Third Tallest Mountain: Fascinating Facts About The Kanchenjunga Range | Kidadl


Third Tallest Mountain: Fascinating Facts About The Kanchenjunga Range

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How tall is the Kanchenjunga?

What are the four tallest mountains in the world? What are the names of the ten highest mountains in the world?

The Himalayan mountain range boasts of some of the highest mountains in the world. The tallest mountains in the world are Mount Everest, K2 (Mount Godwin Austen), Kangchenjunga, Lhotse, Makalu, Cho Oyu, Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Nanga Parbat, and Annapurna. Mount Everest, K2 (Mount Godwin Austen), Kangchenjunga, and Lhotse are the four tallest. Kanchenjunga is the third highest mountain. Lhotse is the fourth highest mountain.

The third highest peak has an elevation of 28,169 ft (8585.9 m) from sea level. The fourth highest mountain has an elevation of 27,940 ft (8,516 m) from sea level. The highest point of the Himalayas mountain range is Mount Everest. The elevation of Mount Everest is 29,031.7 ft (8,848.86 m) from sea level. The prominence of Mount Everest is 29,031.7 ft (8848.86 m). The isolation of Mount Everest is 24,860 mi (40008.2 km). The coordinates of the Everest region is 27°59′17″N 86°55′31″E.

Like reading these mountains? You may also like reading about the sugarloaf mountain Brazil facts and the tallest mountain in the continental US.

Fun Facts About The Third Tallest Mountain

Though spoken singularly as Kanchenjunga, in reality, it is a mountain range in the Himalayas that has five peaks. The mountain is surrounded by rivers from all sides.

It is very interesting to note that the distance between Mount Kangchenjunga and Mount Everest is 78 mi (125.5 km). Mount Kangchenjunga lies to the east-south-east of Mt.Everest. The five peaks in the range are Kanchenjunga Main, Central, South, West (Yalung Kang), and Kangbachen. The name 'Kanchenjunga' can be broken into four parts. Each part has a separate meaning. 'Kang' means snow, 'Chen' means big, 'dzö' means treasury, and 'nga' means five. The name stands for 'The Five Treasures of the Snow' in Tibetan.

It is believed that each of the treasures is a repository. Each of the repositories is held by God. The treasures include gems, silver, gold, holy books, and grains. It is the Kanchenjunga Main summit that is considered to be the third-highest in the world. Around this region, the ethnic communities are formed by the Sherpas, the Limbu, and the Rai.

In the local Limbu language, the name of the mountain is Sewalungma. When translated in English, the word means the 'mountain that we offer greetings to'. From this, the religious significance associated with the peak is understood. The peak is considered to be sacred by the locals of the region and also by the people who practice the Kirat religion. It is further believed that in the Sanskrit language, the name 'Kanchenjunga' comes from two words- one is 'kanchana' which means gold while the other is 'junga' which stands for the mighty Ganges.

It is believed that the name translates into 'the river that shines like gold'. This belief has been further fueled by the beautiful golden appearance of the meandering river during sunrise. The locals who stay at the base of the summit consider themselves to be children of the snow. Hence, they are referred to as the 'Lepchas'.

The second ascent to the peak was made in the year 1977 by a team from the Indian Army. It was led by Colonel Narendra Kumar. They successfully completed the spur on the northeast. This difficult ridge had defeated two German expeditions in the year 1929 and 1931. In the year 1979, on 16 May, the third ascent and the first one without oxygen was made by Peter Boardman, Joe Tasker, and Doug Scott. They were successful in establishing a new route on the North Ridge.

A Biosphere Reserve and a National Park, the Khangchendzonga National Park is located in Sikkim, India. The park is a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list. It was inscribed to the list on July 17, 2016.

Facts About Kanchenjunga

Is climbing the Kanchenjunga easy? Have people successfully climbed the highest mountains? Who can climb this peak? Why should mountaineers want to climb this peak?

Kanchenjunga was considered to be the highest peak on the planet till 1852. In 1905, Aleister Crowley, the British occultist led a party and attempted to climb the mountain for the first time. In the year 1983, the first solo ascent to these mountains was made by Pierre Beghin. In the year 1998, the first woman to reach the summit was Ginette Harrison. To be a part of the Kanchenjunga Expedition, advanced technical skills are a must.

