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.
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
Defending Human Rights in Tibet
Since 2011, over 100 Tibetans have set fire to themselves in protest at Chinese rule. Many of the protests have place beyond the limits of the Tibet Autonomous Region, in parts of eastern Tibet now incorporated into the Sichuan and Qinghai provinces of China.
Tibetan protests mapped
Photo: Students for a Free Tibet
On the Blog...
- 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.
- 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.
- 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?
- 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.
- 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.
Travelogue - travels through the Indian Himalaya from Kumaon and Garhwal to Ladakh
A wide sheet of water slides quietly out from beneath the glacier, complete and self-possessed as a newly hatched crocodile. This is Gaumukh, the main source of the Ganga - the River Ganges. Without Ganga, India could scarcely exist.
I got a lift down the Alaknanda Valley for a few kilometres, and then I started walking. It was the beginning of my journey west from Josimath. My first destination was Kalpeshwar temple.
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.
Photos of Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand (formerly called Uttaranchal), including the Kumaon and Garhwal Himalaya.
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?