A normal route or normal way (French : voie normale; German : Normalweg) is the most frequently used route for ascending and descending a mountain peak. It is usually the simplest route.
In the Alps, routes are classed in the following ways, based on their waymarking, construction and upkeep:
Sometimes the normal route is not the easiest ascent to the summit, but just the one that is most used. There may be technically easier variations. This is especially the case on the Watzmannfrau, the Hochkalter and also Mount Everest. There may be many reasons these easier options are less well-used:
The term tourist route may sometimes be applied (irrespective of the level of difficulty of ascent) by those wishing to suggest that other routes up a mountain are somehow more "worthy". This belittling of the "normal route" therefore maintains a distinction between those perceiving themselves as serious mountaineers who disparage the incursion of tourist climbers into their domain (hence the term the "Yak Route" on Mount Everest).
K2, at 8,611 metres (28,251 ft) above sea level, is the second highest mountain in the world, after Mount Everest at 8,848 metres (29,029 ft). It is located on the China–Pakistan border between Baltistan in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of northern Pakistan, and Dafdar Township in Taxkorgan Tajik Autonomous County of Xinjiang, China. K2 is the highest point of the Karakoram mountain range and the highest point in both Pakistan and Xinjiang.
Mountaineering is the set of activities that involves ascending mountains. Mountaineering-related activities include traditional outdoor climbing, skiing, and traversing via ferratas. Indoor climbing, sport climbing and bouldering are also considered mountaineering by some.
Mount Everest is Earth's highest mountain above sea level, located in the Mahalangur Himal sub-range of the Himalayas. The China–Nepal border runs across its summit point. Its elevation of 8,848.86 m (29,032 ft) was most recently established in 2020 by the Nepali and Chinese authorities.
Mont Blanc is the highest mountain in the Alps and Western Europe, rising 4,808 m (15,774 ft) above sea level. It is the second-highest and second most prominent mountain in Europe, after Mount Elbrus, and it is the eleventh most prominent mountain summit in the world. The mountain stands between the regions of Aosta Valley, Italy, and Savoie and Haute-Savoie, France. It gives its name to the Mont Blanc massif, which itself forms part of a larger range referred to as the Graian Alps. The location of the summit of Mont Blanc is on the watershed line between the valleys of Ferret and Veny in Italy and the valleys of Montjoie, and Arve in France, on the border between the two countries. Ownership of the summit area has long been a subject of historical dispute between the two countries.
In rock climbing, mountaineering, and other climbing disciplines, climbers give a grade to a climbing route or boulder problem, intended to describe concisely the difficulty and danger of climbing it. Different types of climbing each have their own grading systems, and many nationalities developed their own, distinctive grading systems.
Scrambling is "a walk up steep terrain involving the use of one's hands". It is an ambiguous term that lies somewhere between hiking, hillwalking, mountaineering, and rock climbing. Canyoning often involves scrambling.
Reinhold Andreas Messner is an Italian mountaineer, explorer, and author. He made the first solo ascent of Mount Everest and, along with Peter Habeler, the first ascent of Everest without supplemental oxygen. He was the first climber to ascend all fourteen peaks over 8,000 metres (26,000 ft) above sea level. Messner was the first to cross Antarctica and Greenland with neither snowmobiles nor dog sleds. He also crossed the Gobi Desert alone. Messner has published more than 80 books about his experiences as a climber and explorer. In 2018, he received jointly with Krzysztof Wielicki the Princess of Asturias Award in the category of Sports.
Cho Oyu is the sixth-highest mountain in the world at 8,188 metres (26,864 ft) above sea level. Cho Oyu means "Turquoise Goddess" in Tibetan. The mountain is the westernmost major peak of the Khumbu sub-section of the Mahalangur Himalaya 20 km west of Mount Everest. The mountain stands on the China–Nepal border.
Mount Elbert is the highest summit of the Rocky Mountains of North America and the highest point in the U.S. state of Colorado and the entire Mississippi River drainage basin. The ultra-prominent 14,440-foot (4401.2 m) fourteener is the highest peak in the Sawatch Range and the second-highest summit in the contiguous United States after Mount Whitney. Mount Elbert is located in San Isabel National Forest, 12.1 miles (19.4 km) southwest of the City of Leadville in Lake County, Colorado.
Pumori is a mountain on the Nepal-China border in the Mahalangur section of the Himalayas. Pumori lies just eight kilometres west of Mount Everest. Pumori, meaning "the Mountain Daughter" in Sherpa language, was named by George Mallory. "Pumo" means young girl or daughter and "Ri" means mountain in Sherpa language. Climbers sometimes refer to Pumori as "Everest's Daughter". Mallory also called it Clare Peak, after his daughter.
Peter Boardman was an English mountaineer and author. He is best known for a series of bold and lightweight expeditions to the Himalayas, often in partnership with Joe Tasker, and for his contribution to mountain literature. Boardman and Tasker died on the North East Ridge of Mount Everest in 1982. The Boardman Tasker Prize for Mountain Literature was established in their memory.
Toubkal or Tubkal is a mountain peak in southwestern Morocco, located in the Toubkal National Park. At 4,167 metres (13,671 ft), it is the highest peak in the Atlas Mountains, Morocco, North Africa and the Arab World. Located 63 km (39 mi) south of the city of Marrakesh, and visible from it, Toubkal is an ultra prominent peak, the highest for over 2,000 km (1,200 mi). For climbers it is "the most popular mountain objective in the Atlas mountains".
Mount Moran is a mountain in Grand Teton National Park of western Wyoming, USA. The mountain is named for Thomas Moran, an American western frontier landscape artist. Mount Moran dominates the northern section of the Teton Range rising 6,000 feet (1,800 m) above Jackson Lake. Several active glaciers exist on the mountain with Skillet Glacier plainly visible on the monolithic east face. Like the Middle Teton in the same range, Mount Moran's face is marked by a distinctive basalt intrusion known as the Black Dike.
Tower Ridge is one of several ridges protruding north east from the summit plateau of Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in the United Kingdom.
Clinton Thomas Dent FRCS was an English surgeon, author and mountaineer.
Sergey Anatolyevich Kofanov is a Russian mountaineer.
The Three Steps are three prominent rocky steps on the northeast ridge of Mount Everest. They are located at altitudes of 8,564 metres (28,097 ft), 8,610 metres (28,250 ft), and 8,710 metres (28,580 ft). The Second Step is especially significant both historically and in mountaineering terms. Any climber who wants to climb on the normal route from the north of the summit must negotiate these three stages.
The Three Pinnacles are a formation of steep rocks along the northeast ridge on Mount Everest. They were one of the longest unsolved challenges in high-level mountaineering, but have now been successfully climbed.
Stipe Božić is a Croatian mountaineer, documentary filmmaker, photographer and writer. He is the most successful Croatian Himalayan climber. Božić completed the Seven Summits and is the second European, after Reinhold Messner, to climb the highest peak in the world, Mount Everest, twice. He has directed more than 60 documentary films, mostly related to mountains and climbing.
The Goûter Route is one of the two normal mountaineering routes used to reach the summit of Mont Blanc in the Alps, ascending to a height of 4,808 metres (15,774 ft). The route lies on the north side of the mountain, in France. Usually reckoned as the easiest route up Mont Blanc, it is extremely popular with mountaineers, seeing thousands of ascents per year.
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