The Himalayas
The arc of the Himalayas (also Hindu Kush and Karakorams) showing the eight-thousanders (in red); Indo-Gangetic Plain; Tibetan plateau; rivers Indus, Ganges, and Yarlung Tsangpo-Brahmaputra; and the two anchors of the range (in yellow)
Highest point
PeakMount Everest,    Nepal and  China
Elevation8,848.86 m (29,031.7 ft)
Coordinates27°59′N 86°55′E / 27.983°N 86.917°E / 27.983; 86.917
Length2,400 km (1,500 mi)
Native nameHimālaya (Sanskrit)
Mount Everest and surrounding peaks as seen from the north-northwest over the Tibetan Plateau. Four eight-thousanders can be seen, Makalu (8,462 m), Everest (8,848 m), Cho Oyu (8,201 m), and Lhotse (8,516 m).
OrogenyAlpine orogeny
Age of rockCretaceous-to-Cenozoic
Type of rock

The Himalayas, or Himalaya (/ˌhɪməˈl.ə, hɪˈmɑːləjə/; Sanskrit: [ɦɪmaːlɐjɐ]; from Sanskrit himá 'snow, frost', and ā-laya 'dwelling, abode'),[3] is a mountain range in Asia, separating the plains of the Indian subcontinent from the Tibetan Plateau. The range has some of the Earth's highest peaks, including the highest, Mount Everest; more than 100 peaks exceeding elevations of 7,200 m (23,600 ft) above sea level lie in the Himalayas.

The Himalayas abut or cross five countries: Nepal, China, Pakistan, Bhutan and India. The sovereignty of the range in the Kashmir region is disputed among India, Pakistan, and China.[4] The Himalayan range is bordered on the northwest by the Karakoram and Hindu Kush ranges, on the north by the Tibetan Plateau, and on the south by the Indo-Gangetic Plain. Some of the world's major rivers, the Indus, the Ganges, and the TsangpoBrahmaputra, rise in the vicinity of the Himalayas, and their combined drainage basin is home to some 600 million people; 53 million people live in the Himalayas.[5] The Himalayas have profoundly shaped the cultures of South Asia and Tibet. Many Himalayan peaks are sacred in Hinduism and Buddhism. The summits of several—Kangchenjunga (from the Indian side), Gangkhar Puensum, Machapuchare, Nanda Devi, and Kailas in the Tibetan Transhimalaya—are off-limits to climbers.

Lifted by the subduction of the Indian tectonic plate under the Eurasian Plate, the Himalayan mountain range runs west-northwest to east-southeast in an arc 2,400 km (1,500 mi) long.[6] Its western anchor, Nanga Parbat, lies just south of the northernmost bend of the Indus river. Its eastern anchor, Namcha Barwa, lies immediately west of the great bend of the Yarlung Tsangpo River. The range varies in width from 350 km (220 mi) in the west to 150 km (93 mi) in the east.[7]

  1. ^ Himalayas (mountains, Asia). Encyclopaedia Britannica. 14 August 2023. Though India, Nepal, and Bhutan have sovereignty over most of the Himalayas, Pakistan and China also occupy parts of them. In the Kashmir region, Pakistan has administrative control of some 32,400 square miles (83,900 square km) of the range lying north and west of the "line of control" established between India and Pakistan in 1972. China administers some 14,000 square miles (36,000 square km) in the Ladakh region and has claimed territory at the eastern end of the Himalayas within the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. Those disputes accentuate the boundary problems faced by India and its neighbours in the Himalayan region.
  2. ^ Zurick, David; Pocheco, Julsun (2006), Illustrated Atlas of the Himalaya, University Press of Kentucky, p. 8,11,12, ISBN 9780813173849
  3. ^ "Himalayan". Oxford English Dictionary (Online ed.). Oxford University Press. Retrieved 5 August 2021. Etymology: < Himālaya (Sanskrit < hima snow + ālaya dwelling, abode) + -an suffix) (Subscription or participating institution membership required.)
  4. ^ Bishop, Barry. "Himalayas (mountains, Asia)". Encyclopaedia Britannica. Retrieved 30 July 2016.
  5. ^ A.P. Dimri; B. Bookhagen; M. Stoffel; T. Yasunari (8 November 2019). Himalayan Weather and Climate and their Impact on the Environment. Springer Nature. p. 380. ISBN 978-3-030-29684-1.
  6. ^ Wadia, D. N. (1931). "The syntaxis of the northwest Himalaya: its rocks, tectonics and orogeny". Record Geol. Survey of India. 65 (2): 189–220.
  7. ^ Apollo, M. (2017). "Chapter 9: The population of Himalayan regions – by the numbers: Past, present and future". In Efe, R.; Öztürk, M. (eds.). Contemporary Studies in Environment and Tourism. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. pp. 143–159.

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