Mountain climbing is a demanding activity that is certainly not for the faint-hearted. Wild animals, avalanches and pneumonia are all potential hazards that could occur at any moment. Climbing some of the world’s most dangerous mountains is a dream of every serious rock climber. Every year, thousands make that dream a reality.
The climber must be a good person. It must be such that the next person can rely on it. A climber is a person who is aware of the fact that he is ready to entrust his life to the one walking next to him. In addition, volitional qualities, and physical fitness, which must be at a high level, are also extremely necessary for every rock climber. Also, a climber must be erudite. He should be well-versed in many areas: engineering, geology, geography, etc.
Most dangerous mountains to climb
Mountains have attracted people with their grandeur and inaccessibility for centuries. The steepest peaks in the world tried to conquer a huge number of climbers and lovers of extreme sensations. As a rule, rock climbing attracts adrenaline junkies searching for something new and unpredictable. Rock climbing gives strength and understanding of oneself. When a person reaches the top, he begins to respect himself much more than before.
Climbing also attracts people with its high and excellent collectivism. Here, as nowhere else, everyone’s life depends on a mate. Mountains are conquered by the strong, but not by loners. The following mountains require years of training, hard work, mental preparation and dedication before someone can even think about attempting them. Altogether, these 12 most deadliest mountains have claimed thousands of lives, yet still attract many hopeful climbers eager to attempt the long and dangerous journey to the top.
- Eiger, Switzerland, 3,970 m
- Annapurna, Nepal, 8,091 m
- K2, Pakistan/Chinese Border, 8,611 m
- Mont Blanc, French/Italian Border, 4, 810 m
- Nanga Parbat, Pakistan, 8,126 m
- Kanchenjunga, Himalayas, 8,586 m
- Fitz Roy, Patagonia, 3,405 m
- Vinson Massif, Antarctic, 4, 892 m
- The Matterhorn, Swiss/French Border, 4,478 m
- Mount Everest, Himalayas, 8, 848 m
- Dhaulagiri, Himalayas, 8,167 m
- Banntha Brakk, Karakoram, 7,285 m
1. Eiger, Switzerland
This stone giant stands at an impressive 3,970 meters. The first recorded person to reach the top was in 1858, but the notoriously tough north face was not successfully passed until 1938.
Despite the height of only 3,962 m, this peak is recognized as one of the most dangerous and challenging in the world. The death wall stretches for 2 km and is the most difficult part. Blocks of ice systematically break off from the Eiger and slide down. Therefore, the north face of this mountain is known as the Murder Wall amongst rock climbers and has claimed over 64 lives since 1935.
This one of the most dangerous mountains to climb continues to challenge climbers of all difficulty levels, both due to technical complexities and heavy rockfalls. Moreover, as the sun approaches the upper edge of the North Face in the afternoon, the ice on the summit begins to melt. Together with it, small pieces of rock thaw, which rain down. Despite their small size, they are very dangerous, as they fall from a great height.
2. Annapurna, Nepal
Annapurna is an ancient Sanskrit word that translates to the ‘Goddess of the Harvests.’ This 8,091-meter mountain is the 10th highest in the world.
The mortality rate is 26.7%. Unfortunately, 60 people have perished on the slopes of this world’s most dangerous mountain to climb. Only 266 brave souls have ever made it to the top all the time – this is the smallest number of climbers among all eight-thousanders. The leading cause of death in avalanches.
But at the same time, this is the first eight-thousander that a person managed to climb. The first was in 1950, followed by a successful ascent from the south face in 1970. Tomaz Humar from Slovenia became the first solo climber to make it to the top via the south face in 2007.
Climbing Annapurna is possible after severe preparation and training, and beginner climbers are better suited for climbing less dangerous peaks in the Annapurna reserve and visiting teahouses in Nepal on the Khopra range, or hiking in the Mardi Himal base camp.
3. K2, Pakistan/Chinese Border
K2 is the second-highest mountain in the world at a staggering 8,611 meters. No one has ever attempted to climb this mountain during the winter. The summit is plagued by extreme storms that have earned it the nickname Savage Mountain.
Climbing even the most straightforward route requires crossing a difficult glacier, steep sections of rock, and traversing a path around a series of ice pillars called seracs that can collapse at any moment. The technical complexity of this most dangerous mountain makes it one of the most challenging and dangerous mountains in the world.
The mortality rate is 19%. Often peak K2 occupies the top rating among the most dangerous mountains to climb. This is justified since the mortality rate was 42% until recently. Almost every second person who sets out to storm the summit does not return from it.
