Mount Everest is the highest mountain on earth. It stands between Nepal and Tibet in the Himalayan Mountain range. Everest is 8,848 meters high (29,029 feet). That is almost 9 kilometers — or 26 Tokyo Towers. Everest is cold. In the warmest of summer, it is -2 °C. And in the coldest of winter, Everest is -60 °C. Wind on Everest is strong. Rocks, snow, and ice often crash down the mountain.
Despite these dangers, about 4,000 people have tried to climb Everest. But only 600 have reached the top. And about 142 have died trying. Local people did not climb Everest before the 1900s. They believed it was home for the gods. Climbers first reached the top in 1953. In May that year, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached the peak. Norgay was a local man from Nepal, and Hillary was from New Zealand. In 1986, Norgay died, and Hillary died in 2008. But they are remembered around the world as the first to master the dangers of Everest.
In 2007, Hillary and Norgay’s sons warned about new dangers around Everest. The ice is melting. Melting ice causes dangerous flooding. And if much of the ice melts, four of Asia’s major rivers will lose water. This would affect millions of people. Now groups are working to protect Everest. They want to put Everest on a UN list of places that are “in danger.” This will help more people know about the problems. People are also working to grow more trees near Everest. But local people can only do so much. If global warming is the main danger, then protecting Everest is the world’s responsibility.