Cho Oyu, like Mount Everest, towers over 8000m and straddles the border between Nepal and Tibet (China). The peak is first seen far down the valley of the Ngozumpa glacier, which can barely be spotted in the bottom right corner of this image (it looks like a dirty hill as the glacier is receding and has become covered with dirt and rock). The prime location for this photo is along the dividing ridge of older rock pushed aside during the glacier’s last advance down the valley many hundreds of years ago.
On the left side of the ridge is Gokyo, a small town and the last settlement before the mountain. On the right side is the calving glacier with its emerald pools and gray sheen. Standing at 8,201 meters (26,906 ft) above sea level, Cho Oyu is sixth highest mountain in the world, creating its own weather (see future images for examples). With perfect atmospheric conditions, the evening spent shooting the mountain was cold and very rewarding.