservation area in Nepal, including 21 vdcs of Darchula district. The conservation area is named behind the Mount Api (7132m) and Nampa (6757m) which lie within the area. The conservation area covers an area of 1903 sq.km and includes different vegetation types. The central core area is plateau of grasslands intermixed with oak, coniferous forest, riverine deciduous temperate forest. Diverse climatic condition and altitudinal variation of the area have provided habitats for many rare endangered and threratened wildlife species including the snow leopard, musk deer and clouded leopard. Birds include the national bird of Nepal, danphe or Himalayan monal (Lophophorus impejanus), as well as Satyr tragopan (Tragopan satyra).




Chumalhari

The peaks of Chola (17310 feet) and of Chumalhari (23930 feet) appear from Senchal near Darjeeling to be in almost the same direction, the distance of Chumalhari being double that of Chola. A letter written by Dr. Campbell from Darjeeling in 1848 is interesting as showing how mistaken the natives of the mountains may be. His letter runs : 

"When Colonel Waugh left this place in November last, after having satisfied himself of the "position of Chumalhari by observations from Tonglu and Senchal, I took some Lepchas and "Bhotiahs, who had travelled into Tibet by the Phari route, with me to the top of Senchal, to "point out Chumalhari to them, as they were positive in stating their belief that it was not visible from "any part of this neighbourhood. When I said 'There is Chumalhari,' the whole party exclaimed "' No, it is Chola, and not Chumalhari.' I took pains to ascertain the reasons of their dissent, "and afterwards wrote an epitome to Colonel Waugh, who said, as far as I recollect, 'You may rely "upon it, that I shall not finally decide the point until you are satisfied that I am right.' "
Jomolhari Phari, Tibet
Elevation: 7,326 m (24,035 ft)[1]
Ranked 79th


Colonel Waugh eventually proved that the peak observed from Senchal was Chumalhari.


Kailas

"It is solely due," wrote Mr. E. C. Ryall, " to the circumstance of its shape resembling that of a Hindu temple that Kailas is vested with a sacred character."


Ser And Mee

Ser and Mer, known also as the Nun Kun peaks, are remarkable twin giants, rising from a region of perpetual snow: they are the highest points of the Punjab Himalaya between the Sutlej and Nanga Parbat. Ser is white and Mer is dark, being too precipitous on the side of India to retain much snow.

Ser is 21 miles south-west of Mer: a third peak (22810 feet) stands 11 miles east north-east of Mer, and there is a fourth peak (22310 feet) two miles east of Mer. The positions and heights of these four peaks were well determined. The account given in the Geographical Journal % of the Bullock-Workman expedition refers to a third peak of the group, exceeding 23000 feet. No third peak however of 23000 feet was observed by the Trigonometrical Survey. The peak climbed by Mrs. Bullock-Workman was Mer.



Tengri Khan


Tengri Khan is the highest peak of the Tian Shan and the highest point of Asia north of latitude 39°. 

Khan Tengri  
Elevation: 7,010 m (22,999 ft)




In his Central Tian-Shan Mountains Merzbacher describes the isolated eminence of Tengri Khan as "without example in mountain systems of like extent. The mountain," he says, "has no rival and overtops the highest summits of all the neighbouring ranges by over 3000 feet." 




Physical Geography of Western Tibet.


Henry Strachey wrote before the height of Nanga Parbat had been ascertained. Montgomerie was right when he said that Nanga Parbat was as much the King of the western Himalaya as Mount Everest was of the eastern. Nan^a Devi is the highest point of the Kumaun or central section of the Himalaya, but does not compete with Nanga Parbat. 

The fact that both Kungur and Muztagh Ata were named "Tagharma'' by surveyors has tended to increase the confusion. The name Tagharma is given by natives to the peak of Muztagh Ata because it towers above the town of Tagharma in the Sarikol valley, and Wahab was correct in his application of the name. But Trotter made a mistake in adopting the assumption of Kashgarians, that the great snow peak they see to the south-west is the same peak as seen from Tagharma.

