Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Karakoram Mountains & Haiway

Karakoram (or Karakorum) is a large mountain range spanning the borders between Pakistan, India and China, located in the regions of Gilgit-Baltistan (Pakistan), Ladakh (India), and Xinjiang region, (China). Karakoram is home to the highest concentration of peaks over eight kilometres (five miles) in height to be found anywhere on earth including K2, the second highest peak of the world (8,611 m/28,251 ft). K2 is just 237 m (778 ft) lower than the 8,848 m (29,029 ft. range is about 500 km (311 mi) in length, and is the most heavily glaciated part of the world outside the polar regions. The Siachen Glacier at 70 km and the Biafo Glacier at 63 km rank as the world's second and third longest glaciers outside the polar regions.

The Karakoram is bounded on the northeast by the edge of the Tibetan Plateau, and on the north by the Pamir Mountains.
The name was first applied by local traders to the Karakoram Pass. Early European travellers, including William Moorcroft and George Hayward, started using the term for the range of mountains west of the pass, although they also used the term Muztagh for the range now known as Karakoram. Later terminology was influenced by the Survey of India, whose surveyor Thomas Montgomerie in the 1850s gave the labels K1 to K6 (K for Karakoram) to six high mountains visible from his station at Mount Haramukh in Kashmir. the Himalaya are important to Earth scientists for several reasons. They are one of the world's most geologically active areas, at the boundary between two colliding continents. Therefore, they are important in the study of plate tectonics.

A significant part, 28-50% of the Karakoram Range is glaciated, compared to the Himalaya (8-12%) and European Alps (2.2%). Mountain glaciers may serve as an indicator of climate change, advancing and receding with long-term changes in temperature and precipitation. A study by the Universities of California and Potsdam found that the Karakoram glaciers are mostly stagnating,[6] because, unlike in the Himalayas, many Karakoram glaciers are covered in a layer of rubble which has insulated the ice from the warmth of the sun.
The notable peaks of the Karakoram are:
Batura I (7,795 m)
Rakaposhi (7,788 m)
Batura II (7,762 m)
Kanjut Sar (7,760 m)
Saltoro Kangri (7,742 m)
Batura III (7,729 m)
Saser Kangri (7,672 m)
Chogolisa (7,665 m)
Haramosh Peak (7,397 m)
Momhil Sar (7,343 m)
Baintha Brakk (7,285 m)
Muztagh Tower (7,273 m)
K2 (8,611 m)
Gasherbrum I (8,068 m)
Broad Peak (Phalchen Kangri) (8,047 m)
Gasherbrum II (8,035 m)
Gasherbrum III (7,952 m)
Gasherbrum IV (7,925 m)
Distaghil Sar (7,885 m)
Kunyang Chhish (7,852 m)
Masherbrum I (7,821 m)

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