Dhaulagiri, whose name means
White Mountain, is the seventh highest
mountain in the world. It is an enormous Himalayan massif, located in north
central Nepal. It is the highest mountain located entirely within Nepal. After
its discovery by the western world in 1808, it replaced Ecuador's Chimborazo
(20,561 ft.) as the postulated highest mountain in the world. It maintained this
standing for nearly 30 years, until the discovery of Kangchenjunga (28,169
ft.), which was then falsely believed to be the world's highest mountain.
Dhaulagiri's crest stretches for thirty
miles, lending structure to an otherwise tangled topography of twisting ridges,
glaciers, and ice falls. Along the main crest, several pyramid-shaped peaks
rise. Four of these summits, numbered from east to west, rise above 25,000 feet.
In 1960, the Swiss/Austrian expedition
who first reached the summit did so despite their airplane having crashed during
the approach. This was the first Himalayan climb supported by an airplane,
although the plane was subsequently abandoned on the mountain.