“The Knowledge Library”

Knowledge for All, without Barriers…

An Initiative by: Kausik Chakraborty.
09/02/2023 12:31 PM

“The Knowledge Library”

Knowledge for All, without Barriers……….
An Initiative by: Kausik Chakraborty.

The Knowledge Library

The 10 Highest Mountains in India

Mountains, a storehouse of natural resources, occupy about 26.5% of the global land surface, and support more than 50% of the world’s population. It is estimated that over 80% of the planet’s freshwater comes from the mountains and about one-third of the global terrestrial biodiversity is found in mountainous ecosystems. Several studies have revealed that about 30% of India’s total land area is covered by mountains. Some of the world’s highest mountain ranges like the Himalayas and Karakoram Ranges run across the northern part of the country. These mountain ranges host several of world’s tallest peaks like Mount Kangchenjunga, the world’s third tallest peak. Here are the 10 tallest mountains of India:

  1. Mount Kangchenjunga – 8,598m
  2. Mount Nanda Devi – 7,816m
  3. Mount Kamet – 7,756m
  4. Saltoro Kangri/K10 – 7,742m
  5. Saser Kangri I/K22 – 7,672m
  6. Mamostong Kangri/K35 – 7,516m
  7. Saser Kangri II E – 7,513m
  8. Saser Kangri III – 7,495m
  9. Teram Kangri I – 7,462m
  10. Jongsong Peak – 7,462m

1. Mount Kangchenjunga – 8,598m

Mount Kangchenjunga
Mount Kangchenjunga as viewed from Tiger Hill, Darjeeling, India.

Mount Kangchenjunga which rises to an elevation of 8,598m is the highest mountain peak in India and the third highest mountain peak in the world. It is located in the Kangchenjunga Himal section of the massive Himalayan Mountain Range, along the boundary between India and Nepal. The name Kangchenjunga has been derived from a Tibetan word that means “the five treasures of the high snow”. Three of Kangchenjunga’s five main peaks are situated in the boundary between the Indian State of Sikkim and the eastern part of Nepal, while the remaining two peaks are situated in the Taplejung District of Nepal.

Since ancient times, Mount Kangchenjunga has been revered by the people of the State of Sikkim and the Darjeeling district of the State of West Bengal. Therefore, any act of climbing the summit of Kangchenjunga was considered as a disrespect to the religious beliefs of these people. On May 25, 1955, two English mountaineers Joe Brown and George Band became the first climbers to successfully climb Mount Kangchenjunga. However, as per their promise to the Chogyal, they did not complete their ascent to the summit and stopped their climb at a short distance before reaching the summit. Many protected areas including the Kangchenjunga Conservation Area in Nepal, Khangchendzonga National Park, Pangolakha Wildlife Sanctuary in Sikkim, Singalila National Park, and Neora Valley National Park in Darjeeling, etc have been established to protect and conserve the unique Kangchenjunga ecosystem.

2. Mount Nanda Devi – 7,816m

Mount Nanda Devi
The spectacular Nanda Devi mountain.

Mount Nanda Devi which rises to an elevation of 7,816m is the second highest mountain peak in India and the highest mountain situated entirely within the country. It is located in the Chamoli Garhwal district of the Indian state of Uttarakhand and is also considered the world’s 23rd highest mountain. Nanda Devi forms a part of the Garhwal Himalayas and has two peaks – the higher western and the shorter eastern summits. These two peaks are often referred to as the peaks of the Goddesses Sunanda and Nanda and are revered as sacred by the Garhwal and the Kumaon people. The snowmelt and glaciers of the mountain feed several rivers and streams including the Rishiganga, Pindar, and Dhauliganga rivers.

On August 29, 1936, two British mountaineers Noel Odell and Bill Tilman became the first climbers to climb Mount Nanda Devi, making it the highest peak to be successfully climbed by any human. To protect the mountain’s fragile ecosystem, the Government of India established the Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve in 1982. The surrounding Nanda Devi National Park was designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1988 due to its cultural and natural significance.

3. Mount Kamet – 7,756m

Mount Kamet
Mesmerizing view of Kamet, Parvati and Neelkanth mountains of Garhwal Himalayas from Kuari pass hiking trail near Auli,Uttrakhand,India.

