How many mountains in the world are taller than Mount Everest? One may think that it is a tricky question because majority of the research indicates that Mount Everest is the highest mountain in the world. However, it does not mean that is the tallest. Generally the distance of mountains are measured from the sea level but there are actually three different methods of measurement. Using the other two methods, the list of tallest mountains in the world slightly changes.
Apart from sea level, the distance can be calculated from the core of the earth or from the base of the mountain to the peak of the mountain. So technically Mount Everest is not the tallest of them all when measuredfrom other perspectives.
Difference between the Highest and Tallest Mountains in the World
Whenever someone talks about the biggest mountain or highest peak in the world, Mount Everest is the safe answer. However, the question is why it is the highest?
Mount Everest is considered the highest mountain in the world because its Peak is farthest away from the sea level. What if the peak is farthest away from its actual base or the center of the earth? A mountain is a natural elevation of earth’s surface formed due to collision of tectonic plates inside the earth’s core. That’s where the mountains originate and they have been moving along with the planet which may alter their size and density.
Mount Everest: The Highest Point on Earth
This mountain was formed around 50 million years ago when the Indian and Eurasian plate started to collide and formed the whole Himalayan Mountain range in Asia. Anybody who climbs to the top of Everest earns the distinction of climbing the world’s highest mountain but what does it really mean? Mount Everest is the highest elevation of earth from the sea level which makes it a mountain with highest altitude. It does not mean that it is actually taller than couple of other competitors.
It stands at approximate 29,035 feet from water level and continue to grow. It is recorded that 0.2 inches are added to its height each year. Second highest peak in the world, K2 is 28,251 feet high and is situated on Karakorum mountain range which is also in Asia.
Mount Chimborazo: Farthest From the Earth’s Core
This is an inactive volcano with a last known eruption in 550 A.D. It might seem significantly smaller than Everest but it is geographically closer to the space. Planet Earth is of such a funny shape that majority say its round and some say it is flat. The shape is actually an oblate spheroid which is not a perfect circle and looks more like a ball that is slightly squashed from the top:
Earth’s constant rotation creates a centrifugal force due to which Earth becomes thicker at the Equator. Mount Chimborazo is located only one degree south of the Equator. This makes its peak the highest point above Earth’s core and closest point to the space.
Mount Chimborazo lies in Ecuador at only 20,564 feet without its 4000 miles long history underground. It is a part of the largest mountain range in the world, the Andes that is 4500 miles long and spans over 7 countries.
Mauna Kea: Tallest Mountain in the World
Another inactive volcano Mauna Kea last erupted around 2460 BC but it is still showing a unique seismic activity since decades. It was recorded that earthquakes repeat after every 7-12 minutes just 12-15 miles below the peak of volcano.
It is the highest and most glaciated volcano on the Hawaiian Islands. Visually it is half the size of Everest reaching at only 13,796 feet above water level but what about its prominence below water level? In the study of topography, all physical features of area are considered. Mauna Kea’s submerged height is 19,701 feet which makes it 33,497 feet in total. Therefore, its topographic prominence is 4,462 feet taller than Everest. Since the King of mountains has no part submerged under water.