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Mount Everest (Jomo Lungma), Nepal

December 6th, 2005 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

Mount Everest is the highest mountain on Earth above mean sea level. Its summit ridge marks the border between Nepal and China, but the summit itself is in Nepal.

Mt. Everest has two main climbing routes, the southeast ridge from Nepal and the northeast ridge from Tibet, as well as 13 other less frequently climbed routes. Of the two main routes, the southeast ridge is technically easier and is the most frequently used route. It was the route used by Hillary and Tenzing in 1953. This was, however, a route decision dictated more by politics than by design as the Tibetan border was closed to foreigners in 1949.

Most attempts are made during April and May before the summer monsoon season. A change in the jet stream at this time of year also reduces the average wind speeds high on the mountain. While attempts are sometimes made after the monsoons in September and October, the additional snow deposited by the monsoons makes climbing even more difficult.

(Source: Wikipedia)

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Cotopaxi volcano, Ecuador

October 11th, 2005 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

Cotopaxi is a volcano in Ecuador, at 5,897 meters the second highest in the country (the highest one being Chimborazo at 6,310 meters), and one of the highest active volcanoes in the world. However, despite occasional claims, it is not the highest historically active volcano, that title being held by the much higher Llullaillaco volcano (6,739 meters high, active in 1877) on the border between Chile and Argentina.

Cotopaxi is situated about 50 km south of Quito. Cotopaxi has an elevation of more than 3,000 metres when measured from its base. The base of this stratovolcano has a width about 23 km.

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Soufriere Hills volcano, Caribbean Islands

October 11th, 2005 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

The Soufriere Hills volcano is a complex stratovolcano with many lava domes forming its summit on the Caribbean island of Montserrat. After a long period of dormancy it became active in 1995, and eruptions have continued ever since. Its eruptions have rendered much of Montserrat uninhabitable, destroying the capital, Plymouth, and causing about two thirds of the population to leave the island.

Seismic activity had occurred at the volcano for most of the 20th Century, but 1995 was the first time an eruption had occurred. When pyroclastic flows and mudflows began occurring regularly, Plymouth, was evacuated, and a few weeks later a pyroclastic flow covered the city in several metres of debris. A large eruption in 1997 resulted in the deaths of about 20 people.

The volcano has been become one of the most closely monitored volcanoes in the world since its eruption began, with the Montserrat Volcano Observatory taking detailed measurements and reporting on its activity to the government and population of Montserrat.

(Source: Wikipedia)

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Krakatoa (Indonesian name: Krakatau)

October 11th, 2005 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

Krakatoa (Indonesian name: Krakatau) is a volcano near the Indonesian island of Rakata in the Sunda Strait. It has erupted repeatedly, massively and with disastrous consequences throughout recorded history. The best known of these events occurred in late August, 1883.

The 1883 eruption ejected more than six cubic miles (25 cubic kilometres) of rock, ash, and pumice [1], and generated the loudest sound ever historically recorded by human beings — the cataclysmic explosion was distinctly heard as far away as Perth in Australia, and the island of Rodrigues near Mauritius. Atmospheric shock waves reverberated around the world. Near Krakatoa, according to official records, 165 villages and towns were destroyed and 132 seriously damaged, 36,417 people died (including 37 Europeans) and uncountable thousands were injured by the eruption, mostly in the tsunami which followed the biggest explosion.

The eruption destroyed two-thirds of the pre-existing island of Krakatoa. New eruptions at the volcano since 1927 have built a new island, called Anak Krakatau (child of Krakatoa)

(Source: Wikipedia)

(Photo and description: nationalgeographic.com)

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Mount Ararat, Turkey

August 17th, 2005 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

Mount Ararat (Turkish Ağrı Dağı; Armenian Արարատ; Persian آرارات; Hebrew אררט, Standard Hebrew Ararat, Tiberian Hebrew ʾĂrārāṭ), the tallest peak in modern Turkey, is a snow-capped dormant volcanic cone, located in the far northeast of Turkey, 16 km west of Iran and 32 km south of Armenia. The Book of Genesis identifies this mountain as the resting place of Noah's Ark after the "great flood" described there.

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Mount Kenya, Kenya

August 5th, 2005 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 
Mount Kenya is the highest mountain in Kenya, and the second-highest in Africa (after Mount Kilimanjaro). The highest peaks of the mountain are Batian (5,199 m), Nelion (5,188 m) and Lenana (4,985 m). The mountain is an extinct volcano standing alone, which last erupted between 2.6 and 3.1 million years ago. Its slopes include several different biomes; the lowest parts are dry upland forest, changing to montane forest of juniper and podocarpus at about 2,000 m, with a belt of bamboo at 2,500 m that the changes to an upper forest of smaller trees covered with moss. Twelve small glaciers may be found scattered among the complex of seven summits. The area around the mountain is protected in the Mount Kenya National Park. The Kĩkũyũ people believe that their supreme being Ngai lives on Mount Kenya, which they call Kirinyaga. The missionary Johann Ludwig Krapf was the first European to report a sighting of Mount Kenya, in 1849. The first recorded ascent of Mount Kenya was made by Halford John Mackinder, C. Ollier and J. Brocherel on 13 September 1899. The highest point (Batian) is a technical climb; the classic Diamond Couloir climbing route is a Grade IV of about 20 pitches, up to YDS 5.9 in difficulty. Nelion was first climbed by Eric Shipton in 1929, and Shipton and Bill Tilman completed the traverse of ridge between the two highest peaks. Point Lenana, at 4,979 metres (16,335 ft), can be reached by a hiking trail. Mount Kenya is best climbed in January or February on the south side and August or September on the north side. On July 21, 2003, a South African registered aircraft, carrying 12 passengers and two crew, crashed into Point Lenana — no survivors. (Source: Wikipedia)

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