There has not only been a confusion of names, but differences of opinion have existed as to which of the two peaks is the higher, Kungur, the northern, or Muztagh Ata, the southern. The values of height entered in tables iv and v are those derived from the data at the disposal of the Survey of India, but it has to be acknowledged that the observations are less reliable than those of the Himalayan and Karakoram peaks. In the case of observations taken to peaks from stations in India the height of the place of observation is accurately known, but the same cannot be said of the points from which Kungur and Muztagh Ata were observed. Though all our information goes to show that Kungur is higher than Muztagh Ata, by about 758 feet, the great weight of Sven Hedin's authority is on the side of Muztagh Ata. "Muztagh Ata," he writes, 
The loftiest mountain of the Pamirs and one of the loftiest mountains in the world, towers up to the height of 25600 feet, and like a mighty bastion overlooks the barren wastes of Central Asia. It is the culminating point in a meridional chain. The unchallenged pre-eminence of Muztagh Ata over the peaks which cluster around it is proved by its name, which means the Father of the Ice Mountains.

Sven Hedin made three attempts to climb Muztagh Ata, but was not successful. Lord Curzon describing the peaks of Kungur and Muztagh Ata wrote: "The "second and southerly peak, which from Sarikol obscures the first, is the real "Muztagh Ata, the height of which is probably a little less than its nameless brother, "being calculated at about 25000 feet, but which is a far finer mountain since it is "conical and comparatively isolated, whereas the more northerly mountain is the "highest crest of an extended ridge."f
Api And Nampa.

The remarkable group of peaks in western Nepal, of which Api and Nampa (table vi) are the principals, has been imperfectly studied. During the observations of the Great Trigonometrical Survey the cluster was continually obscured by haze, and only one peak was observed. A crowded cluster that is seldom visible in winter, except perhaps on certain days for a few minutes at sunrise, and that is completely hidden by clouds in summer, presents great difficulties to the observer.

If he succeeds in observing the directions of six peaks from both an eastern and a western station, each of the six rays from his eastern station cuts each of the six from his western, and thirty-six points of intersection are given within a small area. If the peaks have been observed from a third station also, difficulties disappear, but when they have been seen from two only, the true points of intersection have to be determined from a study of the several values of height.

Many map-makers have confused the peaks of Api and Nampa, but their heights differ by 1237 feet. Colonel Tanner's observations show that Api is a double peak, the higher point of which (23399 feet) stands half a mile north-east of the lower (23287 feet).

The observations of Colonel Tanner's assistant Rinzin show another peak called Ningru (23143 feet) rising between the two peaks of Api. It is extremely unlikely that the name of Ningru has been attached by natives to this close companion of Api. and it is more reasonable to assume that Api and Ningru are alternative names employed, perhaps in different localities, for the same snowy mass.

According to the observations of Tanner's assistants Nampa is a double peak also, the two summits being 2 miles apart. The higher Nampa is 4 miles east of the higher Api.
The only peak of this cluster observed by the Great Trigonometrical Survey was peak LIII: its position was fixed, but not its height; its position, which was determined from two stations of observation only, is lj miles south-south-west of Api <23399 feet).

The Encyclopaedia Britannica shows a peak of this cluster as Mount Humla (24702 feet), but, incomplete as the trigonometrical observations of the Api-Nampa group have been, they are sufficient to indicate that no peak exceeding 24000 feet stands in this region.
The purity of its unbroken snow and boldness of its outline," wrote Colonel Tanner of the Api peak (23399 feet), "I have nowhere seen equaled The ridges that connect the highest with the lower points of Api are perfectly sharp and decided, and for several thousands of feet there is scarcely a splinter of naked rock to mar the unrivalled whiteness of its slopes. The base and lower spurs of Api touch the Kali valley and are clothed with variegated masses of birch and pine except in those places where constantly recurring avalanches admit only of the growth of short grass.


By: Stanley Yavneh Klos
Edited By: Naomi Yavneh Klos. Ph.D.

