Introduction to Everest
Mount Everest, known in Nepali as Sagarmatha and Tibetan as Chomolungma, is Earth's highest mountain above sea level, located in the Himalayas at the border between Nepal and China.
Everest was formed about 50 million years ago during the collision of the Indian and Eurasian tectonic plates. The mountain continues to grow today at a few millimeters per year due to tectonic uplift.
The Death Zone
Above 8,000 meters, Everest enters 'the Death Zone,' where human life is unsustainable. The thin air there contains less than a third of the oxygen found at sea level, making supplemental oxygen a necessity for most climbers.
First Ascent Legends
Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay first summited Everest in 1953. However, mystery surrounds George Mallory and Andrew Irvine's 1924 attempt; their fate remains one of Everest's most enduring enigmas.
Everest's Microbial Life
Surprisingly, microscopic life forms called extremophiles can survive in Everest's harsh conditions. These organisms thrive in the intense UV radiation and cold temperatures, challenging our understanding of life's boundaries.
Climbing Routes and Seasons
There are two main climbing routes, the Southeast Ridge from Nepal and the North Ridge from Tibet. The best months to summit are April and May, just before the monsoon season commences in June.
Everest's popularity has led to significant trash and human waste accumulation. Efforts are ongoing to clean the mountain, with mandatory garbage deposits for climbers and stricter regulations being enforced to protect the environment.