4. Mont Blanc, French/Italian Border
The Mont Blanc may not seem intimidating as it is only 4,810 meters, yet it has claimed over 8000 lives. This is due to its popularity, and the most dangerous mountain is climbed by an average of 20,000 tourists yearly. France and Italy have fought for centuries over ownership of this mountain and currently share the rights, although most of it is in France.
The first ascent dates back to 1786. And the first woman to reach the top of Mont Blanc was Marie Paradis in 1808.
From a technical point of view, the ascent to the most dangerous mountain, Mont Blanc, is not too difficult, but almost every year, deaths occur here due to frequent avalanches and bad weather conditions. Unfortunately, there were 2 disasters in Mont Blanc, during which 48 and 117 people died, all of them were passengers of aircraft.
5. Nanga Parbat, Pakistan
This 8,126-meter behemoth, the most dangerous mountain in the world, has also never been conquered during winter. Nanga Parbat means Naked Mountain in Urdu, but several deaths have earned it the more fitting title of Killer Mountain.
The ninth highest peak in the world, Nanga Parbat in Pakistan, rivals K2 in technical difficulty. The initial ascent route goes along a narrow ridge to the top. On the south side is the most dangerous mountain to climb on the planet, the 15,000-foot Rupal.
Some of the dead died through no fault of this extremely dangerous mountain to climb. The fact is that Pakistan is often a turbulent political environment. In 2013, the local Taliban shot down part of the base camp. Unfortunately, many climbers died, including three Ukrainians. All of them are also included in the mountain’s death rate. Apart from the terrorist attack, the main causes of death on Nanga Parbat are avalanches and falls from the wall.
6. Kangchenjunga, Himalayas
The world’s third highest mountain sits on the border of Nepal and the Indian state of Sikkim. It is worshipped by the people of Darjeeling and Sikkim, who refer to it as the Five Treasures of Snow after its five high peaks.
In 1955 a British Expedition became the first group to reach the top of this incredibly dangerous mountain but never actually set foot on the peak. This was because of a promise to the Maharaja of Sikkim, who had asked that the top of this dangerous mountain remain untouched. Every climber to this day has followed the same tradition.
Nepal even has a legend that Kanchenjunga is a mountain that kills all women who tried to conquer its peaks. Only a few women went up and down alive, so for a long time, the peak was impregnable precisely for the female half of humanity.
The death rate is over 20 percent due to the avalanches and weather that plague this most dangerous mountain in the world. With climate change causing even more variable snow conditions and extreme weather, deaths during Kangchenjunga climbs may increase.
7. Fitz Roy, Patagonia
Fitz Roy is also included in this list as the most dangerous mountain to climb despite its relatively small size of 3,405 meters. Mount Everest has over 100 visitors to the top every day during the summer season, but Fitz Roy is lucky to receive even one guest per year. It is extremely isolated, which creates many problems for climbers, both technically and mentally.
This peak is considered quite dangerous to climb. Some sections of the slopes of the mountain are granite rocks. In addition to the surface, the weather conditions are also a considerable difficulty for climbers, which are rarely suitable for conquering the peak. Looking at the almost smooth and steep sections of the rock, you can imagine how difficult the climb can be.
It is known that Mount Fitzroy, like a magnet, attracted many climbers to itself, but it remained unconquered until the middle of the last century, despite repeated attempts. So, The first climb to the top of this extremely dangerous mountain to climb was completed in 1952. On average, only one team of climbers successfully reaches the summit of Fitzroy per year. Furthermore, many photographers died here due to falling from steep cliffs. All this makes Fitzroy one of the most deadly mountains.
8. Vinson Massif, Antarctic
The first time this 4,892-meter giant was seen by human eyes in 1958 after a US Navy Aircraft spotted it. It is located west of the South Pole, the highest point of the Ellsworth Mountains. One of the most challenging mountains stretches for 20 km. All approaches to it are solid glaciers. In some places, their thickness is 4,000 m.
The Vinson Massif, the highest and the most dangerous mountain to climb in Antarctica, has no technical sophistication or fatality rate. However, the altitude, combined with the isolation, extreme cold, and unpredictable weather of the Antarctic continent, makes Vinson a very serious undertaking. Even a small accident here can turn into a disaster.
This extremely dangerous mountain was successfully climbed in 1966, and more than 1,400 climbers have conquered it. Many guide companies offer expeditions to the top for around $30,000 per person as it is relatively easy to climb despite its huge size.
