Colliding Continents: A Geological Exploration of the Himalaya, Karakoram, and Tibet

Author(s): Mike Searle

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The crash of the Indian plate into Asia is the biggest known collision in geological history, and it continues today. The result is the Himalaya and Karakoram - one of the largest mountain ranges on Earth. The Karakoram has half of the world's highest mountains and a reputation as being one of the most remote and savage ranges of all. In this beautifully illustrated book, Mike Searle, a geologist at the University of Oxford and one of the most experienced fieldgeologists of our time, presents a rich account of the geological forces that were involved in creating these mountain ranges. Using his personal accounts of extreme mountaineering and research in the region, he pieces together the geological processes that formed such impressive peaks.


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This is a wonderful record of Mike Searles 30 year geological explorations of the high mountains of Asia. He writes as clearly and concisely as he talks, always making huge geological dramas intelligible and interesting to the layman as well as to the expert. Whether you view the Himalaya and Karakoram as a giant exercise bar or a place for spiritual renewal, you will find this geological history of the high mountains of Asia absolutely fascinating. Doug Scott, Climber and Amateur Geologist An intimate anatomy of the greatest mountain range in the planet, revealed by a geologist who has walked, scrambled and climbed over virtually every inch of it. Iain Stewart, Geologist and Broadcaster

Mike Searle is Professor of Earth Sciences at Oxford University. He has worked for the last 30 years on the geology of the Himalaya, Karakoram, Tibet, and Southeast Asia, combining geological field investigations with mountaineering expeditions to the greater ranges. He is the author of Geology andTectonics of the Karakoram Mountains and has co-edited four books for the Geological Society of London. He has also starred on two TV series: BBC's Earth Story and the History Channel's How the Earth was Made.

Preface ; 1. Oceans and continents ; 2. Continents in collision: Kashmir, Ladakh, Zanskar ; 3. The dreaming spires of the Karakoram ; 4. Pressure, temperature, time, and space ; 5. Frozen rivers and fault lines ; 6. Northwest Frontier: Kohistan, Hindu Kush, Pamirs ; 7. Faces of Everest ; 8. Mapping the geology of Everest and Makalu ; 9. Mountains and Maoists: Annapurna, Manaslu ; 10. Around the bend: Nanga Parbat, Namche Barwa ; 11. Roof of the World: Tibet, Pamirs ; 12. Extruding Indochina: Burma, Vietnam, Yunnan, Thailand ; 13. The day the Earth shook: Sumatra-Andaman earthquake 2004 ; 14. The making of Himalaya, Karakoram, and Tibetan plateau ; Postscript ; Acknowledgements ; Appendix 1: Basics ; Appendix 2: Glossary ; Appendix 3: Local glossary ; Appendix 4: Chronology ; Notes ; Index

General Fields

  • : 9780199653003
  • : Oxford University Press
  • : Oxford University Press
  • : March 2013
  • : 246mm X 171mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : March 2013
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : English
  • : 555.496
  • : 452
  • : Full colour illustrations throughout
  • : Mike Searle
  • : Hardback