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Author Topic: What is the 7th summit: is it Carstensz, Kosciuszko or Mt Cook??  (Read 133641 times)

trunl

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ok. but i did not say they were stupid. im sorry if i offended you. i did not mean for it to sound like i thought you were stupid. i actually do respect other people's opinions and am willing to listen to their ideas. again, sorry.
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MoT

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Ah crap - does this mean I don't belong to ANY continent?  ;D I used to sit here on the periphery of Europe (in Ireland), now I'm just living in oblivion...  :-[

Although Bertie Ahern is now the new crowned King of Europe (for a while anyway)  :lol)
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Bill

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The seventh summit is on Australia. It is defined as a continent, whereas Carstensz is located on what is clearly an island. This other mountin that is on Heard island is clearly on an "island".

To Quote:
"Unfortunately, there really isn't a good definition of a continent. The Oxford English Dictionary gives a pretty standard definition: "One of the main continuous bodies of land on the earth's surface." Even geology and geography books aren't much more precise. A definition this vague means that the number of continents will vary depending on what criteria you consider.

There are two main ideas that go into what makes a continent. The first is the "large continuous land mass" idea, and the second deals with continental plates. If you look at continuous land masses, then Europe and Asia should definitely be a single continent. But what exactly does "continuous" mean in regard to continents? Africa is definitely connected to Asia, but people usually think of it as being a separate continent. The same goes for North and South America. If you're thinking that any connection is enough to make two land masses continuous, then there are four continents: Antarctica, North and South America, Australia, and Europe/Asia/Africa. Size is also an issue. There's no strict lower limit to how big a piece of land has to be to be a continent, but Greenland, for example, is considered an island, not a continent.

Continental plates may seem to be a good criterion for dividing up continents, as they are fairly separate and unambiguous. Unfortunately, there are lots of them, and they divide up land masses in some pretty odd ways. Here is a good map of the continental plates. As you can see, India would be a separate continent, as would Asia Minor and Central America. One could decide that they are too small to be continents on their own. Making things more confusing, a good chunk of western Siberia would be included with North America!

To summarize, the definition of continent is vague enough that what is and is not considered to be a continent is largely determined by history and custom. It ends up being a mix of continuous land masses, continental plates, and size, so whether there are five or seven continents just depends on how you want to divide up the Earth. As an aside, note that the division between Europe and Asia can't be justified by either the continuous land mass or the continental plates idea; it's just a cultural consensus."
Quote from: Torsten Bernhardt, Staff, Biodiversity, Redpath Museum, McGill University

So, It is really a matter of social consensus and custom as to the definition of a continent.

If one is to start deciding what plate the moutain is on to satisfy this question, then Denali is suspect. It is not a part of the North American continent. It is an accreation that has bound itself to the NA land mass for a time. Elbrus is just a

One has to look at the history of where this whole issue came from. Rienhold Messner, who is the greatest mountaineer of all time and one of my heros, was the one who brought this about. He felt that Kosiusko was not a real challenge ansd looked for another mountain that was harder, and higher. So, he climber Carstensz and then proclamed it the true seventh summit. With his most respectable weight behind the claim, now here we are.

Island versus land mass. Not much to really argue about, in my opinion.
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MoT

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Isn't there some peak in an island south of Australia that's higher than Kosciuszko? It's part of Australia, but not joined to the mainland... It's in stormy waters and awful remote but is technically the highest mountain in Australia... Doesn't that complicate things? Who wants to be the first TRUE 7 summiteer?  :lol)
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Bill

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It is on Heard Island. But again, that is an "Island" and not a part of the main land mass. Just because it is politically attached to Austrailia, does not mean that it is the highest point on the continent.

I think it is really interesting that Kosciuszko is the only one that is argued about, and that is because it is not a physical challenge. If it were, this would not be in dispute. Challenge doesn't mean the climb itself. The challenge is the whole experience. Having climbed 5 of them, I can tell you that the physical part of the climb isn't what makes the climb challenging. Money, planning, time, coordinating, luck... these are all a part of this challenge that in many of the mountains are more important. Lets face one fact. 5 of the seven summits are not really a mountaineering challenge. They are considered "hiking' mountians, and not technical at all. Everest itself is not a technical climb. Challenging to be sure!!

Anyway, I think the mountaineering community in this argument focuses to much on the heighth of the hill, or the physical challenge. These are a part of the process, but not the end all be all.

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trunl

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whats the big argument? why does it have to be Carstensz or Kosciuszko? why not both? (but not cook)

thats what i vote for. the eight summits.

trunl
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Bill

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Well, I think you might have the answer in the end. Since most folks are doing both, one day it may be the "8 summits", and there will be no more issue.
I figure that each person on this path will decide for themselves what thier 7 are. It is a life accomplishment. Just doing Everest itself is a life accomplishment. Hope to finish up my seven there myself.
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7summits

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In my view the continents together must cover the entire earth. Papua is certainly no part of the Asian continent, in fact is it physically part of the Australian continent; only a few thousand years ago the ice caps started melting again and then the land connection between Australia and Papua (as well as Tasmania) was covered in shallow water.

Again: if the Uk Islands would contain a mountain of 6000m, would it not be considered Europe's summit?

I think the debate between Mt Blanc vs Elbrus vs, Eurasia has more grounds actually..

I figure that each person on this path will decide for themselves what thier 7 are. It is a life accomplishment. Just doing Everest itself is a life accomplishment. Hope to finish up my seven there myself.
Now that's a statement I can live with  8)
The seven summits are the best way to see, enjoy and understand the world around us. In the end you should climb it for yourself, but ofcourse sometimes only lists like the 7summits can help in getting sponsorhip etc, that's ok.

