With eight of the highest peaks in the world, Nepal has been the focus of some of the most outstanding achievements in the world of mountaineering. For many decades the dauntless icy peaks have posed as challenge to those who dare. There are some 326 peaks in Nepal open for mountaineering today. Government of Nepal opened around 175 peaks in the last two years to mark the Mount Everest Golden Jubilee Celebrations.
Climbing permit to scale the Nepal Himalayas is issued in all seasons by the Mountaineering Section of the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation. Certain official documents are required to seek permission for climbing peaks. Around 121 peaks do not require liaison officer for expedition. Fees or ties depend upon the altitude of the peak starting at US $ 1,000 for peaks below 6,501 meters and rising by US $ 500 for every 500 meters.
Climbing gears and equipments can be bought or rented in Kathmandu. Many mountaineering and trekking agencies also offer packages that take care of needs like gear, food, transportation, guide and porter services. They also arrange insurance. Visitors should choose an agency that has good track record.
Nepal Himalaya is known as the rooftop of the world. The Himalayas are the highest mountains in the world. Their scenery is legendary. These mountains have had an air of mystery until recently. Even today, the vast area of the Himalaya is untouched. It has always remained a source of fascination and inspiration for people from all walks of life in the world. Himalaya ("Him" means snow and "Alaya" means abode), the abode of snow and the Gods, extends about 2500 Kilometers. The Brahmaputra (Assam) in the east and Indus river in the west demarcate the length of the Himalaya. It is 300 Kms wide and rises nine kilometers above the sea level.
The Nepal Himalaya is in the centre of the Himalayan range. Eight peaks that exceed 8000 metres including the world's highest peak Mt Everest are the prominent members of Nepal Himalaya. It has a convergence of 1310 magnificent peaks over 6,000 metres. Nepal has become famous through out the world due to these mountains.
It is a very interesting thing to know that there was a sea (the Tethys sea) between Indian Gondwana continent (Indian sub continent and Eurasian continent). Around 70 and 80 million years ago, the Himalaya began to come into existence. It is a peak of each evolution only about 10 to 20 million years back. Therefore, the Himalaya is extremely young and geologically active. According to geologists, mountains are growing at a rate of 15 cm (6 inch) a year as the Indian plate moving northward and forcing under the Eurasian plate. This process (plate tectonics) causes the earthquakes in this region. Geologists say that the collision of continents is squeezing up sedimentary rocks that were once below the sea. The mountains of Himalaya are the result of the collision of continents.