9. The Matterhorn, Swiss/French Border
The Matterhorn is one of the deadliest mountains in the Alps. The first expedition to the top ended in tragedy after four members of the party fell to their deaths on the way back down. This mountain stands 4,478 meters tall and was one of the last mountains to be climbed in the Alps.
The northern slope of the Matterhorn is recognized as impregnable. This breathtaking mountain, which looks like a horn rising from the surrounding valleys, has one of the highest fatality rates of any peak in the Alps. This is due to several factors, including technical difficulties, avalanches, frequent snowfalls, and rockfalls, as well as severe overcrowding of routes during peak climbing seasons.
In 1865, two groups were lucky enough to conquer the summit at once, but one died due to a cable break during the descent. Today this one of the most dangerous mountains to climb in the world is a popular object for climbers. Every year thousands of people try to get to the top. The most popular route is over the Hornli ridge from Zermatt. Another way is along the Lyon ridge.
10. Mount Everest, Himalayas
Earth’s highest mountain is an incredible 8,848 meters high. It is known as Sagarmatha in Nepal and Chomolungma in Tibet. Its status as the world’s highest mountain has attracted a huge number of tourists, and as of March 2012, it has been climbed 5,656 times. Many people have claimed that the commercialization of Everest has devalued one of the most incredible places on the planet.
The most dangerous mountain on Earth is a very attractive object for climbers all over the world who try to climb there all year round. It will take about two months to conquer it. This period includes the acclimatization stage and the installation of the camp.
Chomolungma is a very serious challenge for a person, even the most experienced climber. Everest, being the highest peak in the world and the most deadliest and dangerous mountain to climb, at the same time is not the most difficult to climb but still quite dangerous. Over its entire history, about 250 climbers have died on the slopes of the mountain. The section of the last 300 meters is the most difficult. To overcome the dangerous mountain, you need to climb a smooth, very steep stone, constantly covered with dry, loose snow.
11. Dhaulagiri, Himalayas
The height of this multi-peaked giant is 8,167 meters. Dhaulagiri is recognized as the seventh-highest eight-thousander in the world. People called it the cannibal mountain because 16% of all those who tried to conquer Dhaugalgiri died here.
It is noteworthy that despite the small height (the seventh peak in the world), Dhaulagiri is considered one of the most dangerous eight-thousanders on the classical route. There are some reasons to justify it. First, avalanches falls, and breakdowns make it one of the deadliest mountains in the world, as the route runs along a steep slope. In spring, the weather conditions for climbing are more favorable, and in autumn, they are a little worse.
This peak was the penultimate eight-thousander, submitted to people. The first group to climb it was a group of Swiss and Austrian climbers with two Sherpas. Later, a group of American climbers with no experience in Himalayan rock climbers attempted to storm the summit from an unexplored side.
12. Banntha Brakk, Karakoram
Banntha Brakk is a 7,285 m high peak with a bizarre relief and the highest peak of the Panmah Muztag ridge in the Karakorum. This deadly mountain is famous for its steep and uneven rock, which is why its terrain is much more difficult to cross than most of the peaks of the Karakorum.
Over the past century, the Cannibal has gained fame as one of the most challenging peaks in the world. The high altitude, steepness, unpredictable weather, and proximity to the Uzun-Brakk glacier make the climb especially dangerous and almost unattainable.
Although the first ascension to the mountain occurred in 1971, this extremely dangerous mountain was conquered only in 2001. There were relatively few deaths, and many climbers were injured. Nevertheless, Banntha Brakk continues to claim the lives of those who try to conquer it. Therefore it is considered one of the most challenging and dangerous mountains in the world.
Below, we have compiled a list of the most interesting questions about the most dangerous mountains:
What are dangerous mountains?
Why can mountains be dangerous?
What are the most dangerous mountains to climb in the world?
What are the most dangerous mountains in the US?
Mount St. Elias, located on the border of Yukon and Alaska, is also well-known as one of the most dangerous mountains in the US. Terrible weather conditions make climbing difficult for most of the year. In addition, because the summit is only 10 miles from the ocean, it is subject to frequent Pacific storm winds.
What dangerous animals live in the mountains?
Mountains are ancient, mystical places that are among the most isolated places in the world. Their harsh conditions and dangerous paths seem to be indicating that humans are not welcome on their slopes. Despite this, thousands of climbers are drawn to mountains each and every year, and even the risk of death is not enough to deter them.