Highest Mountains in Tibet
There are many famous mountains on the Tibet plateau, with high altitude and large coverage. They form the basic skeleton of the plateau landform and the center of ancient and modern glaciers. Mountain ranges in Tibet can be divided into east-west Tibet mountain ranges and north-south Tibet mountain ranges. The former occupies most of the Tibetan plateau and consists of 4 mountain ranges, including the Himalayas, the Gangtise- Nyenchen Tanglha, Karakoram Range- Tanggula Mountains, and Kunlun Mountains from the south to the north. The north-south Tibet mountain range refers to the Hengduan mountain range in the southeast of Tibet. The mountain ranges in Tibet are roughly curved, spanning in the middle and narrowing at the ends.
Mountains Ranges in Tibet
The Tibet plateau owns 54 snow-capped peaks above the altitude of 7,000 meters, 12 peaks above the altitude of 6,000 meters, more than 200 peaks above the altitude of 5,000 meters, and nearly 1,000 peaks above the altitude of 4,000 meters. Most of the peaks above 5000 meters are covered with snow all year round and glaciers are widespread. The skeleton of the Qinghai-Tibet plateau consists mainly of the following mountain ranges.
- The Himalayas, located in the southern side of the Tibetan plateau, is a nearly east-west arc-shaped mountain system, the main part of which is on the border of China, India and Nepal. It is 2400 kilometers long and 200-300 kilometers wide, with an average altitude of over 6000 meters. In this mountain system, there are many peaks, with more than 50 peaks over 7000 meters and 11 peaks over 8000 meters. Located on the China-Nepal border in the middle of the Himalayas, Mount Qomolangma is the highest peak in the world at 8,848.13 meters above sea level. Within more than 5,000 square kilometers around Mount Qomolangma, there are 4 peaks above 8000 meters and over 40 peaks above 7000 meters, forming a unique phenomenon of peak convergence.
- There is no clear boundary between the Gangdise and Nyenchen Tanglha, which lie in the central part of the Tibetan plateau, is the dividing line between north Tibet and south Tibet and southeast Tibet. The main peak of Gangdise Mountain Range, Mount Kailash, stands at 6,656 meters above sea level and is a famous buddhist pilgrimage site.
- The main part of the Karakoram Mountain Range lies on the border between Xinjiang and Kashmir, while the part within the territory of Tibet is only the eastern extension of the Karakoram Mountain Range. With an average altitude of over 6000 meters, it is connected with the Tanggula Mountain Range near the east longitude of 90°. Tanggula mountain range is the boundary mountain between Tibet and Qinghai. It is 160 kilometers in width from north to south. The main part is above 6000 meters, but the relative height is only about 500 meters. The highest peak, Geladaindong Peak, is 6621 meters above sea level and is the birthplace of the Yangtze river.
- The Kunlun Mountain Range runs from west to east on the north side of the Tibet plateau, which is the boundary mountain between Tibet and Xinjiang. It is 2500 kilometers long from east to west, 150 kilometers wide from north to south, with an average altitude of 5500-6000 meters, known as the spine of Asia. The part within the territory of Tibet is only a part of southern branch of Kunlun Mountain Range.
- The southeast of Tibet is the north-south Hengduan Mountain Range, which is the generic terms of mountains in east Tibet, Sichuan and Yunnan. It is the longest, widest and most typical north-south mountain system in China.
Highest Mountain Peaks in Tibet
In addition to having 5 of the world’s 14 highest peaks, the Tibetan plateau also owns at least 26 of the 100 highest peaks on earth. Most of these peaks are in the Himalayas, which border Nepal, Bhutan or India. Many of these huge mountains are remote and difficult to reach, and can only be seen from a distance at best. Here below are some higheast peaks in Tibet.
With an altitude of 8844.43 meters according to the measurement of China’s state bureau of surveying and mapping, Mount Everest is absolutely the highest peak in the world. It lies in the Himalayas bordering China and Nepal. Its Tibetan name is Qomolangma, meaning “The Third Goddess”. Every year, a lot of people head to Everest Base Camp to enjoy the beatiful view of Mount Everest. Tourist can go to Everest Base Camp all the year round, but you are suggested to avoid the rainy season from June to August, because you may not see the full picture of mount Everest. If you want to climb the Mount Everest, the best time is April to June and September to October.
Lhotse peak, at 8,516 meters above sea level, belongs to the Himalayas and is the fourth highest peak in the world. Lhotse Peak means “southern mountain peak” in Tibetan language, because it is located 3 kilometers south of Mount Qomolangma and is separated by a col, commonly known as the “south col”. It sits on the border between china and Nepal with its east side belongs to china and the rest facing Nepal.
With an altitude of 8,485 meters, Makalu peak is the fifth highest peak in the Himalayas. It is 19.5 kilometers northwest of Mount Everest. The north part of Makalu Peak is in Tibet China, and south part in Nepal. The mountains are covered with thick snow and ice all year round, and there are huge glaciers in the slopes and valleys. There are many huge crevasses like abyss on the glaciers, and avalanches occurs frequently.
Cho Oyu Peak is the 6th highest mountain in the world. It is located on the border between China and Nepal at 8188 metres above sea level, about 30 kilometers west to the Mount Everest.
Broad Peak is the 12th highest mountain in the world and also the 3rd highest peak in the Kunlun Mountains. It is located about 12 kilometers southeast to the Mount Qogir at 8051 meters above sea level. It lies on the border between China and Kashmir of Pakistan.
With an altitude of 8,027 meters above sea level, Shishapangma ranks the 14th among the 14 peaks above 8000 meter in the world. It is also the only 8000-meter peak completely in China. It is located in the middle of the Himalayas, about 120 kilometers southeast of Mount Qomolangma. It is an 8,000-meter peak completely in Nyalam County of Tibet, China, and also one of the famous peaks in the Himalayas.
With an altitude of 7998 metres above sea level, Gyachung Kang Mountain is the 15th highest mountain in the world. It belongs to Himalayas on the border between china and Nepal, and is the highest mountain between Mount Everest and Cho Oyu Peak.
Mount Namjagbarwa in Nyingchi is believed to be the most beautiful snow mountain in China. Namcha Barwa, lies on the junction of the Himalayas, Nyenchen Tanglha Mountains and the Hengduan Mountains, is the highest mountain in Nyingchi, Tibet autonomous region of China, with an altitude of 7,782 meters. It belongs to the Himalayas and is located at the eastern end of the Himalayas.
When you go to Lake Manasarovar or Mt Kailash in western Tibet, you can see an magnificent mountain named Gurla Mandhata. It is entirely in Tibet and sits at an altitude of 7694 meters above the sea level. If you go to Lake Manasarovar, take a walk to the right side of the lake in a kilometer or so, you will get an excellent view of this peak.
Changtse is the 44th highest peak in the world, with an altitude of 7543 meters. Changtse is connected to Mount Everest by the North Col. Changtse can be seen from both the Nepal Everest base camp as well as the Everest base camp in Tingri County of Shigatse. If you want to get a closer look, consider trekking to Everest advance base camp.
Mount Kailash in Ngari is regarded as the holy mountain, is one of the four major sacred mountains of Tibetan Buddhism. The top of the mountain is 6656 meters above sea level. It is the second peak of the Gangdise Mountains. At the altitude of more than 6000 meters above sea level, there are 28 modern glaciers, mainly corrie glaciers and hanging glaciers. There are more glaciers on the south slope than on the north slope.