Everest from orbit

When you fly across the country on a jet, you’re used to seeing an oblique view of the landscape with the horizon plainly visible. Most pictures you’ve seen from space, on the other hand, are taken looking more or less straight down. But this turns out to be a matter of convenience and convention more than anything else. Planes don’t have glass-bottomed viewing galleries, and satellites don’t look sideways at the planet. But the International Space Station does offer spectacular airplane-like views of Earth. Look at this picture of Everest and Makalu from NASA’s Earth Observatory Newroom. Be sure and click on the full-size image link… it’s mesmerizing. The view is from Tibet, and Everest actually looks like the second tallest mountain in the picture. I remember years ago looking at fanciful National Geographic diagrams of what a view from this vantage might look like. To actually see it naked before you like this is almost… pornographic.

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