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Welcome to HimalayaMasala

The Himalayas, or Himalaya is the greatest mountain range on earth. Our website brings you travel stories, photos, climbing and trekking adventures from the Himalaya. We mix genres that others won't, so we also bring you news and politics from the Himalayan countries - Nepal, India, Bhutan, Tibet and Pakistan.

Himalayan Climbs

  • Kishtwar Shivling (East Summit) - Challo - 2014

    Stephan Siegrist, Thomas Senf and Dres Abegglen have climbed a new route on Kishtwar Shivling, in the Indian Himalaya. The mountain has only been climbed once before, in 1983.
  • Shiepra - Maaji - 2014

    Three Swiss clmbers have made the first ascent of a previously unnamed 5885m peak in Kishtwar, India, and have named the peak Shiepra.
  • Kangchenjunga - North Ridge - 2014

    Dennis Urubko has reached the summit of Kangchenjunga via the North Ridge, climbing solo above 7650m. He took just four and a half hours to reach the summit.

The Himalaya and Karakoram ranges contain all the 14 mountains in the world that exceed 8000 metres, including Everest, K2 and Kangchenjunga. Together with the Hindu Kush, they also contain the great majority of the world's 7000m peaks. Our Ascent Book provides a rich record of recent climbs in the Himalaya, Karakoram and Hindu Kush mountains.
Browse our mountaineering database

On the Blog...

  • Peter Matthiessen: A True Warrior

    12 May 2014 Writer Peter Matthiessen died on 5 April 2014. Many people know him best for his account of a journey through the Himalaya, published as The Snow Leopard. But he was also a novelist of sweeping accomplishment and ambition, and a courageous friend of the Native American people.
  • Piolets d'Or 2014

    23 April 2014 The Piolets D'Or have been awarded this year to Raphael Slawinsky and Ian Welsted for their ascent of K6 West, and to Ueli Steck for his solo ascent of the South face of Annapurna.
  • Reporting Pakistan - Terrorism and Travel after the Nanga Parbat Massacre

    6 September 2013 270,000 British nationals visit Pakistan each year. But the British government is now advising against travel to large parts of Pakistan. Is it xenophobic to talk about the hazards of travel in Pakistan?
  • Massacre on Nanga Parbat

    31 July 2013 11 people, 10 of them foreign climbers, were murdered at Nanga Parbat Base Camp in Pakistan in June. The massacre, said to be in response to US drone strikes, was part of a wave of atrocities carried out across Pakistan.
  • Everest - lawlessness and the expedition industry

    5 May 2013 Climbers Ueli Steck, Simone Moro and Jonathan Griffith were attacked high on the slopes of Everest last week by a mob of Sherpas. The aftermath reflects a culture of impunity in Nepal, and the growing power of foreign-owned expedition businesses.

Himalayan Journeys >

Travelogue - travels through the Indian Himalaya from Kumaon and Garhwal to Ladakh

  • Ganga's story

    Granite crags pressed the township tight against the Bhagirathi River. Cold shadow rose up the valley like canal water behind a lock gate. The Bhagirathi is just one of a a skein of Himalayan streams that join to become the River Ganges. They run as wild as a woman's hair across the mountains because this where the river goddess Ganga fell to earth.

  • Mountain spirits - the Gangotri Glacier

    We were at the edge of a wide green meadow at the foot of Shivling. The Gangotri Glacier was below us and there was a wall of rubble behind us where a side glacier tumbled down from a cirque of granite peaks

  • Trans-Himalayan Trails - Trekking routes and Traverses

    The simplest reason to trek through mountains is to get to the other side. My journeys were directed at no such thing. India’s western Himalaya stretch from the Indus to the Nepalese border - a distance of perhaps 750 kilometres as the crow flies. I wanted to travel along the ranges, staying as close to the high peaks as I could.

Himalayan Images >

Photos of Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand (formerly called Uttaranchal), including the Kumaon and Garhwal Himalaya.

  • Map of restive areas in occupied Tibet, 15 April 2014
  • Photo of a family outside their home in the Rupin Valley
  • Photo of Taglang La
  • Photo of peaks around the rim of the Nanda Devi Sanctuary
  • Photo of the Panchachuli mountain peaks

What's in a name?

The Himalayan ranges are sometimes called the Himalayas, and sometimes called the Himalaya. The name Himalaya seems to be at least as old as the Mahabharata, and means "abode of snow" in Sanskrit.

Variants of the name are well-established in various modern Indian languages. In these languages the word would be unchanged in the plural. The suffix "s" is now so commonplace that it probably won't go away, but it is just a European corruption of the local name. The name Himalaya better reflects local usage and history, and is becoming the favourite in scholarly usage too.
Himalaya or Himalayas?

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