  • First United American Republic: United Colonies of North America: 13 British Colonies United in Congress was founded by 12 colonies on September 5th, 1774 (Georgia joined in 1775)  and governed through a British Colonial Continental Congress.  Peyton Randolph and George Washington served, respectively, as the Republic's first President and Commander-in-Chief;
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ON THE NAMES OF CERTAIN PEAKS.

It is not often that a surveyor can discover a native name for a peak: natives of the hills do not give names even to remarkable peaks, names. The disappointment," wrote Sir Joseph Hooker, "I found that neither priest nor people knew the name of a single snowy mountain." 

Of the 75 great peaks included in tables i to v but 19 have native names. If we take into account the lower peaks, we find that there are many thousands of prominent but unnamed summits in Asia, and the problem of nomenclature has to be considered. It would be a mistake to attempt to attach an actual name to every peak. Astronomers do not name the stars: in olden times they grouped them in constellations, and they now number them according to right ascension. Colonel Montgomerie endeavoured to introduce for peaks a method resembling that of constellations, and he named the whole Karakoram region K, and its peaks K1, K2, K3, etc.

This system would have answered well, but Colonel Tanner and subsequent surveyors have departed from it, and have adopted the plan of designating each peak by the initial letter of the observer: Tanner called, for instance, the peaks he had observed himself T45, T57, etc. The employment of observer's initials has led to confusion > two and more observers have had the same initial, and the same symbol has thus become attached to different peaks. Moreover the designations given under Tanner's system furnish no clue as to the region in which the peaks are situated.

The nomenclature of a mountain region should not be forced: it should grow spontaneously, and we should never invent a name until its absence has become inconvenient. We cannot do better for Tibet and Turkistan than extend the simple system introduced by Montgomerie for the Karakoram: his method of constellations is more suitable for the peaks of Asia than a long series of successive numbers from west to east would be. We need not design constellations to include one whole range, and we need not follow the astronomical plan of drawing animals and heroes; we can have rectangular constellations enclosed by meridians and parallels.

Peaks however possess in their heights an attribute which stars lack, and there is no more useful means of distinguishing peaks than by thin heights distinguished by their heights. If we are dealing with a complex cluster of peaks, it is simpler to indicate the several members by their heights than to confer on them separate names. In discussions of the peaks of Asia heights must be accepted to a certain extent as substitutes for names. 
Out of the 75 peaks of Asia that are known to exceed 24000 feet in height, 42 have been distributed amongst the ten groups above and may be regarded as belonging to the Himalayan system.

THE GEOLOGY OF THE GREAT PEAKS

In dealing with the great peaks the geologist is at no small disadvantage as compared with the surveyor, whose instruments enable him to work from a distance and to fix with accuracy the position and height of the object of his observation. The geologist, on the other hand, must toil arduously up the mountain sides, examining at close quarters such outcrops of rocks as he can find clear of snow, and, where further progress is barred, must depend for his information on fallen fragments, splintered from the cliffs above and brought down by avalanches and glaciers to form moraines and talus heaps. Thus the composition of the highest peaks is rarely known in any detail, but the general character of the rocks can be ascertained, with a fair approximation to certainty, from observation of the material on their flanks, and from a distant view of the weathering characters and apparent structure of the peaks themselves: it has thus been found that almost all those of 25000 feet or more in height are composed of granite, gneiss, and associated crystalline rocks.