The climb to the mountain is not a piece of cake. Climbing this mountain is considered to be even more difficult than climbing Mount Everest. People who have successfully climbed the peak have braved harsh weather conditions and difficult terrain. Substantial experience in mountaineering is crucial. Technical climbing gear suitable for the winter season is a must. People who have climbed the peak had to undergo treks and climbs that lasted for over ten hours each day.

Thus, excellent physical condition is a must. Some consider that the trek to the Kanchenjunga North Base Camp is not that difficult if one has a good itinerary and sufficient acclimatization days. The serious hazard related to the trek is Acute Mountain Sickness or AMS. The unpredictable and harsh climate surrounding the mountain also adds to the woes of the climbers. The threat of avalanches looms over the climbers as the Eastern Himalayas receives a significant portion of the monsoons in India. Despite the hurdles, the scenery around the summit is absolutely breathtaking.

The spectacular snow-capped peaks of the highest mountains of the Himalayas.

Scary Facts About Kanchenjunga

Certain facts regarding these highest mountains have bewildered men through the ages.

On 25 May 1955, Kanchenjunga was first climbed by George Band and Joe Brown. These two men were a part of a British expedition. However, they did not climb to the top of the mountain as they had promised the Chogyal ruler that the top of the mountain would remain inviolate. After them, every climber or group of climbers that have been successful in scaling the peak have followed this tradition.

This summit in the Himalayas is the second least climbed mountain. The least climbed summit is the Annapurna in the Himalayas. The Kanchenjunga summit poses many dangers for the climbers. It is widely believed by the people that spirits live in the summit and to respect them no one stands near the mountain. The locals narrate the tale of a monarch of Sikkim who had promised that no one would come near the summit. It was also believed that humans who tried to ascend the summit could not do so, even many were killed.

A British Global expedition conducted in 1925 noted the appearance of a bipedal creature different from humans. Since then, it is widely believed that there exists a yeti or a mountain man in these highest mountains. Locals refer to the yeti as the 'raksasha' of the Kanchenjunga. It is also called the Dzo-nga ( Kanchenjunga Demon). Though many try to climb the highest mountains, only some of them succeed; the others return back.

Some even die while ascending. Extreme weather conditions, lack of life-supporting oxygen, and one of the toughest terrains on earth make people sick. They start to hallucinate as well. Humans who have been on the mountain narrate tales of shadows, ghosts, unidentified voices, and spirits. People believe that many spirits-both positive and negative haunt the mountain.

The negative ones scare people and want them to die. However, there are some good spirits like the spirits of prior climbers who guide others to their tents and try to keep them safe. The stories about the 'Valley of Immortality' are well known amongst the locals. The mountains can be scaled through four climbing routes. Amongst these four, three are in Nepal.

The routes in Nepal rise from different directions-namely northeast, northwest, and southwest. There is only one route in India. It is from the northeastern part of Sikkim. In the year 2000, after a team from Austria tried to scale the holy mountain in exchange for $20,000, the Government of India banned all expeditions to the mountain. The ban was put in place as the sentiments of the local people were hurt. Climbing the mountain is allowed from Nepal.

Geographical Facts About Kanchenjunga

This huge mountain of the Himalayan range lies between Nepal and Sikkim(India).

The prominence of the main peak of the third highest mountain is 12,867 ft (3921.8 m). This peak has an isolation of 77 mi (124 km). The coordinates of the peak are  27°42′09″N 88°08′48″E. Out of the five peaks, three peaks namely the Main, South, and Central lie on the border of the two nations. The other two peaks namely Kangbachen and West lie in Nepal in the Taplejung District. The elevation of the West mountain is 27,904 ft (8505.1 m) from sea level.

The prominence of the West mountain is 443 ft (135 m). The elevation of the Central mountain is 27,828 ft( 8,482 m) from sea level. The prominence of the Central mountain is 105 ft (32 m). The elevation of the South mountain is 27,867 ft (8,493.8 m) from sea level. The prominence of the South mountain is 390 ft (118.8 m). The elevation of Kangbachen is 25,928 ft (7,902.8 m) from sea level while the prominence of Kangbachen is 337 ft (102.7 m).

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for third tallest mountain then why not take a look at the second-highest mountain or a second tallest mountain in the US.

Written By
Moumita Dutta

<p>A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.</p>

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