Keep climbing and enjoy!
7summits
« Last Edit: May 7 2004, 02:58 by 7summits »
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"He who climbs upon the highest mountains laughs at all tragedies, real or imaginary." -- Friedrich Nietzsche

Brian

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sooo...speaking of Blanc Vs Elbrus, why is that issue not up for more debate?  why is Elbrus considered the highest summit of Europe when Russia isnt really what most people think of when they think of Europe?

regarding the original question about the "7th summit", I would have to go with Australia as a continent, not including surrounding island, regardless if they are part of the same continental plate, and therefore Kosciuszko as the 7th summit...IMHO.

cheers all!   :)
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trunl

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lol. mt. blanc isnt going to be a seven summit just because russia isnt what most people consider of when they think of europe. come up with a stronger argument.
LOL.  ::) ::)

trunl
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Dave

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To 7 summits.  "politically Papua New Guinea is part of Australia"!?!?! Its been an independent country since 1975.

Continents are North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia Antarctica.  Islands are islands, and continents are continents.

Why can we JUST BE HONEST and say that Kosciousko is too boring to be included.  God!
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7summits

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To 7 summits.  "politically Papua New Guinea is part of Australia"!?!?! Its been an independent country since 1975.

Continents are North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia Antarctica.  Islands are islands, and continents are continents.

Why can we JUST BE HONEST and say that Kosciousko is too boring to be included.  God!

Hey Dave, not the land Australia, but the continent Australia. In this part of the world (Europe) this is what geography teaches us: the world is divided into 7 parts. This means the entire world is divided into 7 parts. Those parts are called "world-parts" in European Geography. Some countries belong politically to one or more of these worldparts. Russia for example is part of Europe and Asia.

One of them is the world part of Australia, but this 'part' also includes new zealand, tasmania and PNG. Thanks to the dutch and Indonesians, the line was drawn there, although ofcourse all papuas are ethnically the same with the Aboriginals as the countries used to be one/connected until a very short period ago as you know.

How come no-one ever answered my previous question
Quote
Again: if the Uk Islands would contain a mountain of 6000m, would it not be considered Europe's summit?

How can you exclude a large part of the world if you divide the world into 7 parts? Yes, one definition says a continent is something wich is surrounded by water but not an island and is one of the following (Eurasia, NA, SA, Af, AU An). But of you follow that definition then NA &SA are one continent as well as Af/Eurasia, leaving only 4 real continents. So that definition is self contradictory.

Instead another definition of continent regards the earth and divides it into 7 parts based on geology, including everything/covering 100% of the earth's surface. Doesn't that sound more sensible?
To me this is the truth as I was taught this way at school; but ofcourse your truth can be totally different as is apparent in the world today. That's ok, that's why we have 2 7 summits lists 8)
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Dave

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Historically the word continent means a continguous land mass. Think of the sayings; "the continental United States" (not including Hawaii), "the australian continent".  People in the UK would often say that he or she is "on the continent" when they travelled to Europe.
Certainly here in australia we refer to Continental Australia, ie Tasmania is not on the Australian continent.

I've never come across a grouping which includes islands as part of continents; I suspect this is a new trend, so there now is SOME reference to the UK being part of the Continent of Europe. 

But really really really really the reason this is being argued is that Kosciousko is too boring to be included.  Come ON!

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trunl

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in response to 7 summits:
"NA &SA are one continent." if im not mistaken, then you ment North America and South America are one countinent if the definition of continent is based on physical appearance rather than political.

THIS IS FALSE

even if you went by this definition, North America is separated from South America by the PANAMA CANAL. and yes this is man-made, but it still completely separates the continents!

trunl
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7summits

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Hey Trunl,
if that manmade canal makes sense then the locks in it must be considered as fixed connections as well. There will always be at least one closed to prevent the water from flowing when they level it.
Same for Suez channel in Africa.
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trunl

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but the locks do not always connect the continents. and by defintion a continent is always connected to itself (always).

trunl
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7summits

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but the locks do not always connect the continents. and by defintion a continent is always connected to itself (always).

trunl
Nope, a continent is surrounded by water (always), which is slightly different and not the case.
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guest

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but the locks do not always connect the continents. and by defintion a continent is always connected to itself (always).
That ridiculous.  First of all, there is always some connection, even if it is not static.

But secondly, and more importantly, a canal, even an unborken one, is not enough to make a seperate continent.  If it was, then Ontario, Quebec, and the rest of NE Canada would be considered an island, since they are seperated completely from the rest of North America by rivers that flow north from the great lakes to the Hudson, and east from the great lakes to the Atlantic.  Similarly, all of the Eastern US would be one island thanks to the river flowing south out of Lake Michigan that eventually reaches the Missisippi.  I could provide more examples if you like.  Rivers and other shallow waterways are simply NOT sufficient to divide a continent.

The fact is that we do have only four major continents: Antarctica, the Americas, Australia, and Africa/Eurasia.  For reasons of tradition, we have split the two largest of these into five continents.  That's fine, it's a nice self-contained exception to the rule.
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Rivers and other shallow waterways are simply NOT sufficient to divide a continent.
That's exactly my point for including Papua/PNG as part of the Australian continent. They were connected only a short period ago and now the water level has just risen enough to cover the connection with a shallow layer of water. But I would watch out with big deep cruiseships there ...
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trunl

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it doesnt matter how thick or thin the waterway separating the continents are. it just matters that they are there. and can you please give me the source of the definition you found that says that a continent is completely surrounded by water (always)?
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