Mount Kamet which rises to an elevation of 7,756m is the third highest mountain peak in India and the world’s 29th highest mountain. After Nanda Devi, it is the second-highest mountain peak that is located in the Garhwal Himalayas in the Chamoli District of the Indian State of Uttarakhand. This mountain peak is surrounded by three other major neighboring peaks and is located close to the Tibetan Plateau. The mountain is home to several glaciers and rivers. On June 21, 1931, the English mountaineers Frank Smythe, Eric Shipton, R. L. Holdsworth, and Lewa Sherpa became the first climbers to climb Mount Kamet. Till the first ascent of Nanda Devi, Mount Kamet held the record of being the first Himalayan summit of more than 7,620m that was climbed by humans. Due to its remote location, the mountain is less accessible than other Himalayan peaks.

4. Saltoro Kangri/K10 – 7,742m

Mount Saltoro Kangri which rises to an elevation of 7,742m is the fourth highest mountain peak in India and the world’s 31st highest mountain. It is the highest peak of the Saltoro Mountain range, a sub-range of the Karakoram mountains. The mountain is situated on the Actual Ground Position Line between the Indian territory in the Siachen region and the Pakistani territory in the western part of the Saltoro Range. On July 24, 1962, the Japanese mountaineers Y. Takamura and A. Saito and the Pakistani climber R. A. Bashir became the first persons to climb Mount Saltoro Kangri. The mountain has been a source of territorial disputes between India and Pakistan and is therefore not highly visited by tourists mainly due to inaccessibility and military activities.

5. Saser Kangri I/K22 – 7,672m

Mount Saser Kangri I which rises to an elevation of 7,672m is the fifth highest mountain peak in India and the world’s 35th highest mountain. Situated within the Indian Union Territory of Ladakh, Mount Saser Kangri I is the highest peak of the Saser Muztagh, which is the easternmost subrange of the Karakoram mountains. On June 5, 1973, the climbers Dawa Norbu, Da Tenzing, Nima Tenzing, and Thondup became the first persons to climb Mount Saser Kangri I.

Ladakh mountains
The mountainous landscape of Ladakh, the Union Territory of India that hosts several of the country’s 10 highest peaks.

6. Mamostong Kangri/K35 – 7,516m

Mount Mamostong Kangri which rises to an elevation of 7,516m is the sixth highest mountain peak in India and the world’s 48th highest mountain. Situated in the Indian Union Territory of Ladakh close to the Indo-China border, Mount Mamostong Kangri is the highest peak of the remote Rimo Muztagh, a subrange of the Karakoram mountains. On September 13, 1984, the first ascent of the mountain was made by an Indo-Japanese expedition.

7. Saser Kangri II E – 7,513m

Mount Saser Kangri II E which rises to an elevation of 7,513m is the seventh highest mountain peak in India and the world’s 49th highest mountain. Situated within the Indian Union Territory of Ladakh, Mount Saser Kangri II E is one of the high peaks of Saser Muztagh, which is the easternmost subrange of the Karakoram mountains.

8. Saser Kangri III – 7,495m

Mount Saser Kangri III which rises to an elevation of 7,495m is the eighth highest mountain peak in India and the world’s 51st highest mountain. Situated within the Indian Union Territory of Ladakh, Mount Saser Kangri III is one of the high peaks of Saser Muztagh, which is the easternmost subrange of the Karakoram mountains.

9. Teram Kangri I – 7,462m

Mount Teram Kangri I which rises to an elevation of 7,462m is the ninth highest mountain peak in India and the world’s 56th highest mountain. Mount Teram Kangri I is the highest peak of the Teram Kangri group and of the remote Siachen Muztagh which is a subrange of the Karakoram Mountains. The mountain peak is situated on the border between the People’s Republic of China and the disputed Siachen Glacier region, close to the Line of Control between India and Pakistan. The northeastern side of the mountain peak lies in the China-controlled territory while its southwestern side is located in the Siachen area that is currently under Indian control. On August 10, 1975, some members of a Japanese expedition made the first ascent of Mount Teram Kangri I.