Of the granite there are at least two varieties, a foliated rock composed essentially of quartz, felspar, and biotite (black mica), and a younger non-foliated form containing, in addition to quartz and felspar, white mica (muscovite), black tourmaline, beryl, and various accessory minerals. The former variety was long regarded as a sedimentary rock which had been converted by heat and pressure into gneiss, but its truly intrusive nature was recognized by the late Lieutenant-General C. A. McMahon,* who proved conclusively that the great central gneissose rock of the Himalaya was in reality a granite crushed and foliated by pressure. This rock is frequently pierced by veins of the second or non-foliated variety, and where these run parallel to the foliation planes, they lend to the series a deceptive appearance of bedding and cause it, when seen from a distance, to be mistaken for a mass of stratified deposits. This is a common characteristic of the higher peaks and may be noticed in many of the granitic masses of the great Himalayan range.
Although our experience leads us to assume that all the highest peaks are composed largely of granite, many more observations must be made before this can be positively asserted to be the case. Thus the most important mass of all, the Everest group, is still a blank on our geological maps, and so also is Kulha Kangri in Bhutan. Between these two, however, we know that all the most important peaks are formed of granite. Thus Chumalhari (23930 feet) is composed of foliated (gneissose) granite penetrated by veins of the non-foliated variety, and flanked by the altered representatives of slates and limestones metamorphosed by the granite which has been forced up through them from below. Further to the west, the Kinchinjunga group is also formed of granite.t flanked by metamorphic rocks certainly in part derived from pre-existing sediments but re-arranged and recrystallised by heat and pressure and converted into various forms of gneiss and schist. Owing to the rigid exclusion of British travellers from Nepal, we know little or nothing of the geological characters of the hiehest mountain in the world, since practically the whole country is still unsurveyed. It is probable, however, that, like Kinchinjunga, the Everest group is composed chiefly of granite and gneiss.

To the west of Nepal we are on surer ground, since both Kumaun and Garhwal have been geologically surveyed. Here again the high peaks, such as Nanda Devi, the Kedarnath group, and Kamet,* are all composed of granite and gneiss with gneiss and schist on their flanks. The same may be said of most of the high peaks of Kashmir, including Nanga Parbat, Rakaposhi, and K2,f while granite is also probably the prevailing rock on Muztagh Ata and the other high peaks of the Kashgar range.

This correspondence between the great elevation and the geological structure of the high peaks appears to be too constant to be attributable to mere coincidence, and we are forced to the conclusion that their exceptional height is due to the presence of granite. This may be explained on two separate grounds, either (a) that the superior power of the granite to resist the atmospheric forces tending to their degradation has caused them to stand as isolated masses above surrounding areas of more easily eroded rocks, or (6) that they are areas of special elevation.

If now we examine the relationships of the peaks to one another, we find that along certain definite lines the intervening areas are also frequently composed of the same granite as the peaks themselves, and if we follow these definite lines we further find that they constitute the axes of the great mountain ranges. Thus the great eaks lie on more or less continuous and elevated zones composed of granite and crystalline rocks, and since the lower portions of the zones are of the same composition as the peaks themselves, it is difficult to regard the latter merely as relics of a once continuous zone of uniform height, and it seems probable that special elevating forces have been at work to raise certain parts of the zone above the general level of the whole ; when once such elevation has been brought about, the disparity between the higher peaks and the intervening less elevated areas would undoubtedly be intensified by the destructive forces at work ; the mantle of snow and ice, while slowly carrying on its own work of abrasion, will serve as a protection for the peaks against the disintegrating forces of the atmosphere, whilst the lower unprotected areas will be more rapidly eroded.

By the assumption that the higher peaks are due to special elevatory forces, it is not intended to imply that each peak is the result of an independent movement, for it has already been shown in a previous section of this paper that the peaks occur in well marked clusters, any one of which may cover an area of many hundred square miles: when, therefore, during the development of the Himalaya as a mighty mountain range vast masses of granite welled up from below, forcing their way through and lifting up the pre-existing rocks above, it is probable that owing to dissimilarity of composition and structural weaknesses in certain portions of the earth's crust, movement was more intense at some points than at others, and that the granite was locally raised into more or less dome-like masses standing above the general level of the growing range : these masses were subsequently carved by the process of erosion into clusters of peaks. Whether the elevatory movement is still in progress it is not at present possible to say. but many phenomena observable throughout the Himalaya and Tibet lead us to infer that local elevation has until quite recently been operative, and the numerous earthquakes still occurring with such violence and frequency forcibly remind us that the Himalaya have by no means reached a period of even comparative rest.

