Mount Hope becomes UK's new highest mountain after satellites reveal previous measurement was wrong

Peak dwarfs the highest mountain in the British Isles: Ben Nevis

Ciara Nugent
Monday 11 December 2017 18:32
Comments
Mount Hope is 3,239 metres, meaning it knocks Mount Jackson, the current title holder at 3,184 metres, off the top spot
Mount Hope is 3,239 metres, meaning it knocks Mount Jackson, the current title holder at 3,184 metres, off the top spot

Britain has a new highest mountain after new satellite data revealed the peak was almost 400 metres taller than previously thought.

Mount Hope, in the British Atlantic Territory, was recently re-measured and found to be 377 metres taller than previous calculations.

This takes it to 3,239 metres, meaning it knocks Mount Jackson, the current title holder at 3,184 metres, off the top spot.

"Modern satellite data highlights how inaccurate previous surveys and maps were for some parts of the region,” said Adrian Fox, head of mapping and geographic information at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS).

Both Hope and Jackson still dwarf the highest mountain in the British Isles, Ben Nevis, which stands at 1,345 metres.

The discovery came as part of a mapping project led by BAS. It was prompted by calls to improve safety for planes that fly over the Antarctic, which are essential in an isolated region with few roads.

"Maps with reliable measurements of the highest peaks are an essential safety requirement for flight planning,” said Mr Fox.

"Accurate elevation data from satellite imagery now allows us to produce these resources for Antarctica, where flying is difficult at the best of times."

A lack of nearby airfields makes flying over the continent dangerous. The proximity to the magnetic south pole also complicates navigation.

"As well as discovering Mount Hope is the highest mountain in the territory, we have identified several other interesting discoveries,” he said.

"These include new mountain heights, ranges in new locations by up to five kilometres and even some new peaks which hadn't been surveyed before.”

Sir Alan Duncan, the Foreign Office minister with responsibility for the polar regions, said: "The discovery of Mount Hope as the UK's tallest peak is a great example of British science making big steps forward in mapping techniques to help us get a better understanding of this fascinating region."

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in