10. Jongsong Peak – 7,462m

The Jongsong Peak which rises to an elevation of 7,462m is the tenth highest peak in India and the world’s 57th highest mountain. It is located in the Janak section of the massive Himalayan Mountain Range, and its summit is situated on the tripoint of Nepal, India, and China. On June 2, 1930, the Jongsong Peak was first climbed by some members of a German expedition. Till the first ascent of Mount Kamet, Mount Jongsong held the record of being the world’s highest climbed mountain peak.

Garhwal Himalayas
The Garhwal Himalayas in the State of Uttarakhand is home to many tall peaks.

As seen in the above discussion, most of these mountains form a part of the massive Himalayan Mountain Range and are revered as ‘sacred’ by the country’s religious communities. These mountains also have immense economic value as their unique flora and fauna as well as the immense natural beauty attracts a large number of tourists supporting a growing tourism industry. However, the mountains have been greatly affected by climate change in recent decades. Higher temperatures have triggered the melting of glaciers on these mountains, adversely affecting the region’s hydrology patterns.

Rank (India) Name Height (m) Range State
1 Kanchenjunga 8,598 Himalayas Sikkim
2 Nanda Devi 7,816 Himalayas Uttarakhand
3 Kamet 7,756 Himalayas Uttarakhand
4 Saltoro Kangri / K10 7,742 Saltoro Karakoram Ladakh
5 Saser Kangri I / K22 7,672 Saser Karakoram Ladakh
6 Mamostong Kangri / K35 7,516 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
7 Saser Kangri II E 7,513 Saser Karakoram Ladakh
8 Saser Kangri III 7,495 Saser Karakoram Ladakh
9 Teram Kangri I 7,462 Siachen Karakoram Ladakh
10 Jongsong Peak 7,462 Kangchenjunga Himalaya Sikkim
11 K12 7,428 Saltoro Karakoram Ladakh
12 Kabru N 7,412 Kangchenjunga Himalaya Sikkim
13 Ghent Kangri 7,401 Saltoro Karakoram Ladakh
14 Rimo I 7,385 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
15 Teram Kangri III 7,382 Siachen Karakoram Ladakh
16 Kirat Chuli 7,362 Kangchenjunga Himalaya Sikkim
17 Mana Peak 7,272 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
18 Apsarasas Kangri 7,245 Siachen Karakoram Ladakh
19 Mukut Parbat 7,242 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
20 Rimo III 7,233 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
21 Singhi Kangri 7,202 Siachen Karakoram Ladakh
22 Hardeol 7,161 Kumaon

Himalaya

Uttarakhand
23 Chaukhamba I / Badrinath Peak 7,138 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
24 Nun-Kun 7,135 Zanskar Himalaya Ladakh
25 Pauhunri 7,128 Sikkim Himalaya Sikkim
26 Pathibhara / The Pyramid 7,123 Kangchenjunga Himalaya Sikkim
27 Trisul I 7,120 Kumaon Himalaya Uttarakhand
28 Satopanth 7,075 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
29 Tirsuli 7,074 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
30 Chong Kumdang Ri 7,071 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
31 Dunagiri 7,066 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
32 Kangto 7,060 Assam Himalaya Arunachal Pradesh
33 Nyegyi Kansang 7,047 Assam Himalaya Arunachal Pradesh
34 Padmanabh 7,030 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
35 Shudu Tsempa 7,024 Sikkim Himalaya Sikkim
36 Chamshen Kangri / Tughmo Zarpo 7,017 Saser Karakoram Ladakh
37 Aq Tash 7,016 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
38 Chong Kumdang Ri II 7,004 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
39 Rishi Pahar 6,992 Kumaon Himalaya Uttarakhand
40 Thalay Sagar 6,984 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
41 Mount Lakshmi 6,983 Rimo Karakoram Ladakh
42 Kedarnath Main 6,968 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
43 Langpo 6,965 Sikkim Himalaya Sikkim
44 Saraswati Parvat I / Saraswati Peak 6,940 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
45 Shahi Kangri 6,934 Central Tibetan Plateau Ladakh
46 Sri Kailash 6,932 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
47 Kalanka 6,931 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
48 Chorten Nyima Ri 6,927 Sikkim Himalaya Sikkim
49 Saf Minal / P. 6911 6,911 Garhwal Himalaya Uttarakhand
50 Panchchuli II 6,904 Kumaon

Himalaya

Uttarakhand

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