Eastern Tibet – Mt. Minya Gangkar (also Gangkar mountain, Mt. Gongga or Mt. Gangkar)
Minya Gangkar – Highest Peak on the Globe – 30,250 feet”, wrote American explorer Joseph Rock in the late 1920s after setting eyes on the stunning truncated summit of Minya Konka. The National Geographic Society, which funded Rock’s expeditions to the peak, regarded the report with skepticism and listed the peak at 24,000 feet (7,500 meters). Their guess was closer to the mark. Several years later, in 1932, during the chaotic warlord period in China, Americans Terri Moore and Richard Burdsall climbed the peak, after spending almost a year traveling through China just to reach its base. Their measurement of Minya Konka came in at 24,891 feet. Internal conflict in China cut the mountain off from the outer world until 1980. In 1981, Americans again climbed the peak, this time known as Gongga Shan, a name given by the Chinese who had climbed it in the late 1950s.
The Tibetan word ‘Minya’ refers to an ancient kingdom that formerly controlled the region. ‘Gangkar’ is a corruption of the Tibetan words ‘Gang kar’, meaning white snow. Thus the mountain’s name means “White Snow Mountain of the Kingdom of Minya.” Minya Gangkar is the highest peak in the Da Xue range, which runs in a north-south direction through Sichuan province. Surrounding the peak are countless lesser peaks, many above 19,200 feet in elevation.
A Trek in Mt. Minya Gangkar will bring you into this mysterious land to explore its beauty!