Dhawalagiri  Nepal    26,810' 8,172m
Nanga Parbat  Pakistan   26,650' 8,123m
Annapurna  Nepal    26,504' 8,078m
Gasherbrum  China/Pakistan   26,470' 8,068m
Xixabangma Feng  China   26,286' 8,012m
Nanda Devi  India    25,645' 7,817m
Kamet   China/India   25,447' 7,756m
Namjagbarwa Feng  China   25,446' 7,756m
Muztag   China    25,338' 7,723m
Tirich Mir   Pakistan  25,230' 7,690m
Gongga Shan  China    24,790' 7,556m
Kula Kangri  Bhutan    24,784' 7,554m
Muztagata  China    24,757' 7,546m
Kommunizma, Pik  Tajikistan  24,590' 7,495m
Pobedy, Pik  China/Kyrgystan  24,406' 7,439m
Api   Nepal    23,399' 7,132m
Aconcagua, Cerro  Argentina  22,834' 6,960m
Ojos del Salado, Nevado Argentina/Chile    22,572' 6,880m
Bonete, Cerro  Argentina   22,546' 6,872m
Tupungato, Cerro  Argentina/Chile    22,310' 6,800m
Pissis   Argentina   22,241' 6,779m
Mercedario  Argentina   22,211' 6,770m
Hurascarán, Nevado Perú    22,205' 6,768m
Llullaillaco, Volcán  Argentina/Chile    22,057' 6,723m
El Libertador  Argentina   22,047' 6,720m
Cachi   Argentina   22,047' 6,720m
Incahuasi Argentina-Chile     21,720' 6,620m
Sajama, Nevado  Bolivia    21,391' 6,520m
Illimani, Nevado  Bolivia    21,201' 6,462m
Chimborazo  Ecuador   20,702' 6,310m
McKinley, Mt.  U.S. (Alaska)   20,320' 6,194m
Orizaba, Pico de  México    18,406' 5,610m
Popocatépetl, Volcán México    17,930' 5,465m
Iztaccíhuatl  México    17,930' 5,465m
Whitney, Mt.  U.S. (California)   14,494' 4,418m
Duarte, Pico   Dominican Republic   10,417' 3,175m


The Himalaya Range (Sanskrit: literally, "abode of snow", Hindi/Sanskrit: हिमालय, IPA: /hɪˈmɑːləj(ə)/), or the Himalaya for short, is a mountain range in Asia, separating the Indian subcontinent from the Tibetan Plateau. By extension, it is also the name of a massive mountain system that includes the Karakoram, the Hindu Kush, and other, lesser, ranges that extend out from the Pamir Knot.

Together, the Himalayan mountain system is the planet's highest, and home to the world's highest peaks, the Eight-thousanders, which include Mount Everest and K2. To comprehend the enormous scale of this mountain range, consider that Aconcagua, in the Andes, at 6,962 metres (22,841 ft) is the highest peak outside Asia, whereas the Himalayan system includes over 100 mountains exceeding 7,200 m (23,622 ft).

Some of the world's major rivers, Ganges, Indus, Brahmaputra, Yangtze, Mekong, Salween, Red River (Asia), Xunjiang, Chao Phraya, Irrawaddy River, Amu Darya, Syr Darya, Tarim River and Yellow River, rise in the Himalayas, and their combined drainage basin is home to some 3 billion people (almost half of Earth's population) in countries which includes Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, People's Republic of China, India, Nepal, Burma, Cambodia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia and Pakistan.

The Himalayas have profoundly shaped the cultures of South Asia; many Himalayan peaks are sacred in Hinduism, Buddhism and Sikhism. The main Himalaya range runs, west to east, from the Indus river valley to the Brahmaputra river valley, forming an arc 2,400 km (1,491 mi) long, which varies in width from 400 km (249 mi) in the western Kashmir-Xinjiang region to 150 km (93 mi) in the eastern Tibet-Arunachal Pradesh region. The range consists of three coextensive sub-ranges, with the northern-most, and highest, known as the Great or Inner Himalayas.






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