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The Original WWP

(March 20, 2004)

Mickael Therer

Adèle's 9th Birthday

Matthias Taugwalder

Among 29 Giants

Gornergrat, Zermatt/Switzerland

03:30 pm MEZ

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© 2004 Matthias Taugwalder, All Rights Reserved.

Welcome to the heart of the alps! This panorama was shot above Gornergrat (3089 meters above sea-level, 10134 feet). Gornergrat is easily accessible from Zermatt in 45 minutes by Europe's highestcogwheel railway.

Zermatt is situated quite in the centre of Europe, surrounded by not less than 29 peaks higher than 4000 meters (13123 feet). The striking, pyramid-shaped outline of the famous Matterhorn has become a symbol for Switzerland, used for advertising purposes all over the world. Unfortunately the weather was cloudy on March, 20.

In the picture you can see the following mountains (from left to right, starting at the top of the so-called Gorner glacier): Monte Rosa (4634m), Lyskamm (4527m), Castor (4228m), Pollux (4092m), Breithorn (4164m), Matterhorn in clouds (4478m). These mountains form the natural border to Italy. The building is Europe's highest hotel and also hosts an observatory operated by the universities of Cologne and Bonn (both in Germany). To the right of the observatory, follow the other mountains such as Dent Blanche (4357m), Obergabelhorn (4063m), Zinalrothorn (4221m) and Weisshorn (4505m).

Even some parts of Africa are visible in the picture. Yes, you read it right! Through the formation of the fold mountains, a part of the African plate stayed here in Europe. The Matterhorn was later formed from this plate. But here's another interesting fact: At the end of February of this year strong storms arrived here from Africa containing dust from the Sahara desert. This dust deposited on the mountains and glaciers. In the picture you can see these deposits in the form of slightly red patterns on the glacier.

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