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The Height of Mt. Everest

Mt. Everest is the loftiest mountain at the top of Himalayas: the mountain peak is shaped like a pyramid and penetrates directly into the sky offering a spectacular view. It is no problem to view its peak, looking like a hanging flag in the clouds from a distance as far as 100 kilometers.

Mt Everest Altitude Monument
Mt Everest Altitude Monument

The India Measurement Team, organized by British government, was the first group to identify the height of Mt. Everest. From 1848 to 1852, the team lead by George Everest and Andrew Waffle placed an optical mechanic measurement apparatus at Indian plain 100 miles away from Mt. Everest, to conduct a measurement by taking the India Sea as the datum plane. The calculated elevation of Mt. Everest was 8840 meters (about 29002 feet); making Mt. Everest the highest mountain in the world.

George Everest
George Everest

At the onset of the 20th century, many countries, including China, adopted the system of barometry to measure Mt. Everest, recalculating its peak height at 8882 meters. In 1949, an America surveyor claimed to have found that Mt. Anyemaqen was in fact 193 meters higher than Mt. Everest, takings it place as the highest peak in the world, but his theory was soon dismissed. In 1954, based on the 1852 figure of the India National Measurement Bureau, Mt. Everest was officially re-measured once again as 8847.6 meters.

Chinese measuring team in 1975
Chinese measuring team in 1975

On May 25 at 4:30 am of 1960, having suffered of 30 hours of insufficient oxygen and food shortage, Chinese mountaineers reached the peak of Mt. Everest for the first time, taking their place in world mountaineering history. In 1975, nine Chinese mountaineers including Tibetan female mountaineer, Madam Phentog, repeated the feat. On their trek, the group was able to ascertain a precise height measurement by placing a measurement mark at the peak and setting down ten control points for across an altitude range of 5600 to 7790 meters, crossly measuring the marks at the peak to come up with a height of 8848.13 meters.

In March 1987, newspapers in the United States and Italy reported that American astrologist had discovered through satellite data that China’s Mt. Chogori peaked at 8859 meters, 11 meters higher than Mt. Everest. That same year, however, experts lead by an Italian surveyor adopted a GPS measuring system to conclude that Mt. Mt. Everest was 8872 meters, and Mt. Chogori was in fact only 8616 meters, confirming yet again that Mt. Everest was still the highest mountain in the world.

Between May and October of 1992, experts from the United States and Italy individually measured the height of Mt. Everest using a GPS measuring system and concluded that the figure of 8846.10 meters was most accurate, 2.03 meters less than data from China.

Chinese measuring team in 2005
Chinese measuring team in 2005

In 2005 Chinese scientists obtained new and accurate data: the bedrock on the top of Mt. Everest was 8844.43 meters ±0.21 in height, and the depth of snow and ice at the top was 3.50 meters. Thereafter, the data issued in 1975 was no long used, and on October 9th, 2005, the newly agreed upon height of Everest, as authorized by the State Department, was issued by the National Bureau of Surveying and Mapping according to the "Surveying and Mapping Law of the People’s Republic of China."

The mountain shapes of Himalayas are especially giant and steep. Often referred to as the "High Himalayas", five out of the fourteen highest mountains in the world (those with peaks reaching higher than 8000 meters) are located in this region - the fourth highest, Mt. Lhotse, with an elevation of 8501 meters is situated at the south side of Mt. Everest, Mt. Makalu, the fifth highest at 8470 meters, sits at the east side, Mt. Cho Oyu, the seventh highest at 8153 meters is towards the west, and Mt. Shisabangma, the 14th and last highest peak is situated further westward, reaching a peak elevation of 8012 meters.

Travelers' Questions Might Help

The questions raised by our past customers can help you get a more clear picture about tours to Tibet, read them or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side, our specialists will reply you within 24 hours.

user portrait Mr. Mo*** from: Travelers' Questions Might Help

I'm interested in the 14 day trip from Lhasa to Nepal trip. In in January or February would be great. how much would that be? is there space?

best regards Mo***

Answered by Nancy

Dear Mo***,

Greetings from Nancy at Budget Tibet Tour, thanks for visiting our website and sending your inquiry. Sorry we do not have any group tour in Jan or Feb to Kailash as there will be heavy snow and the road will be blocked, and also the area would be closed, and no one do the business there, no hotel, no restaurants there. So from Nov to March we would not send any groups there.
If you would like to do this tour, you must plan it from April to Oct. and at present we have the group tour in next 6th May and 29th May, and we will have more available date in future. if you are interested in joining in this, please kindly let me know. Best regards.

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8 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Himalayan Panoramic Tour